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TV Review: Everybody Hates Chris – “Everybody Hates Father’s Day”

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Last week, Rochelle (Tichina Arnold) went out on the town and got a chance to cut loose. For the season finale, Julius (Terry Crews) had the house to himself while the kids and Rochelle went to the museum as a Father’s Day present. Chris (Tyler James Williams) still wanted to give his father a present, but the question still remained — What could you give a man who never wanted much? The result is something that had to be seen to be believed.

I said once before that I would have liked “Everybody Hates Corleone” to be the season finale, but I sensed that would seem anti-climatic. We all knew Chris would never leave the school — it would have changed the premise of the show too much. For this episode, it was nice to get a small and simple story without a lot of big gags and what not. The most interesting change for this episode was the more relaxed Rochelle.

For most of the earlier part of the season the laughs from her character where more from her over-the-topness. After the Christmas episode, the tone of her character changed bit by bit with each show. Now for this episode she responded with the same control and aggressiveness, but not with the high volume level performance of the earlier episodes.

Tyler James Williams also came into his own as the young Chris Rock. Many would cite the fact that he never cracked jokes or talked smart to everyone. Had that been the idea of his character, the transformation to the older Chris Rock would have been more obvious. Here, he’s a normal everyday kid surrounded by unusual circumstances and situations. In the history of black television, an observer of life was introduced rather than one who tries to get in the middle of it.

Considering Chris Rock intended to change the show away from the already altered timeline of his real life after this season, the biggest question is: where can they go from here? Rock has a lot to say — just watch any of his HBO specials. It’s also “inspired” by his life as a kid, not as a literal context to it. If he had chosen to do so after this year, I’m sure the laughs won’t be less. After all, That ’70s Show was never really about the ’70s.

Here’s to hoping that the CW Network takes the show for the fall.

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