Remember that selfie video of Skylar Astin singing Bruno Mars in the toilet? Yeah. Turns out there was actually a point to that.
It’s an interesting time to be watching television right now. And as an individual viewer, I’m a good example of that. I live in New Zealand, and yet, just a few minutes after something like Ground Floor has aired throughout America, I can find it, stream it, and laugh at all of your jokes, halfway around the world. The internet has changed all forms of media that exist around it, and so I shouldn’t have been surprised when that video of Astin singing ‘Just The Way You Are’ appeared at the start of the episode.
TBS had posted it on YouTube as a Christmas gift of sorts, when in reality it was just a pre-emptive meta joke. (Brody sends Jenny the video as an apology for cancelling on her – again. He’s so busy at work that the only escape he has is in the bathroom. And Harvard, in an attempt to embarrass Brody, leaks the video on the internet.)
But yeah, I have to say, I was surprised to see that clip there. And when it did pop up, it forced me, on a conscious level for once, to really acknowledge the production that was going on in front of me. I was watching Ground Floor’s fictional Brody singing something to Briga Heelan’s fictional Jenny, that had previously been, well, real to me. Fiction and fact have always been blurred in Hollywood – from falsified private lives in the days of old, to those things that we now like to call “reality” shows – but with social media and the push for interactive marketing (John C. McGinley was live-tweeting this episode), the people that used to join you once a week in your lounge are now, if you let them, doing a hell of a lot more than that.
But hey. Besides all that media theory that was questionably relevant to this review, Ground Floor honestly did hit it out of the park this week. (Pun intended.) We had jokes about Brody singing on the toilet (Potty Pavarotti, Turd Eye Blind), weird and hilarious steam-room scenes between three naked men with blurred out groins, reverse-snob, socialist Harvard taking Brody’s place at the baseball game with the rest of his firm, and Skylar Astin singing not once, but twice.
For someone who doesn’t know a thing about baseball (beyond what Sam Malone’s Red Sox career in Cheers has taught me), this week’s Ground Floor, revolving around Brody ditching his cheap seats with Jenny in favor of a box-office view with his boss (and then making up for that in song when he’s caught out, god bless this beautiful show), “Take Me Out To The Ball Game,” was just perfect.
Pitch perfect, even.
- Even Mansfield can appreciate true beauty when he hears (and sees) it: “You’ve gone viral, son. And Mr. Moyer, you’ve got the voice of an angel.”
- Harvard’s glorious entrance into the baseball game box: “Attention capitalist pigs, I am here, ironically. I have no interest in indulging in your bourgeoisie idea of luxury.”
- Threepeat was also in the episode, but like Jenny, Brody’s singing overwhelmed me a little bit, I have to admit: “My father was more into individual games like tennis… and golf… and withholding affection.”