Suburgatory's Season 2 Premiere: A Glorious "Homecoming" Indeed

Suburgatory S02E01: "Homecoming"

"They also have a variety of caucasian beverages."

I missed Chatswin. The occasionally subtle but generally over-the-top comedy, the premise that harkens back to my own suburban youth, the will-they-won't-they between George and Tessa. And Dalia. Most of all, Dalia.

Dalia was a character I never thought I'd like, especially in the beginning of the first season. I thought she wanted to be Regina George too hard, but without the chops Rachel McAdams brought to the role. Slowly but surely, however, I grew to love Dalia's delivery, a dryness between knowing sarcasm and ignorant fate. She could've easily come off as a failed archetype, but instead she blossomed into a scene-stealer in spite of constantly looking dead behind the eyes.

With so much chaos at the end of last season in Chatswin, my hope was that Dalia would never change, that she would remain in that limbo of materialism and emotion until the jokes ran dry. But with Tessa going off to learn more about the maternal side of her family—then violating George's rules about Manhattan and seeking it out—and Lisa discovering her brother is adopted, it looked like Dalia was going to be left in the dust of story, story that threatened to be a little too dramatic for a show like this.

Happily, we got a reset button instead.

But not a horrible one. "Homecoming" expertly navigated the emotional impact of Tessa going to find the history of her mother while managing not to get too sanctimonious. After all, the heart of this show is the relationship between Tessa and George and how they are able to stand together against everything. If Tessa felt like she needed a mother in the mix, it might compromise that relationship (which might have been why the writers decided to brush away any ill-will toward her father by introducing "New George").

Lisa's storyline also threatened to be a long-lasting burden, but, happily, they wrapped it all up here, minus the minor thread where Ryan's birth mother might one day, indeed, show up. But burning down the potting shed (after a cunning turnaround by Sheila) signified the end of Lisa's corruption, thus pocketing the secret until, I don't know, winter hiatus? The Season 2 finale? In any case, I'm glad to see that, starting next week, we'll move on to more important things. Like Malik.

Noah and Dallas were the designated comic relief, their story being the most outlandishly bonkers (a gold Corolla? Awesome. But wha?). Their argument over Carmen was fine but this—this is where Dalia shines. Everything from telling Carmen "goodbye for good" to having the "second mother" speech with her, except replacing "second mother" with "housekeeper," stole the show from everyone around her. Even when she sat down next to Tessa on the bench and unloaded about her nanny problems, she won.

So, despite all the craziness, it looks like we have the same old crazy suburb we always had. I'm curious to see where we go now after we tied up so many of the loose ends from last season, but I'm also happy that we're not being overly burdened by the weight of those storylines. So for things look hopeful and Suburgatory is headed by people I feel I can trust. Chatswin, bitches!


NOTES:

– Carmen also had a good night: "What gold thing have you given me? Not one gold thing."

– If Tessa left for Manhattan at the beginning of the summer and Eden is gone, did that make it the Summer of George?

– I've never known anyone like the Shays but they seem like my idea of what people were doing inside many of the houses in my suburban subdivision. I like to think of my neighbors popping in and out of trashcans to deliver punchlines.

– The Tessa and Dalia relationship is another part of the show that could've gone south quickly. I like how these two don't play into the archetype and have a unique bond together, despite that fact that they can't stand each other on the surface. They sit on the bench and, though Dalia seems oblivious, you can tell that they both care what the other person thinks.

– I hate when characters sing whole songs on shows that aren't musicals. It makes me cringe. One exception: Lorelai Gilmore on Gilmore Girls, singing "I Will Always Love You" at karaoke as Luke walked in. But I'm only human.

– Malik and his Medium group. I HEART THIS SHOW.

Suburgatory "Homecoming" Photos

QUESTIONS:

1. Did New George seem natural to you or a little forced?

2. Would you've settled the Carmen dispute with a Roshambo? I think Dallas would've fared better in a contest featuring feats of strength.

3. Over/Under on how many episodes before Ryan's birth mom shows up: - 6.

Comments (26)
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Oct 21, 2012
"he's in character!"

Love this nonsense.
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Oct 21, 2012
Very good episode and I absolutely agree about Dahlia. She's pure comedy. This show has already grown on me, I like everything about it with one exception. I don't like Tessa. She acts like a hipster wannabe, very annoying.,,and it's a shame, considering the show revolves around her
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Oct 20, 2012
Cute episode.
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Oct 20, 2012
I didn't realize how much this show was missing from my life until I watched it :) Gosh I love this show. That's all I need to say :D
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Oct 19, 2012
Medium Fan Club dance group was funny but I pick Baby with Coffee Cup Holder headband for the win.
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Oct 19, 2012
I loved when Tessa sang the theme song. Kind of sweet :) and she had a surprisingly good voice.
1
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Feb 11, 2015
yeah.. me too
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Oct 19, 2012
I almost forgot how great the show is. Everything was hilarious, the ending was slightly emotional, followed by really funny. (I cracked up when I realized it was the theme song)

This show and Happy Endings are equally great.
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Oct 19, 2012
MY third favorite comedy after Community and Happy Endings. It is an above average sitcom and can go crazy or normal depending on the plot. This should be winning best ensemble cast at the Emmy's.
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Oct 19, 2012
loved the medium's dance group! and yeah dalia is an awesome character (especially her dead eyes)
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Oct 19, 2012
The extended theme song in Tessa's performance was ingenious. They're creating a mythos to a television theme.
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Staff
Oct 20, 2012
Agree whole-heartedly. It was an interesting choice for the show to make sure the song that opens the show was included in the mythology. And to create a specific mythology in general. The first season focused more on the issues of a teenage girl growing up without a maternal figure and how she was nagged by it only occasionally. By introducing that song element, we have a mystery of the absent mother (paralleled by Ryan's birth mother) with clues and connections.
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Oct 19, 2012
Dalia: "Carmen, I just want to let you know that even if you decide not to be a housekeeper anymore I'll always think of you as a housekeeper... even if you like cure cancer, to me you'll always be like a housekeeper and I want you to know that."
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Oct 18, 2012
What happened to for the Winsday? I know The Neighbours is no Happy Endings, but still.
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Oct 18, 2012
pretty good episode glad it's back.
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Oct 18, 2012
I just love Dalia. And kinda feel sorry for Lisa, being ignored by her mom like that. Medium dance group!! Wish they'd show more of that!! Malik in an Allison-wig, never gets old.
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Oct 18, 2012
This was the zaniest one they've ever made, which was fine by me. Last night I had my pleasantest nightmare ever.
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Oct 18, 2012
The medium dance group in the talent show was the best thing I've ever seen, had me cracking up!
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Oct 18, 2012
I know, I was sad when they cut away from it. I wanted to see more.
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Staff
Oct 20, 2012
I wanted so much more. I want a web series of what happens at the Medium fan club meetings.
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Oct 18, 2012
There is a typo on the title, I see that it's "Surburgatory" :P
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Oct 19, 2012
I don't think anyone edits these things until after they are posted.
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Staff
Oct 20, 2012
They do sometimes.
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Oct 18, 2012
..."the will-they-won't-they between George and Tessa." I'm hoping you meant between George and Dallas, because your way is just creepy. :)

So glad that they're back. Love this show!
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Oct 18, 2012
THE SUMMER OF GEORGE! Perfect Seinfeld reference right there. You should win an Emmy for that one Nick.
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Oct 18, 2012
I'm giving the singing a pass because it was the theme song.
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