As the storyline progresses on The Guest Book, so does the entertainment. “Story Three” definitely stepped up the comedy and the engaging factor with the story of Phyllis and Marsha.
A bar was set relatively high after the hilarious Christian couple tried to turn their son’s atheist girlfriend to the Lord in “Story Two.” Thankfully, Marsha and Phyllis (Michaela Watkins) surpassed that bar. Phyllis, one of the newest renters of Froggy Cottage, receives nightly calls from Marsha claiming her sister lived there. Phyllis wires her money to help her out because Marsha is apparently in a plural marriage and wants out.
Marsha shows up in the small mountain town and the two immediately hit it off. The uniqueness of Marsha’s life and the blandness of Phyllis’ makes for an unlikely friendship that was hilarious to watch. Watkins was definitely the shining star in “Story Three” as she maneuvered her way flawlessly through every obstacle Marsha would throw her way.
However, it isn’t the characters who grabbed my attention during “Story Three,” but rather what was happening behind them. The Guest Book does a great job balancing multiple storylines at once and within the same frame. Multiple times throughout the 30-minute episode, at least four characters are splitting a screen, but there is always someone in the background that ultimately steals it. The best was when Phyllis was on the phone and her husband’s boss was peeing on the kitchen floor behind her. The ridiculousness of the action totally stole my attention away from whatever the phone conversation was, but it made the scene even better.
However, the characters who really steal the show aren’t even part of the central story. Arlo (Arjay Smith) and Woody were introduced in “Story Two” and after their opening scene in “Story Three,” I am hoping they get to stay around. It’s a creative way to recap the audience on what happened in the previous episode. Instead of doing the same montage of “previously on,” Arlo hypes up a show about “people who run a cabin in the mountains” to Woody who seems annoyed and unimpressed.
Honestly, I was on Woody’s side after the premiere, but now I’m on Arlo’s side. Who knows what will happen to the “people who run a cabin in the mountains,” but I am ready to find out.
The Guest Book airs on Thursday nights at 10:30/9:30c on TBS.