The Last Bus In Town
Episode 5 of The Chair Season 1 begins with Ji-Yoon coming under fire regarding her ties with Bill. Bill doesn’t come off looking good here; rides into school from female students, showing up at class drunk and showing inappropriate videos to his students. On the back of this, Bill’s disciplinary hearing is now going to be on the grounds of permanent dismissal.
Ji-Yoon tries to spin this into a sexist issue but Larson brings the blurred lines between personal and professional into question. After all, Ji-Yoon has given favourable treatment to him over the season thus far and her loyalties are called into question.
As we skip over to Bill, we see he’s a complete mess. He pops pills outside while students hurl abuse at him. When Ju-Ju passes Bill in a car en-route to a birthday party, she encourages her Grandfather to let Bill tag along.
While there, Ju-Ju drinks soju with the other Korean men while the women gossip. During the celebrations, Bill takes offence to the Korean traditions and his pills spill all over the floor, dangerously close to this 1 year old. Thankfully the child is scooped up before she can grab the pills. It’s an awkward moment, and one that quietens the entire room.
Ji-Yoon meanwhile, heads over to David Duchovny’s place. Together, they discuss his work where Ji-Yoon realizes that David’s just using this gig as a stepping stone to get back into his academic studies. Ji-Yoon is not happy and lashes out, claiming this position should be reserved for someone who’s actually passionate about it.
So Ji-Yoon offers up a chance for David to do the right thing. She wants him to tell Pembroke he’s changed his mind and in exchange, they’ll endow a chair in his name. The Dr David Duchovny Chair in English Studies to be precise.
Although that’s good news, Ji-Yoon’s heart drops when she learns Yaz has been offered a lucrative position at Yale. She’s on a higher salary and will be getting better benefits there too. So Ji-Yoon decides to match their offer and hopes they can afford the wages.
The Episode Review
Hey, remember when the crux of The Chair’s issues stemmed from Ji-Yoon needing to make a tough choice, cutting three high salary earners to save money and cut down on expenses? Could someone please enlighten me how offering even more money to a talented teacher is the way to combat this? This lack of foresight is one of the may reasons why this show just doesn’t work.
It also doesn’t help that the characters are all over the shop. Joan has jumped between episodic issues, settling on the reality that she could be facing dismissal.
The show also has an issue with its comedy too, which has jumped all over the spectrum without settling on a consistent train of humour. Mythic Quest, for example, at least sticks to a consistent style of comedy while throwing in dramatic plot points. Here though, The Chair just doesn’t know what sort of show it wants to be.
There will be fans of this one but The Chair’s lack of vision and poor plotting makes it a tough sell.