The Moth Chase

Elevating the Art of Procrastanalysis – Academics wasting time on pop culture

Californication begins to explore consequences?

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If you tuned in for your first episode of Californication last night, oof, I’m sorry.  Somewhere between Becca’s refusal to stop texting at the table, Marcie’s rape revenge fantasies, Balt’s attempted suicide, Charlie’s terrifying stocking-headed attempt to get his wife back, and Hank telling his daughter that he hates her, I had to wonder how and why the show had taken such a steep plunge into something much darker than its usual fare.

Californication has never really taken itself seriously – one of the reasons so many of my friends don’t like it.  But last night it seemed to leap into the seriousness of showing the disastrous consequences of poor choices with such abandon it wore me out a little.  Yes, your daughter is likely to become a brat if you never discipline her (and, as Eva prophesies, telling a kid they can be and do anything they want when they grow up might cause more problems than telling them when they suck at stuff).  And yes, if your marriage is in the toilet not only because you cheated on your wife, but also because your love was built primarily on a shared love of kinky sex, there might come a time when kinky just don’t cut it anymore and instead becomes scary.  And yes, a really dramatic response to lazy approaches to teaching might be a student’s attempted suicide (ok, that one was a little far-fetched, but I did love Gossip Girl’s Ed Westwick in that role and the multiple biting allusions to the current popularity of the vampires this blog clearly loves!).  And finally, yes, if you force a teenage girl to grow up too soon with your laissez faire parenting, you’re going to enter a lower circle of hell when she hits those hormonal, finding herself, asserting her independence years.

I wrote last week about how Californication offers an image of family love with the most extreme forms of the sexual revolution already imbibed.  It seems this season is going to explore the consequences of that.  My hope is that it will be able to do so with the humour and creative avoidance of sentimental moralism it has managed so far!

 For more on Californication, see here
Posted by Natalie

Written by themothchase

October 5, 2009 at 8:39 am

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