Single Drunk Female – Season 1 Episode 8 “James” Recap & Review


Episode 8 of Single Drunk Female begins with James showing up to his family’s Thanksgiving dinner drunk. Not to fear–the scenario is a flashback from over one year ago.

At the dinner, James’ parents are too proud of him for his promotion at MIT’s media lab to notice his strange behaviour. But his older brother Lucas calls him out in front of everyone. James leaves the house and ends up at a bar, where he sees Sam for the first time.

Sam buys James a drink and introduces herself as “Katrina.” It’s not long before the two of them have sex in the bathroom. The bartender then throws them out (Sam has apparently done this one too many times), so they go for a walk.

They have long, drunken conversations for the rest of the night. Sam talks about avoiding Thanksgiving with her mother, whom she doesn’t get along with. James talks about his new promotion and how afraid he is of screwing everything up.

By the end of their date, they don’t exchange contact information, but they do promise to meet each other next Thanksgiving.

But James doesn’t want the night to end and have to go back to his family. He tries to persuade Sam to stay with him, but she’s tired and plans on heading home.

He starts to beg her, going so far as to suggest they stand in the road and jump out of cars’ way at the last second. Sam laughs like he’s joking, but he tries it. She has to push him out of harm’s way when a vehicle nearly runs him over. 

Sam yells at him for being insane and tells him he should get help. He says his family doesn’t believe in therapy, but she holds that the alternative is much worse (just for him, apparently, because she doesn’t have a drinking problem).

She says she had fun–except for the near-death part of the night. They hug and part ways.

The episode ends with James standing outside an AA meeting with his brother for support. Olivia greets them at the door and ushers them in.

The Episode Review

It’s refreshing to see an episode of this show that’s one drawn out arc rather than a shallow focus on four to five different characters.

Seeing the impact Sam had on James during their first meeting was touching. All of their interactions, although tinged by alcohol, lend some valuable context to their current relationship.

This episode also raises questions about James. He was kind of evasive when speaking of his job. I’m sure there was a deeper reason for his alcoholism than his fear of failure. Maybe we’ll find out before the season ends.

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You can read our full season review of Single Drunk Female here!

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