This week's episode, "Control," has all the ingredients for a seemingly classy episode — a dinner party, beautiful people and a brisket. I only hope I didn't speak too soon.
While Ryan and Jenna are on the beach with Wilfred, Amanda stops by in the midst of her Sunday morning run. Ryan introduces both ladies, but was upset about the circumstances they had to meet in. His solution is to host a dinner party where he, Amanda, Jenna and Drew can get to know each other more.
Ry-manda (or Amand-yan?) have been together for two months, yet we've seen her for a collective ten minutes during this season. Finally, we get a deeper view how this relationship sustains itself.
Of course, Wilfred was left without invitation, but saves Ryan the trouble and attends the dinner party regardless. There is a moment of comedic crossroads between human and dog.
"Here," Wilfred says as he rips his fur off and flicks it onto Ryan. "Take my coat."
When Wilfred finally meets Amanda, he leaps onto her lap. She shrieks, like a child who sees a harrowing mythical beast, and begs the others to get the dog off her.
An awkward moment commences, only to be innocently exaggerated further by Drew's comment that opened with: "This one time, my roommate and I .?.?." ("American Pie" reference!)
During dinner, we're reminded of Amanda's dislike for dogs when Wilfred runs around the table and she requests a new plate, believing his fur landed on her plate. A little spat ensues when Jenna says dogs are hygienic, but Amanda retorts with a cornucopia of chemistry terms viewers might understand, if only attention was paid in 10th grade science class.
Ryan explains to the couple that Amanda was bit on the butt by a dog when she was younger. But in the kitchen, Wilfred yanks off her pants and Jenna questions the existence of the scar. Amanda reveals her fear of dogs stemmed from a childhood experience where her grandfather died and was left rotting for a week, only to have his body parts eaten by his two pet dogs.
Weird. Uncomfortable. Known for its dark humor, this show just went plain old dark in that scene.
While Amanda is left to her sorrows in Ryan's room, he walks in on Wilfred consoling her. No explanation was given as to why the dog decided to commit a good deed. Yet, I felt it strange that her lifelong fear of canines was reversed in one night — almost too hastily, almost too mysteriously.