In Treatment: Alex-Week One
(S01E02) "I was told you were a good listener." - Alex
I was pleased to see that the second episode seemed a little more light-hearted. Since Blair Underwood is a new patient, things start off a bit lighter. Gabriel Byrne even attempts a little joke, a very little joke. Sadly, that failed joke set the tone for much of the episode.
Six minutes into the show and I'm already bored hearing about Blair Underwood's adventures as a Navy pilot. To make things worse, every time Byrne pipes in with an interesting comment or question, Underwood shuts him down so he can continue his story. We get it, you killed children, you were following orders, mistakes were made. Get to the point!
It finally started to get interesting when the discussion turned to the death of Underwood's mother. When Byrne connected the two events, I was actually relieved to see some real therapy happening. Then when he revealed that he suffered a heart attack and actually died and I was completely back on board.
I was really impressed with Underwood's acting on this show. In the past, he never seemed like anything but a real handsome guy with some talent. That probably has more to do with the lack of great roles for young black men on television than anything else but in this show, it seemed to me that he finally found a part he could sink his teeth into. I loved his cockiness. He even managed to brag about how long he was clinically dead.
The best part of the episode was at the end when Byrne pointed out all the ways Underwood was avoiding going back to duty. Not only did it make perfect sense but it was actually sound psychological reasoning.
Even though, he said he was going to take a trip back to the site of the bombing, I think we can assume he's going to return, if he ends up going at all. Maybe the key to watching this series is to only watch the days with patients you find interesting and then watch at the end of the week when Byrne visits his own shrink. It's only Tuesday and I am already dying to hear what he has to say about his patients.