Filled with a wild cast of characters and a story that continues to deepen after every episode, the second season of “Eastbound and Down” was a revelation, proving exactly why millions of people love the show.
Let’s be honest here. Kenny Powers has a laundry list of personal problems. So many, that if he was a real person, he’d probably end up on “Intervention” or a show similar. We laugh at him because he’s out of his mind, but in a way that he’s essentially harmless.
We laugh a lot actually.
Through his methods however, we end up learning something about ourselves. Rather than be subconsciously greedy, manipulative and sexual, waiting for the right opportunity to express ourselves, Powers doesn’t care about societal norms. He does what he wants, when he wants.
That makes him a better person than all of us in the end.
And that’s the biggest reason why we watch.
But there’s more to it too. The fact that Powers has a family and friends that love him and people who continue to help him, regardless of all the times he’s failed, is heartwarming. To think that a washed-up has-been can survive in life, and still have meager a moment of happiness, makes us feel better about our station in life. So we laugh out loud and we smile inside.
The world isn’t as bad as we thought.
Regardless of how many beautiful women Powers annoys, how many children he curses in front of or how many syringes of steroids he sticks into his rear end to keep his dream alive, he’s not a bad person. He’s just misguided. He has the same excuses many of us do for our misgivings. Bad father, drugs, and bad relationships, he’s got all three. But unlike many, he continues his fight and isn’t scared to ruin his life or anyone else who tries to get in his way, while he tries.
Throughout the second season, we see him confront the type of demons that would destroy the average person. Through it all though, Powers ends up bettering himself and learning more about himself than most do in a lifetime. Perhaps that’s why the writers ended the season with the news of him becoming a father. Ready to finally be the man he has to be, maybe Powers is at the point that the games are over.
Either way, we’ll find a way to laugh.