We start off this review of “Enlisted” with the heart-breaker that next week is the season and most likely series finale. That makes watching an episode like “Army Men” tough to begin with from an emotional standpoint, and then adding something like the Derrick story only brings that to the next level.
Watching the man be somewhat unlucky-in-love at the end of this half-hour was sad, but right you thought that you were going to end the episode on a down note you had the perfect little button of Pete and Randy in their brotherly embrace. After an episode full of fighting / thinking they were in love with Perez while going through Army Ranger trials, they came together in a way that was passionate, over-the-top, and probably everything that you would have wanted and then some.
We’ve spent a good deal of time thinking over the course of the series about if there is a comparable one in TV history, and while “M*A*S*H” and “Hogan’s Heroes” would be the easy choices, we’re going to opt for something a little different: “Scrubs.” Both were single-camera comedies about finding comedy in places that you would not typically associate with laughter, whether it be a hospital or a military base. Also, they each combine those tear-jerking moments with humor perfectly. Compare the “My Lunch” episode of “Scrubs” with “Homecoming” from “Enlisted” to get a very emotional hour of programming.
In the end, the real difference is that one show got more of a platform and promotion in the early going, and one did not. We could be bitter that next week is likely the end of “Enlisted,” but for now we will continue to be happy and grateful that this show managed to be made in the first place without being marginalized or stereotyped, a fate that befalls too many shows on major networks these days.
“Army Men” in the end is probably within our top four or five episodes of the series, and that sets the bar higher for the finale. Luckily, we feel pretty confident that it will manage to deliver. Grade: A-.
What was your take on this half-hour? Share below, and click here if you want to grab further TV updates via our CarterMatt Newsletter.