Moral Orel: Courtship
Orel: Gee, Doughy, your parents really do love you after all. They give you money and they don't ever want anything in return, not even you.
This episode was written by former Mr. Show writer/performer Scott Aukerman, along with Neil Campbell and Paul Rust. It wasn't until about one third through the episode I realized this was the first episode that wasn't tethered to some kind of religious ideal. The only "religious" aspect occurred when Orel decided he had to ask his mother if it was morally acceptable for a woman to accept gifts from a man if she doesn't actually like him.
Up until now, Doughy, Orel's pal, has just been a side character, so it was nice to see him focused on more intently in this episode. I know I've drawn parallels between Moral Orel and The Simpsons before because of the subtext and emotion offered by the series, but it's not as if The Simpsons invented those concepts. Really, it's just a sign of good writing, of creating characters we can relate to, whether they're flesh and blood or molded from plastic.
It would have been easy to turn this episode into a satire of teachers sleeping with their students, but instead it was more about how people will use other people to get what they want. Ms. Sculptum uses Doughy to get free presents, while Doughy simultaneously takes advantage of Mr. Creepler, the ice cream man. It's easy to feel sorry for Doughy for having such inattentive parents, but I think this episode nicely showed how all of us are prone to following the path that most benefits our own needs.
It also, I think, shows that the concept of "morality" can easily reach beyond the basic fundamentalist Christian ideals touched upon in the first several episodes. If I had any fears about the show running out of ideas, those fears were put to rest with this episode. In many ways, this episode felt like the beginning of the next phase for Moral Orel.
7 out of 7.