I tried watching Fleishman Is in Trouble, and I rather enjoyed the first episode.
But the second episode grew tedious as it became increasingly clear that the protagonist, Toby Fleishman (portrayed by Jesse Eisenberg) was making increasingly foolish choices. Plus, I came to realize that we only saw Toby’s wife Rachel in flashbacks from Toby’s point of view and that of the narrator, Toby’s friend Libby, so I began to wonder if Rachel was really the shrew that they were describing.
And I realized that not only did I think Toby was an idiot, but I didn’t like his smug New Yorker friends, Libby and Seth.
Now it’s perfectly possible to dislike characters and still be invested in seeing what they are going to do next, but that wasn’t the case with Toby, Seth, and Libby. I just wanted them to shut up. Oh, and Libby, the narrator, is apparently a stand-in for the author, Taffy Brodesser-Akner, a contributor for The New York Times. I’ve become very suspicious lately of Times reporters and this just adds to my distrust.
Then in the middle of the third episode when Libby, who had already been revealed to be a smoker, gave a cigarette to Toby, a hepatologist who ought to know better, and his reaction was to wrap her shawl around his head so Rachel wouldn’t smell the smoke on him—
I had had enough.