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Dave Ends Season 3 Right Where He Started: Looking for Love

But thanks to Brad Pitt, he finally understands the key to finding it.
  • Rachel McAdams and Dave Burd in the Dave Season 3 finale (Photo: Byron Cohen/FX)
    Rachel McAdams and Dave Burd in the Dave Season 3 finale (Photo: Byron Cohen/FX)

    [Editor's Note: This post contains spoilers for the Dave Season 3 finale, "Looking for Love."]

    No one could have expected the series of events that play out in the Dave Season 3 finale, "Looking for Love." The supersized episode is a star-studded affair, to put it mildly: Rachel McAdams continues her guest turn, appearing in Dave's (Dave Burd) "Mr. McAdams" music video alongside Brad Pitt, whose cameo takes a dark turn over the course of the finale. In the closing minutes, Dave bares his soul to Drake, his idol, and the two set out to make "some scorned love, girl-that-got-away type sh*t" in Drake's studio in Africa.

    But in terms of shock value, these celebrity cameos don't hold a candle to everything that happens between the "Mr. McAdams" music video and Drake's appearance, which bookend the episode. After arriving home from the shoot, Dave is visited by Bella (Tenea Intriago), the superfan who gave him a bust of his head in the Season 3 premiere. Bella explains she's the female Dave, "a full-blown superstar right here, in [his] presence," and she's determined to make him recognize her greatness. She refuses to leave, and when Brad stops by in hopes of recording some music, Bella and Dave's already-tense encounter devolves into a hostage situation.

    Armed with a gun, Bella forces the men to "hang out" with her: She makes a plaster mold of Dave's groin in an attempt to bond with Brad — a Google search reveals he's interested in ceramics — and smokes weed with them beside the fire. When they stop playing along, Bella lashes out, peeing on the floor and forcing them to reveal incriminating information about themselves, including Dave's "death scam." (Bella's effort to uncover dirt that will get Brad "canceled" feels even more uncomfortable given Angelina Jolie's abuse allegations, though Dave doesn't acknowledge the ongoing lawsuit.)

    After hours of escalating conflict, Bella shoots Brad with a crossbow, giving Dave and GaTa an opportunity to flee to the bathroom. When Bella comes calling, they spray her with bear mace and toss Dave's fancy sex doll on top of her, trapping her in a bathtub filled with wet plaster. Just before the paramedics arrive, Brad, who reveals his real name is "Luke," gives Dave the advice he so desperately needs: "Until you love yourself, you can never love another," he says. "Until you're enough for you, you can never be enough for another."

    If Bella, with her inflated sense of self and unrelenting commitment to going after what she wants, functions as an exaggerated version of Dave — not to mention a cautionary tale — Brad's advice offers him a path back to redemption. Dave spent much of Season 3 seeking external validation, even as he pretended not to want it, but Brad's words force him to reflect on why his "Looking for Love" tour and the romantic journey he went on with Robyn (Chloe Bennet) over the course of the season flopped so hard.

    Does Dave internalize this lesson? For a brief moment, it seems like Dave realizes what he needs to do to repair things with Robyn, who went back to Wisconsin after their breakup in Episode 9, "Dream Girl." In a message, he explains he's "been scared to put [himself] out there," but he's "finally ready for this," adding, "It's you. It's always been you." As he speaks, Robyn reads something on her phone, tears up, and abruptly exits the frame; when Dave crosses paths with an elephant upon arriving in Africa, it creates the impression that they're meeting to meet their sponsored "pet" in person.

    The scene proves to be a "massive mislead," as Burd clarified in an interview with Deadline. When Dave sees Drake, he apologizes for the long and "crazy" DM and assures him he's "worthy" of his mentorship. Once again, Dave chooses fame and money, his hunger for validation never satisfied. As he asks Drake, "Is there any chance you can teach me how to love myself?"

    Still, Dave's admission suggests he's finally ready to be honest with himself about his naked desire for celebrity. He may end the season exactly where he started — looking for love — but now that he's willing to confront the ugliest parts of himself, he's far better positioned to actually preserve it.

    Dave Season 3 is streaming in its entirety on Hulu.

    Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.

    TOPICS: Dave, FXX, Hulu, Brad Pitt, Chloe Bennet, Drake, Rachel McAdams, Tenea Intriago