How ‘You’re The Worst’ Destroys One Of The Most Flawed Rom-Com Tropes Ever

Byron Cohen/FXX

Maybe Gretchen and Jimmy aren’t destined to be happy together on You’re The Worst. They’ve basically done everything they can do to hurt each other, and in the Sept. 27 episode of You’re The Worst, Gretchen and Jimmy are living together again. And it’s very apparent that the only thing scarier than their love for each other is how they can flip the switch to blind hatred. They're sharing the same space, but don't expect a magical sitcom reunion.

In the Sept. 20 episode, Gretchen reclaims her rights to Jimmy’s house, citing that because she had paid rent in advance, she still lived there and tough nuggets if Jimmy didn’t like it. Jimmy, who never thinks anything through, is shocked to see her there, but he's especially worried when People Magazine, complete with a camera crew, visit the house to interview him about his new book, The Width Of A Peach, and his life as a single man. Knowing that you cannot boss Gretchen around, he tries to reverse-psychologize her, but did you ever think it would work? No, but they agree to not have their relationship issues interfere with their professional lives, mostly because they both stand to lose a lot.

This works until Jimmy tells Sam and his fellow rappers that Gretchen has been hiding out in Los Angeles the whole time — not in Europe as she claimed to be. Gretchen, in turn, pretends to be Jimmy’s dutiful girlfriend for the cameras and then blows it all up by bringing another man over in front of them. Oh, and she tells Sam and company about Jimmy leaving her on top of a hill, and they vow revenge, too. Well, the path to true love never did come easy.

One of the best things about You’re The Worst is its ability to upend traditional comedy tropes. It could have very easily veered into romantic comedy territory, but the writing is too biting and the characters too damaged (and not easily fixable, at that!) to have a completely happily ever after. They’re just negotiating their lives like everyone else watching. That’s why, when Gretchen and Jimmy are forced to spend time in the same place, it doesn’t mean that they’ll reach an understanding like in a regular sitcom. Take New Girl as an example — Jess and Nick had been doing a “will-they-or-won’t-they” dance for a season and a half when the “Cooler” episode aired. It had Nick and Jess stuck in a room together, and it was only after they had to stay in close quarters that Nick finally made a move on Jess. That experience made them closer. Is this true to life? Not really. Usually when people are upset with each other, being forced to spend time together just makes it worse. For Gretchen and Jimmy, sharing a home and murderous feelings at the same time will not bring the closure that their relationship needs right now.

Gretchen and Jimmy move through their days by living off of their basest instincts. They may complement each other well at times, but the dangerous part of their relationship is that they have no barriers and no filters, especially when it comes to hurting other people’s feelings. When hurt, they both lash out like cornered animals. Gretchen and Jimmy both may position themselves as horrifically complicated people, but in reality, they are markedly simple in their feelings. "I am hurt, so I will hurt you, too."

While it’s clear that Gretchen and Jimmy couldn't work out their issues while living off the grid separately for three months, they are still both lone wolves. And they need to have a space to retreat to — alone — when they are hurt or scared. Being trapped together in that house will only exacerbate their intense feelings, and they may say or do something that they can never take back.