Divorce: “Christmas”

Last week on Divorce, Frances (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Robert (Thomas Haden Church) get their own lawyers, though Robert’s first attempt at representation doesn’t go well. Frances has finally gotten a gallery space but has no artists to fill it. And Robert was still attempting to garner funding for his newest project, regardless of the fact that he’s about to go through divorce proceedings and is already hemorrhaging money. Nice.

This week we join the family for the happiest of festivities: Christmas! Deck the halls, and down me now some whiskey because boy, oh boy, holidays are rough. Frances attempts to split time for the kids (Sterling Jerins, Charlie Kilgore) so they can spend Christmas with her and her parents but Robert can have them for New Year’s Eve. Robert refuses and insists on spending it all together as a family. Umm, Robert, you understand that getting a divorce means you don’t spend holidays together, right? Or at least maybe not right now since you are in the middle of things and you decided to be the ass who hired a lawyer instead of going to mediation? I mean, I wouldn’t want to spend Christmas with you.

Divorce_Christmas-300x195But Frances caves and decides they can all spend it together as a family, however, her parents (Robert Forster and Dorothy Lyman) do not know anything about the divorce and Frances asks that she be the one to tell them. Since she’s taking her sweet time, Robert pokes about it and eventually Frances breaks her silence. But when confronted later, before she can bring up her infidelity, Robert covers for her and claims he was unfaithful. It’s a very sweet gesture. But the parental response is truly the fascinating part. Of course, Frances’ father gets protective. But Frances’ mother utters a comment that makes you wonder if she’s strayed from her marital bed. But she’s quick to tell Frances that she and Robert can work it out and that she’s sure she’ll see Robert next Christmas. After all, a year is a long time. In the end, Robert stops Frances from coming clean, and in his hasty rant about her sexual infidelities, their son hears everything. Oops.

Meanwhile, Diane (Molly Shannon) and Nick (Tracy Letts) are hosting Christmas dinner with his kids and ex-wife. Certainly awkward, and Nick does everything he can to speed the dinner along to get it over with. Kids I can understand, but especially since they don’t get along, why invite the ex-wife? Dallas (Talia Balsam) is spending time with her son, and their relationship is strained. He brings his girlfriend along and while watching a film together, it becomes apparent that he’s getting serviced beneath the blanket. Even though Dallas calls them on it, they don’t stop. I understand the thrill of getting away with something secretive, but in this case, it isn’t a secret anymore and who wants to get off in front of their mom? At least wait until she’s out of the room and asleep maybe.

Next week will be a ringer as divorce proceedings move forward and we get more action with the lawyers. Robert’s true financial situation comes out and it will be amusing for Frances to deal with being broke since she just started a gallery and seems to have no friendly support. Perhaps it will be just more ammunition for her in the proceedings, but she should make sure to keep an eye on her own funds before Robert tries to take them. I can’t wait to have more screen time for Jeffrey DeMunn and Dean Winters. They are both fantastic actors and it will be interesting to see them go against each other.

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