After a shorter-than-expected Season 2, Season 3 of Bob’s Burgers kicked off with “Ear-sy Rider,” a Louise centered episode that let us see the crazy monster that those little pink bunny ears had soothed for so long.
After an overconfident Louise lost her prized pink bunny ears to a local high school bully, Logan, she made it her personal mission to recover them. Although her method of persistent annoyance was hysterical, I was fascinated by how her family reacted to Louise without her bunny ears.
The terrified looks on Tina and Gene’s faces when Logan ripped the ears off her head were telling, but they wouldn’t risk saying a word about it to Louise or their parents. Bob and Linda seemed able to accept that Louise would grow out of her bunny ear phase, but not out of hats altogether.
I loved that we were never allowed to see Louise without something covering her head because it made the mystery more intriguing. Clearly, Louise had an attachment to those ears and the top of her head was her Achilles’ Heel. What is it about her head that must remain a secret to everyone but the Belcher family? Is it just a childhood complex?
Louise tried to play it cool, but she was barely keeping it together. The longer she was without those ears, the more crazed she became. When her version of “reason” failed to produce results, the only answer was revenge.
Once she believed that she had forever lost her beloved ears in a landfill furnace, she snapped and called in a favor from the local biker gang, The One-Eyed Snakes. It’s not really beyond Louise to call in a favor from a biker gang. She’s never really shown a normal fear of anything in the past, so why would she be intimidated by a rough crew of drunken bikers?
Rather than simply ending the episode with the return of Louise’s bunny ears, the entire community was cleverly brought back into the story. Louise’s personal vendetta became something that linked back to the restaurant and to the “town going to crap” around Bob’s Burgers.
The final act was completely unexpected and totally brilliant. Restored to her complete self, Louise stood in the center of the hurricane encouraging the bikers to fight the locals in her dad’s restaurant/biker bar. Linda’s mama-bear claws came out as she began to fight Logan’s mother, but before all hell could really break loose, Mudflap went into labor and the community suddenly forgot what they had been arguing about.
With each new episode, the town around Bob’s Burgers becomes more and more colorful. Among the uptight octogenarians and transvestite prostitutes, the neighborhood now has biker gangs in the mix. In terms of plot, there was no need to show us the softer side of Critter, but as with all the background characters in this town, they’re introduced and affectionately developed as multi-dimensional people instead of simple archetypes.
“Ear-sy Rider” was one of those episodes of Bob’s Burgers that continues to hit me with its humor long after I’ve finished watching. As I reflect on my favorite lines, I find myself laughing even more than when I was watching it the first time around. It’s a characteristic of most Bob’s Burgers‘ episodes and it makes me remember why Bob’s Burgers was one of the shows I was most excited to see returning in the fall lineup. Welcome back Belchers.
“Someone threw a sno-cone at my windshield this morning. I thought I drove into a rainbow. It was terrifying.” – Teddy
“I’m out of control.” – Tina
“Those two? Piece of cake. That one? The whole cake.” – Linda, pointing at Tina and Louise, then Gene.
“God Bleth This Meth” – Gene
“You don’t want to mess with my sister. She’ll wear down your self esteem over a period of years.” – Tina