This week’s episode of The McCarthys was about Marjorie’s overly competitive sister visiting. As soon as I saw that description, I hoped the sister would be played by Jane Kaczmarek and, guys, she totally was. I could give this episode a free pass just for that. Malcolm in the Middle references are the key to my heart.
But even beyond the fact that Laurie Metcalfe and Jane Kaczmarek are beautiful and funny and perfect on their own and doubly so together, this was just a great episode. Marjorie’s relationship with her sister is full of baggage, which is perfectly done here with a good mix of petty hilarity and real emotional weight. In addition, we get to see Sean and Gerard competing with their cousin who attends Harvard, providing some great banter. (“I guess your phD isn’t in sports.” “No, it’s not. It’s in developmental neuroscience.” “Yeah, ’cause that’s a thing”). Plus, Ronny finds out that his other cousin just came out as a gay man and already has a hot boyfriend. That’s what pushes him over the edge, pushing the conflict between the sisters to its climax.
Everything in this episode works so well, with great punchlines scattered throughout a simple but emotionally rewarding story of sibling rivalry. It’s a great episode for Marjorie, but also really shows what a strong ensemble this has become. Every single character in the main cast got their share of material.