The way Brockmire has reinvented itself every season has been really interesting to see. “Baseball comedy” is not even the slightest aspect of this show.
Season 1 was just darkly funny, in a “What new horrific anecdote from this mans’ time in the wilderness could possibly outdo the last one he revealed?” way, culminating in Jim blowing up the semblance of a life he’d managed to claw back from the abyss in small town America in order to clutch at the shiny straw of what he thought could be something better, only to find himself in;
Season 2, the New Orleans one, which was noticably less outright funny and more darkness, just heaping it on (pretty much entirely bringing it on himself, with the exception of the funeral episode) in order to place him at the very bottom of a downward spiral, contrasting the ascent of Charles, and into the newfound sobriety of;
Season 3, the Florida season, where the sad arc of JK Simmons’ character forces Jim to confront mortality and clearly grow as a person, albeit “going from drunk asshole to sober asshole” and the season ends on a pretty positive note compared to previous ones. But then, holy fuck, we come to;
Season 4, where they have jumped forward to the dystopian 2030s, and the impending death of baseball as a sport seems to be tied to the impending death of America itself, a death that 4 episodes in, it’s anyones’ guess if Jim is going to be the man who pulls it back from the brink, or ends up being the man who presides over said death.
4x01 - I have absolutely no complaint about them bringing in a previously unheard of daughter for Jim, because honestly with his sexual history I wouldn’t have been surprised to find out he had an entire brood. But fucking hell, even this exchange doesn’t do justice to the nightmarish vision of only a decade hence;
“Not a great time to be outdoors in America, what with the heat, the guns, and the product placement facial tattoos which are pretty horrible on the inside as well. Not to mention the water shortages, which have led to the aggressive comeback of B.O. … Right, Todd? … B.O. sir.”
“Todd believes that deodorant contains aluminum, which he…”
“I don’t care if it’s laced with arsenic motherfucker, you’re an olfactory dirty bomb walkin’ around here man. You know what kills me, what galls me? It’s not your blatant lack of self respect, it’s the way you just happily and capriciously break the social contract, just right over your knee like Bo Jackson after a strikeout! I stink everybody, HEY-HEY, live with it!”
4x03 last week seemed like an odd one, especially given that it seemed to be about three minutes shorter than usual and somewhat of a “Let’s see what Jules was up to all these years but fill some dead time with more dystopian commercials”, but by fuck 4x04 was an explosive return to form.
The montage of Jim unleashing years, if not decades of pent up rage at the team owners with the promise and threat of more invective to come was just glorious.
“Your family is nothing but a hundred years of war-profiteering, and two hundred years of cousin-fucking!”
I really have no idea at this point which way the show is going to go regarding the fate of a sport which Charles (correctly) describes as “the worst”, but I can honestly say I don’t want to see Jim fall off the wagon, but what with the return of Jules it seems somewhat inevitable.