While still amusing, Season 5 of Big Mouth loses a bit of its bite

There are two schools of people when it comes to Big Mouth. There are the ones who see it as juvenile, gross out humor that takes the concepts of sex and puberty too far and then there are others, like me, who see it as an insightful commentary on the developmental years of adolescents, both physically and emotionally, that is also juvenile, gross, and takes concepts of sex and puberty too far.

Personally, I love that about this show. No matter how far it takes its concepts and how degusting it gets, there is always an ember of relatability to it. You can always watch these characters and identify with at least one thing that you most likely forgot about since it happened to you.

Beyond the perversions of puberty, the show also deals with emotional issues like coming to grips with your sexuality, your racial identity, and the shifting tides of friendship and family. Honestly, this show does a lot for a show that most dismiss as a neverending penis joke.

This year, Big Mouth took on hatred and toxicity as an underlying theme and, while it was not as sharp and pointed as it has been in the past, the results were still quite amusing. The episodes kind of ran together for me, so I really don’t remember what happened in which episode, but the major themes of this season where, again, coming to terms with your budding sexuality, in this case, it is Jesse coming to grips that she he attracted to a female classmate, hatred and jealousy as Missy and Nick conspire together over their shared resentment of Jesse, and finding happiness as Jay tries to deal with his feelings for Lola while Matthew comes to grips with the fact that he’s attracted to Jay.

It’s a lot, but given that it’s a whole season, it’s not a lot lot.

So, first of all, these kids aren’t supposed to be people that you root for. They’re selfish, perverted, and really only out for their own personal gratification which is, to be honest, typical for a teenager, so character flaws and bad decisions don’t really bother me.

What bothers me is that I think I’m getting desensitized to this program. I just don’t find it as shocking as I once did and so many things, such as Maury’s endless disgusting references or Rick being… just gross… came off as more annoying than funny. I’m so completely over Rick at this point that I cringe every time he shows up because he adds nothing to the show besides a hard to understand character with an annoying voice.

There was surprisingly low stakes this season, and astonishingly low character development given the amazing arc that they gave Missy last year. The exception, of course, is Jay. Who would have thought that Jay, the most horrible of the horrible, would be the one character that I wish happiness on more than anyone else? I just want him to be happy!

Regardless, given the past seasons, this one seems a step down, the climax of Nick meeting the “person in charge” is incredibly eye-rolling, but overall, the series is still on my must-watch list. Here’s hoping this season was more of an anomaly than a permanent dip in quality.

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