There were many things to love about Pitch Season 1 Episode 7. The equal opportunity nude fest for example. Then of course there was the tension between Livan and Mike, the peek into Mike's past, and bonding between Ginny and Al.
What's not to enjoy?
It's funny, after the bombshell at the end of Pitch Season1 Epiosde 6, I fully expected the episode to be completely dedicated to the fallout and damage control. I was expecting a full hour of Ginny being embarrassed, her teammates being jackasses about the whole ordeal, and those closest being disappointed.
I was expecting a serious hour and a hell of a lot of mainsplaining before we got to a lukewarm moment of empowerment at the end.
Thank God it was absolutely none of that. In fact the episode was lighter than I ever could have imagined and the more serious moments revolved around Mike, who dominated the hour.
A lot of guys in that clubhouse had rough childhoods.Mike
Feelings on the use of flashbacks have been mixed. Sometimes they work and other times, maybe not so much. This week, they focused on Mike.
Honestly, Mike's childhood as expected, explains a lot about why he is the way he is. He's the typical person who deflects with humor and jokes. And this need to run back to Rachel? The guy craves stability.
Based on how things were with his mother growing up, he never really had that. It seemed like they were always moving and fleeing, and she wasn't exactly a great role model roping her kid into doing wrong things.
And not being able to live with, let along grow up with, his father in his life, because his father had a whole other family? God that sucks.
Which brings me to Livan.
Mike: Livan, I heard you could be one of the greats...someday.
Livan: I followed your career for a long time. My father was a fan.
Livan is such a cocky jerk. Talented and really nice to look at, yeah, but a jerk. I get it, he had a rough life too, and yeah, totally can empathize with that but he did everything imaginable to rub everyone the wrong way.
In any other scenario,Oscar running down Livan's tragic life story of being a Cuban immigrant with parents who were thrown in jail would have hit its mark. But he tried to use it to justify and excuse Livan's behavior, and he made the mistake of assuming that no one else had it rough either.
It doesn't matter how great of a player Livan is, baseball is a team sport. He's not a rock star. He has to put in the hours and the work, and he has to be a team player. Mike may be a confident jackass every now and then, but he puts in the work and he has the respect of his teammates.
On that mound is the only place that feels normal.Ginny
One of the most unexpected bonds that I didn't realize I even needed, is that of Ginny and Al.
He was endearing when he apologized to Ginny after all the hullabaloo over his insensitive comments. He was in peak fatherly form when he stared Ginny down with teary, sympathetic, paternal eyes and told her that no, she was not in fact fine.
But he took it further in this episode with reminding her that baseball isn't everything. He spent most of the episode telling her that he wasn't punishing her by keeping her out of the game, and then when it came down to it, he threw her in there to win it for them.
And how adorable were the two of them having a night out on the town? He took her to all his favorite places, gave her fatherly advice, and just spent time with her. It has to be lonely for Ginny, she relies so heavily on the Sanders, or Amelia, or Mike to spend time with.
For a girl who lost her father, and even so, had one who pushed her more than nurtured her, and made her believe that baseball was life. It was just really nice that Ginny has a bit of a father figure in Al.
Oscar: Nice touch, pulling in the guys.
Amelia: Whole world's gotta know, Padres don't discriminate.
As if Ginny and Al weren't giving me enough family feels, the team came through for Ginny.
I don't know if it was the fact that Ginny helped them win against the Giants, or that they have quietly come to accept Ginny as their teammate, friend, possibly even sister and they're just willing to do anything for her. I hope it was the latter.
But they were willing to strip down and bare it all just to prove a point!
Every time another Padre walked into the room clad in only a white robe, you could see the delight on Ginny's face, because these men who weren't initially in her corner actually showed up and were wiling to support her.
Perhaps it was because a lot of the episode was through Mike's eyes, but I don't think we've ever actually seen so much of the other Padres ( Ah, no pun intended). Can we have more of them, please?
Everything about that photo-shoot was fantastic.
I'm a huge fan of the black and white ESPN photo-shoots where you see the combination of artistry, athleticism, and the beauty of the human body combined.The Padres nailed it!
I really wouldn't mind a calendar of some sort. You know, for scientific purposes. Someone needs to get on that.
Thank you for mainsplaining that to me! I always wanted to use that word.Amelia
Pitch handled the nude photo leak in the smartest way possible. They didn't dwell on it. They didn't make it something that Ginny should have been ashamed about.
Ginny wasn't the least bit worked up about it or defeated. She wasn't ashamed of her body, or made to feel stupid. She wasn't afraid to face her teammates or scared to walk out on the mound.
In fact anytime someone could possibly come close to judging her for them, they were shut down. Whether it was a protective Blip, or a calculating Oscar. And none of her other teammates mentioned it or made it into a thing.
We didn't get hit over the head with the media fallout. It resolved itself so quietly, and I rather appreciated that, because that's how it should be.
They pointed out the double standard of it all and moved on.
It's the way Pitch addresses all of these issues in a nuanced way that makes it a unique show that quietly breaks barriers without much fanfare. It's definitely one of the best things about the show.
So what did you guys think of San Francisco? Were you surprised that the nude leak wasn't that big of a deal? What did you think about Livan's official introduction? Did you like the fact that the flashbacks focused on Mike?
We're getting closer and closer to the last inning. If you want to catch up or just relive Ginny Baker's journey, then don't forget you can watch Pitch online right here at TV Fanatic!
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.