Top Seven Songs From "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend"

If you aren’t watching Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, you are literally (not exaggerating) missing out on one of the best shows on television right now. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a masterpiece, and also a musical comedy. Those words seem to scare many potential viewers off, but those who’ve seen the show understand that the songs are not cheesy, never forced and are perfect narrative devices. The following is a list and analysis of my personal top seven favorite songs from the show (Admittedly, it’s very heavy on songs from season three, which is currently airing Friday nights on the CW. Maybe this is because those songs are fresh in my mind, maybe it’s because season three is phenomenal).

7. Don’t Settle For Me, sung by Heather, played by Vela Lovell

This might seem like an odd choice, but hear me out. This brief song, a reprise of Santino Fontana’s brilliant “Don’t Settle For Me” is worthy of a spot on this list, not only because Vela’s voice is shockingly addictive, but also because it’s emblematic of a core feature of CEGF. It’s something that shouldn’t be so unique, especially in the genre of sitcoms, or romantic comedies, but is. This is a song that acts as a plot point determined by a female character. It isn’t Greg’s conviction or passion for Rebecca that sends him after her, it’s Heather realizing she deserves better than a dude who isn’t head over heels for her. Her choice sets the plot in action in a direction that massively affects the entirety of the show. 6. I’m So Good at Yoga, sung by Valencia, played by Gabriella Ruiz

This song, which borders on problematic, is unquestionably one of the catchiest, most delectable tracks from the show. First of all, it’s hilarious to see the Western bastardization of Indian culture develop to the point that a Hispanic woman is teaching a yoga class while flaunting a tattoo in Sanskrit about her love of anal sex. Second, this song sets up a huge theme of the show, as it is an obvious creation of Rebecca’s delusions. Her insecurity, both physical, mental, and romantic when in Valencia’s presence devolves into her creating the music video of this song, including a Hindu Goddess-esque Valencia spitting the words “My father didn’t leave me.” This song is clearly through Rebecca’s eyes, showing how her insecurities personify themselves as Valencia and relentlessly (but hilariously) torments her during a yoga class. 5.  I Go To the Zoo, sun by Nathaniel, as played by Scott Michael Foster

If this song had a thesis statement, it would be as follows: what is masculinity? What even really is it? Like really though? Masculinity? We take Scott Michael Foster’s Nathaniel, the epitome of all things callous, capitalistic, straight cis white man, and on the eclipse of him transforming from season two’s villain, find out that he has actually a very healthy means of processing his negative emotions. He goes to the zoo. (bonus points for fun animal facts. Kangaroos = nocturnal. Who knew?)

4. Maybe She’s Not Such a Heinous Bitch After All, sung by Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch

Another Season 3 song, it probably wouldn’t have made it on this list was it not for its phenomenal final verse. This section of the song details one of those things about mother-daughter relationships you always had a hunch about but never put into words.

“I know it sounds like I’m falling in love (Love!) Well, when we're finding a mate, it's our parents we're thinking of (Thinking of!) My relationship with her was my first failed romance Now finally, the cute boy's asking me to dance Maybe she's not such a heinous bitch after all”

And maybe that’s exactly what makes this show so piercing. Rebecca’s emotional evolution is a constant sequence of feeling as though Rachel Bloom has captured something you always felt, but never had the words for, or never knew was an acceptable way to feel. 3. Oh My God I Think I Like You, sung by Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch

This is the true Grebecca song, and is also undeniably one of the most perfect pieces of music on the show. It’s catchy, it’s fun, hilarious, normalizes female sexuality, and contains this line

“Is there an IUD

That can stop the image of you and me

Getting married on a hillside, surrounded by ducks

And then we get into a rowboat?”

And Rachel Bloom sings this completely straight, staring at the camera dreamily while Greg, played by Santino Fontana pushing her down (presumably to perform oral sex.)

2. You Stupid Bitch, sung by Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch

This is the point at the show where you have to face that you and every broken person you know and love is Rebecca Bunch. Rachel Bloom says that when writing this song, she was terrified that people would find it dark and terrifying and wouldn’t understand it. And while, admittedly, her first lyric draft was reportedly about eleven verses long, it is certainly one of the most relatable and heartbreaking tracks of the show. Rebecca berating herself, in song, as a Barbara Streisand-type, calling herself a “stupid bitch who ruins everything” and imploring herself to lose weight as an afterthought to her self-destructive spiral is something any viewer of the show, especially those who have experiences with mental illness, would understand.

1. A Boy Band Made Up Of Four Joshes, sung by Vincent Rodriguez the Third as All Four Joshes

This song has to make the list, at the very least in a nod to all of the therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists I’ve told about this as an explanation for how my depression manifests. This song acts as another of Rebecca’s delusions, capturing how Rebecca understands the world. For Rebecca, her crush on Josh is just the act of her believing that his love will “fix her.” Her manifestation of Josh as a partner isn’t just a great love, he’s a boy band: the epitome of a girl’s romantic dream. But more than that, he’s a “team of nationally recognized mental health professionals trained in cognitive behavioral therapy with a specialty in personality and sleep disorders.” And if you’ve never seen the show or listened to this song, that is seriously a lyric from the song.

And this song takes number one partially because it’s a thesis statement for the show, admittedly. But moreover, it takes number one on this list because it’s a huge problem of women’s psyches that is relatively unheard of in our culture. Watching this music number play out when I binge-watched the show on Netflix was such a huge revelation. This was the first time someone put it into words: you rely on your romantic relationships for happiness because you believe the men in your life can erase your mental problems. Your emotional failures will disappear if he loves you.

And that’s something that I have only ever seen Crazy Ex-Girlfriend talk about. Girls have learned since they were young from the media fed to them that if they are broken, men will save them. They are damsels, helpless princesses in towers made of their own failures, and one day a prince will come and take it all away.

And Crazy Ex Girlfriend took that and made it a boy band track. F*cking brilliant.

 

Special mentions (i.e. songs that didn’t fit in this list right but are also favorites of mine): "Ping Pong Girl," "Getting Bi," "Settle for Me," "Let’s Generalize About Men," "I Have Friends," and "We Tapped That Ass."

In conclusion: watch this show. Watch this show! Watch this show? Watch this show.