TV Club: Married: “Aftershocks”

With Lina’s 40th birthday looming, Married does what it does best, which is to fulfill our expectations of what such a standard sitcom situation calls for while making each successive plot point ring with original tones. Lina will be depressed about getting older, and do something impulsive to try to seem fun again. Russ will worry that Lina is growing as tired of him as she appears tired of the rest of her life, and will overcompensate in throwing his wife a 4oth birthday party. (Especially since the unexplained specter of the awful 30th birthday party he threw keeps coming up.) A.J., Jess, and Bernie (Bernie’s back, everybody!) will stand to the side and make wry comments about everything that goes wrong. Russ and Lina will find some small, shared moment that makes their return to equilibrium seem okay—for now, at least. The spouse’s birthday …

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