Bupkis, starring Pete Davidson, just aired on Peacock Network, and it follows the story of Pete, which is inspired by actual events that happened in his life. He plays an exaggerated version of himself (hopefully!) and gets into some wild stuff as he balances his public and private lives while his mother, played by Edie Falco, and grandfather, played by Joe Pesci, worry about his transition from a man-child into a responsible adult.
Created by Pete Davidson along with Judah Miller and Dave Sirus, Bupkis delves deep into the everyday existence of celebrity Pete Davidson, whose life is spiraling out of control, and he desperately needs a purpose in his life if he is to make it through. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes morbid, and sometimes purely absurd, the series is a modern-day portrait of a comedian struggling with mental health issues exacerbated by his circle of friends and a drug habit that borders on addiction.
Pete Davidson’s Chaotic Life
The series takes off and immediately plunges into inappropriate territory, where Pete is seen enjoying his solo sexual escapades via virtual reality. His mother (Edie Falco) catches him in the act and is not one bit surprised, showing us the exact dynamics of her expectations or disappointments, let’s say, from her own son. As a mother, she loves Pete, but reciprocating love without awkwardness is not Pete’s strong suit. This becomes evident when Pete hangs out with his girlfriend, Nikki. Well, they broke up once but hang out together, which only guarantees awkwardness. Although they have fun, Pete relaxes most with his grandfather, Joe.
We get to know that Joe is suffering from cancer, but he doesn’t fret about it as much as he worries about Pete. He sees Pete, and he sees a chaotic child whose mind is twisted and unfulfilled because all he ever does is try to gratify his urges or dabble in drugs. According to Joe, Pete’s problems would be alleviated if he could just once think about giving happiness to another person instead of himself. Pete misunderstands the subtext and thinks Joe is asking him to give him a party where he could hang around with him and end the day with a beautiful escort by his side. As the rich celebrity that Pete is, he books a lavish suite for the party, but Joe is unimpressed with all the escort business. He lets his friend Roy enjoy the escort service and explains to Pete exactly what he meant when he said that Pete should make people happy.
Well, he doesn’t quite manage to please anyone. We shift gears and travel back in time to visit Pete’s childhood. After his fireman father died in the 9/11 tragedy, a young Pete is shown to be taken to his uncle’s wedding ceremony by his grieving mother, although she does hide the emotion well. Things weren’t going as well between Pete’s parents, but nobody expected his death. Pete is cared for by his uncle Tommy (Bobby Cannavale), but as Pete grows up, Tommy seems to have lost all meaning in life. The father figures in Pete’s life do not prove to be very effective in providing Pete with proper guidance, maybe except for his ill grandfather.
With no proper path ahead in Pete’s life, he drifts towards obsessing over minor inconveniences in his life. He asks his manager Evan to track down the anonymous online user who keeps posting a photograph of him squinting that he doesn’t like. It turns out that Pete’s incompetent therapist (played hilariously by Charlie Day) was the one posting the pictures just to make Pete realize his mania regarding small issues in life while he continues to neglect his loved ones. Pete tries to fire him, but when he realizes the validity of his words, he decides to continue going to the same therapist. Pete aims to stay on the right path and get a big showbiz assignment. The only problem is that one of the guys in his entourage keeps leaking their location, allowing the paparazzi to click Pete’s indecent photos. Any more bad press would mean the end of the upcoming deal with the billion-dollar ‘Fast and the Furious’ franchise. Pete’s resolve is broken by a drug dealer-turned-jeweler named Crispy (Simon Rex). He takes Pete on a drug-infused car ride, which becomes the talk of the town, and he loses the deal.
Pete Wants To Be A Dad
Suffering from a crisis of meaning, Pete decides to become a father, as he thinks that the kid will bring him some stability in life. He expects a miracle that isn’t going to happen. He practices being a dad by accompanying Nikki to take the young girl she is babysitting to a theme park. All seems to be going okay as Pete befriends the girl at first, but when he takes her on a scary roller coaster, she flips her tune regarding him.
Nikki is left confused by Pete’s advances later that day. Pete wants to be a dad but is not mentally equipped to handle that responsibility. He goes to his uncle Tommy for advice, but Tommy is not doing so well himself. He speaks against having a baby. Even his grandfather, Joe, disagrees with having a baby out of wedlock, let alone having to raise it all by himself. Pete’s mom tries to procure an egg for fertilization from one of Pete’s ex-girlfriends but manages to only make her day sadder, just like Pete .
With no prospects of having a baby in the near future, Pete flies to Canada to do a movie, which he agreed to do only because he was to star opposite Brad Pitt. This trip, which was supposed to boost his sense of purpose, turned out to do the exact opposite. Neither the director nor Brad Pitt turns up on the actual set. In fact, Brad Pitt’s stunt double shows up and acts with Pete, who gets himself overdosed on some secret Canadian drug. Instead of getting his mojo back, he severely hallucinates about receiving advice from the comedian Ray Romano. He somehow manages to finish the shoot, turning a six-day affair into a fortnight.
The Canadian drugs do a number on Pete, and his already chaotic and dissonant life spirals into further disharmony. His only chance seems to be to go to rehab, but before doing so, he is advised by his grandpa Joe to get rid of all his friends, who are nothing but bad company. Casey, Pete’s sister, nears her graduation as a physician, but Pete goes to rehab. There he meets a very strict therapist who doesn’t joke around with his patients, irrespective of whether they have celebrity status or not. Pete tries to have his misadventures there as well but ends up getting caught.
The therapist, Michael, takes Pete to a nearby forest and asks him to shout his anxieties away. When Pete doesn’t comply, Michael starts slapping him and pumping him up with his pep talk. Pete excitedly ends the unusual therapy session midway after getting an epiphany. He takes off in his car, but his driving skills betray him as he crashes the car and gets seriously injured. The season ends with Pete smiling at his current situation, probably because he escaped death once again.
Why Does Pete Run Away From Rehab?
Michael’s unusually strict approach to therapy works wonders for Pete, as he finally has some inkling of what’s worth living for in life. As soon as he gets this sensation, he leaves the rehab and drives blisteringly fast before crashing. He was possibly either going to meet Nikki, his girlfriend, for he might have finally realized that she is definitely the love of his life, or he might have decided not to miss his sister Casey’s graduation. The exact reason will be revealed when the next season of Bupkis airs. It’s streaming on Peacock TV.