"In cooking, as in all the arts, simplicity is a sign of perfection." - Curnonsky

Sunday, May 6, 2007

The Riches: Believe in the Lie

The Malloy family continues their transition into their new lives. The episode felt like a part two to the premiere as it ended with a bit of resolution for everyone, finally acknowledging that they are really going to do this. Now that they have committed, we can move forward with the story and let the drama and hijinks begin. For me, the best part of this episode was how they showed each of the characters dealing with all of these changes. Of those, I thought Dahlia's story was the most interesting. The burying of the money and the towing of the RV both served to show hard it is for Dahlia to let go of her old life.

Really, the Riches have no use for that crusty old RV. It just makes them stand out in a place where blending in is desired. To Dahlia though, it's not just a mode of transportation. The RV is part of who they are, and it represents some kind of safety for her and, more importantly I think, her family. She didn't have to get it back because it was taken from her wrongfully. It was much more for the psychological security of knowing it is there as an option.

Burying the money is a similar thing. They do have a perfectly good house, and burying money is a little nutty. But it seems that Dahlia doesn't think she belongs there, and she knows that settling in is inviting all kinds of trouble. Couple that with her struggles with drugs and it isn't a hard jump to get to Didi and Cael's conversation about Mom being crazy.

I'll add here that I thought the scene with Dahlia and Nina was excellent. She was so bizarre with the pulling of the hair and the way she was playing games with Dahlia. Nina being stoned out of her mind in the middle of the afternoon was not at all what I expected from that character when we first met her.

For their part, the kids aren't doing so bad. It's quite obvious that Cael's phone calls to Tammy are not going to end with a date to the prom and taking the rented Mercedes to Inspiration Point. Didi is hard to put your finger on at this point. She's a tough kid, and resilient, but you could see in the way she snapped at Dahlia that there is some hostility there. Sam is probably handling things better than anyone. That's due in part to his age of course, but he is making the most of this new adventure.

Wayne was having a pretty good go of it, initially anyway. Despite evidence to the contrary, he was set to make this work, and jumping in with both feet. I liked the job interview. Watching Wayne do his thing is going to be one of the highlights of the show as we move forward. You can see the gears turning as he works and works, just treading water, keeping himself in the game. And then, he gets the opening, this time in the form of Hugh, and finishes it off. The little look he gave when he asked how many of the cases against Hugh they had won was great. Right then, he knew he had his mark.

Things weren't all roses though. Wayne coming to grips with just how much he had bit off while he talked to the bartender was interesting. It gets right to the root of the problem. It's one thing to fool someone for a few minutes, or even a few hours. Fooling them for days and weeks, possibly even months, is a whole different ball game. It all finally took hold as he sat on the porch shooting guns with Hugh. His resignation that he is going to retire, and get an RV, brought him full circle. I think at that moment that he was actually ready to call the whole thing off.

It's interesting how the family came to the decision. It seems like Wayne's confidence and the way he was so set to make this work was part of what ultimately turned the rest of them around on the idea. And then, when he was as close as he has been to pulling out, seeing all of them together, in his idea of that American dream, they brought him right back around. It should be fun watching Wayne in his new gig working for Hugh. Still, you have to believe that all of this can't end well. There are just too many balls for anyone to juggle.

There was a little peek at some of that tonight. The phone call to Doug that Wayne answered. There is also Dale to be concerned with. While the family politics between him and Jenny are interesting, I don't think that is going to be enough to put off the eventual confrontation. So far, so good. It looks like it's going to be a fun ride.

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