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The Last Man on Earth Season 4 Episode 8 Review 'Not Appropriate For Miners'


***Spoilers Ahead***

Not Appropriate For Miners

Will Forte (center). Photo: Kevin Estrada/FOX
With the struggles of childbirth out-of-the-way, The Last Man on Earth takes a ridiculous leap into marriage and dating prospects between the children in their survivor circle. While the series has tackled some cartoon-ish topics (namely Fish in the Dish), the series has always balanced the absurd comedy with some genuine emotion. In 'Fish in the Dish', while Carol might have made a masturbation room for Tandy with hand-drawn porn on the walls, there was also a serious moment where the couple worried about the future of having children due to Tandy's sterility. Arguably, 'Not Appropriate For Miners' has a plot that's far more absurd with none of the sentiment.

As teased above, the A-plot mainly focuses on Carol's attempts to form a relationship between Jasper and her children. After Erica says that Jasper gave Dawn a flower and jokes about marrying them, Carol goes into full survival mode and attempts to get her newborns into the dating pool. Ultimately, the story goes for sheer shock value and the concept is awkward and generally unfunny. Additionally, Carol's continued insecurity is more irritating than amusing. Schaal is a great actress but the writers need to stop fixating on her jealousy of Erica and focus more on her comedy side. Overall, the story ends up bringing out the worst of both Carol and Erica and doesn't progress the plot in any way.

In the secondary plot, Todd asks Tandy to help him discipline Jasper. This duo almost always works well and Tandy's madcap performance of a parent had me in tears. Todd's relationship with Jasper has been interesting and rather touching but it seems like their dynamic resets after every episode despite the progress that's made. Even though Jasper wore his matching tuxedo in 'Gender Friender' and it seemed like the two were becoming closer, that character development is not present in 'Miners'. With that said, the pairing has been the highlight of a rather dull season. Unfortunately, Jasper ends up disappearing and the episode ends with the group searching for him. After several episodes that didn't make any big plot advances, this conflict is definitely a welcome addition to the series. At the tail-end of 'Not Appropriate For Miners', it is revealed that there is another human alive (Fred Armisen). This should help the show bring something new to the table and finally change things up.

Ultimately, 'Not Appropriate For Miners' just isn't a very good episode. There are some solid moments, but Carol and Erica's outlandish behavior doesn't manage to hit the mark in the comedy department. Hopefully, the addition of a new cast member will change the group dynamic and inject some serious conflict back into the show.


Stray Thoughts

  • That friendship kiss between Todd & Tandy was super bizarre.
  • Apparently, we get two more episodes in January. I would've preferred having 10 before 2017 ends and 8 in spring. 
  • Will the rubix cube ever blow up?
  • I love how casual Tandy was about his masturbation habits to Carol.
  • Melissa seems to be last season's Erica. They're barely focusing on her now. 
  • Looks like Leighton Meester will also be appearing. She was great in Making History.
  • I miss when the media wouldn't spoil who was going to appear on the show.

Grade: C+

What did you think of the episode? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.