By Margaret Lyons
May 18, 2009 at 12:00 PM EDT

Mary Louise Parker told More magazine that she regrets doing a nude scene on Weeds last season. (Recall, she was glumly soaking in the tub on the season finale, when a lovesick and confused Andy came in.) According to the interview, “I didn’t think I needed to be naked, and I fought with the director about it, and now I’m bitter,” Parker says. “I knew it was going to be on the Internet: ‘Mary Louise shows off her big nipples.’ I wish I hadn’t done that. I was goaded into it.”

Look, I’ve seen Fame. I know how the world works, and even I find it a little tough to believe that the iconic star of a tentpole cable series would be on the losing end of a fight here. But I’ll grant the premise: MLP didn’t want to be topless in this scene; she caved; she regrets it. Well, consider me the bearer of good news, then, Ms. Parker: That scene was great and the relatively brief nudity legitimately added something of value. I find Nancy to be a pretty confusing character. She’s incredibly reckless and kind of horrible to everyone, but people seem to be drawn to her; it doesn’t matter how detached and spacey she often seems, she always manages to land on her feet. She is largely unaffected by death, violence, and betrayal. But something finally got through to her (human trafficking, a dead cop), and Weeds needed a way to really show us — not just tell us — that Nancy was bottoming out, that she was struggling, that she had reached her limit. In this case, nips = mission accomplished.

What do you think, PopWatchers? Was the scene gratuitous?