Recap

'Louie' Recap: Come on, God

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Aug 11, 2011 | 10:00pm EDT

S2E8: Leave it to Louie to brave the topics that most of don’t dare speak of and to explore them in such ardent honesty that we’re compelled to stick around for all the uncomfortable truths. That’s one of the great things about Louie; it doesn’t feel like television. It only feels like Louie, and boy does it have a lock on slapping us in the face and subsequently soothing our awkward, melancholy reactions by showing us it’s okay to laugh at the ugly truth.

“So we’re like porn for God?” – Louie

This season it seems Louie is determined to include every instance we never thought we’d see on the comedian’s show. Joan Rivers doing stand up and schooling Louie? Yep. Dane Cook in any capacity? You betcha. And now, we’ve got Louie on the Fox News program, Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld. Granted, it’s not like we found our titular character on The O’Reilly Factor, Gutfeld’s show errs on the side of satire so he’s already more apt to participate in something like this.

Louie’s enlisted to wage war against the Disney princess of Christiandom, a young blonde woman leading a crusade against masturbation, claiming it makes us impure. Louis CK, being the “prolific masturbator” he is and the only person who’d agree to go on national television to talk about pleasuring himself, is the unequipped opponent to the cheery activist. At first, he reacts to her the way the majority of the audience for this sort of show would, with a general sense of bewilderment written all over his face.

Clearly, she’s crazy, right? Well, not so fast. When he insists she can’t know what she’s talking about because she’s a virgin and she’s never been married, she asks him if he’s ever been happy. It’s a simple enough question, but it sets this whole debate in motion. The typical Louie soundtrack brings us out of the feel of the Fox News show for a second while he contemplates the weight of such a question and by the time she invites him to her celibacy meeting, he’s determined to prove her wrong. His way of looking at sex is just fine and that’s all there is to it. Right?

“It’s fun and it’s easy and no one gets hurt.” –Louie

Once again, not so fast. Louie goes home to do exactly what he promised the anti-masturbation girl he would do: masturbate furiously. He opts for the more "sophisticated" classical radio station while he proceeds to fantasize about the girl he saw in the elevator on his way home. As we watch him get more and more into his activity, we see the PG visualization of his fantasy in which this elicit elevator girl is asking him to put a “whole bag of dicks” in you can guess where. Perhaps it’s because I’m not a man, but this scene’s ridiculousness seemed exaggerated to make a point; it’s senselessly base and depraved in a comical way so that we end up considering the less promiscuous side of things later in the episode. By the time the old man interrupts Louie’s imagination (and satisfaction) with his hilarious commentary about how American girls are so complicated, we’re already thinking about exactly what he wants us to: maybe masturbation is impure after all.

Of course, that’s only step one. Step two comes when Louie actually goes to the celibacy meeting and proceeds to grab drinks with the virginal young woman afterwards. It’s an awkward exchange, wherein Louie doesn’t know how to talk to a woman when he has no hope of sleeping with her (and he knows it) but the blonde beauty insists he try anyway because it would “be fun.” We’ll put the obnoxiousness of that behavior aside for a second because for what it’s worth, the show is trying to make a point and damnit, we’re going to let it.

This “trying anyway” turns into a very candid conversation carried out along a New York City street as Louie describes the first time he ever had sex. He plainly admits that he was so excited at the time, and his reaction was so unadulterated that he released everything at that primal moment – including a fart. Now before you start cringing, let us think about this. If some two-bit, sensational comic was talking about farting during orgasm, I think we’d all roll our eyes and groan because he’d say it purely to get a laugh out of a few sophomoric kids. Louis CK, however, does all this in the name of honesty, and laughter by way of that completely humiliating honesty. Sometimes, it’s almost as if he’s surprised people laugh at the things he says.

This all comes into play when he goes up to the woman’s hotel room to chat and gets confused and tries to kiss her. And we can’t blame him; a woman invites you to her hotel room, and something signals the potential of nocturnal activity. This attempt prompts the woman to delve into this explanation of the alternative to jumping right into animalistic urges to ravage each other; they could resist for weeks and months even, getting to know each other and depriving themselves of the physical satisfaction until they can hold back no longer. The result, in her mind, is the purest form of sexual ecstasy. Whether or not it’s true to life, the notion is a wonderful one and we find Louie shares that opinion when he’s not only able to finish (unlike when he tried to think about the “bag of dicks” situation) but he finished with the same zeal as he did during his first sexual encounter. It may be the first time the use of a fart noise not only ended an episode of television, but actually gave the entire episode depth and meaning. And this is why we must all bow down to Louis CK.

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