I’ve said many times, the bumbling, comedic version of Jack is my least favorite version. So, imagine my dismay that as soon as Lawrence’s trial wraps up — and I mean in the same episode — the show switches to all out comedy in the runup to Jack and Jennifer’s wedding, as Jack loses his voice with hysterical laryngitis. This is because he is so terrified, supposedly, at the idea of getting married. In hindsight, it is even more depressing, knowing that the downward slide will continue for many, many years.
But oh, there is so much to love here too. One running joke I really enjoy is that all the men in town keeping groaning at the idea of hanging out with Jack and giving him a bachelor party. Sometimes the show papers over all the conflicts for the sake of the Big Supercouple Day, and I thought this was a nice twist. And I really love that Jack asks Marcus to be his best man, as a tribute to Steve.
At the wedding itself, I don’t enjoy all the faux drama of Jack being trapped at a Wild West show, still mute and unable to escape, and then his dramatic entrance falling into a pool yelling and shrieking — though the “let’s get hitched” and kiss is very cute. But I really like the scene where Jack goes to talk to Jennifer before the ceremony (starts at 2:30):
This is comedic too, but it works — it’s more realistic and grounded in real emotion. Jack’s awkwardness is endearing and sweet. When Jo tells him (inaccurately) that Jennifer is “frightened,” and he needs to reassure her, I love his doubt at the idea of being the reassuring one. Then he tells Jennifer awkwardly that the wedding will go ahead, that there’s no stopping it, even if they both wanted to: “you got me?” When Jennifer says yes, he says “that’s your cross to bear.” Ha! And I love his final, vulnerable look at 4:29, like he’s realizing this is really happening.
UPDATE: here are the J&J wedding videos, now on Google+. They are private, I’ll have to add you to my circle so you can view them. Also, I can’t seem to embed the videos if they aren’t public — at least I haven’t figured out how yet!
One thing I think they got right with this wedding is how they handled the vows, that Jack is not the type to spill his guts in front of a crowd. When Jen quotes her poem, he just says “that goes double for me.” That’s a very Jack-like moment, like his “ditto” earlier when she said she loved him. I also love when during the vows he calls her “Miss…” and then corrects himself and says “Jennifer.” I love her smile. Such a perfect moment.
Then, afterwards, there is a really touching and beautiful scene when they are alone, and Jack gives Jennifer a letter he wrote to her. It all fits them perfectly, since Jack is a writer and naturally feels more comfortable expressing himself in print. I like that the letter refers obliquely to his bad Jack days, that before he met her he was stranded in a “gray and soulless city,” and how meeting her was the key out of that city. Then she teases him about actually admitting to being happy, and something about his laugh in response makes my heart melt — it’s so sweet and boyish. And then what a perfect time for him to be able to finally say the words: “I love you so much.” After two and a half years and many trials and tribulations. Now that’s how you do it, Days!
The other thing that makes this so fun to watch is that EVERYONE IS THERE. Jo, Neil, Julie, Alice, Tom, Mickey, Kayla, Kim, Shane, Carly, Marcus, Roman, Isabella, Eve, Frankie … I love it. It’s also pretty amazing how Jennifer’s father Bill shows up, played by the original actor. What a treat for longtime viewers! Ah, for the days of big budgets and better stories!
Aaaaaand I have to post this little gem, from the reception:
Shane Donovan can vogue!