Since the beginning, I’ve said this show’s reminded of a Mike Judge cartoon a whole hell of a lot, and this one felt like it could’ve very easily been a KING OF THE HILL episode with a few minor changes. The Texas-specific locale details, the tempest-in-a-teapot nature of this fire extinguisher bandit… I’m half-expecting to see Mutta chumming around with Boomhauer and Peggy Hill at the Mega-Lo-Mart.
Hell, this even had the best cliffhanger of the whole series so far. I’m sure Mutta found some clever and quirky way to peacefully subdue the bandit, but my morbid imagination kind-of wants to believe that he actually unleashed the fearsome dark fury which his previous bursts of aggression have only hinted at. I’m picturing something like that early scene in A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE.
The former options more likely though. Once again, the show’s formula sees a couple of Mutta’s seeming flaws proving to be strengths: in this case his obsessive attention to detail and his habit of flipping out on anybody criticizing his brother. I figured the show was going to cop out by having the JAXA board eventually overlook behavior that would logically get anybody removed from a high stakes program, but the solution they opt for - - with his mentor exerting some weight and going to bat for him on the board because he’s got a hunch - - is not only more realistic, but more dramatic.
I laugh whenever viewers love to point out “plot holes” in a movie with the assumption that everybody and every institution will always act with the coldest, soundest sense of reason at all times. Anybody who’s ever been involved with any organization (from a Whataburger to a NASA office) knows that things happen all the time because of feeling like those this guy exerts.
He's taking a risk on Mutta that could very likely blow up in his face and, like I said, the danger makes for great drama.