Melissa & Joey, "Going the Distance" & "All Politics is Local": comically wise

Quick Take: Melissa & Joey, "Going the Distance" & "All Politics is Local"
Be careful what you ask for. 

melissa & joey

Review: Melissa & Joey, "Going the Distance" & "All Politics is Local"
(S0123 & S1024) While Mel is enjoying her time dating a younger man, George, his carefree attitude is starting to get to her. She feels that the relationship is getting serious and that it's time for him to get a job. I'm reminded of the saying "don't fix what's not broken" at this point. She enlists Joe to lend some of his business savvy to him. Joe is reluctant at first but agrees to go along with it. While brainstorming with Joe on his job prospects, George asks Joe for advice on what to get Mel for their one-month anniversary. Knowing Mel so well, Joe suggests a music box that will play Mel's favorite song when opened. Joe is definitely the middle guy and problem solver for everyone. With Joe's help George lands a job... in Italy! Of course Mel is now upset with Joe for agreeing to help.  

George does ask Mel to go with him even telling her that Italy is perfect for her since she likes shoes and the country is shaped like a boot. Yes, it's a bit funny and stupid at the same time. It's the kind of quote that only a young minded individual could pull off. At first Mel says she can't go but after receiving his gift to her - which is double wrapped per Joe's suggestion - she agrees to a long-distance relationship since she feels that George must know her so well. Of course it's not George who knows her so well, but Joe. The whole situation is reminiscent of those stories where two best friends are in love with one another but don't think the other person wants them back. Sometimes those stories can be a little annoying and sickening. Thankfully there is more substance to this program.

As Mel is preparing a master calendar for her upcoming visits with George, Joe tells that her that she can't live her life on paper. After Lennox convinces Mel that she should be at the airport saying good-bye to George, she rushes there and they share a final kiss that determines the fate of their relationship. George wants to give up his job opportunity and stay with Mel, but she convinces him otherwise quoting Joe's comment about living one's life on paper. You have to love a comedy show that offers a little bit of wisdom for everyday life. 

No episode would be complete without a little bit of comedic relief. Ryder's girlfriend, Holly, is over-controlling, so much so that he can't even put his arm around her when he wants; it has to be on her terms. When she suggests taking their relationship to the next level, meeting her parents, Ryder gets nervous and asks Lennox for advice. It turns out he didn't need any advice. Her parents love him for the sheer fact that dating him has made their daughter much nicer. Considering how controlling she is with her parents I would hate to see what the mean version of her his. As it turns out, since meeting Holly's parents Ryder has been receiving texts from her mom bribing him with food to keep dating her. Too funny!

In the second new episode of the week, Mel's father, Senator Russell Burke, comes for a visit. Mel decides to let him stay at the house since he has been acting really nice to the family. Joe is suspicious and rightfully so. When a package arrives at the house for the Senator from an opposing councilman, Joe realizes that Mel's father is actually working against Mel on a bill that she supports. Joe confronts the Senator and tells him to tell Mel and he refuses. Joe takes it upon himself to tell her and she gets upset at her father's betrayal. Joe, being the voice of reason and wisdom, tells Mel that she needs to play it cool with her father. Sorry, I don't agree. Sometimes you need to get angry to let people know how you truly really feel.

Mel takes Joe's advice and her father ultimately ends up patronizing her. He knows that she wants to yell and scream but she doesn't and he totally plays on that. In the end he apologizes for how it made her feel but not for what he did. What kind of father is he? Mel turns to ice cream. At the council meeting her father speaks and everyone is hanging on his every word. In the end though, Mel is the victor and when she turns to speak to her father he has already left the meeting. She thinks it's because he's avoiding her since she defeated him. Back at the house she confronts him while he is smoking a cigar and he spins the whole thing around making her believe that he was hurt that she didn't come to him first for help on her bill. He has her hook, line and sinker. She tells Joe about the conversation and gives him one of her father's cigars, saying that cigars are like ice cream for old dudes. He laughs at her and tells that her that her dad has played her once again by using the emotional card. She doesn't believe him so Joe plays the card on her and she falls for it. Sometimes you have to learn that people will never change. They are who they are for a reason. 

Meanwhile Lennox has three poems published in the school's literary blog and that catches the attention of a popular girl in school, Jade, who aspires to be a singer/songwriter. Lennox agrees to help her tweak her songs but ultimately ends up writing them for her. Joe makes her question this and Lennox realizes that she's not cool with being taken advantage of. She confronts Jade and she's taken-a-back that Lennox has the nerve to say something to her but still dismisses Lennox. Joe, ever the businessman, strikes a deal with Jade for Lennox to write her songs and earn commission. Hey, you might as well get paid for your talents. There should definitely be more characters like Lennox on television to provide a positive role model to young girls. It's not worth being part of the popular crowd if you are just there for the wrong reasons. 

By Frances Seda

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