Louie Recap: "Ikea/Piano Lessons”
The first vignette, “Ikea,” begins when Louie runs into Dolores, a woman he met in the season two episode “Blueberries.” Dolores, in simplest terms, was really into spanking and had some daddy issues, or par for the course in terms of the women Louie is likely to run into.
After wondering why Louie hadn’t been discussing that occasion with others, she asks him for some help picking out some items for her son at Ikea. Not an unreasonable request, except she insists that Louie will get oral sex out of it (more on this in a bit).
While browsing through some rugs, Dolores gets upset that Louie isn't really providing any feedback (this doesn't really stray far from what the average guy does while shopping) and they start bickering.
“It’s fine...It’s a rug. It doesn’t’ solve all my problems…It’s not coated with AIDS,” Louie says, somewhat exasperated.
Dolores breaks down and starts crying and rolls under a blanket on an Ikea model bed as Louie tries to console her, and the rest of the store watches. The pair leave the store with goods in the back of a rental van and Louie pushes away Dolores' offer as something she'll just "owe him."
To borrow from Louie, this vignette could easily be surmised as, “fine.” The oral sex deal has already played out earlier this season in a pickup with Melissa Leo. While one might argue BJ jokes don’t get old, this isn’t really much of a joke. It’s Louie feeling sympathetic and unwilling to take advantage of someone in a position of need. Good for him-- it's the only redemptive thing about "Ikea."
The second part of the episode, “Piano Lessons” begins innocently enough. Louie wants to get some usage out of piano his daughters have no interest in playing, so he has an instructor come over to teach him.
That’s when Maria Bamford (a callback to “Daddy’s Girlfriend Part 1”) conveniently calls him to let him know she has crabs and via the transitive property, he has crabs too—you know the usual conversation you have while learning the piano.
“So f*** you, or sorry. I don’t know which one,” Bamford says.
Life with crabs (there’s a book title to be had there) is rather unpleasant, so Louie prematurely ends the lesson and rides his motorcycle on to the drug store for some shampoo.
While Louie waits on his crab shampoo, a woman comes through to consult with the pharmacist (reading the instructions is apparently not good enough), things quickly get rather personal—it’s unlikely you want to advertise the consistency of your bowel movement in a given day. To what end this serves, I’m not sure, though it’s probably just a moment of observational humor from C.K.
But back to the crabs, Louie gets home, presumably uses the shampoo and starts to unwind just in time to see himself on T.V. performing a standup bit from the 80’s. It’s disjarring to see just how much he’s changed, not just to us as viewers, but also to Louie who is using his FaceTime camera to look at his currently out-of-shape self.
In contrast, Sarah Silverman comes on stage and somehow looks no different than she does today—though Silverman argues she looks better today when Louie calls her to tell her she’s on T.V.
Then Marc Maron comes on. If you weren’t aware, C.K. and Maron have had some very real life issues that have played out live on Maron’s WTF Podcast and Louie remains very quiet while watching Maron's bit. “It’s weird to see him right now...I haven’t talked to Marc in 10 years,” he tells Silverman.
Despite being best friends for a time, there was a falling out over something “sh****” that Maron did to Louie though, in retrospect, Louie admits it was his fault.
This isn’t the first time C.K. has used a real life beef on “Louie.” Last year Dane Cook appeared on the show and in a very humanizing, if not surreal, moment, defended himself from accusations that he had stolen C.K.’s material.
In this case though, Louie flies out to L.A. and explains to Maron that he’s only now come to realize the errors of his ways. The only problem is Louie has already had this exact conversation with Maron five years before, though to his credit, he didn’t cry this time. It’s an awkward moment, once Louie remembers that and the two part ways with either the hope that they’ll either meet up for coffee soon or when they have the same conversation in five years.
-Hey! Pamela Adlon co-wrote this episode. I’ve mentioned this before, but it would be great to have her back on screen. Her+Louie=win.
-This is new to me, but this BRILLIANT short from C.K. has been floating around for the last month and you’d be wise to watch it.
-Obviously Louie and Dolores aren't a couple, but it was funny to see the young couple kiss over the sentiment that they would never fight like that. I've never been in or seen a couple fight at Ikea. But it does seem like it would be ripe ground for a fight-- how often does this really happen?