Last weeks Crazy Ex-Girlfriend showed what happens when years of anxiety and depression get ignored, enabled, and pushed down. In true CEG fashion, the subject matter was extremely difficult and delicate, but it was executed beautifully, never veering into the absurd or playing mental illness for laughs.
Rebecca feels like she’s totally hit rock-bottom and alienated everyone in West Covina so she heads back home to her mother. Naomi totally takes over and tries to set her daughter’s life back on track. To her, that means faxing Rebecca’s resignation to Plimpton, hiring movers to clear out her place, and forcing Becks to punch up her resumé and get her job back at the old firm.
In West Covina, Nathaniel has hired Cornelia, a Harvard/Yale educated lawyer who only mentions it if she’s asked and who works harder than anyone. She does not get involved in other people’s business and sees the workplace not as a second family but as a ~workplace.~ Most of her scenes are underscored with the melody to “Whose The New Guy” as the entire office is trying to get her to fill the Rebecca sized hole in their hearts.
She’s so weirded out by all the attention that she takes a work trip with Nathaniel but he’s also confused because he misses the weird sexual energy he thought he had with Rebecca and at the same time glad that it’s not there. Turns out they all followed her there (Paula didn’t follow her, but she was there on a small vacation to spend time with her family) and again try to get her to take Rebecca’s place for them. This chaos causes Cornelia to launch into her own song. She knows this isn’t about her, but she can’t quite figure out what it is about.
Throughout all this, back in New York, Becks is not eating, constantly sleeping, and reliving the awful things she said to everyone the last time she saw them. One day, Naomi glances at Rebecca’s laptop and sees that she’s been googling ways to kill herself. This launches Naomi into protective mama bear mode, trying to protect Rebecca and get her help. Unfortunately she doesn’t go about it in the best way – mixing antidepressants into the strawberry milkshakes she force-feeds her.
Rebecca is deeply moved by this motherly love and affection, they’re wearing matching tracksuits, they’re playing twister together, and Naomi isn’t commenting on her hair or her eating habits, she’s just letting her be her. This launches her into her first musical number about believing that maybe her mom isn’t a heinous bitch after all.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t last long. Audra Levine comes by with a casserole and when she sees the 2 women bonding, warns Rebecca that her mom is definitely up to something (Jewish mothers in their 60s don’t just change overnight) and that Rebecca needs to wise up and figure it out. After this, Becks starts noticing that the fuzzy feeling in her brain isn’t a brain freeze, and she finds Naomi’s pills hidden away in a drawer. She confronts her mom and learns that she was just medicating her until she could get her agree to be committed again. This is a really uncool way for Naomi to keep dealing with her daughter’s mental illness – and it makes Rebecca feel attacked so she storms off.
She ends up back on a plane, heading to West Covina, when she realizes that there’s nothing there for her either. She has no one in Scarsdale and no one in California and so she asks the flight attendant to stop the plane and just drop her off. Thinking she’s having a rough day, the lovely blonde angel offers Rebecca a glass of wine to help her chill out. Rebecca takes the wine and then it happens. She pulls out her mom’s pills, contemplates them for a while, and slowly starts swallowing them, one by one, until she’s extremely out of it and on the verge of passing out. She looks up at the help button, sees it as saying “hope” and actually calls for help.
It is very tough to watch – even more so if you’ve struggled with anxiety and depression that have led you to some dark places – but it is a beautiful thing to see Rebecca pull herself through it and realize that she is worthy of being helped.
If you feel alone and are looking for help, please check out The Suicide Prevention Lifeline and remember that there is always someone willing to listen if you are struggling.
A new episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend airs tonight on The CW.