Damages 3.4 Recap: When the Tobin Case Is Super Ominous and Interesting Because Somebody’s Following Joe, and Martin Short Is Creepy

31 Jan

Episode 4: “Don’t Throw That at the Chicken”

Previously On: Cougar Hippie (Michael’s new mom girlfriend). Michael’s back, and you’re gonna be in trouble!  Hey nah! Hey nah! Michael’s back!

DMM’s in the hospital, but she won’t be able to talk for a while because she was, indeed, very concussed.

Patty’s unconcerned about the concussion:  She wants to know if Gates can delay sentencing on Dad Tobin for long enough to talk to DMM—or something.

Five months later, Magician Cop and Large Cop have discovered that Tom drowned and was subsequently dragged into the dumpster.  Magician Cop lectures Large Cop about “handl[ing] these things more delicately.”  (And later does the exact opposite.)  Whatever Magician Cop.  Go bother Catherine Willows.

"Hey, girl, hey!"

Five months earlier, Patty shows up at the DA’s office probably for some secret shady Patty Hewes stuff (or maybe she’s hoping Ellen will be gone so she can secretly fondle her paperweights again).

She and Ellen make eyes at each other a little, and Ellen asks “What’s Patty doing here?” as if she’s forgotten that Patty has legitimate business with the DA or as if she fingerprinted her desk.  My bet’s on the former though I wish it were the latter.

"What's Patty doing here?!"

Within Gates’s office, Patty states that she wants to question Tobin before she questions DMM, so the DA needs to delay sentencing.  Gates is skeptical, but Patty tries to Jedi Mind Trick him. I am dubious as to whether this works with him as he has already expressed disdain for Patty’s shady ways.

Meanwhile on some park bench, Martin Short’s talking to Joe about how his dad’s being sentenced soon and how Dad Tobin wants to talk to Joe before he gets sent to real jail instead of house jail.  Martin Short suspects Joe’s been drinking.

Ellen’s meeting with Sis about giving Sis money.  Sis thanks her profusely, and Ellen drops the bomb that she cancelled the check.  And then Sis roasts her: “Every time I think we might be friends, you just humiliate me again.”  As much as I hate to side with Ellen about anything, you’re doing hella bad drugs, Sister.  She didn’t find just cigarettes up in your bag, girl.

Dad Tobin, Martin Short, and Dr. Uncle Pete are conferencing now about whether Dad should’ve told Joe about the money.  Dr. Uncle Pete and Martin Short council Dad that he “had to get him on board.”  They decide they’ll “have to consider some other options.”  Ominous!  Joe, get out while you can!

The door says high-powered family defense attorney, but the decor says PI from an '80s erotic thriller.

Now in Martin Short’s tropical paradise office, some severe-looking woman sits across the desk from him.  I guess she’s some lady from an AA-type program/spying service.  Is that a thing?  Martin Short says, “If he drinks again, you know what to do.”  Ominouser!!  Run, Joe, run!!!

Interior.  Fancy restaurant.  Michael meets Patty and claims he’s been in contact with Phil, who has provided him a nondescript business job.  Sounds suspiciously Mary Katherine Gallagher of him.

He’s looking cagier than ever, and his hair is slicked back and totally nasty.  He says, “You were right about [Cougar Hippie].”

Patty says, “She seemed lovely” with the sweetest voice and face ever.  You know what else is that sweet?  Antifreeze slipped into unsuspecting Kool-Aid.

Patty Hewes or Black Oil Alien?

5 months later.  Magician cop’s questioning Patty about Tom’s death.  She’s looking very upset (but also kind of X-Files hollow-eyed—not sure if that’s the weird flash-forward wash out they do or if she truly looks like one of the black oil aliens).  When Magician Cop asks about “particularly demanding cases” or “unusual behavior” and she admits that “something was wrong.”

5 months previous, if I have to hear the phrase “delay sentencing” one more time, I may have to open a bottle of wine.  This time it’s Martin Short and Dad Tobin talking about “put[ting] all this [DMM] business to rest.”  Thank goodness!  I hope this actually happens because I want to know everything about that dame! Or see some murder (other than Tom)!

Now Michael’s painting?  In some spacious studio?  Just as I suspected, Cougar Hippie waltzes in as they are still together.  I bet he doesn’t even have a real job.  He says, “Maybe it’s time for me to get a job.”  Boom, roasted.  Also, Cougar Hippie is pregnant!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Back at the DA’s office, Gates is asking Ellen to join him in a Patty meeting, ostensibly because “Chris screwed up with a witness.” Ellen and I don’t buy it, and Ellen says, “You don’t trust her; you need me there to suss her out.”  Good word choice, Ellen.  Do I like you kind of?

Joe confides to Mrs. Joe about his dad’s affair and that he used to date DMM, too.  Then he ominously says, “There’s a way out of this.”  What do you have planned?  Are you actually not the good guy I thought you might kind of be?  Are you gonna kill her for real this time instead of just accidentally run over her?

Family dinner other Tobins.  I am surprised/disappointed that Lily Tomlin is no longer wearing a gypsy get-up.  Nevertheless, they discuss Joe’s recurring drinking problem and how Dad thinks Joe hates his guts, but Lily Tomlin tries to convince him that Joe just wants his respect.  Cliché?

I know that corn and maize are slightly different (because maize is shorter and would not actually make a very good maze for grown people), but if I had a corn maze, I'm not sure if I could restrain myself from calling it a maize maze.

Now Joe and Joe Jr. are in a corn maze?  Joe Jr.’s asking a lot of really good questions such as, “When did you know grandpa was bad?”  And Joe’s being all philosophical and giving surprisingly good answers, such as the following, “Sometimes people do bad things but love you anyway” and “Even though he had everything, maybe he still felt bad about himself.”  Dammit, Joe.  I’m suspicious of you, yet you are likable and have some morals maybe.

A PI person is shadily following Joe everywhere and calls Martin Short to tell him Joe’s not drinking yet.

Back at Hewes and Shayes, Ellen and Tom catch each other in the hall before the meeting between Patty and Gates, and Tom’s trying to keep in good spirits, saying things like, “I wanted a sexier font”  for his name that is finally on the door.  Ellen expresses her desire to help Tom nail the Tobins because he’s now one of the plaintiffs.  Patty doesn’t know about Tom’s investment situation still, apparently.

Or does she?!

"Crystal ball says Patty Hewes is gonna get you!"

Thanksgiving flashback.  Tobin’s having some heart pain stuff, but he unfortunately left his heart pills at DMM’s.  Lily Tomlin is so pissed.  Is she going to put a curse on him?

Patty and Gates and Ellen and Tom are all interviewing Tobin.  He’s claiming DMM knew nothing, which none of us believe.  They ask, “[DMM] knew nothing of the fraud?  Why help her flee the country?”  And Tobin plays the oh-my-longsuffering-wife card and says, “In one night she found out I didn’t deserve any of it.”  K.

And Patty’s putting on her toughest Patty face, asking “Who are you going to leave this to?  Everyone’s incompetent.”  Tobin claims, “There is no fortune.”

And Patty states, “I will find the money.  Last chance.”  I totally believe you.

Pan to Ellen.  She believes Patty, too. She looks a little wistful, in fact.

Is that a ghost of smile, Ellen?

Now Gates is asking Ellen about this interview, and Ellen explains everything, how Patty was “trying to catch him in a lie” and how Patty’s playing mindgames trying to get everybody to think she doesn’t have anything else on DMM.  Does she have anything else on DMM?  I honestly do not remember.  Patty must be playing mindgames with me, too.  Also, Ellen advises to “let Patty take the lead.”

Now Joe’s back in the city with a big ol’ bottle of booze with a PI person watching.

Dad Tobin and Martin Short are having a heart-to-heart in which Dad says, “I’ve made my decision, Lennie.”  Everything’s so vague and ominous today!

5 months later, Tom’s at the apartment-with-a-million-papers, rummaging around in those million papers all the while looking frantic as a frantic feral cat in a dumpster.  I just realized most of those papers have graphs on them.  Tom hates graphs.  He’s on the phone to Patty—rather he’s trying to get off the phone with Patty.

Tom opens the door, looking like he might puke.

5 months previous, Patty’s alone at home doing paperwork at a table, and Tobin calls her to chat about how he’s not a good father and bond pathetically/ominously with Patty about having sons.  She tells him she’s not a psychiatrist.

Meanwhile, Joe’s in the city, going to get more liquor.  Martin Short is following.  Is he going to kill him?  I’m worried for Joe’s safety.

And the PI’s there, too.  What’s this PI doing?  Is he going to kill him?  Joe, put down the bottle and run for the hills!!!!!!!!!!!!

???

Why’s Martin Short messing around with those screens so much?

Doctor Uncle Pete at Daddy’s.  Giving him meds to kill him?  Assisted suicide?  Dad’s got an envolpe.  Is it to Patty?  his son?

Bourbon Seduction Step 1: Pour bourbon. Bourbon Seduction Step 2: Hand bourbon to seducee in the awkwardest way possible. Bourbon Seduction Step 3: Chit chat mysteriously while affecting closed-off body language.

Now Patty and Ellen are at Patty’s?  Patty pours them both some bourbon.  They share a lot of uncomfortable stares and small talk, and Ellen accuses Patty of “seducing [her] with bourbon.”  She then claims Patty wants to use her for her DA connections.  Patty sighs, “I just want your company.  You need to learn how to let go of work.”

Um… What was that scene?

Joe, apparently not killed by anybody because he dumped out the liquor he was going to drown his sorrows in, shows up at Dad’s to find him dead.  Pan to envelope:  “Deliver to Patty Hewes.”  I was right!  Joe’s not going to deliver to Patty.

5 months later, Patty is running into her apartment screaming and crying in grief-filled paroxysms, “I told you to stop!”  Not again, Patty!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Notes:

  • I have the sneaking suspicion this episode got us almost nowhere in regards to Tom’s murder.  Red herring episode?  Or do they have me totally fooled?
  • What’s in that envelope?
  • Once again, Joe shows how important family is to him.  While I liked him in that corn maze scene and that time he threw away his booze, I’m not sure how much I trust him.  I mean, he did take the envelope marked for Patty.  But I’m blinded by my irrational devotion to Patty:  Anybody would’ve done what he did there to protect his family/money.  Hmm…is he really in it for family or money?  Or are they synonymous for him?
  • I realized while getting the pictures for this that Ellen and Patty hardly ever appear in the same frame.  Does this symbolize their disunity?  Will they be in more frames together as they get back together?
  • What about that scene with Ellen at Patty’s apartment?  Mysterious.  Patty does want something from Ellen, but neither Ellen nor I can put our respective fingers on what.  It’s not all professional, but I don’t think she necessarily wants to bang Ellen.  It’s more like she wants to straight-up own her.  That could just be a Patty thing.  Maybe she played this game with Tom when they first knew each other.
  • Did Patty have Tom killed?!  Surely not.  Of course, if he’s now skimming from the firm to regain some assets (and that’s what this secret apartment is about and that’s why he and Ellen are hanging out) maybe Patty got fed up and hired Baldie to do it.  But then decided another contract hit would be a bad idea?  IDK; nothing’s fitting for me yet, including but not limited to these bizarre/vaguely homoerotic exchanges between Patty and Ellen.
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