Blu-Ray Review – Divorce (Season 1)

It’s interesting to see the career path of Sarah Jessica Parker since Sex and the City ended. A short-failed stint as a movie star, with two Sex and the City films as the highest point commercially, and Parker has yet to hit anywhere near the same heights as she did as Carrie Bradshaw. So, it’s curious that she’s back on HBO … but she picked a terrific project to do it in with Divorce.

Simple premise. After a wacky night out with friends, Frances (Parker) realizes she doesn’t want to stay with her husband Robert (Thomas Haden Church) anymore. She’s also been having an affair for some time, as well, and all the ingredients are there for a marriage implosion. It’s a remarkably dark comedic series that brings out the comedy, and some interesting character moments, because the show has zero qualms with making either of the two leads in the right.

Both Robert and Frances are flawed people and both have moments where they’re both profoundly unlikable as characters. It makes the show interesting because we’re seeing two people completely implode as their marriage fills. It would’ve been easier to make Frances sympathetic, or make her completely awful, but Divorce takes a much more nuanced method and treats them both equally.

We can feel sympathy for Robert, whose wife leaves him and then tries to “make it work” when she’s rejected by her lover, but we can also not like because of how he handles it.

It’s a remarkably effective show because of this. This isn’t a matter of one side being right, the other wrong, and we have villain and hero assignments. We’ve got two people in a marriage about to end handling it in a remarkably awful manner with neither side coming up looking decent in it. It makes for an interesting show because of it.

Audio commentaries are the only extras included.

HBO presents Divorce (Season 1). Created by Sharon Horgan. Starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Thomas Haden Church, Molly Shannon, Talia Balsam, Tracy Letts, Sterling Jerins, Charlie Kilgor. Run Time: minutes. Rating. Released on 4.25.17

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