In Treatment, Season 1


I finished watching HBO’s In Treatment Season 1. Wow. Wow. Wow.

The acting and script were superb – intelligent and intense.

I’ve said before that this was an outstanding program. I’d say awesome, but that word has been so overused. I won’t evaluate the program, but I will comment on my thoughts about the characters.

  1. Laura – the storyline was well executed, and in the end Laura showed growth and more character than I expected, but she was the least likable patient because she was so manipulative. Paul’s interest in her was so cliche, but he knew that and was fighting against it. I can’t believe he told his wife, “I’m going to Laura’s now.” That was a situation in which you either lie or don’t go. Though since the wife announced she was going to Italy with her lover, I guess this is what one does in this marriage.
  2. Alex – talk about intense. Blair Underwood was great. The final “sessions” when we meet his family was inspired and creative and taught Paul a lot about what he knows of his patients.
  3. Sophie – the actress Mia Wasikowska was absolutely incredible. She’ll be a leading actress of her generation no doubt about it. The character was so brave and smart. In fact Sophie may be the bravest teen character I’ve ever seen. So preceptive, real and brave. I never knew what to expect.
  4. Jake and Amy – at first I didn’t like them and thought they should just get a divorce. While I can’t say I’d want to know or be friends with either of them as the series progressed their authenticity and complexity captured me. Amazingly, I still don’t like them, but like watching them. I think Paul’s suggestion that their passion is rare and thus they shouldn’t proceed to the divorce court was on the money. It’s strange how I came to think this couple should stay together although they have so many problems and are so contentious. For them, that’s what “worked.” This sort of thing is the power of In Treatment it makes you reconsider what works versus what society seems to say does.
  5. Paul and Gina – Well, Paul’s therapy sessions with his former supervisor Gina, played by Dianne Weist were so powerful and capped each week well. Not only do we see Paul unravel as he reviews his week, we see him challenged mightily. We see the whole practice of therapy questioned and challenged intelligently.

Such an incredible television program. I will watch these episodes again and look forward to Season 2.

Doc Martin

Doc Martin is a British series that’s as much a story about a village as it is about a character. It’s a wry comedy that chronicles a gruff, insensitive physician, Martin Ellingham, who returns to his hometown after his career in London peters out. It seems he’s suddenly can’t take the sight of blood. I’ve only seen one episode, but the eccentric small town characters juxtaposed with the cantankerous Doc Martin, who bristles when his new neighbors call him by this nickname or get too casual. There’s some romance and the writing’s good. It’s definitely worth getting hooked on. Its levity counters the intensity of MI-5.

holmes on homes

What a cool show! Holmes on Homes is my new favorite show. Each week contractor Michael Holmes tackles a remodeling job that’s a disaster. Most likely, the project was overpriced, done improperly, now looks crappy and the original contractor has dodged the homeowner’s calls and evaded responsibility.

You see each stage, from the disastrous state, to demolition of the shoddy work to the properly done result. Throughout Holmes explains what the errors were and provided insights into the ethics of contracting and trends in devious practices. How I wish Mike Holmes was in Makassar.

It helps the buyer beware.