Friday, 27 August 2010

Californication 3.5 'Slow Happy Boys'

“My vagina looks like downtown Baghdad right now” – Daisy

You’ll have to forgive my rather brief recap of this week’s Californication as the bank holiday weekend brings birthdays to celebrate, parties to attend and money to lose at the races meaning my time is somewhat limited this week.

This was quite a bawdy episode of Californication and for a show that is pretty bawdy at its quietest of times that is quite a bold statement.

Slow Happy Boys practically ditched the Hank-as-teacher storyline that has thus far been season 3’s big arc and instead focussed on our hero’s relationship with an old friend who’d come to visit Hank in LA.

We begin with Hank dropping the now ridiculously cartoonishly sullen Becca off at the airport to go and visit Karen in New York.

Seriously, I know Becca is supposed to be a grumpy emo teen but no teenager is that cold no matter how shitty they perceive their life to be. They are seriously in danger of ruining the whole Hank-Becca dynamic if her current personality remains for the foreseeable.

After waving off Becca in his incomparable style Hank headed over to arrivals to pick up old friend ‘Zloz’.

It turns out Zloz has finally looked up Hank after all these years as he had a big blow-out with his wife and fancied partying with the master to blow off some steam.

Zloz was played by Kevin Corrigan, who was the best thing on the criminally underrated and underappreciated Grounded For Life and he played the role perfectly.

I did have a hard time buying Zloz as an old friend of Hank though, but I assume that was the point. The idea was surely to show how far Hank has come since his New York days and that Zloz was what could have been if Hank hadn’t “got out”. So while it’s hard to buy Zloz and Hank and even Corrigan and Duchovny as running buddies, Corrigan was perfectly cast as the NYC working class hero in this fish-out-of-water scenario.

The episode basically followed the debauched night out that Zloz craved and Hank, with a little help from Charlie, duly supplied.

First to Sue Collini’s party where we were introduced to Sue’s wheelchair bound husband who is an expert in the “oral arts”; this role was filled by the brilliant Stephen Root, who has appeared in so many great shows lately his CV must be practically glittering: True Blood, 24, Justified and now Californication.

Root’s appearance was brief but I sincerely hope this isn’t the last we’ve seen of him, because he does sleazy very well and this role, call me crazy, seems like a sleazy one.

After Zloz got in to a bit of trouble with a tranny in the hot tub (I would’ve made the same error because there is no way that woman had a cock) Hank whisked him out of there along with the bedless for the night Runkle (I’ll get to that in a minute) to Jackie’s strip club where more trouble ensued.

First though let’s tackle why Runkle happened to be locked out of his house again:

My prediction for the fall-out from last week’s episode for the Runkles was way off; Marcy not only most definitely wanted to revisit the sex she and Charlie had, she wanted it there and then in Sue Collini’s fantastically graphic S & M room - whoever invented and/or found that seat with the swinging dildos built into it needs some sort of medal.

Charlie’s sex drive had been somewhat diminished though following a visit from his former porn star lover Daisy who returned, with comedy inflated boobs, to inform Runkle she had contracted some gnarly STDs.

When Charlie finally spilled the beans to Marcy her reaction was to punch him in the face, thus he found himself back at the strip club with Hank as Zloz set about causing a massive brawl after he couldn’t resist sucking one of the strippers’ silicone-enhanced norks during a lapdance.

The morning after scene at Hanks was a scene of silent comedy genius as a groggy Hank awoke, fished his sunglasses out of the bathtub, found Charlie butt naked with two strippers in a bed, passed a small, fat, black stripper in his kitchen (my favourite part) and then discovered a passed out Zloz on his living room floor.

Hank of course awoke with Jackie next to him, and that is something that just bothers me. My obsession with Eva Amurri has diminished since we got to see her naked two weeks in a row so it’s not a jealousy thing.

There’s just something a little wrong about a guy as old as Hank effortlessly bedding a smoking hot stripper young enough to be his daughter, and the fact that she is now referring to “Dr. Henry Moody” as her “boyfriend” is all the more disturbing.

That said, the fact that she played along with Hank making Zloz think he’d been the one to bed Jackie was quite a sweet moment as she and Hank mouthed affection to each other over Zloz’s shoulder.

After sending off Zloz, who had a final reel revelation that he might actually be dying, hence the trip; Hank was surprised, as were we, to see Karen follow Becca out of the terminal doors.

The way Hank greeted her would lead one to believe that Jill, Felicia and especially Jackie are going to be rather pissed now Hank’s Juliet is back in town.

How long is she back for? That will have to be answered next week, but one thing is guaranteed: I can’t wait to see how this all plays out.

Other Quick Thoughts:

- If this supremely funny episode wasn’t already my favourite episode of the season, it quickly achieved that status the second I heard the late, great Warren Zevon’s ‘Werewolves of London’ used.

Any show that references and uses the music of Zevon as much as Californication has to be one of the best shows on TV whichever way you cut it.

- From the spoilery stuff I’ve seen for the season I’m almost certain Hank does end up bedding Felicia before the season is through, with Karen back in town I’m very curious to see how that tryst comes about.

Californication continues Wednesday @ 11.20pm on FIVER


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