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Fosse/Verdon: Glory

After last week’s emotional episode, it was nice to kick things off on a more positive note this week. The show started us off with the success of Cabaret, though Bob Fosse refused to see it as such. Things didn’t stay positive, though. We saw what seemed to be a shot of Bob jumping off a balcony? But only a split second of such, jumping back to Bob hungover on the floor. The response across the papers? Cabaret was a hit. There were positive reviews across the board.

The box office earnings for Cabaret were soaring, but Bob was back to his womanizing. He was rehearsing a dance number and asked three girls to visit him at his place. Legend, icon, star, Nicole Fosse was also in this scene, scamming her dad and getting five sodas out of him. I love that girl. Gwen Verdon intercepts that fifth soda and asks Bob to help out on her play.

Then came 1973. Bob is nominated for an Oscar, which lead to a sex montage because why not. Meanwhile, Gwen takes the stage in her play and Bob gives her high praise. Gwen’s confidence on stage seems to return, but bad reviews on the play led to a cancellation of the run. Bob offers to send his flavor of the week home to stay with Gwen as she navigates her feelings about the play closing, which I guess is the least he could do after all he put her through. He leaves though, obviously.

Bob continues to be the absolute worst as he offers a big scene to an actress. He walks her home and of course makes advances on her. She is the first woman who has put her foot down against his passes. He starts to sexually assault her and she fights back. It was the most satisfying ending to a traumatizing scene for me. I was so proud of the actress. We find out later the actress is named Sharon and since she turned him down, Bob picks her apart and removes her from the number he gave her. He replaces her with a different girl. Maybe she slept with him. After wrecking that woman’s confidence and self esteem, Gwen let’s Bob know the rights Chicago have been given. She wants badly to work on the show with Bob, he says no. Then, she drops a bomb on him. Joan has one month at most to live. She was dying of cancer.

We saw Joan in the hospital a few times this episode. As a reminder, Joan is Gwen’s best friend, married to Neil Simon. Gwen is gushing about her new man to Joan while she is in a hospital bed, saying she wants to have a dinner to introduce him to Bob and she needed to be there. She is then told that she would not be leaving the hospital. Gwen was heartbroken. It got worse when Joan said she needed to look after Nicole, she worries about her. Gwen cancels her dinner plans to spend time with her daughter instead.

Gwen is awoken at 3 A.M. by a manic Bob desperate for her help. He can’t get the show just right. Following that outburst, we watch a montage of Bob winning several awards for said show, Pipin. He also wins the Oscar for Cabaret while Gwen and Nicole watch at home. Gwen is thanked and Nicole is not, which lead her to ask questions. His trophies began stacking up on the mantle place. On the other hand, it had been fourteen years since Gwen won a Tony. While that weighed on her, it’s very obvious the Bob’s success did not make his life any easier. He was clearly spiraling, popping pills and sleeping through the entire female cast of his shows.

We then saw Bob stumble down the street back to the home he shared with Gwen. He puts his Emmy on the table, takes his pants off, and climbs into bed with Gwen. Well, and Gwen’s new boyfriend. Poor Nicole walks in on the whole encounter. Gwen’s boyfriend is very polite and kind to the stumbling man who just climbed in bed with him. So now Bob knows about Ron.

He returns back to hotel and we get this incredible number of all the women he took advantage of basically telling Bob he’ll never get what he wants in life. Sure, it’s harsh, but at this point he deserves it. Even Gwen got in on this performance. I guess it’s a bit problematic, since they were encouraging him to kill himself. I guess by the end of this episode I hated him so much I didn’t really care if he jumped out of that window or not. Then they showed Nicole singing about missing her dad (kinda) and I changed my mind because I felt bad for her. ONLY because I stan Nicole.

The episode ends with Bob waking up in a hospital bed after attempting to take his own life. No further explanations.

Next week it seems we will get some answers about his mental health, as well as a family vacation? This should be interesting.

Let us know what you thought of this week’s episode or if you hate Bob as much as I do at this point in the comments below!

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