By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 4, 2023 |
By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 4, 2023 |
After ten seasons, The Goldbergs is finally over, but not before pissing off the series’ original creator and his mother, upon whom Beverly Goldberg is based, and sullying the memory of the patriarch, Murray Goldberg, who was killed off with little fanfare because the actor who played him was an HR problem.
The final episode appropriately paid homage to Back to the Future, one of the greatest movies of the 1980s, although I should note that it’s clear that ABC didn’t want to pony up for the rights to the Huey Lewis needle drops the episode so clearly had in mind when it was written. Moreover, the finale also highlighted the creepiest aspect of Back to the Future: the fact that Marty McFly’s mother wanted to have sex with him. That has been the unfortunate subtext for the last two seasons.
“Mom, don’t be like that creepy lady in the movie who has the hots for her son,” Erica says to Beverly.
“Excuse me, but I would hardly call the greatest mother-son romance of all time creepy,” Beverly responds.
Thus begins the A-plot, which sees Beverly return to her high-school reunion, where she reconnects with a high-school boyfriend played by Rob Corddry. Because she doesn’t want to go alone, Beverly takes Adam, who spends the entire reunion trying to cockblock his mother. Is it because he doesn’t want her to move on from her late husband? Or is it because he’s jealous because his mom wants to bang the guy from Hot Tub Time Machine? Who is to say?! After Adam succeeds in wrecking their reunion, however, he realizes the error of his ways and uses the DeLorean left behind by his uncle to retrieve Cordrry the next morning and bring him to the birthday party of Erica’s baby, where Corddry and Beverly are free to bang their way into the future.
Erica and Geoff — the best part of the last two seasons — are merely participants in other plotlines in the finale, alas. The B-storyline involved Barry and his girlfriend Joanne, who endeavor to prove to the rest of their respective families that — despite their sophomoric sense of humor and the fact that they do not know what a mortgage is (despite Joanne being a lawyer) — they are serious people in a serious relationship. Their effort backfires, which is where I thought that Barry and Joanne would finally do the inevitable: break up.
For those who have been loyal fans of The Goldbergs since its inception, they may recall the brief spin-off series, Schooled, which lasted two seasons and was set in the 1990s. The show focused on Lainey Lewis, Erica’s closest friend, and Barry’s long-term girlfriend. In this era, according to Schooled, Geoff and Erica are married, while Barry attends medical school in Detroit. Upon his return to visit Lainey, they reignite their relationship, but their long-distance romance ultimately falls apart. Despite this, fans were led to believe that they were destined to be together by the end of Schooled.
Unfortunately, in the final season of The Goldbergs, Barry does not end things with Joanne, but rather, they elope and get married, concluding the 1980s. Either they quickly get divorced, or the show’s ending is riddled with continuity errors. Essentially, the new showrunners, Chris Bishop and Alex Barnow, decided to completely disregard the spin-off series created by the original creator of The Goldbergs, Adam F. Goldberg, and to overlook the high-quality writing and compassionate tone of the first seven seasons. Instead, they tarnished the legacy of the earlier episodes and the real-life Goldberg family.
Bygones! The Goldbergs is over. I won’t have the sitcom to kick around anymore. I will remind viewers that the first six and a half seasons are excellent, as family sitcoms go, and one of the few family sitcoms with Jewish representation.
I would also like to point out that since Erica is married to Joanne’s brother and Barry is married to Geoff’s sister, everyone is double-in-laws. In other words, Geoff is Barry’s brother-in-law because he’s married to Barry’s sister and because he is his wife’s brother. It took me a few minutes that wrap my brain around that.