The Darlings had to bury one of their own in this episode, and they sent the deceased off in style. Sure, the eulogy was written about someone else and some of the mourners were arrested, but that's part of the fun of these events. The rest of the episode was business as usual--power struggles, inappropriate sexual partners, and suitcases filled with cash. No complaints here.
Everyone was betraying everyone else this week. Simon Elder served up his usual dose of manipulation, this time to drive a wedge between Nick and Karen. I'd love to get a better sense of Simon's agenda. The writers spent a lot of time building him up as Tripp's archenemy last season, and he's mostly lurked in the shadows so far. Brian worked hard to get Tish's defense attorney, Foghorn Leghorn, fired and lost the Vice Chair gig before he was even hired. It's too early to tell if Nick betrayed his own values by accepting the job, but Lisa definitely looked a bit hurt by his decision. Hasn't he been listening to her daily anti-Darling lectures? It's obvious that Tripp got what he wanted by bringing Nick closer to the family, but he might not be aware of Nick's suspicions. It'll be fun to watch these two square off over the next few months.
Nola Lyons -
I like Lucy Liu as much as the next person who didn't watch Cashmere Mafia, but Nola isn't working for me. There is already a sleeping-with-the-enemy subplot going on, so her affair with Jeremy is unnecessary. I'd also expect a character like Nola's to have a more hostile relationship with Nick (he is her newest opponent, after all). Their confrontation at Ellen's funeral was missing something. This woman is supposed to be a serious threat to the Darlings, and all I got from her was a little half-hearted flirting. The prosecutor lost me once and for all when she uttered the following cheesy line: "You're the Darlingest Darling of them all." Was that supposed to be intimidating?
The funeral -
The Darlings can't have a lavish party every week, but the funeral was just as good. It was one of those perfect Dirty Sexy Money moments when everything came together: an insincere eulogy, a fainting spell, and a brawl with the cops (and all accompanied by Kenny G). These types of scenes are always done well, and it saved "The Family Lawyer" from becoming a forgettable second episode. I hope that this season doesn't focus too much on the trial scenes; Darling antics are far more entertaining. Still, a few more over-the-top courtroom moments--like the presentation of Letitia's bail--couldn't hurt.
There was a brief mention of Juliet (on some island somewhere) and Kiki (busy at school). I suppose that settles it.
I stopped missing Ellen the moment I learned that she was a Kenny G fan.
Lisa made a smart move by nixing the baby talk with Nick, and she got a nice Godfather moment in return.