The new FX series “Man Seeking Woman,” is a romantic comedy told from a male point of view, where Josh Greenberg (Jay Baruchel) deals with his disastrous dating life by seeing the world around him in a very surreal way. If you think your own love life is a mess, you might feel better after watching Josh deal with trash trolls, immortal dictators, and bloodthirsty bra monsters.
I’m learning some odd dating lessons by watching Josh’s journey to find female companionship, but they can apply to the real world, with a little tweaking, of course.
Don’t talk about “trolling” dating sites in front of a literal troll.
No matter how down in the dumps you are, you shouldn’t settle for dating a trash troll. However, if you do get stuck on a blind date with a slimy green gal who lives under a bridge, don’t utter the word “troll” in front of her — you could end up with a nasty bite on your leg. It’s probably also a good idea to jet as soon as you see your date going dumpster diving. And I’m not talking about the cool kind of dumpster diving that involves digging through rich people’s trash for pricey antiques — if her trash treasure is a bottle of antifreeze that she’s guzzling like a frat bro, your date is definitely doomed from the get-go.
Dating lesson for the real world: Always make sure you see a picture of a potential blind date whenever a friend or family member is setting you up with someone before you agree to the date.
Your ex will probably rebound with Hitler.
If you run into your ex and her new guy, be prepared for the worst — she might be hooking up with a 126-year-old Hitler whose idea of fun is reciting “Precious” monologues at karaoke bars. This encounter will be even more awkward if you’re Jewish, and you really don’t want to hear about Hitler’s version of the Tinder dating app (it involves unwilling participants and burning houses).
Dating lesson for the real world: Don’t try to tell your ex that you’re better than the new guy she’s dating — even if he’s literally Hitler, she won’t see it, and she’ll just think you’re being a jealous jerk.
After a breakup, hire an exorcist.
Sometimes the ghosts of girlfriends past can haunt your home long after you leave. If you don’t want to spend your lonely nights stomping on the pink razors crawling across your floor, you’ll need to hire a Catholic priest. Make sure you warn him about the padded bra that goes for the mouth like the facehugger from “Alien,” and don’t try to save the creepy, heart-shaped plush demon in your closet — it wants to suck out your soul, and the exorcist’s holy water is the only substance capable killing this menacing memento of a failed romance.
Dating lesson for the real world: Don’t hold on to the past after a breakup — all your ex’s stuff will be a constant reminder of what you lost, and you’ll have a harder time moving on.
Visit the Center for Important Emergencies before sending that first text.
Sending that first text to a girl you just met can be hard. Luckily, the Center of Important Emergencies is here to help. Great minds like generals, scientists, your ridiculously successful sister, and your player best friend Mike (Eric Andre) will make sure you don’t screw up that first message. They’ll help you avoid terrible texting mistakes like using poor punctuation on purpose, sending a dirty photo, or deploying a crying wah-wah face emoji.
Dating lesson for the real world: Don’t try to get too cutesy or creative with that first text — just write something normal that most people would say.
Invest in a heavy-duty umbrella.
Sometimes heartbreak can manifest itself as odd weather patterns, including your own personal raincloud that dumps cold water and dead birds on your head. If you want to avoid catching the avian flu, you definitely need to invest in an umbrella tough enough to keep those bird bodies away from your body.
Dating lesson for the real world: Love hurts, but, much like Josh’s cartoon rainclouds, the pain isn’t always there. Enjoy those sunny days.
It’s going to be tough for Josh to find a soul mate in such a cruel, cold world, but he’s already learned some valuable lessons about love. I’m enjoying “Man Seeking Woman” so far, and I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what else he learns about dating in his strange alternate universe.
Photo CR: Matthias Clamer/FXX