Better Things showed off its muscle last night in its third season with guest star Sharon Stone.
Stone plays Reiki Davis, who caught the eye of formerly heartbroken Jeff (Greg Cromer) who was dumped by Sam Fox’s (Pamela Adlon) bestie, Sunny (Alysia Reiner).
Reiki is a bit of a free spirit and professionally works as a decorator
The episode featured the Fox house at its best when it is filled with people from Sam’s life who keep arriving. Sam makes a Lemon Risotto and has the kids upstairs playing while the adults are downstairs.
This includes her mother Phil (Celia Imrie) who, as she told Monsters and Critics in an exclusive interview, is as “naughty” as they come.
“Come on, let me wine you and dine you,” says Sam as she welcomes Jeff and Reiki into her art-filled home, and ushers Reiki into her kitchen where the British Spitting Cobra Phil awaits.
Phil looks Reiki over and says: “You’re the decorator? You’re with Sunny’s bum of a husband?”
Reiki smiles and says that she is indeed with Jeff.
Phil disapproves and sniffs: “A lid for every pot…”
Not missing a beat, Reiki smiles and says: “Well I love the way his lid fits my pot” as she hugs Jeff. Trying to make light of Phil’s intrusive remarks, Reiki then smiles as she says: “You remind me of my mother.”
Fans of the series got a nice resolve to the Sunny and Jeff as well as the Jeff and Sam storylines last night. The whole Sunny and Jeff history was touched upon amidst a chaotic yummy dinner and a guest pet monkey breaking the tension.
Reiki is now the main squeeze for Jeff, who is divorced but not completely separated because of the kid sharing. He and Sunny do this in the family home, taking turns being present.
It’s actually a brilliant solution to a terrible turn of events for their kids.
Of course, Phil is dead set against this California solution and expresses her opinions as such to Reiki (Stone) in a hilarious exchange.
Also in the episode, we see that Reiki has a fondness for monkeys and openly macking on Jeff which is just what the doctor ordered for his ego. The awkward moment last season between Jeff and Sam in his pickup truck has also been smoothed over.
The core fierceness that Stone has always brought to her characters shines in this episode where even Phil backs off when she expresses her unasked for opinions.
Stone’s addition to this cast shows the star wattage that showrunner and star Pamela Adlon brings with a story that resonates hard and strong for all women. This is especially true for people in middle-age who are dealing with difficult kids, existential crises and ailing parents — which this episode broaches in telling exchanges between brother Marion (Kevin Pollack) and sis Sam.
Stone joins Matthew Broderick, Doug Jones, Judy Reyes, Cree Summer, Charlie Robinson, Janina Gavankar, and Marsha Thomason as featured guest stars.
Better Things airs Thursday, February 28 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on FX