TV Club: Portlandia: “SeaWorld”

I spend a lot of time in these Portlandia reviews talking about the structure of the show, weighing the execution of its ideas and the ways it experiments with the sketch comedy format. All of those are relevant topics of discussion, but sometimes that discussion gets away from the fact that Portlandia is at heart a ridiculously silly show. The city’s mayor gets dragged into scandals over printers and reggae, commerce depends on pickling and birds and every kind of milk, and famous musicians drift in and out of events with the occasional reveal of supernatural powers. Reality doesn’t exactly apply in this show’s universe, and the writing staff is very good at injecting that silliness alongside arcs and character development. “SeaWorld” serves as a welcome reminder of that silliness: it’s the first episode of the season not to be centered around a character or a …

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