Bupkis – Season 1 Episode 3 “Picture” Recap & Review


Amy is shocked and physically numb when she reads headlines on her phone that Pete has died in a car crash. It is not true though, as we find out in episode 3 of Bupkis.

Pete wakes up in his hotel, seemingly under heavy drugs. The news has spread like wildfire and Pete realizes the same when he goes down to the hotel lobby. Evan is with him and Pete phones Amy to calm her down. He is attending a climate change event, Tomorrow’s Future. Al Gore and Jon Stewart also make guest appearances in this episode as speakers at the event.

When he looks at the photos used in the news pieces about his death, he is frustrated to find they have used the same one. It is a goofy picture where he is squinting and looks incredibly young.

He asks Evan to track down the user who keeps changing the photo on Pete’s Wikipedia page.  Pete’s annoyance with the photo grows as it is also displayed in the background when he speaks. Stewart’s cameo is breezy; he is shown to be friends with Pete and greatly discourages him from “running for President.” The actor himself has not been seen in much new content since leaving the Daily Show and it was nice to see him again.

Amy pulls up Evan for not protecting Pete, which is supposed to be Evan’s job. She considers him family and asks him to get his guard up. He shows Amy the picture and she also gets involved in the hunt for the notorious user.

Pete meets with his therapist, Dr Rossi, to discuss his newfound anxiety about the photo issue and the news of his death. Rossi says it is up to Pete to decide what makes him happy and what he chooses to ignore and pay attention to. Charlie Day plays Rossi and is another high-profile cameo in this episode.

Joe has a different reaction to Pete’s troubles. They smoke marijuana in a public park and Joe tells Pete to take the matter by the scruff of the neck. He must track down this mysterious user and talk some sense into him. “Be the big dog,” Joe says and Pete is inspired.

Amy has figured out the address of this user and Pete snatches the phone off Evan’s hands. He takes a Glaive blade (from Star Wars) and goes to confront this user. Amy is miffed with Evan for letting Pete go and takes an Uber to the location.

She reprimands Peter for being rash and asks him to get into his car. He explains that he cannot let people do things like this to him. The user is not home and they wait in the car. They order food, role-play buddy cops on the beat, and have a great time together. Amy opens up to Pete about her constant worry that he is going to bring harm his way. However, Pete is asleep while she is saying it.

It turns out that the user is Dr Rossi. He implores a confused Pete to come inside, where Rossi reveals he planted the news piece and the picture to prove his own point. The very fact that Pete is wasting his time confronting a stranger for such a trivial thing means Pete has to change and focus on things that actually matter – like Amy.

It is a hilarious and profound moment, arguably the best in the series yet, and Pete goes out with a life lesson. He hugs Amy and reiterates his love for her. On their way back, they sing along to one of Scott’s favourite songs on the radio, “Jungle Love.”

As the episode closes out, we see a flashback of Scott taking a photo of Pete and Casey, and Pete making the same squinty face in the photo.

The Episode Review

Episode 3 greatly indicates Bupkis might be Pete’s way of venting. He is doing therapy with his creative processes, while also reflecting internet trolls of what impact they potentially have on their “targets.” It might be a coming-of-age moment for such endeavours for more entertainment people like Pete in the future. This approach is working well so far, and episode 3 has even more confident storytelling.

The anxiousness about the experiment seemed to have eased out, which also flushes the absurdity element. In fact, the last two episodes have largely stuck to routine adult drama about complicated life issues. This has also allowed viewers to feel settled in their expectations. It bodes well for Bupkis which seems set to be a successful and meaningful experiment for the creators.

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You can read our full season review for Bupkis here!

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