We've officially reached the halfway point of Season 6 — and to be perfectly honest, it's a lot to process. So far we've had some chaotic wedding planning, the Crows movie has been pretty high pressure for everybody, and there was that threesome conversation last week that went beyond some people's comfort zone. (This is a sex-positive space, folks.)
Before the season gets closer to the end than the beginning, this is a great chance for everyone to pause, breathe, maybe have a spa day or chill out in front of the TV, and take a moment to reflect on a few things. And with this episode, that's exactly what we get.
Plus a hot guy named Citrus, but more on that later.
Patrick is spending a night at the motel with the Roses, after David springs some renovations on Patrick's apartment. (Which immediately makes me wonder if David is planning to move into that little studio he couldn't imagine sharing with Patrick just last season, but you know what, we're not there yet.)
In exchange, Patrick wants David to share a pizza and watch a baseball game with him, which David reluctantly does until Moira not-so-spontaneously interrupts and drags him off to a special wine tasting. "You guys might want to rehearse a little more next time," Patrick says wryly, "the extraction did feel a bit strained."
It's one of several subtle throwbacks to the beginning of the show in this episode: David and Moira put on an equally stilted performance in Season 1 when they tried to get the women of Schitt's Creek involved in a pyramid scheme cosmetics company. You'd think they would have improved a little by now.
For many viewers, Catherine O’Hara's comedic timing in Season 1's Herb Ertlinger Winery commercial is what hooked them on the series; so I'm glad we get to revisit dear old Bingo Lingfucker before the end. (Though he immediately loses points by "forgiving" Moira for her brilliant commercial and being completely ignorant of Rose Apothecary. Don't push your luck, buddy.)
In honor of the Crows movie, Herb wants Moira to help him select an exclusive and limited release of "Moira Rosé" fruit wine, including a banana rosé option that made me say "bleugh" out loud and then Google "banana wine" which is apparently a real thing. Follow-up question: is Herb trying to act like he grows bananas in Canada, or does he just get most of his fruit from the supermarket?
Small problem for Moira and David: all of the rosé options are terrible, and they have to pick one.
With Patrick alone at the motel, Roland corners Johnny and once again makes a valid point in the most annoying possible way. "Not having the big father/son-in-law chat feels like a missed opportunity to lay down some laws," he says. "Maybe Patrick should get the talk from old Uncle Roland."
What follows is some top-notch Awkward Family Time between Johnny and Patrick — though you can tell Johnny is discovering how much he'll enjoy having a son-in-law he can talk sports with, after living with a family of divas most of his life. Patrick sees what's going on and promises, in a genuinely touching moment, "I love your son, and I will always do everything I can to respect him, and to protect him from all of the things in life that can set him off. And there are many, many things that can set him off."
Then, in case anyone thinks Patrick has some kind of advantage in the dignity department, they both have the dorkiest reaction to a home run I've ever seen. The boy loses a brain cell every day he's with the Rose family and I'm so happy for him.
Alexis is trying to ignore her personal life by throwing herself into her work, and lands a gig as "regional brand ambassador / regional marketing invigorator" for a trendy fitness company called Elevate, which she gets all her friends to join. The class is led by a guy named Citrus, and I am dying to know more about the writers room brainstorming session that came up with that one.
"We are ascending, not depending!" he yells as they toil away on step machines. "All our troubles, all our worries, we're going to elevate above them!" Stevie's fine-tuned bullshit detector quickly figures out something's off, and Alexis discovers she recruited all of them into a cult, and Citrus is promoting a Heaven's Gate alien spaceship situation.
I should probably be focusing on how they get to safety, but all I want to know is if Schitt's Creek has its own SoulCycle/Scientology cult, what was Johnny's would-be client Amy "Screamnastic Inner/Outer Beauty Connectivity" Grace from Season 3 being so prissy about? That franchise would have fit right in.
We all have fun speculating about Alexis and her jet-setting, taken-hostage-by-Somali-pirates-that-one-time former life; but I think we need to talk more about Twyla Sands and her equally bonkers backstory. When Alexis tells everyone that Elevate is a cult, Twyla's reaction is "Oh my gosh, did you not know that? My mom tried to take me to the Gateway for spring break one year!"
Quick refresher from previous episodes: Twyla has a tarot card deck that might be cursed, her father once toured with Fleetwood Mac until they got a restraining order against him and he's now in prison, her cousin also went to prison for doing an illegal telemarketing scam, her aunt has a ghost in her house, her other cousin performed with Riverdance until she got trampled, and her uncle had a parrot who kept asking Twyla to take her bra off. And all this time she's been a constant ray of sunshine who just wants to run the Cafe Tropical and listen to other people's problems.
Alexis and Twyla need to go out for drinks and compare notes, if they haven't already.
As they sample and mix different fruit wines to find a blend that isn't awful, Moira and David start talking about David's relationship with Patrick. Once again, wine is used as a metaphor for love — and once again, Moira shows a level of motherly wisdom that nobody could have expected when the show first began.
"You and I, we're two potent grapes," she says. "And there's a lot of your father in Patrick. But just because their notes are subtle, doesn't mean they require any less attention."
Of course, because they're Moira and David, they end up getting sloppy drunk on bad wine and offending Herb until the husband and husband-to-be have to come pick them up. There needs to be an extensive blooper reel of Catherine O'Hara and Dan Levy performing this scene. Extensive.
The great thing about Alexis and Stevie hanging out more is that Alexis gets to experience for herself that Stevie never lets her friends live anything down, ever. David and Moira literally just got themselves kicked out of a winery, and Alexis' Elevate adventure still ends up being the main punchline of the night. "Now, do the step machines actually lift off the ground," David teases, cuddled up in bed with Patrick, "or are the step machines just there to help you practice for when you walk onto the spaceship?"
The whole scene has a nostalgia that I'm going to need a few days to process — the Rose family (now including Patrick) piled on top of each other in their cramped motel rooms, trading jabs that have lost all their sharp edges over the years. I'm getting a pretty strong feeling that it's the last time we'll see them together like this, before everything changes.