2 Broke Girls: Season 6
The situation-based comedy, or sitcom, was one of the original formats back when television was just a brand-new form of entertainment gaining acceptance in American homes. At that time these half-hour comedies typically revolved around family life as defined in the 50s. Then, the nuclear family was defined as a fall to work each morning, a stay-at-home mother and an average of three children. They resided in their own modest middle-class home in a residential neighborhood, and the problems the children inevitably got into was resolved within a single episode, strictly by parental involvement. The universally accepted paradigm for home entertainment was to ensure the content remained family friendly and the targeted demographic was abroad as possible. With modern advancements providing a myriad of sources extensively beyond the traditional four of five broadcast stations supplemented by multi-tier cable networks and the increased market penetration of streaming services. The lack of Federal government oversight, particularly the FCC, permitted the growing proliferation of mature content previously reserved for mature themed movies. The point of this circuitous route brings us to the current consideration, the sixth and final season of ‘2 Broke Girls’. Although most aspects of this sitcom are decidedly unorthodox it was based on a familiar foundation, instead of the nuclear family, a popular format followed the extended family of the workplace. For six seasons CBS has provided audiences with the opportunity to follow the exploits of a pair of young women living and working in Brooklyn. New York. They are highly relatable wage slaves barely living paycheck to paycheck. The hook used to drive the situations and characters is they have a shared dream, to establish a high end, boutique cupcake bakery. The always popular class struggle as poor young women tries their best to raise their station in life and own their own business. The presentation was decidedly unorthodox, but the prevailing theme is pure Americana, pursuing the American dream. A combination of declining ratings and a tendency for the of the humor to become repetitive, the series was ultimately canceled. It seems obvious that the writers were trying their utmost to delay the inevitable.
Native New Yorker Max Black (Kat Denning), and former member of the 1% elite, Caroline Channing (Beth Behrs), have been roommates, business partners, and best friends for about six years and finally, life seems to be smiling at them. Caroline sold her riches to rags life story to the movies scoring them a free trip to Hollywood and a hefty check for $250,000 for the rights. Years ago, the girls made a deal. Max was an extraordinary baker with natural talent. Caroline was educated at an Ivy League business school. Together they planned to open the boutique shop, ‘Max’s Cupcakes.' The preceding five years has been nearly entirely focused on the creation of that endeavor. The events in Los Angles instigated drastic and lasting paradigm shifts. Max wound up with a serious relationship, the most committed she has ever had. The man in Max’s life is Randy Walsh (Ed Quinn), a prominent contract attorney with A-List clients. After a lifetime of random hookups, Max is considering a relationship with potential for longevity. Caroline is exuberant over the prospect of regaining some of the affectations of her former life. The major difference is this time it is with her own money earned by hard work, diligence, and friendship. Each episode concluded with a running total of how much the young women have accumulated. For years the balance has been bouncing around, but now there is a reasonably steady increase. The $250, 000 is no longer in that total; the girls wisely invested it in their business. While they pull that enterprise together, they implemented another mature, sound decision, continue to work at the Williamsburg diner until they business can support them. From a narrative perspective, this demonstrated a carefully calculated move on the part of the showrunners and writers. Considering the underlying premise of the series was goal oriented, the girl had to make progress towards achieving it. It this is not infused in the story the series inevitable becomes a flimsy, self-parody.
Sitcoms are an integral part of the home entertainment industry, the anchor of most network’s programming schedules. Despite this level of importance, the networks traditionally permit canceled comedies to just slip into obscurity without tying up loose ends. The changed instituted in this final season contributed to an ending that is satisfying to the loyal fans. Their dream was always a cupcake bakery offering event orders and catering. Once the funding had been secured Max and Caroline updated their business objectives to take advantage of current trends. The girls had been using the back room of the diner as a kitchen and walked up to window selling their cupcakes after hours. The owner of the diner, Han Lee (Jonathan Kite), had been the butt of endless streams of jokes over is lack of height of sexual experience. The overriding factor driving the dynamic in the eatery is an unfailing sense of family. A dysfunctional family to be sure but a family none the less. Included in this rag-tag group includes the grill cook, Oleg (Jonathan Kite), and his new wife hailing from Poland, Sophie (Jennifer Coolidge) and the elderly former jazz musician, Earl (Garrett Morris). He is the grandfatherly figure with stories about his blurred drug days playing in dive jazz clubs. Oleg and Sophie are known for their limitless libido and insistence of having kinky sex on any surface that is semi=horizontal. The recent birth of their daughter, Barbara has done little to diminish their ardor. The running gag is Sophie entering a room pushing the baby stroller with the force of a battery ram assuring all that "the baby likes it.".
While securing funds to realize their dreams Max and Caroline took on a variety of side jobs. This was an excellent plot device to pull the main characters out of the baseline environment better showcasing the series’ strongest feature, the natural chemistry between Ms. Denning and Ms. Behrs, who are best friends offset. After five years developing their respective characters both talented young women were at the top form of expressing their presentations. The result is an organic feel to the humor that surpasses iconic comedy teams like Lucy and Ethel. It is simple to see the influence that team had on this show. A foundation of this type made it possible for a radical shift in the main objective to come across as natural and believable rather than a hackneyed plot contrivance. One of the side jobs Max and Caroline worked was at an elite dessert bar. Forming the nucleus of an idea, the girls decide to turn their little window outlet into a specialized dessert bar. This brought into the story episodic twists including obtaining the apartment in the building necessary to expand the floorplan and the tribulations involved in obtaining a liquor license. It also gave a solid reason for explaining committing the bulk of their financial windfall. I have been a fan of the series from the very start. Certainly, the objections raised by some that the humor is frequently puerile and overtly politically incorrect. I enjoy non-PC comedy; a means to bring laughter through controversy. The decision to end the series involved these objections but was a result of an acceptable conclusion. The girls have reached their immediate goal, their own business. The series ends with the premiere of Caroline’s biopic and the start of a new chapter of their lives. The premise of the series has been achieved providing an ideal place to lower the curtain. To continue beyond this point would be a disservice to the fans and the talented people on both sides of the camera. It is far better to stop before a solid series can jump the shark.