There’s something admirable about a television show that can completely invert its formula, send its core characters in different directions, and still remain the delightful series that audiences originally fell in love with. It’s not an easy task, but the third season of Apple TV+ Mythic Quest makes the challenge look like a breeze.
After the season 2 finale, the future of Mythic Quest was in the air (as was the future of all the characters in the series). On the one hand, the episode felt like it could serve as a series finale, as several of the main characters quit their jobs at video game development studio Mythic Quest, including Poppy Li (Charlotte Nicdao) and Ian Grimm (Rob McElhenney). But on the other hand, there was still so much to talk about – including how Poppy and Ian’s new venture would go, along with how the other characters would fare in their travels.
Despite this satisfying season finale, the show was soon renewed for not only a third but also a fourth season. After watching all 10 episodes, it’s clear that giving us time to see how these characters move on with their lives was the right move.
The new season begins a year after season 2 ended. Poppy and Ian have founded their new gaming company GrimPop and are hard at work on their next project. hera. (Well, Poppy, at least.) Meanwhile, Brad Bakshi (Danny Pudi), who fell for an insider trading scandal for Jo (Jessie Ennis), gets out of prison on parole and works his way back up to Mythic Quest as a janitor. Jo once again assists Executive Producer David Brittlesbee (David Hornsby), who is saddled with much more responsibility after his two co-creative directors left him. Dana (Imani Hakim) and Rachel (Ashly Burch) are still going strong (yay!) for the long-distance relationship to work: Rachel is at school and Dana works for Poppy and Ian.
The heart of the show still belongs to Poppy and Ian. The duo provides some of the biggest laughs (Poppy doing jazz hands when she’s excited will never fail to be hilarious and perfect), along with the show’s greatest source of pathos. While McElhenney and Nicdao don’t skip a beat with their characters’ funnier moments of friendship, they also bring devastating emotion to some of the more poignant scenes, of which there are many this season.
In the Season 2 finale, all of the characters may have split off in new directions, as life often does, but they really aren’t as far apart as you might think. After all, Ian and Poppy’s new office is just one floor below Mythic Quest. Indeed, changing the dynamic of the office (and adding an entirely new office setting) allows for new ways of bringing unlikely groups of characters together.
Jo, the queen of the scary one-liners, becomes friends with Poppy and Rachel after a day-long brunch outing in what has to be one of the funniest episodes of the season. Ian and Dana go on a road trip and discover that while they’re very different people, they’re incredibly similar in their creativity. Though Brad and Jo no longer have a mentor/mentee relationship, new misadventures continue to strengthen their bond. This includes the mission to catch a rat – the animal, not a snitch, much to their dismay.
There was one particular Mythic Quest employee that we knew wouldn’t be returning to the series: CW Longbottom (F. Murray Abraham), the inappropriate and overly confident writer of the Mythic Quest game. His absence is quickly addressed in the first episode, giving the CW the bittersweet send-off he deserves.
While missing the CW’s presence, the show fills the space by highlighting some of the other characters instead. We’re seeing a lot more of Naomi Ekperigin’s HR Expert/Office Therapist Carol this season, which is a huge win for us. She is the newly appointed leader of diversity and inclusion at Mythic Quest, a position she was given without direction or budget. Instead, it’s just a title and not an actual job responsibility — “a peek behind the white curtain,” as she puts it. Carol now finds herself in a position of authority and determined to use it for good – which, apart from the obvious “hell yeah” goading both us and her, is fodder for good gags. When she is accused by a middle-aged white man in the office of age discrimination in her hiring practices for hiring too many young, diverse people, she outwits him by hiring two middle-aged playtesters. The lesson: Don’t mess with Carol.
While the show, as always, leans toward comedy, it also makes sure to deepen the characters’ backstories. This season’s bottle sequence, which is an integral part of the show at this point, is particularly moving. It delves deeper into Ian and Poppy’s own stories, which does a great job of explaining the duo’s unorthodox dynamic.
With his perfect balance of humor and heart, Mythic Quest gets better with every new part. In true video game fashion, the show defeated the final boss – but then revealed that more adventures were ahead after that was said and done.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/obsessed/mythic-quest-season-3-review-apple-tv-comedy-lands-on-its-feet-after-season-2-shocker?source=articles&via=rss Mythic Quest Season 3 Review