Happy Endings "Boys II Menorah" Review: On the Wings of Love Airlines

Happy Endings S03E03: "Boys II Menorah"

Happy Endings is the perfect show for age of pop culture we’re leaving in. It’s quick, with rapid-fire jokes. The show operates under the notion that its audience gets the references it’s making. The characters abbreviate everything. If Twitter were a TV show, it would be Happy Endings. (This is not a suggestion to turn Twitter into a TV show, though, especially not a show starring William Shatner. Knock that sh*t off.)

While Family Guy gets mocked for having bare-bones plots that only serve as delivery vehicles for jokes, Happy Endings manages to cram more story and more jokes into thirty minutes than any other show on TV (well, any other show except Community, but that show is unfortunately not on TV right now). See, manatees who write Family Guy? You can have both plot and jokes.

Anyway, let's talk about last night's episode, "Boys II Menorah." Max may be one of the funniest characters on TV, but the guy sure can’t hold down a job. Out of the limo-driving business, Max became a bar mitzvah hype guy. After realizing how much Max was enjoying the gig, Brad convinced Max to let him join his hype crew, and the two became Boys II Menorah. The two guys worked great together (Brad even learned Max’s entire routine in 15 minutes), but things went bad when Brad put his own spin on Max’s dreidel dance. Brad went behind Max’s back to perform solo—betrayal!—but Max caught him in the act and challenged Brad to a hype-off. Did they make up? Of course they made up. Boys II Menorah was a great group, but it wasn’t worth ruining their friendship over. This isn’t Mandonna we’re talking about.

Meanwhile, thanks to some prodding on Jane’s part, Alex set out to rekindle the spark between her and Dave. Alex being Alex, her plan didn’t go so well. While Jane and Brad are experts at role playing, Alex’s skills need some work. First pointer? Open a window when you’re playing sexy painter. Alex’s attempt at romance ended when paint ruined both Dave's Lasiks and his Asics. Dave, in turn, set about planning a romantic getaway for Alex. Even though he couldn’t whisk Alex away to Paris, Dave enlisted Jane’s help to create a bit of Paris in Chicago. (Hopefully Dave and Alex will someday get to visit Paris. When they were first together, Dave gave Alex a snow globe of Paris with a key to his apartment taped on the bottom, knowing back then that it was her dream to go there. It was a nice touch on Happy Endings’ part to call back to that.) The quality of Jane’s fake invitation was just too good, though, and Alex wound up getting detained at the airport after trying to board Love Airlines.

Bringing Dave and Alex back together was a risky move for a show whose very existence was based on the idea that Alex left Dave at the altar for a guy on rollerblades. And having the two back as a couple hasn’t exactly been easy. There seems to an uncertainty in how to move the characters forward. Zachary Knighton and Elisha Cuthbert are the show’s most improved players, but all they can do is go with the flow when it comes to being a couple again. Knighton and Cuthbert have chemistry and they're always funny to watch together, but I don’t know what Happy Endings’ next move is with them. Do you keep them together? Do you break them up forever? Do you trap them in on-again/off-again limbo?

Penny was kind of on her own this episode. When she joined J-Date back in Season 1, I’m sure she never dreamed that Jewish men would someday be throwing themselves at her... or at least, not 13-year-old Jewish “men” at bar mitzvahs. Ah, 5773 isn’t going to be the Year of Penny either.



NOTES & QUOTES


– Max introduced the man of honor at a bar mitzvah: “He entered a boy, but will be leaving a— Entered a boy doesn’t sound great. He came— Still doesn’t sound great.”

– Could we get an entire Happy Endings episode where we just follow Max around and learn the secrets of his life and many jobs?

– Alex after learning the realities of kosher eating: “Can I still stay friends with my pig friends?” Dave: “Of course... of course...” Penny: “Pig friends?”

– As I’ve said after past episodes, Brad and Jane are one of the greatest couples on TV. I’m amazed at how much the show gets past censors when it comes to these two.

– Alex referring to Dave’s sunglasses: “Did the doctor make you wear those?” Dave: “Yeah, Dr. Style.”

– Jane helping Dave set up a romantic getaway for Alex: “What is one place Alex has always wanted to visit?” Dave: “Smurf Village.”

– Dave to Jane after realizing how realistic-looking the ticket for Love Airlines was: “You don’t think Alex saw this and thought...” Jane: “No, there’s no way she would actually...” Dave: “But she can be pretty...” Jane: “Yeah, there was there what time she ate that...” Dave: “Well, in her defense it did smell like...” Jane: “You would think after one bite...” Dave: “You know what, let’s just say what we’re both thinking. Alex went to the airport.” Jane (at the same time): “Only an idiot eats a candle.”

– Someone should set Alex up with How I Met Your Mother’s Nick. This candle-eating thing is a trend this week.

Comments (47)
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Great episode!
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I'm stil disappointed that they got Dave and Alex back together the three episodes since they've been reunited have felt anything but so good. Happy Endings was once a show that I looked forward to watching every week because it was able to find humour in reality... I just feel like the last three episodes have been so farcical that it feels like a totally different show.

Regarding the character eating a candle joke, which is sadder that it took HIMYM 8 seasons to do the joke where it only took Happy Endings 3 or that Happy Endings did a joke in its 3rd season that HIMYM was able to wait 8 seasons to make...?
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"....do you wanna go with amish country which is three hundred pieces or with mount rushmore wich is....one piece. I bought a place mat." That line was just so ridiculous and caught me completely off guard. Loved it. This episode was pure gold. One of the best of the series. Really great show.
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Alex and Nick would have beauthiful children...
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Jane has been the funniest this season. Loved the nude season in the first episode, sexy and hilarious.
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i loved this epi! and i think dave and alex should stay together for a while so we can see where it goes.. if it doesnt work out (i think it's working out so far), just break up forever.... please dont be on-off couple cuz it's annoying
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Funeral seat fillers totally needs to be a thing (if it's actually not).
"Hehe, you fools! That only makes me stronger!" Jane's delivery of that was awesome.
I really enjoyed this one.
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A good show, but still nowhere near Community which is definitely more of a niche audience (more subtle jokes, pop culture references, and character development). I can see how some would like Happy Endings more, but I don't think it's starting to eclipse Community by any means. The characters are good but I think the plots could use some work; they are way too predictable.
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I've loved this show from the first episode but as time passes and the jokes get faster, as a Brit I'm missing many of the cultural references. Or maybe I'm starting to get too old. Still love the characters though and I'm persevering.
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I love this show, its hilarious, and how awesome is Jane
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Hilarious episode!!! I loved the Barmitzvah hyping, plus Alex getting arrested at the airport?!! LMFAO!!! Love Airlines!! I pretty much like every character. Don't have a favorite right now, but I do think Brad and Jane together are just so funny!! I don't understand the complaints about this show at all. I think its very funny. There are a few better comedies (Parks and Rec, Modern Family, Cougartown) but its still a very good one.
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I love Max and Penny! Don't get ALL of the references tho, do you have to be American to get them?
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Poor Max got his thunder stolen. And Penny nearly showing the goods to those boys in the coatroom a la the panties scene from Sixteen Candles when all they wanted was a ride, that was gold.
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I can't believe how much Damon Wayans Jr looks like his dad. Too bad he doesn't have the same sense of humor.
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On the contrary, I think he's just as funny as his dad. At times, even funnier. You put him and Jane together, even funnier.
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My question is, how old must Damon Wayans be to have a kid that old? And, yeah, the comedic DNA did not make its way fully down to the next gen.
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"Major Payne Jr." - I'd watch it.
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Good one. "Glimmer Man" anyone?
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@efonsecajr "Blanker Man"
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Order of characters I like from most to least: Alex, Brad, Max, Penny, Dave, Jane
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Which one is Elisha Cuthbert?
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Alex!
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Whoa, Jane last?
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I used to be luke warm on Jane but I don't know how anyone could hate her after the previous episode, she was unbelievably good.
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That should be the tag line for this show: "More annoying than funny"
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Yep, not a fan. I think she's more annoying than funny.
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On the fence If i should watch this show or not.
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I feel like somebody should stick a poll in here about whether or not Eli should watch this show.
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@Joshua, (next best thing), If I get 10 thumbs up for this post, I'll watch it!
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You should definitely watch it. It maintains a very tricky blend of non-stop hilarity with terrific well-rounded characters. Community has been the benchmark for comedy over the last few years but many of us (see Mate's comment below) are starting to think that Happy Endings might have eclipsed it - Happy Endings is that good. At least we'll have to see how good Community's new show runners are. I thought Happy Endings Season 1 wasn't it's best but Season 2 and Season 3 so far have just been outstanding (although this episode wasn't amongst my favourites). The main improvements from Season 1 to 2 were the characters of Alex and Dave that have come along in leaps and bounds.
So basically if people are calling it the best comedy on tv then you absolutely owe it to yourself to check it out, especially when there are so few good single camera comedies out there.
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Stay on the fence. There are much better comedies out there right now: Community, Parks and Rec, Fox News...
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@efonsecajr you should dig it this year, then. I think they scaled back the number of episodes quite a bit.
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@PaulWehrley I haven't seen it. Should I check it out? I liked her in Facts of Life.
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Is it bad if I'm a guy and I like the Mindy Project?
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I burned through Community in 2 weeks. I'd like each season but felt like 5-6 eps per season too long. Still very funny/creative.
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It's a lot of hit and miss. But the hits are funnier than pretty much anything on TV right now.
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@Edlyn, no way, moonpie? lol
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@Eli - I love TBBT! I named my cat Sheldon, haha.
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Intrigued. I don't watch/enjoy many comedies nowadays. Still stuck on Seinfeld and Big Bang Theory.
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Oh, I love it!
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Me too
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Best comedy on TV right now. The one liners are something that gets me every time. And even though, you could see Alex's mistake coming from a ways away. But the end result was so funny. Dave tossing the keys back and forth with the security guard. Jane getting tased and her reaction "this only makes me stronger" and then getting hit again. Eliza is just pure comedy genius. You really have to give it to ABC, they had a chance to cancel this, but they kept it and they are all the better for it.
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Nah Parks & Rec is still the best comedy.
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The show has its moments, but I'd like to see a two or three liner every once in a while. The humor is kind of one-dimensional.
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I can understand how the humour mightn't appeal to everyone, but if there's one thing this show clearly isn't it's 'recycled'. The characters, jokes and plot lines are nothing like any other show.
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I agree. I gave it a chance, but it just felt like recycled characters, jokes and plot lines.
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i agree. I think it's so close but still has a lot of room for improvement. but that's why I keep watching.
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