Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Possession and the other one-tenth

There's just four more episodes left of this strike-shortened season, and since Nip/Tuck creator Ryan Murphy promised two characters would die, I guess it's one down, one to go. Before we get into the death, let me just say how much I love Sharon Gless. I was telling my wife that they must have a connection of sorts because she keeps stealing scenes on all her favorite shows. Queer as Folk*, Burn Notice and now Nip/Tuck. Here she plays Colleen Rose, an 'agent' who decides Sean needs to be a star and offers to represent him. Notice I use the quotes around agent, because she's no Ari Gold. Notice how she wandered away from the house Sean dropped her at? And her general fixation on Sean has me thinking she's more a stalker looking to get back at her extra-loving ex-husband by plucking her own extra and playing Sugar Mama to him. Her reaction to Sean taking up with his own extra near the end seemed like another bit for foreshadowing.

Sean surely doesn't want to be a kept (or possessed) man, though, especially seeing the extreme example that Jeff and his Beelzebubby Magda are. These two also show Christian that he's feeling a bit suffocated by Julia's possession over him along with her mysterious illness. Speaking of possession, when Sean finally gets his starring role on Hearts & Scalpels, it's to perform a human tail removal surgery on someone who believes he's possessed. The scene's backed by House of Love's synth-dance cover of Mike Oldfield's "Tubular Bells," which was famously used in the film The Exorcist. As always, the show within the show H&S gets the best line of an episode. Says Sean (as Pete): "I'm going to remove your devilish appendage and you'll be sliding into home plate by next week." The other great line was a sly reference to the controversy surrounding Grey's Anatomy and Isaiah Washington, when Freddy says in reference to Aiden's scandal: ''Too bad you're not black — we could have kept you around till the end of the season.''

But what most folks are still talking about is the death of Gina (Jessalyn Gilsig,) who only just returned to the series at the end of the last episode. First of all, how fitting that it's the 69th episode of N/T where this sexaholic kicks it? Christian gave her one last poke before she fell to her death, leaving us all wondering if Christian murdered Gina, or it was really just unsafe sex. On Gina's death, Jessalyn Gilsig says: "She better get a funeral, 'cause I don't want them over surgery, like, 'By the way, Gina's dead.'" Also experiencing coitus mortem was poor Jeff, who might be the most tragic figure ever on N/T. It's a sad enough existence marrying a sugar spouse, but to die before they do is truly a depressing thought. Even Anna Nicole Smith's destructive existence outlasted her sugar daddy J. Howard Marshall by enough time to hang herself with the benefits.

Playlist: Nip/Tuck - Episode 5.10
1. "The Devil" - Tears for Fears - Sean & Christian perform hair transplant surgery on Jeff
2. "Tubular Bells" - Book of Love - Sean stars in a Hearts & Scalpels with a possessed patient
3. "Tango, Que Misterio" - Palermo Nuevo - Christian has sex with prostitue while Gina watches
4. "Lovin' You" - Minnie Riperton - Colleen and Sean have dinner / Magda and Jeff having sex
Compiled by Avalon at

*Queer as Folk is an important reference point for this episode, as not only do we have Gless guesting, but also playing the part of Jeff was actor Robert Grant, who the played HIV-positive character Ben Bruckner on the Showtime series. HIV, besides possession, being another fear explored in the episode.

Previously: Forgiving Bombs and Betrayals (Episode 5.09)

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