Moderator: Chief Couch Potato Kylie
Who: “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” is a Netflix original series, always available on Netflix.
What: “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” a situation comedy about a woman who, along with three other women, is rescued from an underground bunker in rural Indiana after being kidnapped or otherwise stuck inside for fifteen years as member of a doomsday cult, the leader of which convinced them that the world had ended, and that the apocalypse had come. Kimmy (Ellie Kemper, The Office) decides to start her life over in New York City, out of time and out of place. Hilarity ensues.
The heroine of the title, Kimmy Schmidt (Kemper), is one of five women to emerge from an underground bunker in Indiana, having been, in some respects, unwitting members of a doomsday cult. The five women were trapped in this bunker, with their religious leader Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne (Jon Hamm), for fifteen years; Kimmy and her bunker-mates emerge into the twenty-first century while still stuck in the twentieth. Brimming with endless optimism and a healthy dose of girl power, Kimmy decides to start her brand new life away from small town Indiana by setting up in New York City. She luckily finds a rent controlled, in a manner of speaking, apartment with a fabulous new roommate named Titus Andromedon (D’Fwan from 30 Rock, Tituss Burgess) and an aging hippie landlord named Lillian, played by – happiest of all surprises – character actress Carol Kane. She secures a job as a nanny with a ridiculously rich Park Avenue family, the Voorhees, the matriarch of which is boss from hell and new best friend Jacqueline (now White as of Season Two, Jane Krakowski, 30 Rock/Ally McBeal). Mostly, Kimmy finds herself full of optimism but is otherwise a struggling fish out of water and out of time, as she attempts to create an adult life for herself, having lost such a significant part of her childhood to the spartan and strange life of the bunker.
When: The third season of the series was released in its entirety on Netflix on May 19, 2017.
Where: The action is set in and around New York City, though there are occasional flashbacks to the bunker, which is in Indiana.
Why: The show was created by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, the producer/creative team responsible for giving us 30 Rock, of which the panelists are generally huge fans. Many of us also enjoyed Ellie Kemper quite a bit in The Office and in the movie Bridesmaids, as she’s got great comedic timing. This show was on CPU!’s list of pilots to watch for the 2014-2015 season and was originally slated to air on NBC, but when Netflix picked it up instead, it was an easy choice to switch over.
How – as in How’s It Going? (THOUGHTS…at present)
CPU! started covering “Kimmy” from the beginning. If you haven’t heard our previous Kimmy podcasts, listen/watch via the embedded links below:
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt blew up the internet when it was first released, which is not surprising, because it’s extremely funny, particularly in how it catches the viewer off guard with its wacky humor, witty dialogue (no doubt spearheaded by Fey), stunt casting, and generally zany but positive tone. Because these elements continued into the third season, our UBK panel – including original panelists Kristen, Nick, Sarah, Krista, and Andrew – proved eager to reconvene once again to discuss Season Three.
Of course, in September of last year, CPU! went LIVE! and live streamed at its Facebook page from Comedy Outlet Mondays at Dog Story Theater in Cool City Grand Rapids, Michigan, to talk Kimmy, her compatriots, and their second season. So, naturally, because we went live last year, we decided to try to uphold (though not quite) a tradition (though not really) – and we attempted to do this latest episode as a “live podcast” from “the bunker,” lacking the live studio audience but including all sorts of bunker-like ambiance. Sadly, technology failed us, and we did not produce a good live-stream video to provide for your viewing pleasure, but always prepared – like the boy scouts! – we still recorded an audio version of the podcast, which is the link you will find below. Do you agree or disagree with our thoughts on the third season? Let us know if there is anything that you think we missed!
This podcast was recorded on August 29, 2017, and there are, without question, MAJOR SPOILERS. Listen at your own risk, and let us know what you think by commenting below!
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Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly! Next Wednesday, we’re back around the water cooler to give our Marvel Agents of SHIELD panel, slightly larger and slightly more robust than before, and the correlating episode another go as our panel reconvenes to dissect the jam-packed second half of Season 4. Stay tuned!
Questions, Impressions, and Future Considerations
1) Where will season three begin? Will we get to see Titus on the cruise ship?
ANSWER: Season Three began some time after the end of season two, in or around two months. We saw Titus on the cruise ship but not until later on in the season, as he mysteriously appears back in New York City in the beginning of the season, having left the job under circumstances about which he is initially unwilling to divulge details.
2) Are Titus and Mikey going to move in together when Titus returns? Will Kimmy still be living with them?
ANSWER: Quite the contrary – Titus, plagued by doubt and insecurity, as other guys start flirting with Mikey, and as Titus discovers that he and his beau have very different interests, decides to break up with Mikey, claiming that the first boyfriend Mikey is “out” with should not be “the one,” and that Mikey should feel free to experiment. The only trouble with Titus’ rash decision is that he realizes that he loves Mikey and spends the rest of the season sort of stalking him and pining after him, finally resolving to get back together with him in the end. Of course, Kimmy remains Titus’ ever loyal roommate throughout.
3) Who is Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne marrying? Or, is he already married? Many of the panel bet on Gretchen, but we were confused by the phase of marriage to which the good reverend was referring.
ANSWER: Wendy Hebert (Laura Dern) is the woman in question, who somehow falls for the persuasive Reverend; to be fair, she does not appear to be in possession of all of her marbles. It is also explained that the Reverend was also married to each of the Mole Women, including Kimmy, who refuses to provide the Reverend’s requested divorce in order to protect Wendy, who seems oblivious to the fact that the Reverend is a former cult leader and current felon.
4) Will Dong ever return for Kimmy?
ANSWER: He hasn’t yet.
5) Will we see Kimmy’s mom, Lori Ann (Lisa Kudrow), again? Is she still married to Kimmy’s stepdad, played by Tim Blake Nelson?
ANSWER: She hasn’t yet, and the latter answer has not, as yet, been clarified.
1) Will we see any more representatives from 30 Rock, since Season Three was lousy with 30 Rock cameos?
2) Will there be a larger plot involving the Reverend, since he and Kimmy are still married?
3) Will Tina Fey always play AHN-drea Andrea?
4) Will Titus and Mikey get back together?
5) Will Lillian (Carol Kane) and Artie reunite?
6) Will Jenna, I mean, Jackie Lynn, I mean Jacqueline be funnier as an agent?
7) Will Kimmy find her raison d’etre?
8) Will Lisa Kudrow come back? She was well received by our panel.
In discussing Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the panel universally agrees that the third season of the quirky sitcom is not as fresh or as successfully executed as the series’ first two seasons. Though all panelists still enjoy moments of laughter provided by the show’s over the top characters and absurdist situations, many of the panelists struggled with the third season’s reach for gimmicks, like the meta connection to Orange is the New Black, and generally disjointed situational story lines, citing Jacqueline’s relationship to Russ (David Cross/Billy Magnussen) as a divergent low point, even as Titus’ various exploits, including his viral hit “Boobs in California,” spark consistent laughter. Still, all agree that the show is a great sitcom with easy laughs by the minds who produced 30 Rock; thus, we feel there is little to lose in continuing to watch it and recommend it highly to anyone simply wanting an entertaining show at which to laugh.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt was renewed for a fourth season; however, no release date has been announced by Netflix as of the publication of this post. The UBK podcast panel will next reconvene following the release of the fourth season, which will likely occur in or around Spring 2017. As always, CPU! will keep you informed of news and additional show coverage. Until then!
NEXT CPU! LIVE!
CPU! will be LIVE at COM (Comedy Outlet Mondays at Dog Story Theater) on October 2, 2017, for our 100th episode! Like our Facebook page to keep abreast of the event – which will publish in September! Stay tuned for all the details!