This Thanksgiving, no matter where you may be, spend it with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. The CW show, created and starring Rachel Bloom, is the perfect recipe for this upcoming Turkey Day, because it gets at what it's really like to feel a little lost when you're an adult. And don't we often feel like that when we're forced to hang out with the family we love, but can't always tolerate, like we're just not as put together as they'd like us to be at our age? What better way to deal with those feels than to marathon a show that just gets it? That's why Crazy Ex-Girlfriend should be the one show you marathon over Thanksgiving break.
Bloom is the crazy talented Upright Citizen's Brigade alumna who came up with the idea for the show. It focuses on type-A New York City lawyer Rebecca Bunch, who decides to leave it all behind and move to the small potatoes town of West Covina, California, where her ex-boyfriend Josh just so happens to live. Of course, Rebecca's not admitting that she actually followed him — as you'll see when you start watching Episode 1 aptly titled, "Josh Just Happens To Be Here" — and that's the great part about this TV show, which is quickly becoming a cult hit. It's always one step ahead of you.
Even the title of the show, which Bloom knows is problematic — shouting in the show's theme song "That's a sexist term!" — is something she wants to prove just isn't true.
"The show is always from the female perspective. The show is always from the perspective of, Here are the times I’ve felt crazy. I’ve felt out of control in my own mind, and kind of laughing at myself," Bloom told Vulture. "And then people started to call the show My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and I’m like, 'No, no, no, that’s not the show.' This is not a man saying, Oh, my crazy b***h ex, she’s so f***ing crazy. It was only with that little addition of 'my,' I was like, Oh s**t, there’s this whole other world where men label women crazy when they’re not being crazy. And that’s not what this is at all. This is how one comes to embody feeling crazy. And the idea that love and infatuation and feeling happy take away the power of your own mind from you. That was always what the show was about."
Rachel is neurotic, for sure, and definitely a hypochondriac, but she's not crazy. And Bloom is trying to negate this unfair stereotype with a raunchy, honest show that flips the script on the musical romantic comedy genre itself. A genre that is nearly extinct in 2015, as Vanity Fair pointed out in a piece that anointed Bloom the only person who is getting away with "bringing an old-school musical to TV." But, it's in these musical numbers that Crazy Ex-Girlfriend proves how smart it can be. Every one of these pop gems (and seriously, they sound as good as anything you could hear on the radio) is a skewering take on a topic much larger.
The show is spontaneous and bold, seemingly unafraid to get at what it's like to be a woman who should be the example of having everything, but realizes something is still missing. Though the show starts with Rebecca following a man across the country, this is all about her journey to discover herself. There are crazy co-workers who can't seem to understand why she would take this job with a resume like hers. There's a crazy best friend, who is living vicariously through Rebecca's search for love. There's crazy mom; a total helicopter parent who can't seem to get a compliment out without an insult right behind it.
For the show's Thanksgiving episode — one of the season's best — Rebecca talks about her holiday tradition, which includes heading to Scarsdale to watch the World Dog Awards with her mom while eating turkey roll-ups and "body-sham[ing] some puppies." Yeah, it's not the best, but, while you're sitting with your family, this episode couldn't be better thanks to a Lady Gaga-eque musical number called "Give Good Parent." The song proves why she's the girl you need to take home to mom and dad. "To be clear, they want to have sex with me," Bloom sings, which may or may not be stretching it.
While Rebecca ends up at Josh's Filipino Thanksgiving, the episode is less about spending it with her crushes "fam-bam" and more about her finding a place where she feels wanted. And isn't that all we really want in life? These seven episodes will kill a few hours with the family, and hopefully make you feel a little better about your own world. The lesson with this series is there's no pressure to be anyone else but you — a lesson that is good for any day, especially a holiday.
Images: Eddy Chen/The CW