Wilfred: “Forward” Review
“IS THAT A JAR FILLED WITH PENS? YOU WOULDN’T DARE.”
Note: The following review goes into detail about the episode. SPOILER ALERT!
Wilfred seems to be on a roll in its final season, delivering another experimental, standout episode that put Ryan and Wilfred together in the basement examining a story from multiple angles. Believing Wilfred to be the trickster god “Krungel,” revealed to him last episode by the psychologist, Ryan has tied Wilfred up in the basement after an embarrassing incident at a prospective preschool for Kristen’s son Joffrey. Ryan’s initial interrogation of Wilfred was priceless as he “tortured” him by shaking a can of pens and crinkling a bag of dog food when it’s not meal time. (“The unrealized expectation of food! Aah!”) Ryan then recounts the tale of Wilfred hilariously showing up with a backpack containing a ski mask, a bottle of whiskey, and sex toys, all of which he spilled out right in front of Kristen, Ryan, and the head of the preschool, an act which Ryan attributes to Wilfred’s drive to constantly ruin his life.
However, things aren’t exactly as they appear as Wilfred reveals his side of the story, mixing some obvious lies in with some great Wilfred moments as he purchased a gerbil, confiscated the whiskey from his “AA Partner,” and bought a ski mask as a gift for Joffrey (“You wouldn’t know it, but it gets cold in Southern California”). Much like seeing Jason Gann out of costume last episode, the segment from Wilfred’s point of view was hilarious and delivered everything it should’ve, from the black-and-white “dog vision” filter to finally seeing Bear as Wilfred sees her: an aging woman with a raspy voice dressed in nothing but a bikini. Perfect. The exploration of the relationship between Ryan and Wilfred was excellent as well, with Ryan using the show’s own narrative to point out various moments where Wilfred has screwed him over and Wilfred cleverly and hilariously dodging each one.
But the real meat came in the episode’s third act, when Wilfred revealed he had spilled his sex toys in order to spare Ryan a meeting with his ex-girlfriend Amanda (remember her going insane in the Season 2 finale?). This added a nice dimension to the friendship between Ryan and Wilfred as well as a great twist to an already fleshed out story. The best scene was delivered when Ryan finally went to test out Wilfred’s theory as Ryan came face-to-face with Amanda, who has indeed been released from the mental hospital. Smallville’s Allison Mack once again played Amanda, and gave one of the best performances in the entire series as she filled Ryan in on what had happened in her life since they’d been apart. Her gut-wrenching confession that she can’t handle being with Ryan again provided both an excellent character moment not only for her and Ryan, but also for Ryan and Wilfred, as he was revealed to have been telling the truth and trying to protect his friend for once.
All in all, this turned out to be yet another standout episode of Wilfred. The interrogation segments that framed the episode were fantastic, and Elijah Wood, Jason Gann, and Allison Mack all turned in some stellar performances and got to flex both their comedy and drama muscles. It moved the story forward while providing some hilarious comedy (more 50-year old chain smoker bear, please!) and delivered that awesome dramedy that has made Wilfred such an absolute joy to watch.
How did you react to seeing Amanda? Were you too tricked by the sound of pens in a jar? Let us know in the comments below.
*We do not comment on anything relating to previews for the next episode and beyond.
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