Last week, Dallas & Robo tackled the murder mystery. In the most recent episode, the titular duo learns about the benefits and drawbacks of time travel. It all begins with them poaching a delivery gig from The Woodsman that involves some pretty lucrative artisan salt from Mercury. When Woody finally catches up to the pair, they trick their coworker by convincing him he can travel back in time to load up the precious cargo before they can. Imagine their surprise when the coordinates they supply him from a carrot cake recipe actually work.
[Slight Spoilers Ahead]
What would you do if you could travel back in time? Robo sees the opportunity to change history for the better and prevent catastrophic events before they happen. Unfortunately for him, Dallas has other, less benevolent ideas. She merely wants to hijack more artisan salt from their past selves so they can earn more money. Based on the coordinates The Woodsman used, it only allows them to return to the same point in time where they keep crashing with the old Dallas and Robo right after taking off with the expensive cargo.
After each time, they pick up their stranded selves and quickly build an entourage. One big enough to take down a whole gang of cannibal bikers and to take over a bar for celebratory. Being around other Dallas and Robos only accentuates their worst traits so Robo has to take action before things get out of hand.
All the time travel causes unforeseen complications on the very fabric of existence. Elsewhere, the office is stuck in a loop that undergoes several different possibilities. Ellie is shredding old mail when she is startled by Fat Paul returning from a delivery. Depending on the letter she picks up first determines that timelines outcome. There are some that result in good fortune such as Fat Paul inheriting a fortune while others are less lucky including the gang receiving food poisoning from bad sushi.
“The Joy of Cooking” is a high concept episode that highlights the absurd side of time travel. Just watching the Dallas and Robos accumulate is a site to see and you can imagine the type of debauchery a bar full of Dallases would be up to. Also, of all the things to do, it’s fitting that Dallas would be small minded in how to exploit the situation.
The subplot with the time loops is a nice way to involve the rest of the characters and still tie in to the main storyline. The different outcomes are random but still entertaining in a “Remedial Chaos Theory” kind of way. It also serves as a means to convey information relevant to Dallas and Robo’s situation. The final outcome may not be the darkest timeline, but it still makes you think “What if?” if any of the positive conclusions ever occurred.
The rumble with the cannibal bikers involves some good action sequences. It was fun to see Robo unleash some WWE type moves including suplexes and tornado DDTs. Then for comedic effect, the episode consistently replays the Georgia Overdrive accidents to show The Woodsman dying over and over again. Poor Woody.
What is surprising is the way Robo resolves everything. It takes a somber and serious tone that hasn’t been in previous episodes. This adds a new layer to the show and makes it more than your typical adult animated comedy.
“The Joy of Cooking” incorporates absurd comedy, good action and even a dramatic ending that makes it one of the more complete episodes of the series so far.
Watch Dallas & Robo Saturday nights at midnight-ish on Syfy.