‘After Life’ Episode 5 | Netflix TV Recap

By Daniel Hart
Published: March 8, 2019 (Last updated: November 4, 2023)
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After Life Episode 5


After Life Episode 5 shows the destructive side of mental health issues, but also represents overcoming the hill for the main character.

This recap of After Life Episode 5 contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.

You can immediately tell that Tony (Ricky Gervais) has turned a corner in After Life Episode 5. He does his usual morning routine of watching old videos of Lisa, but the difference is, he looks in the mirror to check his appearance. It’s all about the little steps, and Tony has been taking them one by one in each episode.

Tony does slide down the destructive side in After Life Episode 5; on the way to school he threatens a kid with a hammer because they were bullying George, Matt’s (Tom Basden) son. But his mood seemingly switches, as he plays and flirts with his father’s nurse.

In The Cambury Gazette, Tony tells everyone about his date, and how he acquired the decent hammer. Matt hurriedly asks Tony to join him in his office and explains to Tony that the paperboy has overdosed and died. Tony acts unsurprised and tells Matt that he gave him the money, and knew it was a possibility. Matt gets angry and tells Tony to stop joking around. Tony explains he did not realize that he was going to kill himself, but of course, he knew.

I know people will have an issue with this story. It is a little uncomfortable, but it also represents Tony’s attitude to life – giving a drug addict so much money knowing they can kill themselves is not good-natured at all, but it fits into Tony’s view of the world at the time; the man wanted to be gone from this world.

After Life Episode 5 presents an even funnier gag of a woman, who makes rice puddings from breast milk and uses her vaginal yeast for bread. Tony ends up barfing as his colleague starts eating the rice pudding. Later on, the strange person who keeps on asking The Cambury Gazette to make a story on him invites the paper company to his home. They find it’s an absolute dive, serving more comedy to the story, but strangely enough, Sandy decides to stay behind to make a story.

The turning point of Episode 5 comes when Matt finds out that Tony threatened a kid with a hammer at George’s school. Tony tries to get out of the situation by explaining that he’s f****d up and he’s in pain all the time. Every time Tony is in this situation, he wells up and its weirdly infectious as an audience, as I felt the sadness that was circling in his head. Matt, however, does not accept his excuses, explaining that he’s going to hurt someone if he carries on. Tony apologizes, but this time genuinely.

After Life Episode 5 ends with Tony taking on a new lease of life after consulting with the lady at the cemetery. The character has realized that he cannot do everything on his terms, and making people happy is happiness in itself. His new outlook is tested when Sandy gets emotional in the office, asking Tony to be happy because it’s breaking her heart. He agrees and decides to comfort the sex worker who had a close relationship with the drug addict.

You can check out our recap of the sixth episode by clicking these words.

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