Episode: “Madison Berg”
Reviewer: Tim Stevens
This Week’s Theme: Umm…Maybe, Christian and Julia Should Give it a Shot
Who Was Nice Enough to Tell Us About It: Sean and Kimber…sort of
Boy, if Nip/Tuck continues to not obviously spell out their themes week after week, my “This Week’s Theme” feature is going to look pretty silly. Anyway, on to the episode in question.
Things get off to a gruesome start as Christian does some last minute spot liposuction for his very soon to be bride Kimber. Apparently, she wants to look perfect in her dress and since buying a dress that would fit her size 0 frame was apparently out of the question, lipo and a fast are the solutions. Give this to her, she sets goals and adheres to them.
Then we meet Madison Berg, a sixteen year old Jewish girl who’s mother has brought her in for a new nose. I had all sorts of issues with this one. First, this girl’s sixteen? She looks about my age and I’m 24. Sorry, I’m not buying it. Second, Ms. Berg has a very nice nose. I know the Jewish stereotype of large noses, but she does not fit it, so what is there to fix? I did appreciate Madison’s reaction to the “before” shot of the popular girl from her school. Her mystified “she’s Jewish” was probably the best line delivery of the night. Sadly, we would see no more on Madison. Presumably, she got a fab new nose.
At school, Matt reaps some of the benefits of having a plastic surgeon dad (or two, I suppose) when is approached by Ariel played by none other than formerly lily white and innocent Brittany Snow of American Dreams fame. Yeah, I have no idea what the heck show that is either. Anyway, despite formerly looking like Michael Jackson, Matt’s no fool so he extracts a coffee date out of her in exchange for access to his two dads.
Kimber has moved on to the next stage of pre-wedding adjustments with a stop off for a waxing at the spa. As if that experience was not uncomfortable and painful in and of itself, she is lucky enough to draw Gina as her technician. Gina does her best to make things worse before Julia steps by. Then, Kimber picks up the awkward slack by talking about Julia and Christian’s connection. Un-com-for-tableeeeeeeee!
Thankfully, Christian is having a better time of things. First, he gets a small step towards reconciliation out of Sean and Matt as he gets them to agree to be his groomsmen at his wedding. Then, it is off to the cake tasting, with a distracted Sean by his side. However, after Sean manages to get Christian to more or less own up to the fact that the cake testing is where he sealed the deal with Julia before her marriage to Sean, things get better. They get very funny, actually, as the two act like a couple when the cake lady says that they are the most open, sharing couple she has ever seen. Now if only the rest of America could be so understanding (ahh, nothing like a political statement to grind a recap column to a halt, eh?).
After their sweet, sweet gay coupling, Christian and Sean sit in with Matt’s new lady friend. What turns out to be a rather righteous screed against plastic surgery feeding into the idea of “perfection” quickly turns into a white supremacy lecture. Which makes sense because Matt has shown that he has great talent for picking them.
Unswayed by his dads’ distaste for his new lady, he promptly gets to the making out with her until he notices her earring which is a hammer of Thor. Apparently, however, she is not a big Marvel Comics fan as the fan also bears the swastika as its sigil. Matt at first seems weirded out (a perfectly sensible decision) and when she brought up her distaste for transsexuals, I thought things were going to get ugly. However, I forgot that Matt is a phenomenally messed up young man so next thing I know, she’s claiming, “I’m not a Nazi, I’m a purist,” and Matt thinks that that a person who would make such a claim would be a fine choice to pierce his ear with a home kit. Ahh, kids.
Meanwhile, Kimber arrives home from her grueling day of lipo, hair yanking, and starvation to find Christian mooning over Julia and Sean’s old wedding album. Oddly enough, this upsets her and she packs up and heads for a hotel.
Back at “Purist and Proud” Matt meets Ariel’s fam. Mom’s a big fan of Aunt Mamie figurines and Dad does background checks on all his daughter’s boyfriends. Don’t worry about Matt though, Dad is just thrilled to find out that Matt beat the tar out of a transsexual and sees in him a “kindred spirit”. He asks if Matt might steal his fathers’ files from the office, but Matt begs off because it is family.
Apparently that meeting of the Hitler Suburbanites Society ran long because Matt rushes to Christian’s wedding at the last minute still rocking hiking boots and his sweet new racially inflammatory earring. Predictably, Christian ain’t having it and Sean fails to broker a compromise between the two on the issue. Matt takes off (to steal files and make out with his Aryan beauty) and Sean steps into the slot of best man and guy giving away the bride.
The blushing bride, sadly, does not appear to have a bride’s maids because Gina is able to show up unannounced to make disparaging remarks about the future of the Christian/Kimber coupling and give Kimber her old diaphragm as a gift. Then, weirdly, Kimber cries and the two have a moment. No way Gina ever has a moment with Kimber, especially not like this. Sure it was sweet and poignant, but come on. WAY unrealistic.
Julia and Christian apparently did not get the “Christian loves only Kimber” memo as they engage in hot and heavy reminiscing that culminates in a kiss. It is a but a wedding gift according to Julia though, to help Christian let go of the past. If only we were all so lucky to receive such a wedding gift.
Here’s where things get odd. Kimber is primping in the mirror when the door opens and she says hello to Sean. We, however, never see anyone in the reflection of her mirror. A little while later, Sean runs into the church and whispers something to Christian. Back to the bride’s room they head and Kimber is gone with only the words “I just can’t” written in lipstick on the mirror. So how did she go from ready to go with Sean to ditching her wedding and leaving her “Dear John” note on a mirror? My theory: the Carver. She did not leave of her own free will, she was snagged and the message on the mirror is just meant to obfuscate. It is pretty clear by now that Carver has it out for Christian, so it makes sense that he might swipe Christian’s bride. To me, anyway.
All in all, another strong episode. Matt is back to being the teen that I loathe, which is comforting. Gina, except for a last minute slip, was delightfully nasty. Oh, and there was almost no Quentin. Truthfully, the rest of the episode could have been awful, but as long as it still included Christian and Sean at the cake tasting, I would still give it an…