Massachusetts Daily Collegian

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A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Californication gets heavy in two latest episodes

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A quarter of the way through the fourth season, this one’s shaping up to be pretty good. Who knows whether the Hank/Sasha romp will continue – I bet it will, and we’re all dying to see more of Sasha (even if we’ve already seen all of her), but there’s a lot else going on that’s equally as entertaining.

Hank almost died from booze and pills after writing what appeared to be a suicide note. Karen took him back for a minute when she thought he was suicidal but kicked him to the curb when she found out he wasn’t. Becca’s going to be in a band – Queens of Dog town – with Zoe Kravitz, Lenny‘s daughter, and Karen’s teased with a new love interest, played by Michael Easley. The producer of the on-screen adaption of “F**king and Punching” just made a pass at Marcy, but repaid Charlie with his kinky secretary, Runkle’s bread and butter. Rob Lowe stole Brad Pitt’s getup and made a showing in the second episode as crazed actor Eddie Nero. And Hank finally started writing again.

At some point Hank’s going to need to get down with Abby (Carla Cugino), which is what made Hank’s short lived respite with Karen all the more confusing in the third episode of the season. Even though it was nice and Hank was happy, that’s over now and Californication is on to bigger and better things. I love seeing Hank and Karen together as much as anyone else, but I also like new episodes of Californication, and that dynamic doesn’t get the ratings the show deserves. 

These last few episodes have gotten a little heavy, with the montage of Hank’s pill binge and on-paper self reflection-turned suicide note in the final moments of the season’s second episode, and the romantic bedside talks with Karen in the third. The show’s backbone has always been Hank’s relationship with his wife and daughter, but Californication’s allure has been anything but. Hank’s exploits are the most interesting, but when he’s with Karen, the show’s appeal begins to dwindle- not for lack of emotion, but for lack of excitement. We’ve been conditioned to expect a certain something from Hank Moody, and the producers understand that. Some of the best scenes have come from Hank’s rash decisions riding on the tensions and disappointments between him and Karen.

It appeared that the show might be getting stuck behind Hank’s defiance and refusal to write, which in turn impedes the development of the film adaptation of Hank’s book, which could make for some great episodes. Some of the best quotes from earlier seasons have come from excerpts from Hank’s previous novels and blog posts Hank wrote for Hell-A Magazine. With Hank writing again, expect the show to really start to pick up as the season gains momentum.

Showtime has announced a fifth season of Californication, ordering 12 new episodes for next year. Catch Californication Sunday nights at 9 on Showtime.

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  • B

    BrianJan 26, 2011 at 11:52 am

    You’re right, I should have checked that.

  • M

    micah720Jan 26, 2011 at 1:51 am

    Is Michael Ealy’s character named Lenny? If not, you’ve got your info wrong. Lenny Kravitz is not going to be on Californication.