Monday, March 14, 2011

Dirty Sexy Money: The Summer House (2.8)

Something went wrong here. For a couple of weeks, Dirty Sexy Money had been riding that wave of insanity pretty successfully, but here the show flew off the rails with a host of unfocused storylines, weird characterization and annoying plot developments. Least of all is Nick and Lisa's break-up, which is being handled appallingly. In one corner we have a bitter Lisa, who orchestrates a date with Jeremy in an attempt to make her ex jealous. Whatever you thought of Lisa before this episode, she wasn't a flighty teenage girl. In the other corner we have Nick, who two seconds after splitting with his wife is in a flirtatious new relationship with Wrenn. Excuse me? They were actually dating each other! And then later abandoning your newly ex-wife in the middle of a deep conversation to run after your hot young girlfriend is just low. Ugh.

At the same time, is Nick orchestrating all of the Simon stuff to win Karen back? But, if he is, why is he also dating somebody else? And is Simon really so cold and ruthless that he would dump Karen like nuclear waste for shares in the company? And why is Karen just mad at Nick? It's understandable, sure, but why no slappy conversation with Simon, too? And why did Leticia go crazy at Wrenn, right after Tripp professed his love for his wife? I can understand if she had done that before his epiphany, but why after?

Brian and Andrea's impromptu wedding was sweet, but hampered by another logic flaw. Isn't Brian still married to Mei Ling? Or are we supposed to assume they divorced off-screen? If so, why isn't he at all around his daughters? Or even caring about them at all? Huh?

Equally mind-numbing was Jeremy's job working for Patrick, yet another excuse to keep Jeremy and Nola orbiting around each other, despite the two of them having little chemistry and Lucy Liu's entire presence on the show feeling unnecessary. The escapades with the energy executive were particularly contrived.

The Summer House created a wave of confusion. The show had been firing on all cylinders for so long and it really fell off this episode. Creating a wacky soap opera is always a challenge, because it's so easy to stumble so far into craziness that it just becomes contrived and full of glaring plot holes. That happened here. D+

Guest stars Ken Howard (Evan Connello); Shawn Michael Patrick (Clark); Sheryl Lee (Andrea Smithson); Sarah Carter (Wrenn Darcy); Will Shadley (Brian Darling Jr.); Scott Alan Smith (Executive); John Rubinstein (Dr. Zwerling)
Writers Bill Chais, Jake Coburn Director Jamie Babbitt

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