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Fans Think This Compromise Would Have Changed Nathan And Angela's Dynamic On The Rehearsal

Contains spoilers for "The Rehearsal" Season 1

Nathan Fielder's "The Rehearsal" takes the discomfort levels of the documentary-comedy genre to a whole new level. The show revolves around comedy veteran Fielder ("The Disaster Artist," "Nathan For You"), who creates elaborate rehearsal scenarios that people can use to practice major life events. The show gleefully blurs the line between reality show and cringe comedy, as the lines between apparently real people and actors playing characters become increasingly blurred, people lose and realign their focus, and even the immaculately prepared host himself threatens to implode amidst the constant tonal shifts. 

Fielder's inherent awkwardness is key to the confusing, yet entertaining show's success, and it's on full display in his interactions with the show's second-most prominent person. Highly religious wannabe mother Angela enters the show in the second episode, "Scion," and the pair's massive and highly complicated parenthood practice scenario is the overarching story of the season. Eventually, the pair's dynamic becomes irreparably strained when Angela starts acting overly prejudiced against Fielder's Jewish religion, and Fielder starts implementing even more complicated rehearsal scenarios in retaliation. In the end, Angela opts to walk away from the show, and the rehearsal takes a tumble in yet another highly unexpected direction. 

Considering the vast differences in Angela and Fielder's temperaments and values, a clash was perhasp inevitable. However, some viewers of the show think that one particular compromise would have changed the pair's dynamic in "The Rehearsal."

Fans think compromise on religion might have been the key to coexistence

The tension between Nathan Fielder and Angela reaches breaking point in Episode 5, when Fielder finally faces off with Angela. Superficially, the confrontation is because Fielder is unhappy with the way Angela doesn't take the rehearsal seriously enough. 

However, in a Reddit discussion about the show, redditor u/manbearkat pointed out that the underlying issue is that Angela doesn't allow Fielder — who has been playing her partner in the parenthood rehearsal — to include Jewish elements in their "children's" upbringing, which prompts Fielder to get personal. "He was going beyond the scope of the original discussion to make personal attacks and not let go," they wrote. "Angela left because he was being passive aggressive back. If she had agreed to also raise Adam to be Jewish, Nathan would have kept her on." 

User u/catsupatree agreed, while u/builder-barbie thought similarly but felt the issue wasn't about religion in particular as much as it was about Angela's unyielding nature in general. "I don't think it was specifically about religion, but more of her unwillingness to compromise on anything for the relationship and raising of the kid," they wrote. "With Angela being who she is, religion was constantly brought up by her, if she didn't like something she found a way to make it religious." 

The fans might be onto something with their speculation about Angela's unwillingness to compromise, since in a video addressing her departure from the show after Episode 5 (via Variety), she noted that one of the reasons was that she wasn't in control and no consensus could be reached. However, she also pointed out the show's underlying premise: That it may have been about Fielder all along. "It had become more so Nathan's rehearsal instead of mine," Angela said. "And since we didn't agree about how to proceed, I'm not the boss, so it was time for me to go and let Nathan do his thing."