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Shrinking Season 1 Brilliantly Encompasses the Muddles of Grief
Shrinking Season 1 Brilliantly Encompasses the Muddles of Grief,Through astounding performances and a sharp screenplay, Shrinking Season 1 takes viewers through the hurdles of grief by placing its focus on therapy.

Shrinking Season 1 Brilliantly Encompasses the Muddles of Grief

The following contains spoilers for Shrinking Season 1, Episode 10, "Closure," now streaming on Apple TV+.

Developed by Bill Lawrence, Brett Goldstein, and the series star, Jason Segel, Shrinking Season 1 bridges a riveting gap between comedy and drama as it explores grief and moving forward. From the first episode to the final few moments of the tenth, the series asks its audience to pay close attention to what therapy entails and how the consequences of one person's actions could open barred floodgates back up.

The story begins with Segel's Jimmy Laird, a struggling therapist trying to keep up with his clients' many problems while grappling with his wife's sudden death and the difficulties he's yet to work through in their marriage. Jimmy is accompanied by nosy (but well-meaning) neighbor Christa Miller's Liz, his coworkers, Harrison Ford's Paul and Jessica Williams' Gaby, and his daughter, Alice, played impressively by Lukita Maxwell. The debut season brings Jimmy's struggles to the surface, and nearly every other character seamlessly moves from point A to B with organic and vulnerable growth.


The screenplay gives Harrison Ford some of his most pleasing dialogue to breathe life into, showcasing that his fierce tone works brilliantly with sharp comedy. Jimmy Laird is Segel's best role yet, allowing him to bring some of the most vulnerable and hilarious performances to the screen. Additionally, music editor Richard David Brown and composer Tom Howe expertly weave music into the series' narrative, allowing the songs to play a role in moving the plot, as well as showing viewers what's inside the characters. Like Ted Lasso, Shrinking alternates between directors and writers, creating vastly different focuses that bleed together seamlessly to reveal the show's intimate tone.

Where each character begins in the first episode, "Coin Flip," and where they end up in the Shrinking Season 1 finale, "Closure" is an accurate encapsulation of growth that still requires work. The series notes that healing isn't a linear path but rather a befuddled, crooked trajectory. The finale does its finest work by cementing that people aren't designated to be alone, showcasing that much of Jimmy and Alice's healing comes from the people around them. In officiating his best friend Brian's wedding, Jimmy frames the speech around his wife Tia, which subsequently works, considering viewers learn she's the one who introduced Brian (Michael Urie) and his soon-to-be husband, Charlie (Devin Kawaoka). Jimmy's speech prompts the audience to examine the importance of friendships, noting that, at its core, the series is about strength in numbers. Paul begins the series as a mentor to Jimmy and ends up learning how to be a better team player toward everyone — especially Gaby, who drives him to work every day and makes sure he stays hydrated.

Ultimately, Shrinking Season 1 only scratches the surface of progress by emphasizing that even when there are thrilling, happy days, something treacherous can always make people veer off course. In "Closure," one of Jimmy's prominent clients, Grace (Heidi Gardner), jokingly states that she sometimes wants to "boop" her abusive boyfriend off a cliff. In the end, it becomes a reality after she shoves him for hurling insults at her. The episode concludes with that final scene, nudging viewers toward the newly renewed Season 2, which could undoubtedly unpack the boundaries between therapists and clients. Plus, with Jimmy and everyone growing closer to Luke Tennie's Sean — another previous client — the series could continue to question right and wrong while exploring various forms of healing.

Shrinking Season 1 spends ten episodes see-sawing between progress and steps backward to carefully and considerately showcase the growth trajectory for all types of people. For an episode titled "Closure," the season finale is more about the many open doors that lie ahead for the characters. Alice steps into her mother's favorite heels, even as she fears forgetting the sound of her laugh. Where the show excels in humor, it also peppers in heart and drama beautifully, making it the kind of thoughtful series that breaks barriers by putting stigmatized topics at the forefront and pushing through with a lot of love. In its ten episodes, Shrinking Season 1 is awe-inspiring in every way.

Shrinking Season 1 is now streaming on Apple TV+.