The Dubek family returns with a satirical tale of the highs and lows of fame in The Other Two Season 3.
The first season of The Other Two followed down-on-their-luck Dubek siblings Cary (Drew Tarver) and Brooke (Heléne Yorke) as their teen popstar brother rose to international fame status as popstar Chase Dreams (Case Walker). Season 2 followed their mom, Pat (Molly Shannon), as the suburban mom became a beloved talk-show host. After a two-year wait, Season 3 finds Cary and Brooke gaining their own fame and success. However, the industry’s rigors take their toll. It’s a brilliantly existential comedic satire on the levels of fame as the Dubek family and friends deal with the success and failures of their star-studded lifestyle.
The season opens at the long-awaited premiere of Cary’s first feature, Night Nurse. Cary’s ready to step into the limelight as a leading actor, leaning into obsessive social media posts and alienating friend and fellow actor Curtis (Brandon Scott Jones). Now a successful manager, Brooke wonders if she should leave the industry behind and do something more meaningful in her life. Perhaps follow in the footsteps of her fiancé Lance (Josh Segarra), who gave up fashion to become a nurse.
Elsewhere, Pat struggles to find the balance between living a “normal” life and building her network as a celebrity. Chase is turning 18 and thus reinventing his image from teen heartthrob to ratty male artist. Think chest tattoo that’s just “piss” inked across his chest. It’s a slow burn of chaos as the Dubeks try to remain a loving family as showbiz strains their relationships.
Tarver and Yorke are excellent as Cary and Brooke, siblings simpatico in industry-related anxieties. They’re both oblivious that their career aspirations are pushing away their loved ones. Cary’s friendship with Curtis turns sour when Curtis books a role Cary is pursuing. Likewise, Brooke’s insecurities about her management career lead her down a destructive path that shakes her relationship with Lance. Tarver and Yorke know how to balance Cary and Brooke’s delusional actions with enough humanity that they’re not full-fledged monsters.
Tarver and Yorke are excellent as Cary and Brooke, siblings simpatico in industry-related anxieties.
The rest of the cast in Season 3 of The Other Two is just as exceptional. Shannon, superb as always, really gets to play this season. With Pat still clinging to the idea she can be an average person despite being a billionaire celebrity with her own network, the actor can explore dramatic undertones previously held beneath the surface. In one scene, she power walks around her pool because she’s too famous for strolling in Central Park.
Ken Marino as Streeter, the dim manager of Chase, and Wanda Sykes as Shuli, Chase’s record company exec, are back in scene-stealing roles. Another standout is Brandon Scott James as Curtis Paltrow. While Cary’s friend, he quickly turns rival as his buddy’s star meter eclipses his own. Finally, Segarra continues to shine as Lance, Brooke’s fiancé, who wants to support her ever-changing career dreams as he finds fulfillment outside the industry.
The Other Two has always had satirical takes on topical events, and it maintains that razor-sharp wit this season. There’s an examination of the COVID “mass exodus” that found so many quitting a soul-sucking job to find a job to “do good.” For Brooke, it all hits an immediate roadblock when it turns out you can’t just apply to be AOC’s best friend. Cary gets a groundbreaking role as a gay animated character, turning a blind eye to the performative nature of the mouse-eared company behind the film.
There’s also a look at working during Covid. The first episode flashes back to Cary’s time working on Night Nurse. It shows him trying to get to know his costars, only to have a safety monitor yell they’re too close. This experience only amplifies Cary’s aggressive perseverance to book another leading role, as he feels cheated from having a real onset experience during a pandemic.
The Other Two tows the line of being a satirical sitcom that’s also not afraid to dig a little bit deeper to find the bittersweet drama lurking under the laughs. It’s a fun dark comedy that’s not afraid to break viewers’ hearts while making us laugh. Unfortunately, there’s been no announcement of a Season 4. With all the shuffling at the soon-to-be Max, Season 3 could be the series’ last. However, if any show could survive shake-ups, it’s The Other Two. They’ve already survived bouncing around once. Season 1 premiered on Comedy Central before moving to HBOMax for Season 2, after all. With so much ripe for satire in the entertainment industry, here’s to hoping the series survives to play another day.
The Other Two Season 3 currently wrestles with fame on HBOMax.