by pat howard

WEEDS | Season 4, revisited

In Jenji Kohan, Weeds on December 2, 2008 at 11:46 pm

I spent part of the long weekend re-watching the most recent season of one of my favorite shows. Previously, I had a lot to be disappointed in where this latest batch of episodes was concerned. But watching all thirteen back-to-back made for a much more cohesive arc and definitely a more satisfying package, even though I still saw the pregnancy bombshell coming a mile away.

I’d like to add some speculation where that is concerned, as well. I’m thinking it’s likely not the mayor’s baby. Weeds is among a new breed of quality/premium/cable series that begs to be watched in huge chunks — if TV is the new novel, these are its suspenseful, gripping page-turners. Weeds also has a story timeline that moves even more glacially than that crazy three-season intern year on Grey’s Anatomy. Best I can tell, it’s been a little over a year (two on the outside) since Uncle Andy crashed the bereaved Botwins’ Agrestic abode. A lot has certainly happened in that time: Nancy’s buried two husbands, cheated death multiple times, and (finally) started to come to her senses a little bit.

But she’s also bedded a number of guys. Of course there is the mayor of Tijuana. But going backwards, there’s shady developer Sullivan Groff and a tragic stunted romance with former business partner Conrad, with whom she shared what could be described as a heavenly consummation scene toward the end of season three, around the time those pregnancy hints started dropping into the scripts like third-world care packages.

If I had to guess, I’d say the bun in the oven belongs to Conrad, and not just because I really want to see him (and maybe Heylia) pop up on the show again, however briefly. It’s a perfect postscript to the Nancy-Conrad relationship, which was fraught with peril in both business and pleasure as it unfolded off and on for three seasons. Of course, we have a virtual eternity to wait and see (and there’s always the possibility that the baby won’t make it to full term).

However it turns out, I’m hoping Weeds comes out of the gate strong for season five, having learned from some of the bumps in the road over the last two years. Flawed, deeply human characters are what makes this show so resonant. If Jenji Kohan and the gang keep their sights set on that, we’ll be doing okay.

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