“Some of us think holding on makes us strong, but sometimes it is letting go.” – Herman Hesse
In the opening scene of Wilfred, “Letting Go”, Ryan (Elijah Wood) is at Jenna (Fiona Gubelmann)’s house to see Wilfred. He hasn’t really gotten to talk with Wilfred since the “accident” that ended last season. Drew (Chris Klein) is there, so the wedding seems to still be on. The reason for he engagement was, of course, the pregnancy that was fabricated by Ryan and though Jenna and Drew both know the pregnancy was a false alarm, they are still going strong-ish. Drew is moving to L.A. to make good on the proposal, but all is not well, there is some tension in the household.
When Wilfred makes his appearance, he bounds right past his old buddy Ryan and up to Drew, his tormentor. Initially it seems Wilfred just doesn’t remember or maybe doesn’t even see Ryan. Drew and Ryan go outside with Wilfred to toss a ball around and the reason behind the tension between the couple comes out. Drew shares that Jenna found steroids, which he swears he didn’t know were steroids, in his luggage and freaked out. Wilfred also comes clean, he tells Ryan he remembers everything, especially how one-sided their relationship was and how self-centered Ryan has been. Wilfred convinces himself that Drew has his best interests in mind. He struggles to impress Drew though and is overreaching to try and gain the man’s respect. Wilfred has even adopted Drew’s spectacularly douchey way of speaking, not to mention they have showered together.
We later find Ryan at work, his first foray into the “real world” outside of Jenna and Wilfred, as coworker Amanda (Allison Mack) tries to ingratiate herself with him. She is very forward and actually makes a great case for herself as dateable, but it seems to no avail as Ryan only has eyes for Jenna. Jenna is still having a hard time with Drew and balks at Ryan’s off-the-cuff suggestion that she could just “call it quits” on her eight year long relationship. Jenna is a bizarre version of her character from Season One; she seems bitter and cynical, very un-Jenna-like.
Ryan seeks out Wilfred’s company and continues to dig for information on Drew and Jenna’s relationship. Wilfred recognizes the self-serving motive and Ryan fesses up to it, but suggests that they can help one another. While the two are jogging on the beach, Ryan and Wilfred come across Jelly Beans the dog and his owner. Jelly Beans is the anti-Wilfred, his own Ryan and Drew situation if you will. Jelly Beans is a beautiful Golden Retriever who can do it all, obstacle courses included. Wilfred decides the only way he can earn Drew’s respect is to go up against Jelly Beans in a dog competition. This is where Ryan’s trade-off comes in. He suggests that he train Wilfred to take on Jelly Beans and impress Drew.
In the course of getting Wilfred ready for the competition, Ryan suggests “juicing” to Wilfred, who promptly insists they get the back-alley, illegal steroids rather than using the legal ones. The two go in search of steroids at Muscle Beach and run in to a skeevy character, played by Don Swayze, who offers to give them steroids for a blow job from Ryan. Ryan offers him money instead and compromises with a long, tender hug of which the dealer says “I can feel your heart beating against mine.” It really is an awkwardly long hug to watch as well.
Finally the big day arrives for Wilfred, his moment of truth. Jenna and Drew come out to watch him. The couple seems to be doing better and Jenna attributes the improvement in their relationship to Ryan spending time with Wilfred so that the two of them could work out their issues. When Wilfred’s big moment arrives, he tries to take the entire bottle of steroids but ends up not taking any at all. The alternative that Ryan finds is to let Wilfred get exceptionally agitated on his leash. This quickly backfires when he gets so agitated that Wilfred tears up and pees on the obstacle course before trying to spear Jelly Beans.
Along the way, Ryan realizes, if you care about someone you would rather “let them go” than hurt them. His realization translates to his relationship with Jenna and he finally decides to back off and just “let go” of his hope for that relationship to ever come to fruition. Drew is still patronizing to Wilfred in the end and Wilfred finally suggests planting steroids in Drew’s bag and framing him so Jenna will boot him. Ryan, however, refuses the offer.
The closing scenes on the couch with a man and his (neighbor’s) dog smoking pot are great. We find in this one that Ryan sucked it up and took a step forward by asking Amanda, his hot coworker out on a date. She accepts, giving us something to look forward to for Episode Two of this season. Conversely, Wilfred shares an entertaining, albeit disturbing memory about a relationship he had with Jenna’s old couch, along with the fallout of said relationship.
The preview episode and Episode One have set us up well for what is to come in Episode Two, which is really where things start moving. Steven Weber’s character gets more of a spotlight in this episode and we get to see Ryan’s relationship with Amanda moving forward. There are some hints at conflict arising between the two of later in the season, possibly revolving around Wilfred, but I don’t want to to give too much away. Suffice to say, things really start moving in the next episode.
If you’d like to learn more about what to expect from Season Two of Wilfred, Click Here to read an interview with Elijah Wood.
What “couch moments” would you like to see this season? Share in the comments below!