Dr Ken: Ken at the Concert was a splendid mix of comedy with a touch of “lump in the throat” poignancy. Every parent longs to connect with their teenage offspring. Ken’s attempt to remain relevant in his daughter’s life, and still be the “dada” by grabbing the Emblem3 concert tickets for Molly (Krista Marie Yu) and her friends results in Jeong knocking it out of the park (no pun intended…) with a hilarious wine-fueled vow of “heart” for his teenage daughter.
The entire storyline is a reversal of parenthood and child raising. There is a variation on the “baby-viewing” rooms in the cinema where parents with crying and noisy (that’s spelt embarrassing and annoying to both the parents of said child and the other cinema patrons) can sit to watch the film and not stress out the other audience members:
This variation is called the parent lounge.
At the concert, an embarrassed Molly sends Ken away from her, and the bestie’s who have been invited to the concert, before he leaves Molly gives Ken, “the list.” Two mother’s see Ken’s predicament and explain that they know his pain.
Ken is taken to the parent lounge. There the exiled inhabitants imbibe wine and gouda cheese. Ken is a hit with his fellow denizens and as he and the mother’s who share his misery get deeper into the wine, Dr. Park learns that these are parents who have given up on their teenagers.
Grabbing a gouda to go, Ken heads back down to Molly and her friends. He tries to express his feelings and is shut down by his embarrassed teen. After sitting down, Ken notices a fan jump on the stage and the upset father gets an idea.
Ken rushes on stage and declares that while Molly is no longer his “little girl” she will always be his daughter. Molly cringes at this PDA until she realizes her friends are impressed by Dr. Park’s little speech. Ken is then tackled by the band’s onstage security guard.
Dr. Ken; Ken at the Concert goes back to the storyline of “Pamona” just in time to see them break up. The Pat and Damona breakup takes place at Welltopia where Dave shows up with Allison after stepping on a rusty nail at the birthday party.
“It wouldn’t have gone through my shoe if you’d let me wear the wedges.”
The lion’s share of the episode dealt with Molly and Ken. A truly funny look at a father devoted to his teenage daughter a’la “Super Dad” but with that Ken Jeong touch. But, as is natural for this show, other players managed to shine comically as well.
Dave’s invitation to a birthday party:
“Legit or class invitation? It doesn’t matter let’s just savor the victory.”
The whole “tetanus” injection scenario:
Dr. Julie Dobbs: “I’m great with kids…I used to be one.”
Allison Park: (no reaction)
Later when Dave is locked in the exam room:
Clark: “I’m great with kids, I used to be one.”
Allison: (gales of laughter): “It must be the way he says it…”
Clark telling Julie and Damona how to get out of a relationship:
“Tell him that your grandmother has died and that you are the chief suspect.”
Later Damona has trouble trying to explain to Pat that she wants to break up, he is not getting her message, and she blurts out the “grandmother” line in desperation. Pat’s reaction is to invite her to a romantic getaway at a B&B.
Dave freaks out at the idea of the injection and after he escapes from the exam room, he finds refuge in Pat’s office. Before that Juan-Julio gets another moment in this episode:
“He’s in the vents. We’ll have to smoke him out.”
As Dave sits in Pat’s office he starts to explain his dilemma of the tetanus shot. Cue one brilliant “Up” reference:
Pat: “All right. You’ve got my attention Park…Whup! But you lost it…Pigeon…”
Were many, but there were a few that really made their mark –
Juan_Julio’s creepy smile after the “smoke him out” line.
Ken’s drunken singing to Molly and then his on stage appearance.
Juan-Julio, again, “Until the men in the suits took him sailing.”
Pat’s desperate: “My grandmother’s dead and I’m the chief suspect!”
Kate Simses proving yet again that she is Queen of comedic timing with her stricken, yet accusatory, look when Allison laughs at Clark saying “the kid” line.
Damona, again, “Well I’m waiting for the D.A. to call me about my grandmother, but I guess I got a minute…”
Ken: YOLO, LOL, OMG, et al.
Dr. Ken: Ken at the Concert was a brilliant look at the chasm that is created when our kids “out-grow” us. Krista Marie Yu killed it as the embarrassed, initially, teen who “hearts” her dad right back by the end of the episode. Ken Jeong also kills it as the dad who desperately still wants to be part of his little girl’s life. Albert Tsai, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Dave Foley and Marques Ray all rocked this week.
Emblem3, aka E3 (which feels a little like a blatant rip off of the gaming conference, just saying…) had little time to perform but this appearance must have provided a great chance to celebrate their getting back together. While not a fan (I’ve only just learned of their existence.) it is easy to see why the characters on the show were such fans.
Dr Ken airs Fridays on ABC, tune in quick as there are only five episodes left in season one.