Friday, March 07, 2008

"Dressed to Kill" - Lipstick Jungle, episode 1.5


Did we know that Wendy's husband Shane was a musician? That's just one of the questions raised in this week's episode, which began with a song and ended with two of the Lipstick ladies making choices that could cause trouble in their marriages.

The ladies are out at a club where Shane's former jazz combo is playing. Shane is enjoying being the only man at a table with three gorgeous women (Nico's husband is at a conference and Joe is making a deal in the car). He's called on stage to play with his former bandmates and spends the rest of the evening happily at the piano while Wendy looks on adoringly and makes out with him in the green room afterwards. We haven't learned much about Shane thus far, except that in the pilot he's trying to get a restaurant started and has issues about being married to a more famous wife. Paul Blackthorne gives Shane a palpable unease with his status as a house husband; in the domestic scenes you can sense that he knows he's an underused man.

Wendy's decision to submit Shane's demo CD under another name as a possible composer for a film is well intentioned to be sure. She wants her husband to feel validated by getting the job on his own merits as opposed to his connections. So why when Wendy meets the film's director in the elevator, does she fess up so quickly? We don't know how much the director felt pressured to hire his Wendy's husband, but this one is a time bomb. As for Nico, she's falling for her young lover Kirby and this week rights a wrong by getting him a job as a still photographer on a film set. Nico has tried to keep Kirby at an emotional distance by setting up "rules" for the relationship - it's just sex, etc. But she's ready to throw the rules out the window when Kirby (at Nico's urging) brings an actress from the movie to a fancy fundraiser. Powerful men marry younger women all the time, but could a woman get away with a younger man? The Nico/Kirby relationship isn't just sex anymore.

The lightest storyline this week belongs to Victory, who this week discovers her former assistant has stolen her sketches and sold them to a rival. This leads to a confrontation at Nico's fundraiser; in the world of "Lipstick Jungle" people are always ripping each other's dresses and writing "bitch" on their cats at these ritzy events. What I enjoyed about Victory this week was the deepening of her relationship with Joe, who seems to enjoy spending time with Nico and her friends and gives her some practical business advice without sounding like a jerk. Andrew McCarthy's accent didn't even bother me this week. Next time, Wendy learns that Nico and Kirby are still involved. She doesn't take it well.

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