The Best of ‘Bob’s Burgers’: ‘Purple Rain-Union’ (Season 4, Episode 6)

Bob's Burgers, Purple Rain-Union recapFOX

This week on Bob’s Burgers, Linda goes to her 25th high school reunion with hopes of avenging her terrible garage band, the “Ta-Tas” after being humilated at the senior talent show… only to once again be showed up by “Bad Hair Day,” the good local garage band that actually won the talent show and went on to rock stardom. Along the way, adolescent anxieties arise, from Linda’s insecurity to Bob’s enormous pimple. But, in the end, reuniting with the band (and especially her sister, Gail, whose songs were always too weird in high school but are perfect mournful ballads for a group of disillusioned 40-somethings) is enough for Linda to have a great time. 

And according to the “Ta-Ta’s” closing song, apparently there are exactly five sexy parts, and you run an average of ruining one per child. While dealing with that sobering truth, enjoy the funniest character moments from “Purple Rain-Union”: 

Bob: Bob only agrees to go to the reunion if he can stop and buy some concealer for his giant zit on the way there. “You’re all out. I used a lot.” But of course, once he gets there all is well because the group of “cool” kids all happened to go into skin care.

Linda: Linda manages to convince herself into going to the reunion by how good her singing is in the shower. “Nobody sounds good in the shower!” and then doubles down on her confidence in a fantasy sequence where everyone admits they were wrong 25 years ago. “They were all idiots.” But that’s just the tip of the iceberg as Linda has a great showcase for her perverted self image: both over and under confident. 

Tina: Tina rarely gets aggressive, but one of her favorite pastimes is babysitting her younger siblings (it brings out her “fun” side). So when that’s threatened by a real babysitter, the claws come out, and each barbed comment is followed with a whispered “I’m mocking you.”

Gene: Gene just really wants to eat Chunky Shim-Sham generic brand cookies and throw up wherever he pleases. Even if that place is Bob and Linda’s bed… again. And his best line, in reference to Gail’s hunky Greek god crush: “At least he isn’t a Roman god. Those guys were jerks!” 

Louise: Louise has been kept at the fringes for too long, and she’s clearly going even more insane. Her plan to give everyone black eyes after Jen the babysitter accidentally punches Tina makes absolutely no sense. We need another Louise episode stat to find out what’s going on in that head of hers. 

Guest Star MVP: Jen, one of the most boring ancillary characters, comes to life this episode with her extreme ticklishness, accidental punch, and her inspirational speech: “Your band is probably bad. But I don’t let it bother me that I’m a bad babysitter. I have no chemistry with children, I don’t know how to use a mick-rowave, I don’t know what bathtime means, but I do it because I love it.” 

Recurring Gags: Linda’s love of drinking leads her to ban the kids from the reuinion. “It’s rated R for Really Boozy. Starring me!” In the opening credits, props to “Betty’s Machetes” for fitting into tonight’s girl-power theme, but something about the broken syntax of “If You Give a Mouse a Poison” is gold. And where most shows would probably make Gail’s song amazing enough to bring the house down, we take pleasure in its creepiness.

Overall Assessment: It’s more of a messy “Ta-Ta’s” than a polished “Bad Hair Day,” but still a loveable episode.