'The Big C' recap: Kicking Against The Pricks

laura-linney-the-big-c-320.jpgWow. So accidentally walking in on her son masturbating is one thing. Sitting down next to him to discuss methodology and probably turning him into Jack the Ripper? Thing two. But the voyage of sexual discovery this sends Cathy on -- from the Brazilian, to watching porn in the middle of class, to literal exhibitionism, to full-on sweating adultery -- hits a whole new level of weird, even for Cathy, whose Inner Freak, it would seem, has been sharing rent with her Inner Ho. And nothing could be finer, frankly on "The Big C."

Adam deals with the trauma of The Talks his mom keeps obsessively giving him -- trying, as always, to cram ten years of parenting into eighteen months -- by being his usual s****y self, bird-dogging chicks with his dad, and eventually having quite a surreal little playing-doctor moment with Andrea, down at the park. Meanwhile his dad Paul is running around in an eyepatch, tossing around bizarre pop-psych catchphrases, drinking beers in his car -- generally looking even more like a full-on lunatic than usual -- and edging ever closer to throwing down with Rugby Slut, with whom this week he shares an oddly skinny joint.

Brother Sean is about to be driven from his squat by a municipal project, so he decides to do some Crazy Homeless Person version of acting through the appropriate channels. There are hand-drawn graphs and like a ransom note, it's bad. Neighbor Marlene catches him going through the Jamison's recycling and holds him at gunpoint for awhile before taking him back to her house for some of her dead husband's suits, and they dance together, and it's awesome. Less awesome is his run-in with a stuffy young functionary (weirdly/reliably adorable Jack Ferver from "Strangers With Candy") and the huge Crazy Homeless Person mess he makes of himself at that point.

And all this time, Andrea's finding new weight-loss motivation in the school's summer painter, crazy-sexy Idris Elba, talking with his real accent for once and charming the pants -- literally -- off Cathy herself. One wide-angle Sharon Stone move later, she and old Idris are dry-docking on her desk in the pale afternoon. Oh, Cathy. Mid-season climax is due to hit next week. What in hell are you going to do for an encore?

Photo credit: Showtime