Review: ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ Season 3, Kimmy and the Gang Continue To Evolve Hilariously

When it first premiered on Netflix, a comedy about doomsday cult survivor being reintegrated into the world after 15 years of captivity, seemed like an unlikely choice.  However, with creators Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, anything’s possible and so we have Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  Kimmy (Ellie Kemper) carries the most upbeat personality on the planet, despite everything she’s gone through) and decided that she’s no one’s victim.  Deciding to reinvent herself in New York City.  Because she has been away from society for more than a decade, she has a natural fish out of water approach to just about everything she comes in contact with, to hilarious results.  Lucky for her, she’s made a group of friends who are equally as funny as she is as she goes through her new adventures.

Each season her character has had some funny moments and continued to evolve.  In the first season, it was strictly about her adjusting to life outside.  In the second season, she continues to improve on her education (as she was kidnapped when she was 15) and get her GED.  The show also allowed her to deal with PTSD from her being held hostage for all hat time as well.  While it was hilarious, it was also very touching.  Even though there are a million jokes a minute, the show is about a very traumatic event.

Season 3 hits Netflix today.  We here at Punch Drunk Critics were able to take a look at the first 6 episodes of the 13-episode season.  Suffice to say, the show hasn’t lost its touch.  It is still funny, culturally relevant, and as topical as ever.  Such issues as changing the Redskins name, college culture, gentrification, sexuality, and even a few thinly veiled pot-shots at the Trump Administration and its policies.

The big cliffhanger from last season centered on her captor, “The Reverand” Richard Wayne Gary Wayne, the “prophet and CFO of Savior Rick's Spooky Church of the Scary Apocalypse” (Jon Hamm) who kidnapped Kimmy all those years ago makes his return.  Don’t worry, he’s still in jail.  Now, he wants a divorce from Kimmy (who knew a bunker marriage to an abductee was legit?) so that he can get married to his new sweetheart Wendy (Laura Dern).  Dern, who many would consider more of a drama actress is incredibly smart as his prison pen-pal bride-to-be who is completely head over heels in love with the wacky convict and shows up at Kimmy’s doorstep to try and get her to sign the divorce paper.  Of course, the naturally happy and optimistic Kimmy wants to try and save Wendy from her own craziness to great comedic effect.

Returning this season is Kimmy’s best friend Titus Andromedon (Tituss Burgess) who gave us the “Pino Noir” pop song previously.  When last we saw him, he was going to live out his dreams working on a cruise.  Lucky for us, the first opening shot reveals his fate and the promise that he and Kimmy will be reunited soon enough.  Last season Titus found was starting a relationship with Mikey Politano, the “macho” construction worker who realized that he was, in fact, gay and had a thing for Titus.  When he thinks Mikey is cheating on him with another man, Titus does the best rendition of Beyonce’s “Lemonade” ever seen as evidence by the season 3 trailer:

Trust us, the entire sequence is awesome and very creative.

Kimmy’s other sidekicks, her landlady Lillian Kaushtupper (Carol Kane) and her former employer Jacqueline White (Jane Krakowski) return as well.  Lilian is continuing her quest against gentrification, and is now a member of the city council.  Her relationship with Robert Durst (Fred Armisen: so many celebrity cameos) is also explored with comedic effect.  Her main fight this season seems to be against a Whole Foods type of company and her rabble rousing impresses the CEO.  There might even be an opening for another relationship for her.  Meanwhile, Jacqueline, who spend most of her time passing off for white, is embracing her Native American roots.  Determined to get the Washington Redskins to change their name goes “undercover” in the world of rich white men as she continues to try to use her sexuality to try and woo them, so that she will have some influence on them to change the name.  There are two incredibility funny moments where one of her plans doesn’t come to play, injuring her suitor, and also when the suitor’s brother tries to come on to her and she has to pretend that she and Tutus are a couple.

Kimmy is also evolving this season.  Instead of just getting her GED, she wants to go to college.  At first, her sights are low as she tried to figure out classes to take for a specific job when she meets a fellow student (Daveed Diggs of Hamilton fame: So many good guest stars!) who introduces her to philosophy, the arts, and then leaves Community College to head to Columbia University.  Kimmy eventually her way to Columbia University as well where we get to see all about legacy privilege, sex contracts, and just plain old spoiled college kids.  She and he have a very interesting and quirky relationship that takes a few turns the closer they grow.

While we only saw a tiny bit of what’s to come for this season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the show is still going strong.  The humor is sharp.  The characters are real.  They all have their own adventures and side stories, but they all still remain connected in the most interesting and humorous ways.  Kimmy’s overarching positivity in the face of what has happened to her allows the show to shine at important moments as well as give us some great laughs (she still hasn’t said a curse word).

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is currently streaming on Netflix.