TV Club: Louie: “The Road Pt. 1”

Sometimes Louie gets bleak by following a monologue off to some inescapable fact of life. “The Road Pt. 1” is bleak from its name through to its bones. Louie’s going on the road, first to Cincinnati and then to Charlotte, but we only get the Cincinnati leg this week. Nothing much happens. That’s part of it. There isn’t one exciting moment but instead a morass of little frustrations, and even those don’t stand out much.

There’s also a cyclical feeling to the structure. The episode begins with Louie packing: “Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, sweat,” he says as he rations the appropriate number of black T-shirts and grey boxer-briefs. In the final scene, after he loses his luggage, he buys an identical black suitcase and packs it with the identical dreary clothes: blue jeans, black tees, and grey underwear. It has the same relentless monotony …

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