Monsters at Work is back with a new episode after what was its best outing so far in the previous episode. The show doesn’t slow down the momentum as this episode adds a new cast member: Gary Gibbs (Gabriel Iglesias), or the Anti-Mike as I like to call him. Is this enough to keep Monsters at Work‘s momentum going or does the episode fail to deliver? Let’s find out…
In this episode – titled to my delight “The Big Wazowskis” – there is a bowling tournament at hand. Tylor signs MIFT up to be Mike’s bowling team for the annual Monsters, Inc. Bowl-off-a-thon, only to discover that everyone at MIFT isn’t particularly good at bowling. When it comes to this episode, you can narrow it down to me being a simple man. I like bowling, I like the Monsters at Work universe, and I also love The Big Lebowski. That said, I am sad to report that the series has its first subpar episode with this one.
Like previous episodes, I enjoy all the callbacks to previous gags and this week was no exception with great ones such as the paperwork gag and the slowpoke from Monsters University coming in with the laughs. Other than that and some great movie references, this episode really doesn’t offer much.
This episode is very Wazowski-centric, which I think many fans will appreciate. However, the rest of the content just felt so generic. Yes, it’s supposed to happen once in a while with a series such as this. At the same time, it’s especially disappointing when coming off of a special episode like the last one was. I will say that Gabriel Iglesias was good in his limited role as Gary and I’m excited to see what’s next for the character.
The standout from this episode of Monsters at Work was Duncan (Lucas Neff), as I just found everything involving him to be fun and entertaining. He does not have many appearances, but the writers make the most of them for sure. Regarding the MIFT crew, they just felt subdued and shadowed throughout the episode by the imminent bowling tournament. The overall absence of the MIFT crew is an indication that a problem is brewing within Monstropolis regarding nostalgia.
Monsters at Work is having a bit of a crisis that is showing up in pieces every episode, but this one features it prominently. There are some characters and gags that are being inserted for the sake of nostalgia only. I, like many others, enjoy my fair share of nostalgia. But it is starting to cut into the quality of the episodes themselves. The fact that I’m clamoring for more MIFT content means that the show is succeeding with pushing new and fresh characters. And yet, it just doesn’t succeed at creating a balance.
Overall, Monsters at Work’s fourth episode is the weakest so far and it’s the one with the most wasted potential. The bowling tournament and the Gary/Mike rivalry are interesting ideas, but they just fall flat in their delivery. Other than some cool movie references and some highlights by Duncan, this episode really doesn’t offer anything new or fresh like previous ones have. – Kenneth Colon
New episodes of Monsters at Work premiere Wednesdays on Disney+.
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