“Up All Night” ended its first season by pulling off a pretty nice trick: “The Proposals” both called back to the show’s pilot and showed how much it’s grown over the course of 24 episodes.
The show began as the story of two new parents trying to fit their baby into their lives, but they’re not new parents anymore, and the show is more about their lives. As a result, what sometimes came off as an awkward mashup of a workplace and family comedy early in the season now feels a lot more natural.
Some weeks lean more heavily one way or another, but that’s OK. It comes across (and creator Emily Spivey told Zap2it as much when we spoke with her) as the show just going where the story leads, rather than trying to shoehorn one half in at the expense of the other.
So while we only saw Amy at the end of “The Proposals,” we only missed her because she’s so darn cute, not because the story felt deficient. The past few weeks, in fact, have been some of the season’s best as the show zeroed in on Reagan and Chris’ relationship. The flashbacks to their engagement were consistent with what we know about them pre-baby (their love of drinking and cheesy music) and the way they are now (pretty much equals, even though Chris sometimes feels like he’s second fiddle).
The finale also featured one of the things that helped the show find its groove in the second half of the season: Ava’s erstwhile boyfriend Kevin. Jason Lee and Maya Rudolph are great together, and having a regular guy* to ground Ava really helped bring the character into line with the rest of the show.
(*That said, the finale also used Chris Diamantopoulos as Ava’s Euro-tool ex Julian to excellent effect. The “Jerry Maguire” line was gold, even though it was repeated ad nauseum in promos.)
And the actual re-proposal, complete with a barful of people singing “Total Eclipse of the Heart”? Well, maybe it’s the fact that we have a newborn of our own and haven’t slept very consistently the last few weeks, but there wasn’t really a dry eye on this couch. The closing scene with a hungover Chris and Reagan confronting a wide-awake Amy was also a really nice bookend to the similar sequence in the pilot
Here’s hoping that if “Up All Night” gets a second season (NBC hasn’t decided yet), Lee can be a part of it. And also that the show does in fact get picked up — it’s fun watching a series find its footing, and we’d like to see it keep going.
What did you think of the season finale? Are you hoping for a Season 2?