The outrageousness on The League wouldn’t work if there was one person doing the outrageous things and everyone else looking on in disgust. Whatever happens in the heightened world of The League is treated as if it’s the most normal thing in the world. When Kevin accidentally swallows Jenny’s hoity-toity pearl earrings, Jenny immediately insists that Kevin throw them up. And, almost without question, Kevin obliges—or tries to. When it becomes clear that nothing’s gonna come out of hole number zero (because the pee hole is number one, right?), Jenny moves on to numero dos. Kevin puts up a little bit of a fight, but a part of him knows that it’s going to happen, whether he likes it or not.
Same goes with Ruxin and his bedroom intruders. Ruxin has laid out a perfect lady-day for his wife Sofia during which he did whatever she wanted, pampered her at every turn, and most of all didn’t mention football. And the reward is a night of steamy lovemaking in the Chi-town suburbs. Only Ruxin snuck out at one point to complete a trade, screwing Andre and angering he and Pete. So—of course—they show up at Ruxin’s house and barge in on he and his wife unannounced, creeping around the bedroom while Sofia is blindfolded and receiving footjobs from an unsuspecting Sofia until Ruxin undoes the trade. Sure, it’s a breach of privacy, but life goes on.
It’s fun to spend time in the world of The League for precisely this reason. There are few barriers the guys can’t cross, and even given that fact the show takes them right to the edge nearly every single chance it gets.
It helps that the show has found the perfect foil in Raffi. For all the jabbing the guys (and Jenny) do to one another, at least they’re aware enough to know they’re being made fun of, and also savvy enough to figure out ways to get each other back. Plus, you know, they actually like each other. Raffi is simply oblivious to everything. He’s a chach who thinks the party really starts when he puts “$7 worth of Hoobastank” in the jukebox and friendship is made over sending “such funny videos” to others. He drinks people’s beers, hits on girls they like, and borrows people’s expensive cars to have stinky sex in them. He’s not only immune to social cues, he’s immune to being a decent person. They think he’s annoying, but he’s not so bad that they’d raise much of a fuss over it, especially given his relationship with Ruxin.
The presence of Raffi means the guys are a lot less harsh on Taco. His quirks all of a sudden seem far more endearing when compared to Raffi. The storyline of Taco pretending to be somebody else so he can date Kevin’s coworker—thus showing up to make all of Kevin’s work events awkward—would have been hard to stomach if he was the outcast of the group. (So, too, would have that salmon colored three-piece suit, which I really like for some reason.) But luckily Taco has some free reign to do things like pretend a new condo development has his apartment in it, and I can chuckle.
Yes, having Raffi as a punching bag has given the show more heart. The guys more overtly care about one another, which is a boon to comedy strangely enough. (Exhibit A: Parks & Recreation.) Season two is smartly letting the relationships between the characters be the focal point of episodes. Tonight not only had Kevin and Jenny, but some fun stuff between Pete and Andre—enemies last season who now got to scheme against Raffi and Ruxin in tandem. Episodes of The League keep getting better and better, and given more room to breathe this season (13 episodes instead of 6), it looks like The League is using them wisely.
- "He’s become like a homeless ethnic Santa Claus."
- "I'm off the clock." "You don’t have a clock, Taco." "Yeah I do, in my kitchen, it makes animal noises."
- "Maybe you’re off, like, fingerblasting somebody."
- "We shared a room until we were, like, 18."