HBO News Blog

Divorce Series Premiere: “Pilot”

By Alexandra Mitchell on Oct 15, 2016 to Divorce

Sarah Jessica Parker has made her grand return to HBO in this new show centered around a struggling marriage. Here is what she had to say about all that. 

Divorce focuses on SJP as Frances who is plagued with marital issues in her relationship with husband Robert, played by Thomas Haden Church. It appears the show will launch into the complications of marriage, divorce, and everything in between pretty quickly. And as with any relationship that reaches its end, you wonder where it all started to unravel and what was the final straw. While we haven’t seen the build up, we get a fresh glimpse at what finally broke the back of this marriage. At the 50th birthday of a friend (Molly Shannon) it becomes clear the two aren’t happy and apparently no one else is either. As their friends openly disdain their own marriages or partners, this weight becomes oppressive for them. After Molly Shannon gets pretty wasted, she pulls a gun on her husband which induces a heart attack. In the process she nearly shoots Robert.  Once the dust settles, Robert is pleased to be alive and so grateful.  But Frances sees it differently; she wants a fresh start; one away from Robert.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGxlK6yQugY

The casting of the two main characters was very well done. Both Parker and Church are very skilled at portraying emotional depth, and with the obvious emotional ammunition here, it will be interesting to watch this season continue.  At first, you emotionally align with Parker. The show focuses on her unhappiness and portrays Church as being annoying and boring. Eventually, we discover that she has been having an affair.  And any empathy I had for her went out the window. Robert is of course furious when he finds out. Literal mic drop.

As the show goes on, it will be interesting to see what affects the turmoil has on not only these two but also their children. It’s clear the relationships there are tense, at least between the children and Parker. Children involved in the dissolution of their parents’ marriage can have a lot of troubles. It’s clear there is a lot of displeasure between the two parents, so being stuck in that atmosphere can’t be easy.  And there’s always the chance a parent can try and use the kids to hurt their former partner. Could we see parental subterfuge?  Or maybe both will try and keep the children out of the drama for their own good?  Time and more episodes will tell, but what is obvious is the emotional turmoil between these two characters will be fascinating to watch as it unfolds. Are you watching Divorce Sunday nights at 10:00pm?  We end with next week’s preview and look at what some critics say. 










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