Servant: “Boba” Review

After watching several of these characters question their own sanity, we the audience finally got to join in!  Servant’s latest episode, “Boba” gives us a much deeper look into Julian than we’ve ever gotten before, all while throwing us a very welcomed curveball.

(Disturbing) Adventures in Babysitting
The episode begins with a tension building long take on Julian, as he mentally prepares for a night of babysitting, and we the audience are completely not prepared for what is to come.

It’s just Julian and Jericho for the night while Sean and Dorothy attend a television awards dinner, and Tobe and Leanne go on a bowling “date”.  However, still in detective mode, he makes sure to send Roscoe the P.I. to follow them to keep watch of Leanne.

All seems to be going normally, but Julian’s true shock comes when he goes to check on Julian, only to find that the living, breathing baby he previously thought may have been kidnapped has been replaced again with a the creepy, lifelike doll.  Immediately panicking, he assumes the real baby must be hidden somewhere, or that Leanne took it with her, but neither seem to be the case.

This would probably be the worst nightmare for anyone babysitting.

Then, with the absolute worst timing in the world, Julian and Dorothy’s father arrives. He finds the doll and (still unaware about the real baby) suggests switching out the doll with a real one that is in need of adopting.  Little does he know the immense cruel irony of his idea.

What is Real Anymore?
Upon Leanne’s return, Julian explodes in an unhinged fashion we’ve never really seen from him, and as he’s about to drop the doll down the steps, he hears the real baby crying and he’ll probably never quite be the same again.

Via flashback, we learn that it was Julian who discovered Jericho originally, and while the trauma of that certainly explains his casual alcoholism, it also suggests a new theory pertaining to the baby and the doll.

We’d also like to point out that Rupert Grint deserves a lot of credit for this series. Coming from a massive franchise like Harry Potter, it’s been difficult for the three leads to transcend those iconic roles, and here it’s very easy to forget he was ever Ron Weasley (until we mentioned it in this review of course).

Is it possible that the doll and “real” baby are in fact one in the same?  Is it possible that everything boils down to a matter of belief and perception?

This series has always been about how different people process grief differently.  And maybe when Julian was alone with the baby, all he saw was the doll.  But when Leanne came home, the shared delusion was reinforced and now that’s all he sees as well.

There’s a brief moment at the end, where Julian tells Sean that everything is okay.  It’s both an elightening moment as it’s the most serene and at peace we’ve ever seen Julian, but it’s also a bit disturbing realizing that, much like Dorothy and Leanne, Julian finally “drank the Kool-Aid”, so to speak.

There’s also a beautifully awkward moment at the end of Leanne’s “date” where she tries to kiss Tobe. It helps to humanize her, and remind us that she’s also just a shy teenage girl. But who else wishes we got a whole episode of just their date?!

Up to this point, Julian has been a driving force in exposing the truth about Leanne and the real baby, but from here onward, it seems that Sean will be on his own.  Perhaps he’ll also find it easier to merely give in.

All this time, we the audience have been theorizing answers to all these questions, but honestly, the most unsettling ending would be one where they all merely just accept this as reality and move on.

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