“No Small Parts” deals with the pressure of being perceived as a victim, especially at a young age, while Forrest and Delia get out of their comfort zone.
This recap of The Unicorn Season 1, Episode 5, “No Small Parts”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
A key part of the grieving process is learning how to get back into the world, and Wade (Walton Goggins) thinks it’s time that Grace (Ruby Jay) did exactly that. At the school where her mother used to work, he befriends a musical theatre teacher who recommends that Grace partakes in the arts. It seems a good idea, even if it does come with a fair amount of pressure. As the title of The Unicorn Episode 5 suggests, there are no small parts.
And then there’s the problem of what might happen if Grace doesn’t get the part she auditions for, which is floated by Forrest (Rob Corddry) and Delia (Michaela Watkins). Luckily, Grace gets the lead role in the school’s play, but at the rehearsal, Wade notices that she’s extremely nervous. Assuming she must have done a lot better in the audition in order to land the part in the first place, Wade is told that she actually did worse, but she was given the part to bring some joy into her life. The acting was supposed to bring her out of her shell, but when she embarrases herself in front of the whole school, it’s going to have the exact opposite effect. Wade didn’t realize that his kids have also been treated differently after his wife’s death.
Wade debates whether to lie to Grace or not in The Unicorn Episode 5, but the decision is basically made for him. One of the other girls had told everyone that she was garbage and was only given the part out of sympathy, and when she asks Wade about it, he can’t bring himself to lie to her. She’s crushed, but Wade, following the advice of Delia, allows her to make her own decision. While she initially wants to quit, she eventually comes around to the idea.
The B-plot in “No Small Parts” concerns Ben (Omar Benson Miller) and Michelle (Maya Lynne Robinson) getting increasingly frustrated with Forrest and Delia not volunteering for things where the kids are concerned, and their limp excuses for not doing so, such as “the work”. In an overcompensatory effort, Forrest and Delia attempt to run a snack bar, but as if it wasn’t going badly enough, Delia, a pediatrician, can’t bring herself to serve unhealthy snacks and does a runner. She later returns with healthy alternatives and the kids rebel.
The Unicorn Season 1, Episode 5 ends with everyone assembling for Grace’s performance — and she absolutely kills it, revealing herself as a glorious songbird just in time for a touching ending. As a father of two daughters, Wade mouthing “I love you” as Grace went off to celebrate with her friends left a lump in my throat. Apparently, there really are no small parts, after all.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.