Shrinking (Season 1), Episode 8: In the previous episode of ‘Shrinking,’ almost every character was dealing with the aftermath of the embarrassing party. While Brian somehow managed to propose to Charlie despite all the issues, others were left struggling with how they behaved.
Jimmy was trying to figure out how to handle his feelings for Gaby. Alice was attempting to do the same with Sean. The father-and-daughter pairs, meanwhile, were still trying to connect with each other without any communication barriers. Since the show has built a strong emotional resonance by then, you naturally fall for their struggle and want them to succeed in their emotional goals.
The latest episode, streaming on Apple TV+, follows these characters taking constructive steps to make things right. Let’s find out how those efforts pan out for them. Please be aware that there are spoilers ahead.
Shrinking (Season 1) Episode 8 Recap
Episode 8: Boop
In the last episode, we saw Meg (Lily Rabe) storming out of Paul’s (Harrison Ford) place. While she wanted to provide a helping hand in this vulnerable stage of his life, he wasn’t open to going to stay with her. She felt hurt that he still wasn’t ready to make any sacrifices for her and prioritized his work to date. So, he is left at his place on his own.
Afterward, he keeps calling her, trying to have some kind of communication. But she refuses to pick up his calls. Eventually, her son, Mason (Sawyer Jones), picks up the call and has a word with him. Then her husband, Dave (Ryan Caltagirone), speaks with Paul and politely tells him to respect Meg’s boundaries. But engulfed in his own misery, Paul cannot deal with it maturely.
Grace (Heidi Gardner) returns to her therapy sessions with Jimmy (Jason Segel) and speaks about her return to Donny’s place. He stands by his position on this matter but does not enforce it on her as he did before. But during this dialogue with her, he has a breakthrough in regard to his own life. He realizes that no one changes bad behavior without consequences. So, he decides to take action on his personal issues.
So, along with Gaby (Jessica Williams), he sits down with Alice (Lukita Maxwell) to tell her that they slept together. He says that he wants them to have an honest conversation about it. They both claimed it to be a mistake and had no feelings attached to it. But that makes the matter even worse and weirder for Alice, who brings up Tia’s subject in the discussion. Jimmy ends up making the matter just about himself and ruining it for both sides.
Paul meets with Alice for their usual therapeutic chats. He gets candy in return for helping her and eats it in his usual grumpy style. While Alice continues to complain about Jimmy’s selfish behavior, Paul takes it personally (because he is also dealing with his daughter, Meg, at this point in time) and tells her to cut him some slack. She gets pissed since she cannot have an honest conversation about it. When he realizes his mistake, her mood gets already spoiled to have any further conversation with him.
Brian (Michael Urie) and Charlie (Devin Kawaoka) invite Jimmy for their daily trekking ritual, where Jimmy gets breathless in no time. The actual reason why they invite him is that they do not want him to officiate their wedding. Considering the fiasco during their engagement party, they assume that it would repeat if they give him any such responsibility. But Jimmy leaves this conversation abruptly, and their interaction ends on an awkward note where Brian cannot get this job done.
Meanwhile, Gaby’s ex-husband, Nico (Adam Foster Ballard), is having an exhibition of his recent artworks. She wants to visit it out of courtesy but does not want to go alone. So, she asks Liz (Christa Miller) to accompany her and then also asks Sean (Luke Tennie) since she does not want just a rich white lady with her. Both accept her invitation.
At its inauguration, Gaby arrives all dressed up with them. But she feels anxious when she sees her and Nico’s old friends. She feels that they are judging her. Liz becomes a validator for her and says the things that Gaby wants to hear at any given moment. They make fun of Nico’s artworks and try to decipher what he wants to express through them. When Gaby is by herself, exhibitor Aliyah (Adrienne Lewis) walks by her to have a word. Gaby confesses that she is there for Nico despite knowing he does not reciprocate her feelings.
Meanwhile, Jimmy gets worried seeing his car and daughter disappear. He calls Paul to ask whether he has any idea about it. So the two get together in a car, along with Brian, to go look for her. During this awkward car ride, restless Brian shares that he does not want Jimmy to officiate his wedding. While still upset, Jimmy soon stumbles upon a party that Alice had told Paul about. They speak with intoxicated kids, who initially try to hide where she is.
Jimmy makes an emotional plea to her friend, Summer (Rachel Stubington), saying how worried he is for her. So she ends up mentioning that she went to the USC hostel and shares a location she shared with her. Paul recalls her speaking about a guy on Vespa, which by itself sounds like a red flag to them. So, they decide to look for her right away. Back in the exhibition, Nico comes up to speak with Gaby, and even that minor interaction makes her feel butterflies in her stomach. But at the same time, she struggles with a confusing mix of thoughts about him.
Shrinking (Season 1) Episode 8 Ending Explained
In the exhibition, Nico makes a speech about the people that helped him reach this stage and acknowledges Gaby among the crowd. However, later, he completely ignores her years of support and acknowledges Aliyah instead as his muse. It makes Gaby angrier for getting blatantly ignored. So she lashes out at Nico. Although she creates an ugly scene, it helps her overcome her guilt for leaving him to some degree.
Jimmy, Paul, and Brian reach the location of a hostel room and knock on the door. Jimmy gets Alice out, while Paul and Brian scare the guy to death. When they all return to Jimmy’s place, Paul gives a parenting lesson to Jimmy. He does not want Jimmy to let people off the hook just because he wasn’t ideal in the past. It makes Jimmy confront Brian about how bad he feels for being rejected to officiate his wedding. It was something that he had been looking forward to for ages.
Jimmy also takes this suggestion seriously with respect to Alice. So, instead of letting her behave however she wants to, he decides to discipline her. He grounds her for a few weeks. She responds by saying that Tia would not have done it. But he does not get emotionally manipulated by it and notes that Tia would have been just as strict, if not more. As a result, we see him finally not letting his past be a barrier in disciplining his kid.