"Don't Be Ridiculous": Unraveling Episode 2 (and That Trampoline Scene)

Warning: Contains spoilers

Episode 2, “Don’t Be Ridiculous,” had recappers buzzing right off the bat, discussing various Easter eggs in the hour’s jam-packed first five minutes.

Longtime Leftovers recapper Sean T. Collins attempts to make sense of the action in Vulture: “Let’s talk about the title sequence, which reintroduces the memorable family-photo fade-outs of the previous season but drops the jaunty country-music accompaniment in favor of... the theme song from the cornball ‘80s sitcom Perfect Strangers? Let’s talk about the credits, which list the writers of the episode as... Tha Lonely Donkey Kong & Specialist Contagious? Let’s talk about the first thing we see after this disorientingly goofy stuff draws to a close... Jarden’s resident old hermit plummeting to his death?”

Jason Guerrasio over at Business Insider had a similar reaction, particularly to the music choices: “If there's one thing The Leftovers has proven over its brief three-season run, it's that the show loves to shock. And Sunday's episode was no exception. From the revelation that there might be a way for Nora to see her departed family (the news was delivered to her by none other than the departure-faker and Perfect Strangers star Mark Linn-Baker) to that old guy on the tower finally dying, there was a lot to absorb. But if you're a fan of the legendary hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan, you were given quite a treat.”

Not to get hung up on this Perfect Strangers business, but Variety’s Sonia Saraiya couldn’t help but notice the meta of it all: “Of all the things one might expect of The Leftovers, no one could have predicted a tragic homage to Perfect Strangers, the 1986-1993 sitcom. It’s so telling of the grace of The Leftovers [that the show is so aware] it is a television show—and more precisely, that it is aware of the sometimes terribly banal distance between television shows and real life.”

Fans on Twitter had thoughts of their own:

Is Mark Linn-Baker who he says he is? Will Nora really get to see her children again? What’s Australia got to do with it? And is that Wu-Tang Clan song stuck in your head, too? Share your thoughts and theories in the comments below—and catch new episodes of The Leftovers every week.

More from “Don’t Be Ridiculous”

Also: See What’s Coming Up in “Crazy Whitefella Thinking” 

Watch new episodes of The Leftovers Sunday nights at 9 pm on HBO.