Louie Review: “So Did The Fat Lady/Elevator Pt. 1” (Season 4, Episodes 3&4)


Those of us who’ve been regularly watching Louie up until this point are aware of most of C.K.’s characteristics. He’s hilarious and witty, but we’re not surprised to find out that he rarely gets a date, or that his daughters don’t necessarily look up to him, but rather view him as a funnyman they get to hang out with every once in a while. Furthermore, he’s self-loathing, yet others would merely call him self-aware. Regardless of one’s impression of Louie, the comedian possesses an undeniable gift for poking fun at his own limitations. In So Did the Fat Lady, C.K. explores these deep-seeded insecurities, which are brought to light by an overweight –albeit charming–waitress who asks him out at his regular comedy club.

People love Louie when he comes onstage. He delivers jokes with little elegance, but none is needed for his self-deprecating type of humor. One observes people cheering, applauding, and consequently acknowledging him at different places he frequents. “You’re really funny,” an attractive server tells him at a diner. Nevertheless, that’s as far as he can possibly hope to get with them. Time and time again, we’ve seen Louie strike out. Sometimes he manages to say the wrong thing, other times he won’t even make it that far. As it turns out, Louie believes his physical qualities to be his main, perpetual downfall.

Last week, we saw him score a model–or perhaps the other way around–but that didn’t turn out so well, unfortunately. Is he merely aiming too high? Should he lower his standards and expectations? Enter Vanessa (Sarah Baker). She’s confident, even cocky about her charisma. Most importantly, she knows she’s “a fat girl in her late 30s,” a concept she embraces with self-assurance and an everlasting smile on her face. She’s real. Naturally, that scares Louie to death.

After politely rejecting her a few times–despite realizing that they share uncommon chemistry–Louie finally agrees to take Vanessa out for coffee. Their walk and subsequent conversation around New York City further develops their mutual attraction, up until the point where he, in an attempt to show kindness, flat out lies to her. “You’re not… fat,” he says. Louie’s attitude disgusts and disappoints her.  She proceeds to unload her frustrations on him, as she has noticed his insecurity from the very beginning.

So Did the Fat Lady serves as one of Louie‘s earnest episodes, which one would believe to be uncommon for a comedy show about a humorist whose main purpose in life is lost on him. Yet, Louis C.K., the surprisingly talented writer and director, has brought us slick 22-minute dramatic masterpieces such as Season 1’s God and Bully, in addition to laugh-out-loud episodes that are equally insightful, and continues to gather admiration among critics and audiences alike.