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The Big C: “The Last Thanksgiving”

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Last week, I paid homage to Oliver Platt on The Big C, and now, I think it’s time for Gabourey Sidibe to get a little love, too. There was some concern when this show was getting cast and first started airing that Gabby was unable to play a role that asked her to be anything other than “big angry black girl.” And Andrea was rather angry in season one, but I think the writers are doing a nice job of making her more complex as season two proceeds. Basically, she’s evolved from one of the most unpleasant characters on the show (although there were a handful of those season one, right?) into the one I think I’d most like to know in real life.

Her romantic subplot isn’t (so far) essential to the show, but I find it incredibly sweet and believable, even though obviously, its charm lies in the fact that her partnership with Myk seems unlikely. In the episode, Paul invites Myk over to celebrate Thanksgiving, where he tells Andrea that he loves her, but instead of reacting with joy (the way she did over the gold butterfly necklace he gave her), she reacts with instant suspicion: I loved the way her face fell the second he told her. After arguing with Adam, Andrea realizes that her view of young men has been colored by his bad behavior, and she realizes that Myk might actually mean what he says. She tells Myk she loves him too and they kiss over the Thanksgiving table. It was a little over the top, but Sidibe  had a lot of good little moments in tonight’s episode. I especially loved the way she went, “Eeee!” when Rebecca and Sean proposed marriage to each other.


Oh yeah, speaking of which! Isn’t it odd how many characteristics Cynthia Nixon’s Rebecca shares with Sex and the City’s Miranda Hobbes? Becoming unexpectedly pregnant? Proposing marriage to a dude? A willingness to show breasts on premium cable? Anyway, we knew that Sean was hot to marry Rebecca, but at the Thanksgiving table, Rebecca feels overcome by Andrea and Myk’s love and begins to propose to Sean, until he joins her on bended knee. It was a sweet moment there for a bit: I loved the look on Sean’s face as she told him everything she loved about him. But then Rebecca demands that Cathy give her her engagement ring: Cathy had said earlier that she never loved it that much (it belonged to her mother), so of course Paul is put out that she went that entire time with a ring she didn’t care for.

Exasperated, Cathy takes off her ring to give to Rebecca, and one of her fake nails falls off on Lee’s plate. She had put them on to cover up the fact that her nails were falling off: Cathy wanted to avoid hurting Lee's feelings over the fact he didn’t seem to have any side effects from the treatment and she did. Lee realizes that Cathy lied to him and that she had him over for Thanksgiving because she was worried it would be his last. Lee erupts in a very unzenlike storm (partially thanks to all the wine he brought over), informing Cathy that he doesn’t need her pity and that the joke’s on her. The drug doesn’t cure cancer; it just buys time. Then, most unforgivably, he throws a glass of wine on the fancy cake Cathy had painstakingly made for him.

Oh yeah, and Cathy kills a turkey with her bare hands. You know it’s a good episode when the sight of Laura Linney, bloodied and holding a huge bird carcass, is one of the less remarkable parts of the show. The Big C’s been on a roll these last few weeks, I’m happy to say, and I have high hopes for next week, because thanks to the preview, while we have a spoiler on what happened to Rebecca after she left dinner, we know that Parker Posey’s coming, and I think she’s going to play Adam’s online girlfriend. Parker Posey and Laura Linney, facing off? Yes please.

Stray observations:

  • Is it bad that I like tired/mad Lee more than happy Lee?
  • “He looks like Jesus, only angrier.”
  • “I’m fat, and you’re gay, so we’re supposed to get along.”
  • Fried mac and cheese is what’s up.
  • “I honestly want to get laid this Thanksgiving. I’m touching my wife under the table right now.”

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