What would a season premiere be without a little shame, hand-slapping, and hallucinogentic-like dreaming? Definitely not a Bob's Burgers premiere, that's for sure.
Bob struggled with the lack of responsibility he's had in his life on Bob's Burgers Season 11 Episode 1, which resulted in dreams about taking an adventure with his old rubber-band squeezy ball and self-help tape.
Meanwhile, Tina had a personal struggle as she seemed to be the only one who couldn't learn a hand-slapping song.
It was a rather poignant episode about self-discovery, but it still featured some classic Bob's Burgers humor and its atypical approach to storytelling.
What started out as a funny, self-bashing story turned into a powerful growing moment for the patriarch of the Belcher family, as he learned to accept himself for who he is.
Anyone who is an adult can relate to not only Bob's lack of responsibility but also his constant tendency to shame himself for not being responsible.
Bob: Twenty percent off an oil change -- we're probably supposed to be getting those.
Teddy: When was the last time you got one?
Bob: Last year, or, um, maybe the year before. I mean, definitely since Louise was born.
This is what makes Bob's Burgers the perfect animation comedy for adults, anywhere from age eighteen to eighty. The Belcher family, even the young children, are always getting themselves into trouble that all of us can relate to and laugh at.
Especially now that most of us have been in quarantine for months thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, it's easy to be hard on ourselves for not accomplishing all the things we think we need to do now that we have the time.
Who would have ever thought that Bob's Burgers, of all the shows on television, could remind us of the fact that it's okay that we're not on top of everything? Definitely not me, that's for sure.
Bob's "thing" as a character on an animation show has always been that he's very self-critical. He makes jokes about himself that are always funny and kind of true, unfortunately.
This episode was no exception, but it avoided being repetitive by Bob passing out in his car -- hilariously with the door open and judgemental people walking by -- and dreaming of a journey with a couple of his old things.
I love the fact that you're a millionaire but your car looks like crap.Rubber Band Squeezy Ball
Jack McBrayer was the perfect actor to voice Rubber Band Squeezy Ball as he is expertly able to convey the right amount of obliviousness and admiration, which was his character's "thing."
Rubber Band Squeezy Ball was also a great foil to Bob's self-bashing as he -- it? -- was quick to encourage the burger master.
Bob and his two new best friends -- Rubber Band Squeezy Ball and Tape -- set out to find the missing key to the safe, but Bob eventually realized it was about the journey and not the destination all along (cue the "aws").
If Bob can accept his unresponsible self for who he is, why can't we?
After all, he never did find the key, which turned out to be fine because Tina changed her extracurricular plans anyway, but his dream taught him a thing or two about himself.
Maybe Tape, a self-help tape on Strategies for Living, was useful after all. Was that the message? Invest in a self-help tape? Probably not, but it wouldn't hurt, especially in this day and age.
At any rate, Bob's shame seems to have lessened and we couldn't be more happy for him.
But Bob should really look into getting his oil changed, or responding to his jury duty letters. We really don't want his car to break down or for him to get arrested.
While Bob was on a journey of self-discovery, Tina was trying to learn what appeared to be a very difficult hand-slapping song.
Unfortunately for her, she was the only one who didn't know how to do it as even Mr. Fischoeder was an expert. So, Tina did what Tina does, she became obsessed with mastering the song.
Honestly, Bob could use a bit of Tina's confidence. It's almost as if the roles are reversed and Bob is the stereotypical insecure teenager and Tina is the stereotypical self-assured adult. Except Tina is probably more susceptible to peer pressure.
Bob: I wanted to put the key on my key chain to be responsible, but I realized I left my keys in the car.
Louise: That way your car's just ready to go!
Anyways, Bob's Burgers is all about being funny and avoiding clichés, and Tina was determined to figure out the hand-slapping song, even if she was terrible at it at first. She just needed to get out of her head like her father.
This B storyline took a backseat to Bob's and could have been drawn out a lot more, but the hand-slapping still somehow managed to compliment Bob's shame well.
Both Bob and Tina were struggling with their individual flaws -- irresponsibility and being uncoordinated.
While the two characters came to terms with their shortcomings individually, the two stories were able to work together well.
And it didn't hurt how the characters at the restaurant hilariously didn't realize Bob was gone for so long searching for the key because they were too focused on helping Tina learn the hand-slapping song.
Okay, either I'm actually tiny and I'm in my glove compartment and I should maybe be a superhero, or I'm dreaming because I'm a sleepy middle-aged man and I fall asleep a lot.
The episode overall successfully blended together the two things that make Bob's Burgers fantastic -- a clever sense of humor and relatability.
These kind of episodes are what have been sorely missing these past few months while we have been stuck indoors, and we are so glad that Bob's Burgers is finally back to provide us with an escape.
What did you think Bob's Burgers Fanatics?
Were you proud of Bob and Tina? Was this a good episode to kickoff the new season?
And how excited were you to hear the renewal news?
Let me know in the comments and do not forget that you can watch Bob's Burgers online right here via TV Fanatic!
Bob's Burgers airs Sundays at 9/8c on Fox.
Sarah Little was a staff writer for TV Fanatic.She retired in September 2021.
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