Tarra Matthews Staff Writer
This week on The New Normal Bravid adopted a dog as a way to prepare for a baby while Shania shows her love for actress Maggie Smith and Goldie has to battle her baby hormones in dealing with an Assistant Principal who is FAR from hard on the eyes.
Let’s delve deeper shall we?
So Bryan and David decide that they need to adopt a new puppy to ‘acclimatize’ themselves to the schedule and tasks of having a new baby on the way; the feeding, the playing, and the sleepless nights all seem manageable for the pair, facing them all together, a welcome surprise from those families out there where one parent seems to have to face the majority of this stuff on their own. That is, until the puppy (named Harvey Milkbone, only one of the best names ever) has to go to the vet and Bryan coerces David into doing so.
Meanwhile, Shania has her new obsession of the week in the great Maggie Smith, dressing up as Professor McGonagall and casting spells on people, ‘harmless’ stuff. Then Shania steps up her game, somewhere finding an authentic looking early 20th century woman’s attire and putting on her best British accent as Downton Abbey’s own, Violet Crawley. The era-appropriate shade she’s throwing doesn’t sit well with here teachers though, landing Goldie in the Assistant Principal’s office. Apparently the Assistant Principal took a drink from the Chippendales water fountain & had Sam Evans lend him his gold short and stripper moves (*Bravo!*); or maybe that’s just Goldie’s pregnancy hormones acting up! Either way, thank you, New Normal crew!
Anyway, it seems like Clay is finally going to step it up and be a responsible Dad to Shania; that, coupled with his sweat workout attire and ‘magic hands’ send Goldie over the edge and the pair sleep together!! Simultaneously, Bravid is dealing with their ailing Harvey Milkbone and Goldie’s false labour pains. The puppy gets the short end of the leash, getting hit by a car while out on a walk with a Vet Tech while receiving treatment.
This is finally when I understood the lesson of the episode, about halfway through. Stricken with grief over the death of Harvey, Bryan attends Confession where the pastor helps Bryan to understand that without great pain in our lives, we will never know great love. The two opposing emotions go together naturally, why would you want to banish pain from your life if it meant you would never know true love again. This scene was my favourite of the episode and had me in tears! The message is so simple and NOT being shoved at us as some messages done in the past. Bryan’s character growth and development from the beginning of the season is amazing and consistent. Here is a shallow, Hollywood show runner who has come to realize that family is what is truly important in life, if you don’t have those around you to show you love, what do you have really? For an episode that seemed to have no direction at the start (besides a cute puppy story), the story did a lovely 180 in its final moments and yes it didn’t end on the happiest of notes but life isn’t a 30 minute comedy show, everyone is allowed to have their sad moments!