Happy! Review: Coming Together

At the end of last week’s Happy!, I thought the naked fellow that sat down next to Nick was just some weirdo nonsequitur meant to give the episode a bizarre ending. I failed to recognize that he was actually Mikey Scarramucci, Blue’s “favorite nephew” After this realization, I was thrilled to see what would happen on this week’s episode, and I was not disappointed.

Last week’s episode was a bit slow because it felt like a set up, and this week is also a set up, but a much more exciting and well-executed one. “The Scrap Yard of Childish Things” had everything, excitement, real, raw emotion, lots of laughs, and tons of dark, dark moments.

We start with Happy, who I assumed had “poofed” out of existence entirely, but it turns out he just ran away. Where to exactly? Where else would this show take us besides a support group for imaginary friends who’s creators have stopped believing in them (one of which looked suspiciously like a green mitten, hmmmm). This support group is lead by a three-headed cartoon dog named Raspberry, appropriately voiced by veteran voice actor Billy West, who gives each of the heads a different cartoony voice.

This concept on its own is hilarious and well executed, if not a bit predictable. Happy finds unexpected support from these friends – who exhibit the spirit of the show, as they are cute imaginary friends who curse and face the dark elements of the real world – but all is not what it seems with Raspberry, who invites Happy to stay with his friend, who “has enough belief” for all of them. The offer is suspicious, and a bit cliched, but what comes later is exciting and insane.

Cut to Nick and a naked Mikey Scarramucci taking pictures in a photo booth. Yes, you read that right. Nick is still shocked that his gunshot didn’t hit any vital organs, a fact which he is happy to point out by fingering the bullet wound. Good God, this show is insane.

So, Nick brings Mikey to a local church to hide him away from Blue, and also because he’s pretty out of it since being shot in the chest, unable to take care of himself. Nick drops him off after being a dick to the priest and he leaves the church to go confront Blue about Very Bad Santa.

Then we check in on the kidnapped kids, who have been dolled up in different costumes, and boy is it creepy. It’s made even creepier by the fact that we know they’re referred to as “gifts” both in prior episodes and in a later scene. This scene doesn’t last long, and neither do most scenes in the episode, something I found kept the excitement going. This episode is still setting up things for the final showdowns and whatnot, but it wasn’t as boring as last week’s, everything is light and fast and nothing lasts longer than it needs to.

After this, Nick confronts Blue. Blue is at his son’s Christmas play, looking like he’d rather be anywhere else when Nick pops up behind him with a gun to his back. Nick tells Blue that he knows about Very Bad Santa and the kids and that one of them is his, so they set up a “deal” to get Hailey back, using Mikey as a bargaining chip.

However, that bargaining chip is no longer on the table since he escaped from the church. After a scary/funny series of events in which Mikey scares the priest into losing his faith, taking off his collar, stealing the church donations, and running away, the disoriented Scarramucci son starts wandering the streets, being drawn to his mother, supposedly by her cooking, with the help of the old spirit medium.

However, it seems like Blue never intended to keep his end of the deal, since Smoothie, still looking after the kids, tells them that whichever one of them is Hailey, their dad is dead. Whatever Blue’s reason for manipulating the kids like this, it doesn’t seem to work, since in a later scene we get this amazing character moment where Hailey decides to stop waiting for others to save her.

Happy and her dad aren’t coming to help so she steps up and leads the kids to escape. It is unsuccessful, however, since it turns out what looked like the streets of New York is actually a facade, and the kids are threatened to go back inside. But the, for lack of a better term, spark of revolution is there, and I feel like things are continuing to fall into place for next episode.

We check back in on Happy, who has taken Raspberry up on his offer to stay with a new friend. Turns out, this new friend is Blue’s son, Gerry, and boy do things get dark. Turns out that Gerry is just as much of a psychopath as his father and has been accumulating imaginary friends, with the help of Raspberry, to put through torturous trials, playing Russian roulette and pinning them to a wall until he’s ready to kill them. I’ll say it again, this show is f***ing insane. Once Happy finds out that this new home isn’t the sanctuary he thought it’d be, he tries to run, finding the aforementioned pinned imaginary friends, eventually being cornered by Raspberry and Gerry.

Between all of this, Nick finds out that Mikey has left the church and he needs a way to get what he wants out of Blue, which involves seeing Le Dic again, a scene which showcases some of Christopher Meloni’s amazing slapstick physical acting. After a heartfelt plea that does nothing to get Le Dic to help him, Nick just throws some cash out for the C4 he needs and he’s off to enact his plan.

Unfortunately, the plan doesn’t work, and since Mikey showed up at his mother’s house, where the reality show is filming, Blue knows via tabloid news that Mikey is not in Nick’s trunk. And, since the C4 didn’t work, Blue orders his men to kill Nick.

Nick is taken into the garage while Happy is is cornered by Raspberry and Gerry. Nick is given some last moments to reflect on his life, a moment hilariously given to him by one of Blue’s men, who respects Nick so much that he asks to take a picture before he kills him.

Nick rattles off one of his signature cynical speeches with a touch of worldly understanding in his final moments that continues to satirize and subvert the grizzeld cop archetype, and in the process, Happy hears him through the house’s vents. Knowing that Nick is still out there, and in trouble, Happy pierces Raspberry with his horn and kills him before flying off to rescue Nick.

The death of Raspberry frightens Gerry so much that he runs screaming for his dad, only to stumble upon Nick and Blue’s men in the garage. His mother also walks in, both being scared by the scene before them. Happy finally finds Nick, who uses the distraction to go all “Nick Sax” on them, throwing one of the guys into his chainsaw-wielding buddy so hard that both of them get sliced up.

Nick and Happy finally reunite, and Nick, in a moment of vulnerability, tells Happy he believes in him, returning color and life back to the imaginary horse, who was starting to fall apart. The two claim they still have work to do and with fire in their eyes, the episode ends.

“The Scrap Yard of Childish Things” was magnificent, one of the best episodes so far. It had everything the series aims to have, comedy (a lot of it being great physical work by the actors), dark turns, genuine thrills and of course, off-the-rails insanity that makes Happy! unlike any show on TV. I was excited by both the episode itself and by what it set up for next week, as things are really starting to come together, a theme of the episode – Happy and Nick found each other again, the kidnapped children rallied together, and Mikey returned to his mother.

But, as with other great episodes of the series, there was one aspect that weighed it down. In this case it was Merry, who I like as a character – she’s sassy and doesn’t take shit and fights to get out of a tough situation, – but her story and the time she is given in each episode makes it harder and harder to care.

Once again, her father is brought in to hijack her character’s agenda, and “secrets”(?) are revealed by her mother – who is now surprisingly lucid – revealing a connection between her father’s death and Blue. It is then revealed that her mother overdosed on her medication (on purpose?) and she collapses on the floor after saying that Merry doesn’t have to protect her any more. It was just a mess of a scene and it felt like a forced subplot.Merry is still a likable character, but it feels like the show doesn’t know what to do with her sometimes, thus this uninteresting subplot, which was the only bad part of the episode.

Otherwise, “The Scrap Yard of Childish Things” was a wonderful way to amp up tension and excitement for the last two episodes of the season, bringing laughs and insanity along the way.

Stay tuned next week for the penultimate episode of Happy!‘s first season!

Happy! Season 1, Episode 6: "The Scrap Yard of Childish Things"
  • Happy! S1E6
4.5

Summary

Our heroes reach their last resorts and end up in some pretty tight spots on this week’s Happy!

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