TRAFFIC LIGHT “Bonebag” Review

TRAFFIC LIGHT Help Wanted Episode 9

TRAFFIC LIGHT “Bonebag” Episode 10 – Well they hit me with something I thought was impossible: an episode of Traffic Light that I actually sympathized with.

I’ve been on the Kill Callie bandwagon. Hell, I may have started it (though I would hope there are other discerning gentlemen before me who have taste and cannot abide her). But this thrift-store C-rate Rachel-from-Friends wannabe really gets under my skin, and “Bonebag” gave me another reason to hate her.

She’s a honker. No, not someone who reaches out and “honks” random noses, boobs, or backsides; she’s one of those irritating people who think she can “get back at” other drivers by laying on the horn of her car. Worse, she’s a passenger seat honker, which is twelve times worse than being a backseat driver. I’ve had only one person ever reach across from a passenger seat and honk the horn of the car I was driving, and—

Actually, I ended up marrying her.

… alright I guess that’s the wrong message. Still.

(If you want to avoid being married to me, do not honk my horn!)

Not to put too fine a point on it, but horn honkers have it wrong. If you let someone one their crappy driving has gotten under your skin, they win. Do you think they don’t already know they’re crappy drivers? Of course they do! I’m a crappy driver, and I know it! It’s like someone who angrily tailgates a bad driver. You realize they are one brake-stomp away from you getting them a new car, right?

Never let us win, man. Honks from other cars do not make us angry. They make us laugh.

Where was I? Oh yes. Traffic Light.

Again, a slight improvement. It’s incremental. The writing was decent this time around (thank you, Donick Cary) and the direction (kudos, Chris Koch) was nice, sharp.

It’s still the acting, for me, which is flawed. Sometimes deeply flawed. I can still sort of schlub around with Adam (Nelson Franklin), and even Lisa (Liza Lapira) has shown little flashes of spitfire talent. But obviously Callie (Aya Cash) is not going to win me over. And Mike (Dave Denman) seems so incapable of emoting anything besides what seems to be “confused caveman” look, it’s really hard to take anything he says seriously. And granted we’re not supposed to, really, because the character is kind of a neanderthal / bro hybrid. I get that’s how he is. It doesn’t make me gravitate to him any better.

Still worse is Ethan (Kris Marshall), whose hangdog puzzlement would have been better suited for some nonsensical and wrong-era’d remake of Dazed and Confused, or perhaps stuck somewhere in Portlandia. I think his blind date said it best when she said, “I thought it would be like kissing Mick Jagger, and it wound up like kissing a barfly.”

(Arguably, kissing Mick Jagger may actually feel like kissing a barfly.)

I’m just not motivated to like the dude at all. Ethan is depressing. And what’s with the chronological order of these episodes? Wasn’t Ethan trying to make things work with some chick last week? What happened with that? He was hip-deep in trying to understand the female psyche in “Best Man” … but here he’s back to being lost, lonely, and desperate. Either Cary is confusing himself, or FOX is doing that thing they did with Firefly and showing shows out of order yet again.

The only difference here is I don’t really care if Traffic Light gets cancelled.

Now, for the record, again—it’s not a pile of crap. It made me laugh more than once. And I enjoyed the fact that Callie had yet another trait that irked me. The word “bonebag” makes zero sense—and there’s equally zero reason why anyone should get pissed if they were actually ever called a bonebag—but I do see what they were doing. The situation setups were funny. Toddlers with wood are funny. Having J.J. from Good Times (Jimmie Walker) make a cameo is funny. Male masseuse issues are damned funny. This is funny:

“He’s peeing on Tommy!”
“So what? That’s what people do!”

Well I think it’s funny.

So sure, Traffic Light improved from a C-minus to a C. If we can get a C+ next week we’re really seeing something. But it’ll never get an A so long as Callie keeps honking my horn.

Are you deeply flawed? I love deeply flawed. Follow me on Twitter! That’s @Axechucker!