The fandom is often volatile, but there is now a clear consensus on social media that the latest episode Barryblack comedy drama on HBO Max will never let fans recover.
Most of the anger, praise and therapy requests are aimed at lead and showrunner Bill Hader, who plays the titular Barry, a depressed hitman and aspiring actor – with fans posting their shock and disbelief after episode four Barry season 4 aired.
Bill Hader expect an invoice from my therapist #Barry #BarryHBO pic.twitter.com/Ic9aXxE9rMMay 1, 2023
From BarryThe first season kicked off in 2018, it has always been an interesting show – walking the line between the expected violence of a killer and the brazen critique of a ruthless Hollywood meat grinder for talent, aided by the talents of Bill Hader, Saturday night live fame. But the latest episode takes it to a new level, with both cameo appearances and some especially heartbreaking ones dis-performances.
Warning: Spoilers for Barry season 4 follows.
A murderous cinematic universe
The last few episodes of Barry were an emotional roller coaster as an incarcerated Barry navigates his co-workers, current friends and FBI agents as he tries to start a new chapter in his life.
His willingness to cooperate with the FBI on witness protection causes NoHo Hank and Cristobal to attack him. But a pair of romantically engaged assassins are torn apart by the former’s desire for a criminal empire and the latter’s desire for legitimacy. Hank devises a way to take out several rival mobsters at once by tricking them with plans to import sand before they eliminate them together. Cristobal nearly died in the quicksand, but our brief relief of survival is interrupted by the Chechens who take him away for good.
Henry Winkler’s Gene shoots his own son in a moment of panic, mistaking him for Barry. The episode then ends with Barry eloping with Sally and a scene a few years later that seemingly shows them settling down with the baby.
Between the end of a fledgling romance with a killer, suddenly increased brutality, and a glimpse of the distant future (eight years to be exact) beyond the chaos of the previous episode, this is a slice of television that completely topples expectations of what’s to come Barry how the program could or would do. Somehow in the mix is director Guillermo del Toro, who plays the killer’s handler; Fred Armisen, hitman podcaster; and even an Oscar CODA director Sian Heder, playing herself, with maximum star power highlighting the horrors in the game.
Al Griffin, Senior Home Entertainment Editor for TechRadar (i Barry fan), says it’s “shocking mainly because it’s an incredibly violent episode, even for a show with a regularly high body count. Also two very likeable characters meet their doom: Gene’s son whom Gene accidentally shoots thinking he is Barry, and Cristobal. It’s unclear if Gene’s son actually dies, but Cristobal’s death after the massacre of their sand business partners was almost too much in a show already filled with carnage. It’s hard to imagine where this program could go.”
Thankfully, we won’t have to imagine for long as the next episode is scheduled for May 7. Pray that we will be prepared this time.