'Anger Management' Review: "Charlie and the Prison Riot"


Anger Management’ continues on its 90-episode, two-year run with its 42nd overall episode, “Charlie and the Prison Riot,” as Charlie finds himself in the middle of a riot after prison therapy, while Jen and the group can only watch from home, and Kate finally reveals her true feelings.

Previous episode, “Charlie Kills his Ex's Sex Life,” saw Charlie’s physical challenges of Jen’s boyfriend Canvas (Greg Cipes) leading to grave consequences, while Patrick helped Lacey cope with a difficult modeling shoot. So what did the latest episode bring? Were there more laughs to be had in the forty-second half-hour of ‘Anger Management,’ or was it the bad kind of riot?

Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Anger Management’ episode 42, “Charlie and the Prison Riot”!

After Nolan reminds the group he doesn’t want to be wished a happy birthday in a few days time, Lacey arrives late, claiming she couldn’t have called given she lost her phone and didn’t know the numbers. Later, Charlie and Kate work on their project together, and Charlie senses that Kate still has feelings for him, even accidentally opening a file on her laptop filled with their pictures.

Charlie finishes up a prison group session, bringing along Michael to handle a real estate issue with inmate Donovan, before Charlie pulls Wayne aside to ask for his anger journal. Wayne takes Charlie to his cell to show it written all over the walls, before the two debate Charlie’s standing with Kate, and Wayne suggests people don’t reveal their true feelings until someone has died. Just then, an alarm sounds and the cells shut, signifying a riot.

The regular group arrives at Charlie’s house to find Jen upset about the riot on the news, to which Lacey offers her Proloft pills from work. Sam arrives home, ecstatic that she managed to shed her counting OCD without anything horrible happening, leading the group to pretend Charlie has simply gotten stuck in traffic while the group celebrates Patrick’s birthday.

Charlie and Michael find one another within the prison riot, but soon realize themselves to be the hostages of all the other inmates. Meanwhile, Wayne answers a call from Kate on Charlie’s phone, telling the doctor that Charlie died in the riot to provoke her reaction, and smashing the phone when Charlie attempts to correct her. Charlie manages to get a phone from another inmate, but realizes he doesn’t know the numbers either.

Kate attempts to reach someone else at the prison, but can’t seem to get real news of Charlie’s fate. Meanwhile, the prisoners discuss how best to achieve their minor demands, perhaps by killing either Michael or Charlie, but the discussion is interrupted by a tear gas canister through the window. A short while later, Charlie returns home to find Jen loopy and the group concerned for his safety, accidentally revealing what happened to a frightened Sam.

Charlie finally reaches Kate at the office, wherein she immediately kisses him in a show of relief. A short while later in the test subjects’ bed, Charlie agrees to take things day by day, even as Kate tries to give them another definition, finally settling on “friends with amorphous and indefinable benefits.”

Well, things have been a bit quieter on the 'Anger Management' front of late, even as Laura Bell Bundy has been announced to fill the slot from Selma Blair's departure, the timetable of which we're at a loss to figure out. It certainly doesn't help that Kate return in full form tonight, following a week apart, and the story positions Kate and Charlie at their most entangled yet.

On the whole, staging an entire episode within the prison in such an energetic context proves intriguing for 'Anger Management,' which continues utilizing ever-more creative means to connect characters from entirely different settings. Kate and Wayne proved a particular highlight we might hope to see again, but surely Selma Blair's days would be numbered at this point. Overall, a much more concise episode than usual, with a few solid jokes to boot. Cue the shakeups!

Did you enjoy the latest from ‘Anger Management’’s ongoing run, or did it make you burn with rage? Join us next for another all-new ‘Anger Management’ episode recap of “Charlie and Kate Do It For Money” on FX! Well, so much for that.

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