Silicon Valley Season 2 Episode 1 Review: “Sand Hill Shuffle”

Silicon Valley

Success is a funny thing. Whether it brings out the best or worst in someone, there’s no denying the fact that it changes people, either making them strive to continue doing better, or injecting them with so much confidence that they become boastful and arrogant. Then there’s overwhelming nature of success, the stress and pressure of not knowing what your next move will be and the uneasy feeling of waiting for the other shoe to drop because you believe this is all just a little too good to be true, and on a series like HBO’s Silicon Valley, you have to know that will be the case, as for every good thing that goes right for Richard, Erlich, and the rest of the guys, there’s about a million other things that have the possibility of going wrong.

Tonight’s Season 2 premiere, “Sand Hill Shuffle,” doesn’t dig too much into the trouble that our favorite Silicon Valley characters will be facing throughout the course of the season’s next nine episodes (although that final scene where Richard discovers that Gavin Belson is suing them definitely is a not-so-good sign of things to come). Instead, Silicon Valley kicks off its second season by showing how the guys are reacting to finally having gotten a victory for once in their lives after their performance at TechCrunch Disrupt in the Season 1 finale, and the results are both hilarious and compelling.

Watching Pied Piper being sought after by all the major firms in Silicon Valley is rewarding after having seen all ups and downs these characters went through during Season 1 and also quite an interesting storyline all on its own, putting Richard in a difficult position as he has to decide what’s best for his company, his friends, and himself in the long run rather than going with the most attractive option in the moment. Plus, while it might not have been better than the “tip-to-tip efficiency” scene in last year’s finale, the negging sequence is absolute comedy gold, showcasing everything T.J. Miller does so well and proving that Erlich Bachman is one of the best characters on any comedy series on TV right now (Thomas Middleditch also gets some good awkward moments as Richard as well).

And while seeing Richard and the guys enjoying success for a bit was a nice change for Silicon Valley during in its Season 2 premiere, it’s reassuring that the show is returning to its roots, as the battle between Pied Piper and Hooli continues, with the promise of things getting even more intense as the season moves along. Silicon Valley is absolutely one of the funniest shows on TV, but it’s also a comedy with a lot of heart underneath all its biting satire. This is a series that, for as much as it pokes fun at the tech world, is still a story about how underdogs; it’s about people who have ideas and dreams that they want to see fulfilled, despite how difficult that journey may be in this industry.

Who knows how Hooli’s case against Pied Piper will turn out? Who knows if Richard, Erlich and Co. will be able to build the company they have into the company they want? I’m not sure how it will all unfold, but the important thing is that I am fully with these characters as they go on this journey and am so very happy that Silicon Valley is back on my TV.

Other thoughts:

– Welcome back to Silicon Valley reviews here at TVOvermind! I’ll once again be writing about the show every week throughout its second season. I’ve seen the first three episodes of Season 2, and the next two after the premiere are just as good.

– Out of all the places I would have expected Silicon Valley Season 2 to start, AT&T Park was certainly not one of them.

– Erlich seeing the Winklevoss twins and attempting to “herd them back together” was a really small moment that made me laugh a ton.

Silicon Valley did a great job at handling Christopher Evan Welch’s unfortunate passing, giving the actor the respect and honor he deserved while also not breaking from the show’s usual tone. Also, Monica’s explanation for Peter Gregory’s death, and Richard and Erlich’s confused reactions to the story, was the most hilarious moment of the episode from me, proving that hippos are just inherently funny.

– So was Peter Gregory really disappointed in Snapchat? The world may never know.

– Suzanne Cryer is a great addition to the show as Laurie, who provides Silicon Valley with another strong female character and also gives Amanda Crew a lot more to do as Monica (which I’m happy about, because Amanda Crew is awesome). Check out our exclusive interview with Cryer about what we can expect from Laurie and some of the funniest moments we can look forward to in Silicon Valley Season 2 right here.

– “I don’t want to live a world where someone else makes the world a better place better than we do.”

– “And your logo looks like a sideways vagina. I find that to be racist, don’t you?”

– “Monica, Peter Gregory is dead.”

What did everyone else think about the Silicon Valley Season 2 premiere?

[Photo via HBO]

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