Valerie Tries to Get Yesterday Back
Written by Michael Patrick King & Lisa Kudrow
Directed by Michael Patrick King
Valerie is shooting a video for her Val Vlog, which includes an impression of Jean Stapleton as Edith Bunker. She announces her ‘Seeing Red’ role just as Mark shows up and asks her again why she’d do the show. “It’s HBO, Mark,” she explains. “I’ll be an actress on an HBO show.” Valerie defends Paulie G., but Mark says “people don’t change.”
At the HBO offices, Valerie walks down a hall adorned with posters of shows from the network. “Guess I’m one of the girls now,” she declares as she passes by ‘Sex and the City.’ She points at ‘The Wire’: “Don’t know that one, actually.” At ‘Girls,’ she says the star, “Leela Durham” is “real special.” Valerie and the HBO execs decide to use the footage she’s capturing for web and social media content, as long as she gets her old producer Jane Benson to take over. Shooting for ‘Seeing Red’ starts next week, prompting Valerie to call her plastic surgeon about short-term options. “You are one of the few actresses who still looks real,” one of the execs tells her. “That’s why we hired you.” Before she leaves, one of the execs invites Valerie to the Golden Globes next week.
Valerie drives off the LA grid to find Jane, who initially refused her producing offer via email, in what looks like a makeshift dude ranch with horses, goats and dogs. “There’s no such thing as a definite ‘no,’” Valerie says, as she arrives. “Oh my God, Valerie!” Jane says. “I thought, Who is this? And then I saw the cameras, and I knew it was you. You never give up.” Jane continues to refuse the job and reveals she won an Oscar for a documentary short about lesbians in the Holocaust. Valerie takes several photos with the statuette, which Jane says “makes a good doorstop.” She’s disillusioned by the lack of funding for documentaries in Hollywood. Jane and Mickey smoke weed, and Valerie smokes, too, in an attempt to show she’s relaxed. Jane finally agrees to be Valerie’s producer, with Mark’s nephew still on the crew.
Getting ready for both the Golden Globes and ‘Seeing Red’ production, Valerie gets a call from the guy who gives her Botox, which upsets Mark. Valerie visits stylist and reality star Brad Goreski to find a dress for the Globes. There’s a dueling reality crew filming, too, for a Chinese series starring Goreski. The stylist wants Valerie to try an outlandish dress that Valerie says she’d “never wear in a million years.” Brad urges her to model the dress, but she balks. “We just need to see you in a couple of looks for this,” he says. “You know the drill, you’ve had a reality show.” Valerie comes out in the dress, saying it looks like she “fell asleep in a bird sanctuary.”
“Did somebody say Golden Globes?” Valerie says dramatically as she comes down her stairs, ready for the show. Jane asks how the cameras will get in, causing a scramble where Billy and Mickey’s tickets instead go to Jane and a camera guy. Once at the Beverly Hilton, it turns out Valerie’s tickets are for a Globes viewing party in a hotel suite, filled with what Mark says are “Russian whores” and Paulie G., who’s again smoking his e-cigarette. “Hello Valerie and her cameras,” Paulie G. says in greeting, asking about Jane’s presence. “What is this? ‘The Comeback’ comeback?” After some awkwardness, Paulie G. and Valerie have a sweet moment. “Next year!” Valerie says, referring to ‘Seeing Red,’ “You’ll be inside. We’ll be inside.” Paulie G. heads off to “a meeting,” as Valerie jokes that she wishes she was an alcoholic so she could go, too.