The writers address Luis and Julio’s personal differences in profound detail but struggle to move the plot forwards. This promising show continues to waste its potential and stumble sideways.
This recap of the Hulu series This Fool season 1, episode 5, “Sandy Says,” contains spoilers.
Therapy is a major part of rehabilitation and in “Sandy Says” the ex-convicts talk through their problems. It’s a clever segue into Luis and Julio’s unresolved issues and these characters become the main focus of the therapy sessions as they delve into their own problems. The series continues to mix childish comedy and heartening self-improvement, but is starting to become rather formulaic.
This Fool season 1, episode 5 recap
Julio slaps Luis to wake him up. This week Julio is running Group Hugs and he can’t be late. At Hugs Not Thugs their group therapy sessions are called Group Hugs, always ending in all the gang members embracing one another. As usual, Luis and Julio end up in a play fight, with their immature behavior really starting to bore now.
At group therapy Randy discusses his p**n addiction and how it is affecting his marriage. Luis seizes the opportunity and makes obvious jokes about Randy’s name and his embarrassing vice. Luis is obsessed with the Austin Powers franchise and quotes the films nonstop. The other group members grow tired of his cheap jokes though and Julio takes him aside. He tells his cousin that no one is laughing at his jokes and that he isn’t funny. Luis decides to seek revenge.
The next session, Luis arrives dressed in a full-body dinosaur costume, still making Austin Powers jokes to no-one’s amusement. As he enters, a woman is talking about possibly getting her face tattoos removed and Luis instantly ruins the atmosphere. They all start to berate Luis, saying he has issues and needs help. It is suggested that he pays Sandy a visit, who is the program’s volunteer psychologist. Luis agrees, but kicks a chair over as he leaves.
Sandy gets to the bottom of the problem straight away. Luis enjoyed connecting with his father through comedy movies and she believes he is filling the void his deceased father left with humor. Luis is trying to hide his trauma with comedy. Luis starts to sob uncontrollably at this realization and Sandy comforts the thug. He feels like a weight has been lifted and is buzzing at the dinner table that night. Luis even starts to assess Julio’s own trauma, stating that he may have messed Julio up when he beat him up as a child.
Julio doesn’t appreciate Sandy’s meddling and meets with her the next morning. Sandy starts to psycho-analyze Julio as he discusses Luis. Julio believes that he is the only one looking out for Luis and he has made it his duty to constantly check up on his cousin. Sandy wonders why he feels a need to control Luis and she starts to make notes. Julio grows defensive and states that this is not a session, before storming off.
In the next therapy session Luis tests Julio’s patience and begins to analyze his cousin in front of the others. Luis makes a profound observation about the connection between Austin Powers and his own life. He was imprisoned for a long time and can’t cope in the real world anymore, just like the spoof character. He feels the world has changed and he is tired of living in the past. The others appreciate the sentiment, but Julio feels outdone. He starts to get rather aggressive, which shocks the group members. Luis then tells the others that Julio has never attended a therapy session in his life. They see this as highly hypocritical and Julio feels cornered.
Julio attends the next session with Luis and they discuss their relationship in more detail. Sandy believes that because Luis used to bully Julio in their youth he might be getting his own revenge as an adult. His controlling behavior is not healthy and Sandy suggests they spend some time apart. Julio decides to stop being Luis’ case manager and Luis quickly begins to slip up thereafter. His new case worker writes him up all the time, destroying all his progress. In the end Julio and Luis decide to team up against Sandy and go back to their old habits. It’s a believable and realistic conclusion, but I find it frustrating that these characters have reverted back to their old ways. Nothing has changed and the show seems happy to repeat itself, even after addressing the cast’s main issues in a mature way in the first place.
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