Playing House: Maggie Reconsiders Her Future

Michael Yarish/USA Network
Michael Yarish/USA Network

Playing House took a very serious turn at the end of last week’s episode as we saw the demise of Mark (Keegan-Michael Key) and Tina’s (Lindsay Sloane) marriage. In this week’s “Employee of the Month,” Mark makes an attempt to move on with his life and that means becoming a permanent fixture on Maggie and Emma’s couch. As if that wasn’t enough to deal with, Maggie also struggled with doubts about what her life would have been like had she become a nurse as was her original plan when she was younger.

Just as we’ve done every week of Season 2, we have picked out a few of our favorite moments from this week and listed them below. Be sure to let us know if you agree with our choices or if any of your favorite moments were left out.

Mark sweating it out Silver Linings Playbook-style

The episode opened with Mark spiraling a bit out of control due to his divorce from Tina. A prime example of that? The fact that he ran by Maggie and Emma’s house 16 times wearing a garbage bag, doing lunges and squats all while letting out a “guttural noise that you should only let out in the privacy of your own home.” Luckily, Emma has been watching a lot of The Steve Harvey Show as of late and she warns Maggie how when men are in pain they really want to be left alone. That may be true, but what we really want is more of Jessica St. Clair’s Steve Harvey impression!

Digiorno tastes like delivery!

As an avid listener and fan of St. Clair and Lennon Parham’s podcast Womp It Up! I have been eagerly anticipating the easter eggs and references to the podcast that St. Clair promised would be there. However, there is none that I’ve been looking forward to more than a Digiorno pizza (Marissa Wompler’s food of choice) reference and we finally got that this week. Emma you may say “it’s just a Digiorno pizza man,” but we all agree with Mark that “it tastes just like delivery.” Long live Wompler and Listler!

Mark needs his Murder She Wrote!

Remember back in the Season 2 premiere when Emma discovered 44 episodes of Murder She Wrote on Mark’s DVR? Well it turns out he looks to Jessica Fletcher and Cabot Cove in times of need and Emma confronts him about this while he’s laid up with a sprained ankle. Emma may say that “only bad things happen” there in Cabot Cove, but I’ve got to say Mark had the perfect comeback explaining that “then Jessica solves it because she’s a crime fighter and a novelist and that’s sexy as hell.” Somewhere Angela Lansbury is smiling, I just know it.

Michael Yarish/USA Network
Michael Yarish/USA Network

Emma’s Stand for Feminism

When Emma joins Mark on the couch to play video games she was appalled, and rightfully so I may add, to find out that her character could not be “a woman with enormous boobs,” who also wears “a tight tank.” Mark quickly informed her there are no women in the game, only men. This left me wondering the same thing as Emma: “What kind of message does that send to the women of America? That we can’t pick up a gun and murder spiders? Well yes we can!”

Maggie considers going back to school

After earning Employee of the Month status in her gig as a waitress at Rosie’s, Maggie began to reconsider what she was doing with her life. Last week may have been Key’s time to shine but this week gave Parham that chance and she went all out with it and nailed it. Who out there can’t relate to this story? Life has a funny way of interrupting and ruining the plans we have for ourselves when we set out in life as a young twentysomething. For Maggie, her parents dying and getting married to Bruce derailed her dreams of becoming a nurse. While I love Playing House dearly for giving me a weekly dose of laughs, it’s the serious moments like this one that really elevate the show above all those other comedies out there and make me love it even more. 

Maggie tells Emma about her decision

The heart and soul of Playing House has always been the friendship between Emma and Maggie, something that so effortlessly shines through due to St. Clair and Parham’s real life friendship. When Maggie finally and tearfully blurted out that she wants to go back to school because “If I’m going to be away from Charlotte it’s got to be for something I really care about,” what working mother couldn’t relate to her struggle? But it’s the driving force of the  friendship between these two women that was on full display here. Maggie, rightfully so, felt bad asking for more sacrifices of Emma, seeing as she’s already moved home and in with her to help raise her daughter. But Emma quickly replied with the best response ever:

“If this is what you want we are going to make it happen, OK? You have spent your entire life taking care of other people. How about you let me take care of you?”

While the girls may be in agreement that baby Charlotte is “the greatest,” I happen to think this friendship between Emma and Maggie is simply the greatest.

Memorable Quotes

  • “Your ankle is going to be fine. But you do appear to be a child trapped in a man’s body so, you know, get that checked out.” – The doctor is giving it to Mark straight!
  • “Fatal Blowout 2? That’s what happened to me when I went to Chico’s Mexican Restaurant.” – Emma. Sorry girl, but Mark’s right. We don’t need to hear about that!
  • “Goodnight to you sir.” – Emma to Mark. This one is included more because Emma’s tipping of the cap is a callback to the pilot episode where she did the exact same thing upon seeing Mark again for the first time. The cap tipping seems to be Emma’s go to move when she gets in an awkward situation but we’re not complaining.
  • “I want to be a nurse!” – Maggie. You be a nurse Maggie! Sisters are indeed doing it for themselves!


What were your favorite Playing House moments this week? Add them in the comments below!

Playing House airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET on USA Network.