Since its humble beginning, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has explored relationship drama and mental illness through the medium of song. Rebecca Bunch has sung and danced her way through life’s greatest trials, working her way through a pastiche of different genres. Let’s take a look back at the show’s most impressive musical numbers.
20. “We Tapped That Ass” (Episode: “When Will Josh and His Friend Leave Me Alone?”)
The show pulls from every corner of a musical theatre major’s fever dream, so it was only a matter of time before it pulled out all the stops for a lavish, Golden Age tap dance number. In the true spirit of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the song finds Rebecca haunted by the ghosts of old flames… and the ways in which their passion used to manifest itself. As Josh and Greg bounce around and spout sexual innuendos with boyish glee, we feel Rebecca’s anguish in trying to get over the past.
19. “Gettin’ Bi” (Episode: “Josh Is Going to Hawaii!”)
Darryl is the show’s secret weapon, and it’s always a treat when he gets a moment in the spotlight. Bisexuality – when it enters the conversation at all – is often treated as a punchline, especially when in reference to male sexuality. In a short and sweet Huey Lewis-inspired number, we are reminded that people don’t always fall into the identity categories that we lay out for them. Once Darryl was able to be honest with himself and his coworkers, his whole character arc was kicked up a notch.
18. “Put Yourself First” (Episode: “Put Yourself First”)
There are few better examples of everything wrong with the beauty standard than a group of teenage girls urging you to “put yourself first in a sexy way.” And even in the songs that preach the gospel of female empowerment (such as in the Fifth Harmony tune this song is parodying), there are often unattainable and exhausting physical expectations. Just in case you missed the already straightforward message of the song, the video features a photographer with “MALE GAZE” plastered on his chest.
17. “Feeling Kinda Naughty” (Episode: “Feeling Kinda Naughty”)
After misleading us into thinking that this was going to be a song about a harmless girl crush (à la “I Kissed a Girl”), Rebecca lets us know about her detailed, darkest fantasies involving Valencia. Many people can relate to this feeling on some level, even if they don’t think about abducting their new friend and stealing their identity. It was one of the earliest moments of Rebecca’s trademark oversharing, and it cemented the zany tone of the show.
16. “The Math of Love Triangles” (Episode: “All Signs Point to Josh… Or Is It Josh’s Friend?”)
Aping the expectation of women to play dumb around men they’re attracted to, Rebecca – in a spot-on Marilyn Monroe breathy delivery – throws out her Ivy League education, much to the exasperation of her chorus of gay mathematicians. The cutesy-poo display is filled with a delightful call and response, as well as plenty of wonderful scholastic puns. More importantly, it gave us some real insight into Rebecca’s true motivations.
15. “Remember That We Suffered” (Episode: “Remember That We Suffered”)
Whether she likes it or not, Jewish culture is ever-present in Rebecca’s life, and when she takes Josh back to her hometown for a family bar mitzvah, we see all the reasons she is frustrated with her heritage. The song is an insider jab at the tendency of Judaism to put emphasis on their troubled past, even in a time of celebration. It’s also a tremendous use of a cameo by the legendary Patti LuPone.
14. “Sex With A Stranger” (Episode: “I’m Going on a Date with Josh’s Friend!”)
Rebecca has a long history of making rash decisions – it’s what throws the show into motion, after all – especially when it goes against her own best interest. In order to distract herself from Josh, she opts to bring home a complete stranger. Still, at the end of the day, she’s a worrier, and she can’t help but be cautious that her new fling is secretly trying to murder her. We will never be able to get that skin-tight animal print bodysuit out of our heads.
13. “West Covina” (Episode: “Josh Just Happens to Live Here!”)
Our first taste of Rebecca’s musical tendencies, the song establishes the magical, idyllic village she imagines West Covina to be…”and also by coincidence, Josh just happens to be here.” It is a big, boisterous ode to the foolish optimism of a hopeless romantic, and it is filled to the brim with overwhelming joy. The song is a brilliant introduction to the state of Rebecca’s denial, detailing why she ditches the Big Apple for a town that is two hours from the beach (four in traffic).
12. “I Gave You a UTI” (Episode: “Why Is Josh in a Bad Mood?”)
The male ego is extremely fragile and, as a result, men are able to find pride in the strangest of places. Greg couldn’t be more enthralled when he learns that Rebecca has contracted a UTI after the two become intimate. He takes it as a badge of honor that her “maiden ship got wrecked,” even though Rebecca tries her best to explain that her discomfort has nothing to do with his performance. It is the perfect snapshot of the dynamics at play in a heterosexual relationship.
11. “Where’s the Bathroom?” (Episode: “My Mom, Greg’s Mom and Josh’s Sweet Dance Moves!”)
Our introduction to Rebecca’s overbearing Jewish mother couldn’t have been any more perfect. She begins ranting and raving before she’s even entered the house, without anything in the form of a greeting to her daughter. Many viewers are able to feel the sting of every one of her passive-aggressive insults. By getting a glimpse at what she’s had to deal with her entire life, it isn’t hard to see why Rebecca loses sight of reality from time to time.
10. “I Could If I Wanted To” (Episode: “Josh’s Sister Is Getting Married!”)
The best way to avoid failure is to never try in the first place. That way, you can continue to judge those around you as they fall on their face. At least, that seems to be Greg’s philosophy, as laid out in this high-energy ’90s-esque rocker. His outlook on life is perfectly summed up in the song, from his overwhelming cynicism to his boiling inner conflict. Moving past this mindset will prove to be Greg’s greatest hurdle to clear.
9. “The Sexy Getting Ready Song” (Episode: “Josh Just Happens to Live Here!”)
Before she is reunited with Josh, Rebecca has a lot of steps in her beauty routine, from “primpin’ and pluckin'” to “brushin’ and rubbin’.” We see all the hoops women jump through when getting ready for a hot date. The whole ordeal is enough to teach Nipsey Hussle about the double standard of beauty expectations, leading him to “go apologize to some bitches” and pick up a copy of Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex.
8. “I Give Good Parent” (Episode: “My First Thanksgiving with Josh!”)
Apparently there isn’t a musical genre that Crazy Ex-Girlfriend can’t master, so it was only a matter of time before we got to hear Rebecca rap. Along with a gold-toothed, blinged-out Amy Hill laying down a tasty hook, Rebecca details her skills at kissing up to parents. Like any great rap song, it is filled with lyrical wordplay and an array of pop culture references. Rachel Bloom has got her Nicki Minaj impression down.
7. “We’ll Never Have Problems Again” (Episode: “Will Scarsdale Like Josh’s Shayna Punim?”)
The beginning of any relationship comes with a certain level of willful ignorance. We all think that we have love figured out, and “it’s only smooth, smooth sailing from now on.” Straight out of an episode of Soul Train, this 1970s disco track is sure to get your feet moving. Taking a moment to poke holes in Rebecca and Josh’s paradise, Heather makes wonderfully sardonic comments about just how ridiculous they are.
6. “It Was a Shit Show” (Episode: “When Will Josh and His Friend Leave Me Alone?”)
Even if you were rooting for Rebecca and Greg to end up together, you have to admit that they had their share of turmoil. Theirs wasn’t the storybook romance Rebecca had in mind, and it was time that they both admitted it and moved on with their lives. This bittersweet ballad points out the undeniable chemistry between Rebecca and Greg, as well as reminds you why they would never work together.
5. “(Tell Me I’m Okay) Patrick” (Episode: “Is Josh Free in Two Weeks?”)
Sometimes we need reassurance from an objective party that everything is going to work out in the long run. Our friends and acquaintances hold too much bias, so naturally we seek comfort from the delivery guy. Or at least we do if we are Rebecca Bunch trying to throw together a wedding at the last minute to a guy she may or may not actually be in love with. The creative minds behind this show love Broadway musicals, and it leads to classic standards like this one.
4. “Settle For Me” (Episode: “I’m Going on a Date with Josh’s Friend!”)
We’ve all had feelings for someone who was preoccupied with someone else, but our hearts don’t always know when to quit. With “Settle For Me,” what starts as a simple plea quickly morphs into a loving homage to the films of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. It taps into a vein of the show’s base sentiment, as we see when it pops up again in a later season. Between its meticulous staging and its whimsical lyrics, this is easily one of the show’s most memorable moments.
3. “JAP Battle” (Episode: “Josh and I Go to Los Angeles!”)
When a rival from Rebecca’s past shows up in West Covina, the two have to prove their dominance over one another in the form of a rap battle. Of course, as the two boast about their achievements, it becomes increasingly apparent just how similar they truly are. Besides being a catchy tune, “JAP Battle” pulls deep from the well of Jewish references, giving us the unforgettable line: “sheket bevaka shut the hell up.”
2. “Oh My God I Think I Like You” (Episode: “Why Is Josh in a Bad Mood?”)
Fooling around can all too often lead to catching feelings, usually without even realizing it until you’re in way too deep. Though she initially just hangs around Greg for the sex, Rebecca is starting to become more and more attached to Greg. It was at this moment that fans of the show started to split into two camps: Team Greg and Team Josh. The song is also just as addictive as anything else to come out of the show.
1. “You Stupid Bitch” (Episode: “That Text Was Not Meant for Josh!”)
Although it’s not always easy for her to admit, most of Rebecca’s suffering is the direct product of her own careless decisions. In her moments of self-loathing, her inner monologue takes the form of “You Stupid Bitch,” a song with themes that most of us have sung to our own reflection at one point or another. Just as hilarious as it is tragic, this song is all too painfully relatable to anyone who’s ever felt like a “poopy little slut” when they were at their lowest.