Hot in Cleveland shows improvement with the second episode of the summer season after a disappointing premiere.
TV Land’s Hot in Cleveland returned to finish out it’s second season last week after a twelve week hiatus. The premiere left a lot to be desired. The writing was tired with the majority of the jokes being recycled from former episodes. Not only were the jokes disappointing but the manner in which the writers wrapped up two major storylines (Elka’s arrest and Joy’s impending deportation) was far too simple and left the feeling that viewers were cheated out of an appropriate conclusion.
This week the show managed to make up for the premiere with a hilarious episode which revolved around Joy (Jane Leeves) meeting her long lost son, Owen (played by Michael McMillian). This storyline is mixed in with a subplot where Victoria (Wendie Mallick) reveals that she had written letters to a convict (played by Mark Derwin), posing as Joy, and now the man has been released and is looking for revenge.
While the subplot is disappointingly similar to an episode of The Golden Girls where Blanche is confronted by her prison pen pal, it leads to the most hilarious scene of Hot in Cleveland yet. When Joy accidentally shoots her son in the leg with Elka’s gun, she convinces Melanie (Valerie Bertinelli) to pose as her until she can get a grip on the situation. This leads to an outstanding comedic scene where each woman takes on a different character and accent in order to keep up the ruse until Joy finally confesses who she is.
The interaction between McMillian and Leeves is both heartbreaking and heartwarming as they debate whether or not they should get to know each other. Their interaction manages to bring some much needed warmth to the show and makes it the most worthwhile episode of Hot in Cleveland to date.
Hot in Cleveland is notorious for going back and forth with it’s writing. Hopefully this week is a sign of many enjoyable episodes to come.
Hot in Cleveland can be seen on TV Land, channel 51 in Hartford, on Wednesdays at 10:00 p.m.