It’s hard to picture John Casey of the “*grunt*love’s for suckers” as a sexual being, much less one who’s in love. It’s a brilliant and somewhat creepy dynamic that Gertrude brings in these episodes, none more than in “Kept Man.” Though overall it was an unremarkable episode–if you consider the level of spectacularity that was vs. Baby, but I guess it’s always hard to come down–Casey and Gertrude’s chemistry elevated this episode in much the same way Sensei was a fun outing. Even better than Sensei to be truthful.
It wasn’t that long ago that we heard these words:
Casey: “Look who’s finally admitting she has feelings for the nerd.”
Sarah: “All I will admit to is having feelings.”
Casey: Twenty years in this business has taught me one thing. People it’s that people let you down in the end.
Sarah, glaring: Well, It’s nice to know where we stand.
It almost seems like every episode this season is designed as a nod and a look back from the journey that was, the growth that is. Casey is no longer that unfeeling, cynical, G-man, nomad. Now he’s got roots, and amazingly, a girlfriend. But still he’s John Casey, he is nobody’s “Kept Man,” regardless of how hilarious that would be. I’m not going to lie, I was utterly and completely creeped out and yet intrigued at all the subtle and not so subtle sexual overtones between Casey and Gertrude. Sarah said it best, [what’s wrong?] “everything. It’s all wrong.” I had no idea that when I campaigned for #SexyTimes, this is what I’d get (heh). At the same time, I find that I like it, I laugh and enjoy it. I enjoy seeing Casey be different, evolved and romantic. The last scene where he asks Alex to meet his girlfriend is probably one of the sweetest scenes Casey has ever been involved in. I truly hope (and have no doubt) that John Casey will find his happily ever after with one Gertrude Verbanski, traveling the world and embracing danger every step of the way.
Chuck and Sarah dealing with their own “Happily Ever After,” albeit in the present was equally heartwarming. I’ve long since championed and campaigned for a pregnancy scare and this was much, much better than I ever could have imagined. I had a more dreary fantasy of how it would take place, but this was perfect. We’ve gotten so accustomed to Sarah revealing her inner thoughts and feelings so seldomly that whenever it happens it always seems like a special gift under the Christmas Tree. Though she’s taken down her walls long ago, it still seems special whenever we get a glimpse of her inner thoughts and dreams. This was no different. “Part of me was kind of hoping I was pregnant” (GASP). I wish Sarah of season 1, as she looks toward Lou and Chuck having coffee, or after she says to Casey, “do you ever just want to have a normal life? Have a family? Children?” could see herself 4-5 years later, married, happy, anticipating a family. I wish she could tell her 4-5 years younger self, to keep at it, that everything will turn out ok…more than ok, perfect.
Ironically Casey’s response to Sarah’s query is also appropriate after Kept Man, “The choices we made to something bigger than ourselves is the right choice. Hard as that is for you to remember sometimes.” Oh Casey of 4 years ago, you had no idea.
By far my biggest beef with this episode was Chuck’s obliviousness. Throughout these 5 years we’ve been shown that Chuck, much like Sarah, understands emotional nuances. He understands and often anticipated Sarah even though he was continually oblivious to how Sarah felt about him–but that’s understandable, that was more of him not believing himself worthy of her, rather than not realizing that she has feelings for him too but I digress. So him being too preoccupied about the business and the future and missing all the not-so-subtle clues about Sarah fearing and yet secretly anticipating pregnancy was a little hard to buy. Especially if you consider the amount of time he dwells on “Care.” But like all things, it’s explainable and not really that big of a deal. Nevertheless, it was fun to see him be protective and yet sensitive to her (in the end). And without it, there really wouldn’t have been an opening for Casey to show off his emotional maturity.
Last point: as big a fan as I am of Gertrude and all that she brings, it’s quite remarkable for me to feel that Jeffster stole the show. And I do, and they did. Lester dressed as a woman, a not-so-bad looking woman at that, was hilarious squared. More than hilarious, it’s a long time coming. I’m not a big fan of them learning Chuck’s secret, but I was amazed at how much Jeff deduced. Needless to say this will be an interesting plot point for the future.
All in all it was a lighthearted romp of an episode. Definitely a far cry from the emotionality and stakes of Baby and Santa Suit, but no less entertaining. A very Sensei-Undercover Lover-esque stand-alone episode, appropriate for a John Casey centered venture.