Season 3 of Netflix’s ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ Gets Serious

After over a year’s wait, fans of Netflix‘s hit sitcom Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt were finally rewarded with the highly anticipated third season. The series follows the adventures and misadventures of the series’ titular character, Kimmy Schmidt, played by The Office’s Ellie Kemper.

Throughout Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Kimmy attempts to adjust to adult life in New York City after being freed from an underground bunker where she was held captive by cult leader Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne (Jon Hamm) for fifteen years. While Kemper’s Schmidt manages to retain an authentic childishness in the face of difficult adult situations, the series’ real star is Schmidt’s over-the-top roommate, struggling Broadway wannabe Titus Andromedon (Tituss Burgess). If you haven’t yet seen the first two seasons, go binge all of them immediately. It could very well be one of the funniest shows on whatever it is we call television these days.

*Minor Spoiler Alert*

Season three of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has only been available a few days, but critics are already praising this season for finally addressing Kimmy’s life in the bunker as what it was: kidnapping, rape, and sexual abuse. Season three kicks off when Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne sends Kimmy divorce papers in an attempt to nullify the semi-legal wedding he performed in his underground bunker. Considering the divorce forces Kimmy to relive the horrible existence she lived for fifteen years in the bunker.

Ellie Kemper told E! Online that while Kimmy’s life in the bunker has been alluded to, this season finally meets the dark realities of Kimmy’s kidnapping head-on:

I think that there was undesired sexual stuff going on in the bunker. She does literally say rape. There was dark stuff in the bunker and I’ve always been curious about how that horrible a person is able to be portrayed in a way that when we’re watching him we don’t hate him. And I think the answer is because he’s played by Jon Hamm, who does a really great job of softening the demon that is that man. I think to continue to make it watchable you have to lighten those moments in a way.

In a way, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt can be said to be forging a new take on women’s issues alongside Hulu’s critically-acclaimed series The Handmaid’s Tale which explores similar issues. While Kimmy Schmidt retains its unique brand of rapid fire surrealist comedy throughout season three, the inclusion of Kimmy’s acceptance of what happened to her is refreshing in a day and age where women’s issues are front-and-center in politics but occasionally overlooked in cinema and television.

All thirteen episodes of season three of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt are available to stream on Netflix now. Plus the other two seasons if you need to catch up. It’s totally worth it.

Brett Tingley

Brett Tingley

Brett lives at the foot of the ancient Appalachian mountains in Asheville, North Carolina and writes about technology, science, and culture.
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Brett Tingley