Season 3 (Episodes 1 - 6)
Aired On: HBO
Release Date: 04/24/22
THE "IMDB" PREMISE:
"A hit man from the Midwest moves to Los Angeles and gets caught up in the city's theatre arts scene."
It’s been nearly three years since Barry Berkman took a hiatus from our television screens, so with his extended absence also came some extensive hype for his return. Luckily after having the privilege of watching the first six episodes of the latest season, Barry lives up to every expectation I had for the show. These episodes had me second guessing every turn the show was about to take, because Barry season 3 is an absolutely outrageous fever dream.
All of the favorites and not so favorites are back this time around - no one is left out. There’s a lot of story to tell, and it can be overwhelming very quickly; it’s manic but in a delightfully charming way. Let’s begin with the premiere episode of season 3, where we start off a few months after the season 2 finale with Barry still in a relationship with Sally, Mr. Cousineau seeking justice for Janice’s murder, Fuches on the run from Barry while still harboring a jealousy complex, and lastly NoHo Hank attempting to keep things afloat after the massacre Barry conducted.
All these connecting stories give a ton to latch onto and a lot to build off of for the remaining season. Some aspects are more gripping than others in this premiere, but as they become more fleshed out you get to see them evolve into something even more insane. One large fault I have with this third season is that it’s leaning heavily into the weird, goofy side of the show that season 2 briefly leaned into for the “ronny/lilly” episode. At times this seems like a setback for the story and atmosphere, but almost every time it generates a laugh, which I’m sure was its reason for existing in the first place. Absolutely nothing included in the first six episodes is a dud, some pieces just feel misplaced.
This all-star cast of Bill Hader, Stephen Root, Sarah Goldberg, Anthony Carrigan, and Henry Winkler doesn’t miss a beat in their triumphant return from their three year break. Coming straight off the season 2 finale to the season 3 premiere, it’s a perfect example of careful, hypnotic storytelling that invests you into its direction, plot, and characters. As I ended one episode and dove into the next, I had no idea where we were headed.
Bill Hader and Alec Berg deliver a masterclass (ironically mentioned in the show itself) in directing and writing, as they deliver some of the most gripping television on the air today. Barry is back and it’s just as chaotic, psychotic, and beautiful as ever.