On Central Park, the Tillermans are a close-knit and loving group who, even though they may have differences on occasions, still have each other’s backs. That’s what being family means but sometimes they do find themselves in awkward positions all for the ones they love. In “Down to the Underwire,” Owen has an uncomfortable task in order to help his daughter.
After seeing the older students dressing for gym class, Molly decides it’s time to upgrade in the undergarments department and purchase a new bra. Since Paige has to go into the office for the day, Owen steps up to help. As expected, it’s painful to watch him squirm during the whole process as he desperately cries out to the sales associate. Fitting for a dad centric subplot, there are many “bra” puns. There’s plenty of comedy and a lot of heart seeing the lengths Owen goes to make his daughter happy.
Over in actual Central Park, Cole has his regular meeting with Champagne but Helen speeds things up so she can go back to the hotel and check if she’s actually in Bitsy’s will. In her haste, she loses an important item that could cost Helen her job. The pair’s interactions provide yet another chance for Tituss Burgess’ character to shine.
He’s still the sweet little boy but shows a quick-thinking side to him as well when he saves Helen in the end. Her words also sit with him and he ponders his unhealthy obsession over Champagne and decides to take a break. He realizes he misses out on some fun opportunities in life because of the dog such as playing pirates with Enrique. Quite the development for the youngest Tillerman and it seems our little boy is growing.
Meanwhile at the office, Paige and her boss, Marvin, see Bitsy take a meeting with the newspaper’s owner. They fear Central Park’s villain is going take over the company but it’s a little more complicated than that. The owner and Bitsy have a history and a challenge and wager are made. If you thought power walkers look ridiculous, these two take it to another level.
The prize has sentimental value to Bitsy and its loss adds layers to her character. It shows a more vulnerable side and it was one of the few times her father was proud of her. Though it’s interesting that he was proud more on how she obtained it than actually earning it. This advances the ideas first brought up in the previous episode and her unresolved issues with her parents.
The three musical numbers in this episode of Central Park are pretty entertaining. Two play with the bra theme with the first being “I Have a Bra-blem” from guest writers and New Orleans’ own, Tank and the Bangas. It begins with a fun 60s vibe then turns into a Vegas showmanship instrumental. The raining bras are a nice added touch.
Then there’s “Down to the Wire” which is a bit uneven. The title works for both Molly and Bitsy’s storylines and serves as a good way to combine the two. There are some sweet falsettos from Leslie Odom Jr. but Kathryn Hahn’s part doesn’t match his level. Although she’s improved over the course of the series, having her sing opposite of Odom Jr. doesn’t do her any favors. In between those two songs is “Keep It Low Key.” A playful ditty with a quick back and forth banter and an amusing running gag that plays on the words “a key” to provide some Latin flavor.
“Down to the Underwire” captures the awkward comedy of a father shopping for his daughter’s undergarments but incorporates tender moments showcasing Owen’s genuine love with the things he’ll do for Molly. There’s also character development making Bitsy more sympathetic and growth with Cole.
New episodes of Central Park drop Fridays on Apple TV+.
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