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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Tell Me You Love Me: "Episode 7"

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Illustration for article titled Tell Me You Love Me: "Episode 7"

I'm going to let the (apparently few) readers of this show help me write this week's entry.

Chartex: "Here's the dealy: this show makes being in a relationship — hell, being alive — seem like a dour, mirthless slog broken up by occasional bouts of desperate humping. That could make for a plenty interesting movie, but it's tough to see why you'd tune in to a weekly show for this crud."

You know, if you'd posted this after week two or three I probably would have agreed with you. But now that we're past the halfway point, I think it's easier to see the bigger picture. It's not perfect and I still think the show has some pretty deep flaws. But it's slow by design and I think the slowness is starting to pay off. Take this week's episode: At first Jamie just seemed like a shallow nothing of a character but as the series has progressed, she's shown hidden depths (as has the actress playing her, Michelle Borth.) Now that surface shallowness seems like part of a long-range vision for a character who's just now starting to discover herself and realize there might be a way out of the unhappy patterns she's used to sabotage herself. Jamie's scenes make the explicit sex looks like it has a point, too. Contrast her scene with a returning (and suddenly incredibly whiny) Hugo this week with her athletically enthusiastic scene with Boone From Lost last week. With Hugo it was familiar, obligatory, and to all appearances just satisfying enough not to count as a failure.

Howardbeale1: "I'm tired of Carolyn, she's been an insufferable cunt from the word go and Palek might as well bang Jamie if that's where this is going, anything to get him out of this awful relationship as quickly as possible. Also I'm in favor any more sex scenes involving her."

Hmm… I'd agree that for the first half of this season, Carolyn seemed like an unforgivable harridan. But when she finally gave up on getting pregnant, all that time spent watching her act so obsessive about it made me feel really bad for her. And now it's Palek who's seeming a little monstrous. He's happy to have a wife who's given up on kids and who can now be sexually available with no consequences, but the moment some boundaries go up, forget it. Does somebody always have to be the bad guy in a relationship gone wrong? It would seem that way. These characters have slowly grown interesting over the course of the show. (On the other hand, the big reveal at the end of the episode came as a huge "no duh.") Also, I've tried to avoid sounding lascivious throughout this blog but you're not honestly saying you'd want to see fewer sex scenes with Sonya Walger, are you?

Howardbeale1 (again): "Siver Fox husband is funny, but there's only one official Silver Fox, country great Charlie Rich."


Damn straight.

This show sucks: "If I wanted to watch old people having sex, I'd hang out in a nursery home."


You were spared this week, although the moments when Dr. May and her SFH look like they're going to start going at it now make me a little worried about where the scene is going. I still think, apart from the therapy scenes, the Dr. May material is the weakest part of the show (although I'm happy to see Ronny Cox).

Admiral Neck: "There are 15 milli0n things I don't like about it, but I can't stop watching. And Ally Walker needs some award recognition. Maybe for Most Nervous Prudish Giggling."


Maybe, but you're right. She's great and so is Tim DeKay (who would do a great job playing a really, really dumb guy even though here he's supposed to be more conflicted than dumb.) Their scenes are heartbreaking because they clearly love each other and have a marriage that works but something's not right. I still find myself thinking, "Just fuck already!" but the show's been better at persuading me that their problems aren't so easily solved.

Grade: B (again)

Stray observations:

- Once again Dave chooses TiVo over sex.

- Hugo's back! And now he's a a total crybaby. His therapy scene with Jamie was one of the best this show has done, with Jamie finally getting smart about how easy it would be to fall back into the same unhealthy life with him she'd had before. But did anyone else think Dr. May's saying, "It's hard when someone you love that much walks out the door," was some cold-ass business?

- Boone From Lost is clearly better for Jamie, but what kind of man has a futon with a leather cushion?

- The lady from the suit shop will not help Palek and Carolyn's marriage.

- "Veggies over brown rice with a hot curry sauce." Yum!