What’s a word Midge doesn’t often associate with herself? Failure. One she gets a huge heaping of this episode.

You are watching: The marvelous mrs. maisel season 1 episode 5

Previous Recap: Episode 4 “The Disappointment of the Dionne Quintuplets”

Amazon Prime
Director(s)Amy Sherman-Palladino
Writer(s)Daniel Palladino
Characters Introduced
Mary PetruscaErin Darke
VivianLilli Stein
Mrs. O’TooleJoanna Glushak
HarrietWakeema Hollis
JackieBrian Tarantina
Herb SmithWallace Shawn

The New Job: Midge, Mary, Vivian, Harriet, Rose, Abe


To the dismay of Rose, Midge gets a job. It isn’t the one she originally wanted, that is being an elevator operator, but a makeup girl. Something she takes to rather quickly and between Mary, Vivian, and Harriet, she is a hit. Now, as for what is her long-term goals with this job? Who knows? Abe seemed fine with it, until he saw her working there. Though with her having her own money, meaning less out of his pocket, maybe he’ll lay off a bit? Though, who knows, with him knowing Midge rejected Joel, they may end up in a fight that leads to him just kicking her out. If not Rose doing so.

Either way, these girls end up becoming a savior to Midge later on in the episode.

Bombing Run: Midge, Susie


As noted in the last episode, with Midge usually hitting the stage when mad about something, if not drunk or high, her doing stand up sober might have been an issue. Well, discard that might for it is an issue. Midge, after being quite good at just getting on stage and talking about stuff, she bombs. She bombs hard. In fact, she bombs twice. The first time wasn’t so bad. She got a few chuckles but then the hecklers killed her confidence a bit.

However, the second time? BOMB! You know why? She had someone else write her jokes – Herb Smith. Someone who has written the same joke for every fool who would pay him and when Midge uses his jokes, without looking over them before hitting the stage, she bombs badly. To the point, Midge quits. I’m talking walking off the stage, having a vulgar back and forth with Susie, and seemingly tapping out.

Which of course, despite her tough exterior, bums Susie out for she was really investing a lot into Midge. Much less, even with her talking about keeping their relationship professional, she seemed to like the idea of having a friend. Perhaps leading to why she made sure Midge understood that breaking them up as a duo meant no friendship either. A possible threat she was probably hoping to lead to a different reaction.

The Comeback Kid: Midge, Mary, Vivian, Harriet

After bombing and saying she is going to quit comedy, she gets sucked right back in at a party Mary is having. One she is invited to in order to pick her spirits up a bit. Which it does. As the men circle around something, the women circle around Midge as she tells jokes. Likely meaning, once again, she is going to be crawling back to Susie who, I believe, definitely will take some convincing to get back in the good graces of. For if there might be one thing Susie can’t stand, besides butt holes of course, is people who can’t deliver.

Other Noteworthy Facts & Moments

Penny meets Joel’s parents and neither one likes her. In fact, Moishe makes her sound like the type who doesn’t deserve to be more than a mistress.

Question(s) Left Unanswered

Whatever happened to the morality police? Lenny Bruce giving them enough work that Midge is no longer on their radar?

On The Fence

The Back and Forth


With Midge just becoming acquainted with failure through her marriage, and now bombing, you have to wonder how much will she go back and forth when it comes to comedy? In my mind, I can fully picture her meeting a guy who wants to marry her, but makes her choose between comedy and marriage. Also, while stage fright hasn’t been an issue, there comes the question of what will happen when she gets bigger in later episodes, or seasons?

And I bring all this up for the pacing of the show really pushes you to wonder how quickly will Midge get big. Just her getting a job so quickly seemed a bit of a surprise. After all, like her father said, she doesn’t really have experience or anything. Yes, she is cute, and her being a makeup girl is pretty much the ideal first job, but a part of me just hopes they don’t make her comedy career the only struggle here. Midge needs more than that and honestly, I just feel she is approaching that moment when she needs a real breakdown. One venting on a stage can’t fix.

For even with her bombing, she bombs one night and is right back to cracking jokes with an audience in the next. Albeit, it’s the girls from work and I understand her bouncing back shows not only that she loves doing comedy but also is what some may consider a needed win. However, there just really is this vibe that Midge hasn’t even skid rock bottom and it pushes the idea if great comedians have to have terrible lives? I’m talking laughing to keep from crying kind of lives, in order to validate their jokes.

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Think of it like a rapper having a normal upbringing, does that mean their rhymes don’t have edge? That is what I’m getting at here. For sometimes with Midge’s jokes, like when she was bombing, that is how I feel. This rich, or at the very least privileged, woman complaining about her life to people who are working class. It doesn’t click that well you know. Are we supposed to laugh at the vulgarity of the upper class? That’s the gimmick? And I get this is a woman in the 50s and to a certain degree who, as Midge’s actress notes in a Metro article , was inspired by Joan Rivers. It is just, there is this need to see her knocked on her behind and stay there for a little while.