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I guess I just like liking things


Jaye and Alec the Mouthbreather are discussing her lack of ambition at Wonderfalls and in general, and she mentions this later to her friends at The Barrel. Mahandra notices a woman looking at a photo and recognizes her as Millie Marcus, the first woman to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel (and live!). The Mounted Bass tells Jaye to “give it back to her,” and so she sets up a signing at Wonderfalls that fails dismally.

Sharon reluctantly agrees to let her speak at an event she’s part of, but during set up, another woman barges in claiming that Millie is a fraud and that she, Vivian Caldwell, was the actual person that went over the falls. Jaye is upset that they have all been lied to and tries to help Vivian say so. Mahandra wants to preserve the current story about Millie, and steals the original barrel from Vivian’s property.

Millie realizes that she would never have the courage to go over the falls and apologizes to Vivian, by asking her to come with her on her new press tour. Before Vivian can respond, Millie keels over dead. To make things right, Jaye decides to pass off Millie’s body as Vivian, and Vivian becomes Millie on the tour. Jaye puts Real Millie’s ashes in a plastic barrel and tosses her over the falls.

Both Jaye and Eric participate in the theme of this episode, which is essentially about getting “unstuck” from life choices. Jaye realizes that she could easily end up like Vivian, stuck in a town that she hates for the rest of her life. It’s telling how she calls Vivian lazy for trying to get out of working hard by plunging down the falls in a barrel, especially with the way that she “trained” Bianca in Karma Chameleon. She knows that she is unmotivated and lazy, and from that she can spot it easily in other people. She is affronted by the idea that Vivian’s present is her future, however. There’s a lot of self expectation that Jaye will someday find a career path that will take her other places besides Wonderfalls.

Eric, meanwhile, is still dealing with the fallout from Heidi’s infidelity. He is trying to distance himself from “that other Eric”, so he has Mahandra screening his voicemails and pretends that his old life belongs to a different person. I felt that we already dealt with this in Wind Up Penguin, when he discusses forgiveness with Father Scofield. It’s not so much that it should only take one episode to get over such a traumatic event, rather that it seems disjointed with previous episodes.

One of the scenes that I enjoyed the most in this episode was where Millie, Mahandra, and Eric talk about Millie’s deception over a bottle of Merlot. Eric can’t believe that they are trying to justify the fact that Millie lied to everyone about the barrel and doesn’t have any shame or guilt about it. He says:

“It is sort of the quintessential American tale. […] Look at her. She’s 100% fabrication. She decided what she wanted to be and damn the facts. Don’t get much more American than that.”

While this statement makes quite the commentary on American stereotypes and expectations, Eric does seem impressed by this idea. Isn’t this what he is trying to accomplish by relegating his past life to “that other Eric”?

Eric and the drunk ladies discuss heroism and truth.

Eric and the drunk ladies discuss heroism and truth.

We also get a lot more insight into Mahandra, as more than just Jaye’s token black friend. She feels shut out from Jaye’s life since they used to share everything and now Jaye is holding back. Her competitive spirit also comes out when she wants to beat Jaye at whatever she’s “planning”. We also get a sense that Niagara is her home and she is proud of it, and wants to revel in its history. She could not be more different than Jaye!

For muses, we have Barrel Bear and the Mounted Bass, although the Wax Lion makes a non-speaking cameo. We’ve returned to the more vague instructions here, with the “give it back to her” line getting the most play. Jaye also makes an issue out of the vague pronouns and calls the Barrel Bear a “murderer”.


  • A woman actually did go over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Her name was Annie Taylor and she plunged in 1901. She was 63 at the time.
  • Mahandra calls Jaye a Hobbit that hates The Shire, which is a reference to the fantasy book series by Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings. She’s basically saying that Jaye hates where she comes from.
  • Mahandra also mentions Hansel and Gretel, saying that the story scared Jaye so much that she can’t stand old ladies.
  • The Republican organization that Sharon belongs to, CLAW (Concerned Ladies of the American West – east coast branch), is likely a parody of the Concerned Women for America organization and other such groups.
  • The fake barrel that CLAW intends to use for Millie’s talk is borrowed from the Niagara History Museum, which really exists. It’s located in Ontario, Canada.

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