‘Weeds’ recap: Run for the border
I want to say that day-to-day life here is reaching a point of normalcy, what with Shane going back to school and Nancy holding down a real 9-to-5 job, but then I snap out of it, remembering that we’re talking about Weeds here. So while this episode, brilliantly titled ”I Am the Table,” seems more like a steady hum along the tracks, I anticipate full well that a train wreck is around the corner. But for now, let’s pretend: normal.
Between playing contractor and, let’s face it, parent, Shane now added student to the list. It was his first day at a new school, and sensing his mother’s inherent hypocrisy, he had to inquire why he was being forced to go while his brother, Silas, was off at the cheese shop all day. ”Give it a chance,” Nancy pleaded. ”A chance for what, more emotional scarring?” Shane asked. Nancy tried to explain: ”You’re our one shot at legitimacy,” to which he cracked, ”No, I’m not. I’m very corrupt. I’m a contractor!” Needless to say, no amount of kiddie persuasion was going to budge Nancy from this one lapse into responsibility. After all, she reasoned, he was the only one with a shot at becoming a doctor, lawyer, or business executive.
Cesar foiled her kid-ferrying plans by showing up at the door, and Shane, thinking he was a subcontractor, went into another of his minor tizzies. Cesar made little effort to correct the miscommunication, saying only, ”He would like to see you.” (”He,” meaning Esteban. ”You,” meaning Nancy.) And so the three of them piled into a limo and drove off to school.
”Great,” said Shane as the car pulled into the school parking lot. ”Getting dropped off in a limo with Mexican plates. So much for flying under the radar.” Nancy attributed his incessant whining to ”first-day jitters.” Fortunately, Cesar was on hand to offer some manly advice: ”Sometimes you eat the bear, sometimes the bear eats you.” Would Shane end up the bully or the victim? He didn’t care to find out. ”Can’t I do drug things with you guys?” he asked, ever the little entrepreneur. Cesar could do nothing but glare, and then told Nancy, ”He’s going to get his ass kicked.” Her response? ”He’s used to it.”
Meanwhile, at a local motel Isabelle was trying to kick her mom’s ass into gear. Celia, looped on pills and looking more and more like a good candidate for A&E’s Intervention, could barely get out of bed. When awakened out of her stupor, she lunged at Isabelle and grabbed her daughter’s neck. ”Jail reflex,” she downplayed. Isabelle let it go, hoping Celia could get out of her clothes from the night before, get into the shower, and get on the road to school, where it was also Isabelle’s first day. ”Isn’t there a bus or something?” Celia mumbled. ”Maybe I’ll walk,” Isabelle responded.
NEXT: The rape tree
Speaking of walking, Andy was well into his inaugural coyote run. Escorting ten or so illegals, the group took a breather by the side of a tree, where they were treated to matzo and tales of the Old Testament. True to Andy’s vision, each client was supplied with essentials like breath mints, a portable fan, and a copy of the personal-finance book, ”Padre Rico, Padro Pobre” (on tape for illiterates in the bunch). But the jokes were cut short when Andy, noticing girls’ panties hanging off leafless branches, was informed they were sitting near a ”rape tree.” Time to move on to scenery that’s ”a little less rape-y,” Andy directed.
Back at Ren Mar, Silas was trying to make himself useful at Lisa’s cheese shop by offering expansion ideas, like maybe gourmet sandwiches? ”Money is the goal,” said Lisa, revealing that she’d gotten screwed in her divorce settlement, and that paninis or anything of the sort were out of the question. Scouring the kitchen for a small plastic bong, she forbade Silas from even saying the word ”sandwich,” but he wasn’t done with his critique. ”For someone who’s a gourmet, why are you smoking this? It’s like the Cheez Whiz of pot.” Silas went on to explain, in intimate detail, all of her weed’s shortcomings: grown a year ago, harvested prematurely, dry, moldy. Naturally, Lisa wondered how he had become such a cannabis connoisseur. ”It’s my business,” he answered matter-of-factly. Surprised, she exclaimed, ”I’m f—ing a drug dealer?” ”Grower — small scale,” Silas clarified. ”Soon to be drug dealer, and we make love.” Cue the Al Green as Silas offered some green for his new girlfriend to sample — his own strain, the equivalent of the ”greatest cheese ever.” ”Oh my God,” Lisa said mid-exhale. ”I’ve been smoking Cheez Whiz.”
On to the big cheese, Esteban, and his meeting with Nancy and Guillermo. The mayor/kingpin quickly got to the point: After delivering 300 pounds of weed to Nancy last week, Guillermo had apparently announced that he wanted her ”killed in front of her children.” ”I didn’t instruct you to do that, did I?” Esteban reprimanded, clearly annoyed that he’d been forced to micromanage. Guillermo, intimidated if not a bit humbled, offered only yeses from there on out, assuring Esteban that Nancy would not be harmed. With that, ”everyone’s friends again,” said Esteban, before beckoning Nancy to stick around and have some lunch.
With Nancy off playing footsie in Tijuana, Celia was struggling to keep the store running. Still loopy from her morning meds, she barely noticed the third shoplifter that day to make off with merchandise. Instead, she whined about missing Nancy and an annoying donkey situated outside the store playing ”Pop! Goes the Weasel” (the store’s burglar alarm?). Ignacio had a solution: a pick-me-up administered through the nose. Cocaine, maybe? Whatever it was, Celia was down.
NEXT: Border issues
Off in Minutemen territory, Doug and Col. Donnie Schmidt (played brilliantly by Lee Majors, I neglected to mention last week) were getting their red, white, & blue on while monitoring a gap in the fence. ”My retarded cousin Tom used to be a janitor…no more,” said the colonel. ”Mexican takes his job. After he got caught f—ing a mop, but still…” With little action at the border, Schmidt retreated, leaving Doug as the sole lookout and Andy poised on the other side of the border. ”I shall lead you now,” Andy, in full-on Moses regalia, pronounced to his group. ”You shall be my people!” And with that they bolted for Doug’s truck, where Davenport was hidden and fully armed with baseball caps and other American-minded accoutrements. Bad news for Doug, though: None of the hombres had seen his crush, Maria.
”So, you’re not a lesbian,” Esteban inquired as he and Nancy sat for a late lunch. ”Only around Guillermo,” she answered. ”It made it easier to be friends.” (That is, before he threatened to snuff her out in front of Shane and Silas.) Esteban again assured Nancy she was now protected, and a victorious smile crept across her face. Nancy excused herself for a bathroom break, but while desecrating a poster of Esteban, was rattled to her knees when gunfire erupted seemingly right outside the door. Esteban is a popular target, as it turns out, and one with no fear. ”Maybe we should go out for Chinese,” Nancy cracked, but Esteban would not entertain any options other than finishing their lunch, despite some bleeding from a glass shard lodged in his neck. And so they sat and they ate.
Also having a midday snack and trying to avoid an impending panic attack, Shane and Isabelle bemoaned their new lives. ”If only life were a Judd Apatow movie where geeks ruled the world,” Isabelle said with a sigh. ”It’s not, so let’s just suck it up.” But Shane had his own plans, and after finding out who was the most popular kid in the school, he wasn’t about to waste any time. Casually, Shane walked over to Dan, who looked like a foxy version of Jeff Spicoli, picked up a tray table, and whacked him in the face. ”Don’t f—k with me,” were Shane’s four — and only — final words.
Taking a hyper turn, Celia was back to running the store — sprinting to and fro like a banshee on crack — but still scaring away the customers. Whatever substance she snorted was definitely keeping her awake, but she wanted more. Ignacio obliged with one more toot.
NEXT: The storm before the calm
As Nancy and Esteban wrapped up their lunch, the conversation turned to more dire matters: namely, who was looking to off him. Esteban gave his best assessment, using salt-and-pepper shakers to demonstrate where his enemies lived. ”Let me guess, you’re the hot sauce,” said Nancy coyly. Esteban responded with a simple truth: ”I am the table.” But Nancy couldn’t help but question his motives — Take a little blood, give a little blood,” she remarked — which you’d think, judging by his previous hard-headed tantrums, wouldn’t sit well with Señor Grande. But it seemed Esteban, still bleeding, was impressed with Nancy, so she continued to taunt: What were his fears, besides dirty beer bottles? He claimed he had none, but Nancy managed to squeeze out an admission — heights scare the crap out of him. As for what rattled Nancy? ”Calm,” she answered without hesitation. And all of a sudden, Mr. Big, Bad and Beautiful didn’t seem so scary anymore.
On the U.S. side of the border, Andy and Doug were patting themselves on the back after successfully completed their first run. The two business partners said goodbye to their buddy Davenport, who was headed to Florida along with several Botwin-delivered illegals. But just as Andy finished gloating about ”doing God’s work” and ”providing the backbone to the American economy,” the bus closed its doors, and Doug had to inquire: ”They paid you, right?” D’oh!
Back at the store Celia was jonesing for another snoot, courtesy of Ignacio. ”No mas,” he told her with agitation. But once she offered cash, it was a whole other story. Clearly not thinking straight, Celia emptied the register without even flinching.
And Lisa was thinking of where she should spend her own hard-earned cash, when a lightbulb went off: Why not let Silas make use of the store’s backroom for a small grow op? After all, nothing stinks more than cheese — ”It’s the kind of smell that overpowers all other smells,” she told Silas (chest covered for the first time in weeks). ”You really don’t wanna make sandwiches do you?”
Once more in Tijuana, Nancy had a private show-and-tell courtesy of Esteban. She got to see his prized lion, one of several he fosters at his zoos, during dinner time. And while we didn’t get to witness the goat-to-slaughter carnage — thankfully, though we did endure hearing it — Nancy was starting to get a better idea of the bigger picture: Esteban is the bear and the lion.
A notion Esteban reinforced back at his place, which apparently serves as his office and love pad. A sexy romp was well underway once the cameras cut in, during which Esteban was most certainly in charge — but not without a sense of humor. We left the two intertwined John-and-Yoko-style, minus the peace. As for the love? It’s too soon to tell.
Our final scene took us to a bar deep in the heart of Mexico, where we saw a coyote that got outgunned on Andy’s maiden cross-border voyage, now sporting a leg brace. According to his buddy (via his cousin’s cousin), witnesses had seen this mysterious gringo who was serving gourmet snacks to his trusted followers. His name? Señor Andy.
Where will this road take us? And how deep will Nancy delve into Esteban’s world? Only five more episodes to find out!