I’ll be completely honest, when you watch as much television as I do there are few moments that really surprise me or take my breath away. A lot of times, those surprising moments come in the form of shocking character deaths or some unexpected twist that spells all kinds of trouble and tragedy for a beloved character. Very rarely do those surprise moments come in the form of a happy, tender moment that truly touches my heart and makes me smile from ear to ear. Those kind of moments? Well, those are even more rare and more special and that’s exactly what Dan Levy and Schitt’s Creek delivered in this week’s episode, “The Gesture.”
After having their first major rift, in which David (Levy) found out that his boyfriend Patrick (Noah Reid) had still been in touch with his ex-fiancee, Patrick had been trying for a week to smooth things over. Part of his plan was to send David gifts every day to try and show him how much he was invested in the relationship. David being David, kept Patrick in his state of misery a tad longer than necessary just so he could keep getting gifts. Naturally, when Patrick found this out he was a little upset. You see, he had been extending David these olive branches each day and now he wanted one extended in return that showed David wasn’t just in this relationship for the gifts.
By episode’s end, David was finally standing there in the store, extending the olive branch and lip-syncing Tina Turner’s “Simply the Best” to Patrick. Earlier this season Schitt’s already delivered what I thought was going to be the most romantic moment for these two when Patrick sang a cover of the same song to David. So using it again here was the perfect callback and just the most ridiculously perfect gesture for David to do. Patrick’s reaction mirrored my own, and I suspect the reaction of many other viewers, as he sat there both simultaneously surprised and even more in love with David as he rocked out to Turner. It was such a genuine and heart-warming moment that left me with nothing but the best kind of butterflies in my stomach.
Here’s the thing, I absolutely adored David and Stevie (Emily Hampshire). When they dated and then broke up in earlier seasons I always thought, “that’s OK, they’ll get back together eventually.” I adore them as friends but figured somewhere down the line they’d find their way back together romantically, right? Well thankfully, it turns out that Dan Levy knew far better than I because along came Patrick. The relationship that has then been built between he and David is so sweet, loving and romantic. What I find to be even better is that I still get the banter and everything I loved about David and Stevie. Being with Patrick doesn’t take away anything from David and Stevie. In fact, sometimes their crazy friendship is even better when Stevie and Patrick team up to torment poor David.
That’s the thing about Patrick, he has never wanted to change David. He knows that David is a hot mess, doesn’t have experience in any kind of healthy relationship and also has a ton of neuroses. He is fully aware of it all, doesn’t enable any of these issues, but also doesn’t push David to be anything other than who he is. In the process, David has really grown and become a better person because of all it. Think back to the selfish, immature David Rose we first encountered in Season 1 and tell me we’d be at this point. No way, right?
The other aspect of both these moments between Patrick and David this season is how Schitt’s Creek goes against the lazy approach other, lesser shows may take. Too many times writers on TV series think they need to tell viewers what’s happening through exposition or dialogue, but it’s so much better, and way more effective, when we are shown and not told. By using this song, a pretty simple device, Schitt’s Creek has conveyed how these men feel about each other in a powerful way that words could just never do.
Of course when discussing David and Patrick’s relationship, I would like to give a tip of the hat to Levy, Reid and the entire Schitt’s Creek team for how meaningful the story has been for LGBTQ characters on screen. While things are slowly improving and getting better, there’s still so much work to be done when it comes to on screen representation and diversity. Few series are telling a story with the same amount of intimacy and care as Schitt’s Creek is doing with David and Patrick.
David and Patrick are allowed moments of true sweetness and possess a sense of innocence to their relationship that we don’t often get to see from a relationship between two men on screen. The love their share is tender, pure and simply put, downright delightful to watch. Sadly, a love story about two men is all too rare a sight on screen, but Levy and Schitt’s Creek isn’t here to teach anyone anything. Instead, they are just telling a love story, plain and simple. Sure, it feels fresh and unique, but that’s not because it’s about two men. It’s more due to the fact that David, Patrick and the connection the two share is well-written and completely fleshed out.
When Patrick walked into Rose Apothecary at the end of that episode he wasn’t expecting David to lip-sync that song. I know as a viewer I wasn’t expecting to see Levy bust out that performance. It was a true moment of surprise, but one I’m so grateful to Levy for delivering. He may have joked after the episode aired that he’s been too embarrassed himself to watch the scene, but Dan Levy know this — David, Patrick and this entire Schitt’s Creek storyline is simply the best.
What did you think of David’s gesture? Did you love it as much as we did? Add your thoughts below!
Schitt’s Creek airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on CBC in Canada and Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Pop TV in the U.S.
Editor in Chief Bridget Liszewski comes from a long line of TV Junkies who fostered her love of television from a very young age. She's channeled that passion into covering both US and Canadian television shows, and is thankful everyday for the invention of the DVR. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame, she loves college football and is a fan of sports in general. Bridget is always up for talking TV and you can follow her on twitter at @BridgetOnTV.