Togetherness “Kick the Can” Review (Season 1 Episode 5)

Togetherness HBO Kick the Can Episode 5 01

Though nowhere near as uncomfortable and raw as last week’s episode, Togetherness still managed to pump up the awkwardness in “Kick the Can.” Fortunately, despite this show’s tendency to show off some painful humanity, there was still a truly uplifting ending, even if it’s ultimately the precursor for greater heartache.

Because an affair, or at least the very real threat of one, is on the horizon for Michelle. It’s a tale as old as marriage itself, but the more Brett fails to connect with his wife, the easier it is for her to form a new connection with David. And really, the rift in their marriage has moved beyond simple complacency at this point. David represents something new and exciting, but he’s also a guy who can offer her the one fun afternoon she’s been dying for. It’s a small thing that, even with Tina and Alex’s coaching, Brett refuses to do.

Maybe the marriage is too far gone if it takes a constant string of beers for Brett to stomach the idea of an afternoon spent with his wife having fun. Really, he can’t even do that much, telling Michelle directly how miserable he is and completely failing to meet her in the middle on the issue. The hipster kids, for all their protesting, inevitably are willing to compromise and, despite their initial misgivings, have a fun time with a bunch of old-timers. So what does it say that Brett can’t even give his wife that much?

A few weeks back I noted that an affair would be the easy, predictable way to go, but the truth is at this point, the show has earned it. Togetherness has spent five episodes really digging in to this marriage and showing how broken it is. It’s not necessarily unsalvageable, but it’s also in a bad enough place that the comfort and support David is offering Michelle seems like a wonderful escape.

It’s such a big episode for Brett and Michelle that it’s easy to overlook that this is also the episode where a drunk Alex made a wildly inappropriate move on Tina. It doesn’t get explored in much depth here, but it’s also a long time coming. Tina’s slap is definitely deserved, but it’ll be interesting to see how this resonates in their friendship down the line. Tina tends to be able to shake off a lot, but it’s inevitable that this won’t come back up at some point.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!