In the season one finale of Chozen, our boy finally faces off against Phantasm at the Broken Spear music festival. Of course, he loses his groove due to some spelling bee PTSD and needs to trip on mescaline to go on some spirit quest to find his voice, but really who hasn’t? Also, Ricky continues to perv on Tracy and it actually almost works this time. Almost.
On the whole, this was a pretty good episode. Not a scene was wasted, and every character was utilized properly, and for a big episode like this IT MADE SENSE to have all the characters present. As Avatar: The Last Airbender taught us years ago, watching a lead character trip balls is fucking priceless, and Chozen’s trip did not disappoint. From the pop culture references to the appearance of Biggie and Tupac (and Bruce Lee?) to the pivotal flashback that reveals Chozen’s hidden trauma, it was pretty spot on.
And I have to admit… I’m not made of stone, people. Okay? Watching Chozen comfort his younger self got me a little choked up. Luckily, the show allowed this development without missing the opportunity to undercut it with some comedy. Chozen does find his answers, but he learns all the wrong lessons and continues to be a boorish, narcissistic dick. And thank God. That’s what makes his character work.
Meanwhile, we have Ricky trying a new tack to get with Tracy by being her friend. He, of course, has no interest in that and is just doing it to get into her pants. I do like that the writers are addressing his creeper tactics for what they are: creepy and unhealthy. Furthermore, he doesn’t get rewarded for his efforts. I have to say, I really like that. I doesn’t feel like we’re supposed to be rooting for Ricky. We’re supposed to think that the dude has it coming when Tracy shoots him down for not taking a freaking hint.
So, yeah, solid episode, but a mediocre finale. Yeah, Chozen steps up and confronts Phantasm, and it’s very possible (though the ending leaves it open) that he wins this fight. Of course, he ends up getting arrested, which bring us full circle to how the show began. All the pieces were there, but they just failed to be more than the sum of their parts. For my money, I feel Chozen won a little too easily, and yeah, the spirit quest was a great development, but it took up most of the episode. The actual rap battle was over fairly quickly, and I never really thought for a second that Phantasm would win. Now, I know this is not high drama, but storytelling is storytelling, and as a stand-alone episode, this one works fine. As the crescendo to an ongoing storyline that was already underdeveloped… meh. Could have been stronger.
But hey, as Chozen himself says, you have to do you or the haters win, and this first season, though wobbly in places, did have enough good points that I look forward to seeing where the writers go once they iron out the kinks.
That is, if the show gets a second season. I’m starting to get the feeling I’m the audience. The entire audience.