"Six Feet Under" Untitled (TV Episode 2004) Poster

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Season 4: "You're alive, what's a little pain compared to that?" (mild spoilers)
bob the moo2 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
After the previous season very much focusing on relationships and their collapse, this season opens with the tragic and final end to one of the relationships just as another begins. This season continues the darker material of course but generally the tone is a little more variable than before with still plenty of tragedy mixed in with more humorous and human touches. That said, this is a season that is rather driven by more excessive developments – a sudden marriage, a day-long kidnap/assault, the apparent suicide of one of the characters; there are a lot of things here that if you saw them in a standard daytime soap you would scoff at them for their excess and their clear role as a narrative device. But there is a difference between such shows and this one.

The difference is in the writing but more specifically in the direction that the characters are the focus, not the events that happen to these characters. This sounds simple but it is very effective thing that the show does because it means you engage with the character and, by and large, go with them through whatever they go through – not because the specific event is the thing that does it. This shows a great deal in this season because, as I said, some of the detail here isn't totally convincing if you laid it out as just simple statements. It isn't laid out this way though, it is laid out in the context of flawed people going through their specific life, whether it be the temptation to cheat, the inability to communicate with someone or just day to day tensions caused by the clash of personalities. This is very convincing and the characters feel very real so that even when the plot developments are perhaps not so "day to day", I never struggled to go with it, because within the them the characters and their reactions just worked.

This also helps some of the observations made in the writing, some of the "truths", because rather than being pat or smug, they are backed up by those going through the subject – so these lines of dialogues and scenes work because again we buy the characters, have seen how they got there and it feels genuine. Again, very good writing. The cast continue to deliver on this potential. Krause has some of the harder material due to its excess but he mostly makes it work and the actions of the character are sold by how well he gets his role. Hall is the same and convinces whether he is under extreme trauma or if he is just having spat with Keith. Conroy continues to be great while Ambrose is allowed to grow up and herself become more and more of a person and again she makes the most of this. Support from Rodriguez, Patrick, Cromwell, Griffiths is consistently good – although I should not say support since they are all brought to the fore and make up a stronger front than before.

The third season was very much about lots of relationship problems and things falling apart and, while season 4 is still dark and full of conflict and trouble, it mixes it up more to include love, humor and human touches in a way that enhances the darker material by way of placing it within a much more familiar world. It works very well, allows the characters to develop and be flawed and generally makes for an emotionally engaging season.
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When People Get In Your Heart, They Stay for Good
Claudio Carvalho20 November 2006
Kenneth MacDonald Henderson is split in two while trying to rescue three passengers of an elevator. Jimmy shows the pictures of Claire to a dealer and she is invited to expose in the Bellandi Gallery. Claire is excited and invites her friends, using cocaine in the vernissage. She argues with the selfish Russell, Billy defends her and later they have sex. Roger Pasquese has oral sex with Keith and calls off his claim in the justice. Later he invites Keith to be his bodyguard. Ruth and George have lunch with George's daughter Maggie. Later, when Ruth sees George speaking alone, she calls Maggie. Rico misses his family, and after having a conversation with Kenneth's widow, he proposes reconciliation with Vanessa, but she asks for the divorce. David visits Jake in the prison to express his rage and he feels better in the end. Nate sees the picture of Lisa that Michaela gave to David and travels to Idaho. He meets Hoyt and discloses an inner secret with tragic consequences.

The last episode of the Fourth Season "Six Feet Under" is great and gives a hint of the destinies of the characters in the next season. Claire is still using many types of drugs and having a promiscuous life, now with the unstable Billy. Rico seems to be conformed with his lonely life; George is insane and intends to live in the bomb shelter; Nate and Brenda seems to be OK; David seems to have superseded his trauma; Keith may be tempted by Roger's proposal. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "Sem Título" ("Untitled")
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