The Last Man on Earth Season 4 Episode 3 Review ’Skeleton Crew’

***Spoilers Ahead***

Skeleton Crew

Will Forte (center)  photo: Kevin Estrada/FOX

Throughout its run, The Last Man on Earth has had two episodes devoid of Tandy and the other main cast members ('Pitch Black' & 'Got Milk'). But, the series has never delivered an episode where the writers have pushed Forte to the side in favor of others. 'Skeleton Crew' changes the status quo by deciding to mainly focus on the two newest additions to the group, Pamela and Glenn.

The episode starts off with the survivors treating Pamela very poorly on the boat. Her situation is reminiscent of Tandy's in early season 2 in which the group was unwilling to reaccept him after he pulled a gun on everyone. There are many parallels to their situations and it helps one realize how much Forte's character has grown throughout the seasons. Ultimately, Glenn falls for Pamela and the two end up together. But, Glenn comes to a realization that he has to leave to see his family. And since her schedule is packed, Kristen Wiig decides to cash in her one-way ticket out of the series and go along with him. This aspect of the episode was a major blunder. While I appreciate fast-pacing, Glenn was barely introduced in the previous episode and Pamela hasn't been around much longer. These two characters barely had time to develop before they were written off the show. In fact, the growth that was seen in this 22-minute installment could have been stretched out through several episodes. I'm okay with the series introducing characters and killing them off immediately (Jack Black, Will Ferrell), but keeping them for 2-3 episodes only to send them off is pointless. Additionally, since they're underdeveloped, it's tough to feel any sympathy for the fact that Glenn and Pamela are going on a suicide mission. Overall, the end resolution was a huge letdown. The Last Man on Earth normally establishes their characters and helps the audience understand the pain they are going through. This can't be accomplished in a thorough manner through the span of one or two episodes.

Outside of their storyline, the other cast members receive no significant role in the episode. Todd realizes that Zihuatanejo isn't the paradise that he wanted for Melissa, but it's not an actual full-fledged plot. As always, Rodriguez's frantic personality shines. On the other hand, Carol finally patches things up with Pamela only for her to leave at the end of the episode. This is another problem I have with the main plot. Just when Pamela began to fit in with the group, they decided to yank her out.  

After starting its fourth season on a strong note, 'Skeleton Crew' ends up being a very weak episode of  The Last Man on Earth. Glenn and Pamela are taken away from the cast prematurely and most of the regulars have nothing to do. While it was essential to the plot, 'Skeleton Crew' wasn't a very entertaining outing. Nevertheless, despite my negativity, I did enjoy the scenes between Glenn and Pamela. They were an interesting duo and I only wish that they weren't driving off to their impending doom. But, that's the open-ended nature of unwitnessed death for you.

Stray Thoughts
  • Jasper is like the kid in the school play who has one line.
  • Maybe Glenn & Pamela will run into Mike along the way.
  • The title of the episode is usually said by one of the characters at some point in the episode. But, I don't remember anyone saying 'Skeleton Crew'.
  • The most notable thing that Tandy this in the entire episode was sing 'Drift Away'. To be fair, it is a really good song.

Grade: C+

What did you think of 'Skeleton Crew'? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Catch an all-new episode next Sunday at 9:30/8:30c on FOX.

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