Hulu Television

Pen15: “Shadow” Review

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Synopsis:

Anna helps her dad move into an apartment. Maya is confronted by a surprise visitor from Japan.


This episode was super unsatisfactory for me. I was pretty bored watching it and it was anti-climatic. Maya’s friend, Ume, comes to town and stays with her family. What was unclear from the beginning, was that her friend was from Japan, didn’t speak any English and Maya wasn’t even excited to see her. It already seemed like the story didn’t make any sense because we got no context about how they had known each other from the past. But in true Maya fashion, she immediately got jealous of Ume, because everyone loved her. And even though it was funny at times when Maya would try to talk to Ume, why would you have your new character not say any words for most of the episode? It was such a one-sided conversation from Maya and Anna’s point of view. We didn’t see how Ume truly felt till the end of the episode. And to put a bow on top of things, Maya of course came to her senses in the end, and apologized to Ume.

Anna’s storyline was a little more believable. Even though she was mostly hanging out with Maya during this episode, we did get an insight into her life, living with her dad. Her dad has moved into a apartment and is desperately wanting Anna to move in with him. She’s hesitant because he doesn’t have his life together at the moment and it already seems like she would be taking on a “wife-like” role. We definitely saw that in the last scene they had together. Her dad is gone, and Anna walks in to find that the kitchenware still hasn’t been put away. She takes it upon herself to put everything away, and attempts to make her and her dad a meal. When he comes back, all goes downhill, when Anna sees that she burned the food, and that she used a plastic container in the oven. What was so realistic, was that Anna was trying to be the mature one and get their lives together, but her dad blamed the incident on the fact that she is too young to be cooking. All Anna said she wanted to do was help and even when the phone started ringing, her dad went back into parent mode, and yelled at her to get the phone. I knew that Anna wouldn’t choose to live with her dad permanently, and this scene showed exactly why.

We got a few little nostalgia moments in this episode. Dance Dance Revolution made an appearance which I loved because I used to play that game all the time, and Maya and Anna talk to each other in pig latin. That was a funny little moment because with the episode mostly being about language barriers and not understading one another, Maya and Anna thought it would be smart to use a language, only they knew, so that Ume and Maya’s mom wouldn’t understand them.

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