The seventh episode of Looking’s second season was its best episode to date. It married humour and grief in perfect synchronicity whilst narrowing the story down and focusing upon one of its best characters. Yes, after fourteen episodes, Doris finally got her moment in the spotlight.
Within the opening minute of the episode a joyous breakfast is tainted with news of Doris’ father’s death. This came as a blow, which was probably intended. This, and the episode as a whole, had a deep resonance and I felt emphatic towards Doris, and later Dom. It was an emotional episode all round.
So we say goodbye to San Francisco and head home. This week we learnt a lot about Doris and Dom, and how they experimented as kids with their sexuality and had frequent sex, resulting in Dom reaching orgasm but Doris failing to. We also learnt that Doris’ dad loved Dom like a child, and that he was rooting for them to hook up. It’s surprising that their relationship has survived Dom’s coming out, but I’m glad it did. Doris is a delight.
Her crowning moment is perhaps when she took a cheeky snap of her breasts to send to Malik, before admitting that she’s falling big style for him. Whilst their relationship hasn’t had as much airtime as others, it was brilliant to see him come to their rescue at the close of the episode. I root for this pairing.
In a near flawless episode, the only thing which bothered me was Patrick during the funeral. I get that this was his first funeral, but I think it was a mistake to place so much emphasis on him crying when this episode was all about Doris. It took away some of the emotion which she was feeling, and for the first time I hated Patrick. Because Lauren Weedman was pretty amazing during that funeral scene, simply sitting and crying as her aunt regaled stories of how much her father loved her.
All this discussion of father’s results in Dom wanting to look for his own father’s grave, but unfortunately he cannot find it. Again, this segment hit deep. He never got to come out to his father and has been plagued with insecurities about whether or not he would have accepted his sexuality. Suddenly, his relationship with Lynn is starting to make a lot more sense.
And then wham! There’s a car crash.
Utterly pointless in narrative storytelling, perhaps, but the crash did lead to Doris telling Dom that he was her family, and that she wanted to invest some money her father left her in Dom’s chicken window. I hope it’s a success; it’s about time Dom did something with his life. He was clearly uncomfortable when he told his childhood friend that he was opening a restaurant, because that was clearly a lie. There’s a big difference between a restaurant and a chicken window. But here’s hoping this is the first step.
On to Patrick. Aside from his abysmal scene-hogging during the funeral, he was as brilliant as always. I felt so sorry for him when he was plucking up the courage to speak to the loner in the bar, only for the loner’s boyfriend to turn up and ruin everything. But that is the power of Jonathan Groff; he has me so invested in his portrayal that simple things like this hit hard.
But the sorrow is short lived. Because as the climax of the episode Patrick finds Kevin on his doorstep, and Kevin admits that he has finally left Jon, because’s he’s falling in love with Patrick. Both Groff and Russell Tovey are exceptional here. Tovey portrays this love believably. Patrick is quick to agree to them giving their relationship a chance, and the episode closes with a stunning kiss.
You just know their happiness will be short lived, too, though. Richie is still around…