「Fire and Rain」
Their musical talent is practically effortless. They compose, write, sing, and create together as though they’ve been doing it for years. They’re complete opposites, but can somehow surf the other’s wavelengths with ease. That’s not to say that Carole and Tuesday won’t have obstacles to overcome together. Although the series is slow to soar in terms of both music and story, the set up is actually becoming a little more interesting as the girls take smalls steps forward.
In this episode, they accept Gus as their manager and they receive help from Roddy so they can pitch their new song to Ertegun – who I might add, is an absolute prick.
What’s interesting in this episode though is the foreshadowing of the issues around Tuesday’s upbringing. We know that she’s lived her whole life coddled in a very large home with a caring brother but a mother who doesn’t necessarily prioritize her children. Tuesday might have difficulty expressing herself (aside from her lyrics) because she’s been shut down time and time again. Carole, on the other hand, although brought up under entirely different circumstances, has always been able to express herself either through use of violence, her words, or even pranks. She can be blunt at times but that’s also part of her charm and the reason she’s been able to live on her own so far.
This stark difference between them is very noticeable when they react to Ertegun’s suggestion that they want to ‘sleep their way to the top.’ He’s intentionally degrading their work and efforts, which upsets both girls. However, unlike Carole who expresses her disdain, Tuesday’s anger flourishes through a dissociative explosion. She burns their music sheets using Ertegun’s fancy lighter and throws the sheets high up into the air, triggering the fire extinguishers. She’s clearly unaware of her actions when Carole steps in to snap her back to reality. Just with this single fit of rage I could tell that Tuesday’s feelings have been pent up for a while. The scene then took on a lighter tone as the soundtrack softened and the girls ran off, Gus trailing behind them. However, even if the issue was essentially brushed off, Tuesday’s dissociative state might return to either hinder their strides or even come between them. Or perhaps I’m overthinking the whole thing. However, it’s not unlike Watanabe Shinichiro to work this way.I recognize the same playing around with mature themes and lighter tones that was present in both Samurai Champloo and Cowboy Bebop.
Aside from Gus and Robby, after three episodes, in my opinion many of the supporting characters still lack depth. For one, Ertegun is the kind of douche we all imagine the worst celebrities could be. Surrounded by the hottest girls in the city, self-absorbed, probably spending more than he earns, and the “Who am I?” tagline are all quite generic character traits. Nothing about him makes me want to despise him, although I did flinch when he dropped his robe. Tao and Angela’s relationship still eludes me and I have yet to feel anything for Angela’s misfortunes even after learning that she’s trying to live up to her mother’s expectations. They’re all pretty generic but knowing that the series has two cours is what’s keeping me interested in them.
On another note, there were lots of pop culture references in this episode, a quirk of the show I’m quite fond of. If you’re unfamiliar with Vogue’s 73 questions, now would be a good time to look it up. Angie was part of Teen Vogue’s 37 Questions, she works out by the pool in a bathing suit (every fitness influencer’s Instagram account today), Banksy’s shredded “Girl with a Balloon” makes an appearance, there are references to musical pop stars like Bieber and to legendary musicians like the Beatles. Clearly, most of the work is going into the music and cultural references in Carole & Tuesday.
My opinion of the first two episodes is that Carole and Tuesday’s jams sessions and musical appearances are what redeemed them. However, in this third episode, I’m very much appreciating the larger roles Roddy and Gus are playing, even Ertegun. The story seems to be evolving, things are being foreshadowed, and I like the sense that we’re moving forward, even if it’s slow. Seems about right though when it comes to music. You can’t rush art.