Karma’s a Bitch tries to be multiple things at once and only slightly succeeds by the end of the hour.
It’s no secret this show isn’t very subtle, but the episode’s message about the consequences of our actions is spoon-fed to us repeatedly at every turn. While bad people getting what they deserve could be satisfying in a twisted kind of way, such as the awful guy leaving his dog in the car ironically getting burned in a tanning bed later, the exact same subplot is told over and over again throughout this hour with very similar story beats. Sadly, there’s nothing original or fun about watching a predictable storyline unfold on screen.
To give the show some credit, the writers do try to switch things up a little this week by including flashbacks that focus on certain characters’ perspectives. Much like the lesson about karma, these flashbacks aren’t incorporated very organically into the episode. In fact, they are scattered around sporadically; whether it’s the opening teaser’s long backstory about the abusive husband or the abrupt look at the gym employee coming for the poor dog’s rescue, the flashbacks prove to be very distracting for no good reason.
Luckily, Bobby makes up for the episode’s shortcomings with a gut-wrenching storyline. Peter Krause gives what is undoubtedly one of his best performances to date as a broken man struggling to stay alive without his family. Even when the episode stumbles a little with its red-herring about Bobby’s blood, there’s enough heart (and tears) in this story to keep us invested.
– Barely any Abby screen-time this week is not cool, writers.
– As someone who worked in tech support for about a year, I absolutely believe the woman who forgot to think about unplugging the tanning bed from power. Yes, these people exist.
– The woman who steals other people’s delivery packages is admittedly hilarious, but she too took up a lot of unnecessary screen-time!
– The father throwing things at a tiger just so his son could get the perfect shot on his iPhone absolutely deserved what he got.
– Hen is still saddled with an exhausting storyline, but the writers took the “karma’s a bitch” plot way too seriously with the reveal that her ex-wife only slept with her last week to use that as leverage for a custody battle. Geez.
– Loved Athena flirting with a guy at the bar after finally deciding to divorce her husband.
– There’s only one episode left until the season finale!
Bobby: God’s not punishing me by killing me. He’s punishing me by forcing me to stay alive.
Hen: You know what karma is.
Athena: A bitch.
Hen: No. She’s a wild animal, and she won’t be caged.
Chimney: (to Bobby) Look, you’re gonna see your own kids again. I do believe that. But right now, Asha and a thousand others just like her They’re your kids, too. That’s your blood in their veins. So you look at her, you look at her and those young parents, and you tell me if that feels like a punishment.
A couple of amusing moments sadly aren’t enough to keep this unusually subpar episode of 911 afloat.