June 23, 2024

Fleishman is in Trouble: “Longtime no-see Dr. Fleishman” or “In this case, you’re the wife”

Damn you, Jeffrey Eisenberg. You’re going to make me write a couple hundred words praising your masterful work on “Fleishman is in Trouble” this week. I don’t usually care for roles unless you’re fighting Superman or zombies, but they should show some of your scenes in this weeks eps in acting classes. Its that good.

The show was once again close to perfect this week. This time chronicling Toby’s journey through the stages of mindset after finding out that his perfect wife, Rachel, had moved on to another man.

Eisenberg’s work in the empty apartment hallucinating the horrors of the mother of his children shotgunning pot smoke and eating beef lo mein with her new lover managed to be both ridiculous and devastating at the same time. This is the kind of irrational thoughts that run through the heads of the heartbroken who feel betrayed. We notice the body language in photos that have been there the entire time, and it takes a fake newscast announcement to finally wake you up.

Then they brought in the divine J. Smith Cameron who plays Gerri on “Succession”, acting in a similar advisory role, and who tells Toby in that he’s not even masculine enough to be considered the man in his own divorce.

And he’s wandering around town with this toaster he took from Rachel’s apartment, his sole token of ownership in a marriage where he never may have never have had any sort of element of true control. His reality is changing right in front of us.

Because Lizzy Caplan is great, the show also gives us a glimpse into her own existential mid life crisis. Except Libby’s problems are things we see everyday. And Seth also got fired. Is everyone going through this? Is Fleishman actually in trouble? Or is this just life?

I don’t effing know.

And we crawl into the final sequence with Karen Cooper. A liver transplant patient of Toby’s that he wants so desperately to be perfect because he’s suddenly realized that nothing else in his life really is.

When Toby cries in the final scene, I wanted to break down with him. Toby. Played by an actor I can take or leave on most days.

That’s effing acting right there.

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