Maria sets her sights on Andy, Shane scores big with his girls, and Nancy makes a deal that could cost her everything
Credit: Sonja Flemming
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‘Weeds’ recap: Let’s make a deal

With the Labor Day break out of the way, we are nearing the end of the road here, folks. There’s just one more episode of Weeds left. Prepare yourself for a Silas drought (though you can always order him up shirtless on on-demand), no more funny cracks from Andy, and (thankfully) an end to Doug’s endless racist rants. As for our fair matriarch? All season long, we’ve seen Nancy Botwin dig a hole for herself deeper than the one burrowed in the back of her store, but now it’s all coming to a head. Her world is teetering on the brink of collapse and threatening to drag her down, along with all those she works and lives with.

We ended the last episode with a meeting. This week, we got a deal. Naively perhaps, Nancy scheduled a sit-down with Captain Till, thinking it would be one-on-one. Cops, of course, work in pairs, so that wasn’t happening, and Agent Shlatter listened in nearby. “So your word is s—,” Nancy barked while futzing with a Rubik’s Cube. Captain Till barely blinked, even when she read her list of requested “assurances.” Namely, that no one finds out the information came from her. With that came other demands, like if there was a bust, her “people” would not go down, that her name would not appear on any paperwork, and that her family would not go into witness protection. Having Guillermo in his sights kept Captain Till interested and accommodating, and finally he got some key information: “There’s a tunnel.”

Also coming to the end of her rope, Celia wasn’t feeling the low-rent rehab she was forced into, and hearing stories from one of the group’s more pathetic members made the picture that much more clear. “I thought I hit bottom,” she told her fellow addicts, “but after hearing your stories, I realize it could be so much worse. The truth is, none of you have any chance in hell of pulling your lives together.” By the end of her declaration, Celia seemed convinced that only she stood any chance at starting over. And with that realization, she bolted. “Stupid-ass bitch,” said the group leader. Clearly, no love lost there.

Speaking of asses, Andy’s looked absolutely scrumptious to Maria, who walked in on him rinsing off in the outdoor shower. “You have been in my dreams,” she told him. He tried to shrug off the confession with one of his own, which involved Lou Dobbs of all people (on the other hand, maybe it’s not so odd, since the CNN vet does love to talk immigration policy). There was no tap-dancing around what Maria had in mind, so she just came out with it. “Make love to me,” she pleaded. “Doug is not the man for me. You are.” Give the man props for at least trying to uphold the “bros before hos” rule, but with his package cupped in his hand, chanting Lou Dobbs’ name wasn’t going to do much in the way of physiological deterrence, and so Andy dove in.

NEXT: Shane’s big adventure

The DEA wasted no time in scoping out Maternity World, sending Agent Shlatter and a female decoy in for some sly surveillance. Were it not for Sanjay’s “never wrong” gaydar, they may have managed to pull off the charade undetected, but no such luck. “There’s weirdness,” said Sanjay as soon as the supposed married couple headed off to the dressing room. “It’s a puzzler. No straight man knows what a drop waist is…and if he does, he denies it.” Nancy did her best to laugh off Sanjay’s insight, but once he started in on the possibility that this customer could be an undercover cop, anxiety set in. “He’s an undercover cop here to scope us out and bust us,” Sanjay said. “And then ask me out!” Whew.

Meanwhile, at school, Harmony and Simone ducked out to have a smoke while Shane and Isabelle looked on. The girls were considering breaking into the science lab after school to get high, until Shane came up with a better option: He could procure some pot. Izzy was none too thrilled by his newfound darker side, nor cared much for the company he was keeping. “You two totally make me reconsider f—ing boys,” she snapped. “You do it once and they become your puppet.”

Sure enough, Shane made a quick run to the sandwich shop on behalf of the girls, but his request for one head-cheese sandwich didn’t go quite as he planned. Without mincing words, Silas told him to f— off. “I’m not gonna sit here and say don’t do drugs,” Silas began, before Shane interjected that it would make him a total hypocrite, “but I’m not gonna be your f—ing dealer.” Not even an offer of $300 would do the trick. Shane was S.O.L.

Oblivious to the dramas of the outside world, Nancy made herself at home in Esteban’s apartment as he regaled her with stories of boats and serenades. She certainly brought out the softer side of the Tijuana mayor/overlord, even inspiring him to display a photo of his three daughters, living in France with their mother. “You make me do things I wouldn’t usually do,” he said. But Nancy wasn’t all there, and as her mind drifted off to what might come of her alliance with the cops, we started to see how things were going down back at the store. As Sanjay closed up shop, he was greeted outside the door by a gun to his head and a swarm of DEA agents to boot.

At the same time, Nancy came close to confessing to Esteban. “I wanted to tell you something,” she started saying, but never quite got it out. Instead, Esteban promised there would be no more girls coming through the tunnel, and explained that this business is one of “dark-hearted people,” a club neither of them belonged to. No, with these two is was all about sophistication, a dance while shots peppered the store’s back-room operation, sparing viewers the noise and guts of the fight (wish I could say the same for the second half of Pineapple Express). An interruption came when Esteban brought up the idea of going away, just at the moment the DEA reached the middle of the tunnel with Guillermo in their possession but the Tijuana police directly in front. The two factions would be separated here, and Ignacio was released to the south. As the situation intensified below ground, so did Esteban and Nancy’s conversation, even veering to that other L word. “Are you in love with me?” Nancy inquired coyly, but she didn’t get much of an answer — more like an echo. But that window was closed soon enough as some bad news was delivered by Cesar via cell phone. Code word: red licorice, meaning “very bad.”

NEXT: Celia’s apology tour

The next day at Doug’s apartment, Andy dropped a bomb of his own. “Maria and I had sex,” he told to his best friend. “I feel like s—. You’re my friend and it’s tearing me up inside. I had to come clean.” Maria, who stood off to the side, tried to take the blame and told Doug that she seduced Andy, but Andy’s efforts to skirt around the truth — that it was a “one-slash-two-time thing that meant nothing” — were far from convincing. Not helping was Maria’s outburst that Andy was the best lover she ever had. Surprisingly, Doug seemed to take it fairly well. He praised Andy for his honesty, calmly explained to Maria that for her to continue living in his apartment would be awkward, and then excused himself for a few minutes. To do what? The ultimate dick move: call the INS.

With all the tunnel brouhaha, Esteban was busy planning a press conference while Nancy tried to calm her people down. Arrests were being made, but Esteban wondered where the leak came from — the Asian homosexual? Celia the lesbian? It couldn’t have come from his end, he insisted, because “my people don’t talk.” But his joke about Nancy as a potential suspect revealed exactly what was in store for her should she be found out: “Reckless, impulsive, not suicidal,” said Esteban. Sure, Guillermo was out of the picture, but another tunnel was already being dug, as Cesar pointed out upon arriving to pick up his boss. Esteban, who didn’t seem nearly as affected as his underling, had other things on his mind, like the answer to Nancy’s question before they were interruped the previous night: yes.

Celia’s path to recovery continued with the requisite apology to the people she’s hurt. She started with her daughter, Isabelle, to whom she passed on “massive body issues” along with a host of other judgments. “You wanna love the ladies, love the ladies! I’ll buy you a strap-on for Hanukkah.” Apology accepted. But Dean’s would not be so easy. Turns out the Hodes marriage was doomed from the start, as Celia admitted to never having been attracted to her husband in the first place. Repulsed was more like it. But Dean paid it little mind. Instead, he encouraged his ex-wife to reconnect with their other daughter, Quinn, whom she hadn’t seen in two years. Dean urged her to “make things right” with the one person who could use a real apology. Now, am I just spacing, or did this come out of nowhere? I always thought of Izzy as the quintessential only child. Doesn’t she give off that vibe?

NEXT: Truth and consequences

Esteban’s press conference went off without a hitch. Staged as a coordinated effort between the DEA and Tijuana’s municipal police, Captain Till and Nancy’s boyfriend stood side by side while presenting a waist-high pile of contraband. The bust was to serve as a warning, Esteban declared that, “we will find you. We will arrest you. We will prosecute you.” But back in the limo, it was all about taking the law into his own hands. When Cesar presented Esteban with papers concerning the bust, the boss had but one order: “You have my permission to read that very carefully,” he told Cesar. “And do what you need to do.”

Back at school, Shane came through with the weed and was greeted with two very happy groupies who were left speechless by his undeniable cool. All they could say was “You rock.”

Also feeling self-congratulatory, Captain Till reunited with Nancy for a post-bust recap. Everything had gone as planned, but she would have to be brought in for questioning, he explained: “We’ll arrest you tomorrow, we’ll pretend to ask, you’ll pretend to know nothing, and we’ll pretend to f— up on a technicality.” Sanjay, meanwhile, was shipped out of town while Guillermo was looking at a one-way ticket to the big house. Her escape would have been nearly complete, were it not for one big unknown: Who was Guillermo’s boss? While Nancy was covered north of the border, “they play a harder game down south,” Captain Till reminded her. Still, Nancy played dumb yet again.

With the meeting adjourned, Till called his beau and partner but got his voicemail. Turns out Cesar had apprehended Agent Shlatter, and while reading aloud the case documents that he had procured, was slowly sanding the skin off his body. Would the cop spill? Indeed, he did, naming Nancy Botwin as the informant. His reward: a shot from close range.

So, at this point, how many cops is Nancy responsible for killing? And how many guns have been pointed at her head? I get the feeling Esteban’s not the talk-it-out kind of guy, despite his recent admission of love. You know this is going to turn out badly, but how ugly could it get? Will we see an offing on next week’s finale? Pipe up with your predictions for the season ender.

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