Before we headed out following C.W.’s story in both past and present, a regular HR exercise brings to the surface the animosity that has been festering between Poppy and Ian all season. This week we return to the Mythic Quest office to see how the co-creative directors are managing now along with catching up with the rest of the gang.
The pair have a big presentation for Montreal showcasing their own halves for the new expansion. It’s very fitting to stroke both their egos that their contributions are entitled Zeus and Hera. Ian impresses everyone with his demonstration but it’s more of the same and lacks innovation. On the other hand, Poppy shows a proof of concept where things built and destroyed in one player’s game appear and disappear for everyone else in real time. It’s still in development though and she gets the blue screen of death along with a world-wide outage on all the servers.
The stress of the presentation takes its toll on Ian and he ends up having a heart attack. Poppy sets aside her differences and their rivalry and quickly races to the hospital. Ian’s whole experience puts things in perspective and it helps spur a dialog between the two. It’s like a do-over from “Please Sign Here” where they can have a true heart to heart. When the titular juice box comes into play, we learn Ian’s condition isn’t as serious as reported.
This episode of Mythic Quest gives us great scenes between Poppy and Ian. Their entire hospital interactions are representative to their overall rollercoaster relationship compacted in a short screen time from tender moments of caring to outlandish jerkish behavior. Rob McElhenney brings some real vulnerability to Ian while Charlotte Nicdao’s body language and slight movements such as grabbing for her backpack straps when called out ooze with Poppy’s insecurity.
At least this time, both sides concede a little leading to their reconciliation. Ian sincerely apologizes while Poppy is there to support and comfort her friend. Throughout “Juice Box” they’ve been teasing the final song with some of the banjo riffs in the video game cutscenes. It was a nice build up and a calming number as we leave the co-creative directors. Give me that Willie Nelson and Nicdao duet of “Rainbow Connection,” especially if Charlotte’s part is in Tagalog like when she initially started singing.
“Juice Box” also progresses some of the other Mythic Quest storylines. It looks like the game testers might not be breaking up with Rachel finding a new calling. It adds another purpose in the overall narrative of why Rachel accompanied C.W. in “Peter” and now she has a reason to attend Berkeley. Although, she and Dana might face problems of being accepted since they both are lacking in their respective desired fields. Moreover, it seems as though a too convenient way to keep them together but at least they can be happy.
Brad’s nice guy image continues with David asking him to help move and it further raises Jo’s confidence in succeeding her former mentor. It ties in with his brother’s hostile take over of the company but I find it hard to believe that Jo is so ignorant to the idea of insider training. Plus, if she ever got caught, couldn’t it all lead back to Zack? I don’t know how it will all play out but this subplot is becoming a little shaky. I just want to add that when I pass away, I’d like F. Murray Abraham’s C.W. to both write and narrate my obituary. He’s so compelling.
“Juice Box” serves as another significant moment in Poppy and Ian’s relationship on the show highlighting their complicated but endearing friendship. It also further develops the other storylines that will hopefully conclude in the season finale.
New episodes of Mythic Quest drop Fridays on Apple TV+.
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