‘Weeds’ recap: Big deals
In the many roles Nancy Botwin has taken on these last few TV years on Weeds — widow, housewife, mom, drug dealer, God — it’s nice to know she can still play the respectful granddaughter-in-law in times of deep family crisis. And so she came through for Bubbie by sitting shiva and honoring ”a courageous woman who escaped the clutches of Adolf Hilter and lived a long, productive life, only to be snuffed out by a hypoallergenic pillow from Bed Bath & Beyond.” That’s according to Len, no candidate for son of the year. But before we get to his detestable cash treasure hunt or Nancy’s Wild Card odds, let us mourn Grandma Botwin with our own seven-day review.
Day 1: The rules of the weeklong Jewish mourning period were laid out by the acting head of the household, Len. What’s in store? Lots of sitting, eating, and a perpetually open door that turns no one away — not even greedy real estate agents. ”We’ll remember, soon we’ll eat, and we’ll remember more,” Len said.
Day 2: Neighborhood kid Brad rolled in for a visit, towing a gift basket and positive vibes. ”What’s up, dude?” he casually asked Len, to which the elder Botwin replied, ”Please get out of my house.”
Day 3: Another real estate vulture descended — this one with legs and tatas aplenty — eyeing the property’s proximity to the beach.
Day 4: Doug Wilson made his Ren Mar entrance, with permission from Andy to crash at the Botwin pad. ”The entire town of Majestic is up in my grill,” he told Nancy and the kids. Just another fugitive to harbor for this clan…
Day 5: ”Shiva goy,” a.k.a. Doug, got sent to the corner market to bet on the lottery using Bubbie’s Holocaust numbers. For shame. Adding insult to injury, Guillermo sent over a massive cross wreath with a note written in chicken scratch: ”Nancy, get your ass back to work.”
Day 6: Nada.
Day 7: It’s time for a declaration: With the weeklong shiva fully observed, the house can now be put up for sale, hopefully for somewhere in the vicinity of $1.5 million.
Well, we all knew Albert Brooks’ guest stint had an expiration date, and so the day has come. Len’s plan A: Make a killing on the house and retire to a life of gambling abandon. After all, Bubbie’s will allegedly left everything to him. Andy’s argument to keep the house in the family made absolutely no impression. Not even favorite grandson Shane could dissuade Len from cashing out on this dead-end street. As for his agent of choice? The ”hot chick,” of course.
With little time to console her youngest, Nancy made for the door on another shopping trip in search of a bed skirt. Now who would’ve ever thought such an inane shabby-chic piece of fabric would end up being code for ”massive delivery of ganja.” Ah, you gotta love Weeds. You also have to marvel at Nancy’s complete disregard for privacy in the Bubbie matter. As we saw once she hit Guillermo’s headquarters, Nancy didn’t care who knew she had smothered her own grandmother-in-law, going so far as to specify that the Tempur-Pedic pillow formed to fit her face, making the process less tiring. Nancy’s gangster partner can relate.
NEXT: Len’s financial planning
On to her next smuggling assignment: a pickup at the border in exchange for $10,000 cash. Seems simple enough, but when handed a gun, Nancy confessed to being nervous. Not that it was going to stop her.
Back at the Ren Mar house, Len redefined chutzpah with his demands on the real estate agent, not realizing that $1.5 million or a naive Chinese family aren’t so easy to come by these days. But amidst the bickering and cringe-worthy come-ons, Len also revealed that he’d already borrowed more than a million dollars against the house. In a buyer’s market, with little prospect of a turnaround anytime soon, he’s trapped.
Guillermo Garcia Gomez — the three magic words ring in Captain Till’s ears, but with Celia as his main informant, count on a screwup every step of the way. Take her first surveillance. Celia’s observations of Nancy went something like this: Her stature as a drug queenpin is rising, seeing as Nancy didn’t leave the house for a whole week and had people come by with food, taking their shoes off before walking inside. Nancy also seemed to be getting her crew back together, since Doug’s back in the picture. Wrong on all fronts, but a second chance came Celia’s way thanks to an awkward karaoke attempt at Animotion’s ”Obsession.” Was it just me, or did you feel like you were watching Twin Peaks for a second there?
Then came another seriously stony session in the van, courtesy of Silas and his newly discovered green thumb. While the strain numbed Andy’s left side, it prompted Doug to confess, quite uncharacteristically, that all his troubles were inevitably his fault. ”My life: an abyss,” he sighed. ”Purposeless, directionless, homeless, just less.” Then again, in typical Doug fashion, he followed up this moment of introspection with ”You suck d—, Silas?”
Meanwhile, sucking every last dime he could get his hands on, Len recruited Shane to comb through drawers, cabinets, and hat boxes in search of his dead mother’s secret stash of money. What they found, however, were wads of bills with serial numbers that suggested they had been accumulated in the last couple years, which Sherlock Shane inferred were likely Nancy’s. Of course, with eyes like his — big and telling — there was no doubt in Len’s mind that some kind of shadiness was at play here, and Shane’s explanation, that his mom simply ”found it,” was far from convincing. Len deduced that, despite Nancy’s attire and odd hours, she was not a prostitute, and seeing a stoned-out Doug head to the fridge for multiple munchie visits helped Len figure it all out.
As ill-equipped as Doug to handle what was thrown his way, Andy regretted joining Nancy for her drug run not long after they arrived at border-wall section 529. Baked, paranoid, freaking out, and far from a ”drug-smuggling badass,” he lost his cool repeatedly, while Nancy kept it on an even keel, taking the oldest trick from the Heathers handbook and straddling her brother-in-law as flashing lights approached. (Though I knew all would be okay, I’ll admit my heart was pounding just a little bit faster.)
NEXT: Law and disorder
I should mention the sweet little moment that preceded the make-out session, where Andy suggested he and Nancy say ”thoughtful things about each other” just in case they died that night. Finally, Nancy gave Andy some long-overdue praise for being a good person, stepping up for the kids, and making her laugh. Andy didn’t exactly return the kind words, saving his thoughts for long-lost love Yael, but the suggestion was good enough, and hell, he makes us laugh, too, especially with lines like this one: ”Police moving drugs? It’s so corrupt. We gotta move to Mexico!”
I counted eight sacks of weed dumped at Nancy’s feet and was dumbfounded to see that all that can fit into a Prius, even with Andy knocked to the curb, scared, alone, and probably wondering whether there was something creepy about his kiss with Nancy, or the fact that they both seemed to enjoy it.
But while Nancy was dropping her cargo off, Silas was forced to make an unexpected pickup. His van, complete with a high-tech grow room, had been impounded. Fortunately for him, the garage attendants were a couple of stoners easily bought off to the tune of four ounces. Will Nancy’s enterprise soon expand to Botwin and Son? Silas does ”have a gift,” as several people have noted by now.
Looking to take advantage of the situation, Len, in the few hours that had passed between his first discovery of Nancy’s business, had already concocted an elaborate plan that would solve all his problems. He could jet off to Paris for a poker tour, taking with him Nancy’s $15,000 and charging her rent while waiting for the housing market to pick up. In his words: ”My mother dying was the best thing that ever happened to me.” As for whether Len will be back later in the season, it would only take ”Not-Francie” missing one payment for that to happen, and knowing how bad Nancy is at holding on to her profits, that’s not out of the realm of possibility.
We were left with one final cliff-hanger of a scene: Celia being dragged by the hair into thug central. The expression on her face once she spotted Nancy standing a few feet away? Priceless.
But it looks like we’re in for another wacky turn, folks. Nancy’s ”promotion,” Guillermo’s cryptic instructions to meet at the outlet mall by the border, Doug’s exile, and now Celia’s second tour of duty with the Botwins could lead to a whole mess of entanglements, most of them sure to be illegal. How are you all feeling about the latest twists?