Frankie messing with Sam.
Frankie: Sorry, not sorry.

With the girls growing up and becoming a slightly bit more amicable, it seems Sam is in for “Better Things.”

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With the girls growing up and becoming a slightly bit more amicable, it seems Sam is in for “Better Things.”

Directed By Pamela Adlon
Written By Pamela Adlon
Aired (FX) 3/5/2020

 Plot/ Recap

Since You’ve Been Gone: Max, Phil, Duke, Frankie, Sam

It isn’t clear how much time has passed, but with Frankie now on the verge of turning 15, Duke taller than most of the women in her family and Max working a job – steady?! Oh, it is clearly a new dynamic. Which, unfortunately, includes Phil requiring a cardiac buddy due to her passing out in Sam’s home.

A New Dawn, A New Age, A New Life For Me: Frankie, Sam

Frankie saying she loves Sam.
Frankie: I love you

But, on a happier note, to really prove things are changing for the better, Frankie, after spending time with their father, runs to Sam and hugs her tightly! Then, to follow that up, Frankie asks for a party! All of this shocks Sam since Frankie usually is fighting her, and while there is still a slightly contentious relationship, their time apart has made them better than ever.

How Do You Mend A Broken Heart?: Rich, Sam, Duke

But everything isn’t sunshine and daisies. Sam, at this point, is celibate and rather pour her time and energy into her kids, her mom, and her friends like Rich. Someone who is damn near dry heave level of crying since he got broken up with and is struggling to deal with that. However, with some kind words from Duke, while Rich isn’t necessarily in bliss and joyous, he is calmer and struck by Duke’s maturity.

Leaving some good old reality tv and cuddles between Sam and Rich to finish the healing process.

Review/ Commentary


Sam and Frankie Having Moments

Usually, Sam and Frankie have one moment a season where you’re reminded, despite Frankie often butting heads with Sam, they love each other. However, in this episode, we got two moments. One which came as a shock since Frankie hugging Sam seemed like something we’d might never see. Especially a tight hug that was initiated by Frankie. Then when you add in Frankie asking Sam to throw them a party? Oh, I think that makes it clear that after a summer (?) with their dad, Frankie has learned to appreciate Sam so much. Granted, they still ask of Sam to invite their dad, but just being willing to be vulnerable and affectionate with Sam seems like something we’d wouldn’t ever see in this capacity.


Rich reacting to Duke's kind words.
Rich: I can’t believe she even exists

While Duke has always been a sweetheart, her engaging with Rich at his lowest and what she said really makes you wonder, does she still switch it up as we’ve seen? Because her going from sweet child to talking about her friend sticking a monopoly piece up her vagina hasn’t left my memory. Nor her cursing Frankie clean out either.

So I guess what this is all boiling to is, just as we saw Frankie at her most pure, will we see Duke at her worst in coming episodes?

Exploring Sam and Phil’s Homes

Despite us being 4 seasons in, I don’t think we really got to spend time in anyone’s room like we did this episode. Usually, the rooms are filled with people, noise, someone yelling, and thus while we have been in them, to truly appreciate what they represent for each character’s personality hasn’t been made accessible. And considering Frankie is changing their room, it really pushed you to realize how much each room, over time, likely represented where a character was at each season.


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Sam and Frankie Having Moments - 89%
Duke - 88%
Exploring Sam and Phil’s Homes - 85%


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