Season 1 Episode 1 Recap and Review
Colin (Tuc Watkins) and Michael (Neil Patrick Harris) lie in bed on the morning of the former’s 50th birthday. Colin feels a little too old and isn’t sure he’ll be over fifty and entering a new phase of life. He doesn’t ask for anything fancy and quiet for the birthday.
Michael calms him down and arranges a nice dinner for the two of them. Michael runs a successful real estate agency, while Colin is a hedge fund manager. Secretly, Michael has planned a surprise party for Colin, but little does he know that he himself has a big surprise coming.
He meets Suzanne Prentiss, his colleague and friend, who informs him that Tyler Hawkins, a young agent, has taken on another of their clients. They’re ready to welcome new clients when Michael receives a phone call that his apartment has been burglarized. But curiously, only certain everyday objects are “missing”: Hermès towels, a few clothes, bottles of wine. Michael is confused but continues the projection.
It’s party time and Colin arrives. He has a solemn look on his face and prepares to give Michael the big news. He leaves him. As he breaks the news, Michael inadvertently reveals the surprise party Colin will be throwing. have to participate. It’s not as awkward as we thought. Michael’s friends Billy, Stanley and the Jonathans all congratulate him on the 17th year of his relationship with Colin.
Michael is in shock but agrees before letting it all out and giving a heartfelt toast to Colin. The two finally have a moment to process the big reveal. Michael is visibly and understandably furious. Colin criticizes him for having organized the party when he asked for something discreet. He takes a taxi and goes to the only apartment he has reserved.
The next morning, Michal receives a message from Colin that he has booked them an appointment with a couples counselor for the next day. Michael tells Suzanne about Colin, who is equally incredulous. At Stanley’s art gallery, Michael discusses the counselor’s appointment with his friends. They warn him that he must not let go of Colin and that he will come back to him. At Michael’s age, men become “invisible” to other men. The calm is reassuring.
At dinner, Stanley places Michael next to Claire Lewis (Marcia gay Harden), a wealthy, divorcing art collector. She might have a list that Michael can get his hands on and earn a big commission and call her to see the apartment. The next morning, Michael goes to Claire’s house, but not before getting an eye-roll from the lobby man for shouting in the lobby. Claire’s luxurious 5000 square foot apartment is truly stunning.
Claire explains her situation and Michael gradually realizes that it is the same for him too. She is livid with her husband and thinks she won’t find anyone at her age. She shouts profanities and swear words as Suzanne enters, late. The two end up leaving, unsure if they’ll get the list. They are heartbroken when they see Tyler work their way up the list to Claire’s house. He also lets them know that she is a friend of his mother and that he will get the list.
Michael and Colin attend the counselor’s session. The latter is still not at the rendezvous and hesitates to face the accusations of the first. Although they make the next appointment, Colin forgets to take Michael’s gift. They originally planned to go to the party together but Colin says he will come separately. But at the Jonathan party, Colin sends a message to Michael saying that “they have nothing more to do” and that he is not coming. Michael is getting ready to drink all night in his apartment but receives a phone call from Suzanne. She knows where Colin is – and who he lives with.
The episode review
Creators Darren Starr and Jeffrey Richman have created a pseudo Sex and the City reboot with modern sensibilities. To imagine a gay main character so open-minded, comfortable, and transparent in how he fits into the scheme of things is a proud effort.
Episode 1 immerses us in the mix of things as the series’ central conceit – Michael moving on and discovering life beyond his domesticated walls – takes over. The first impressions are really positive with some reservations on small things. The energetic tone and tenor of Starr and Richman’s famous previous show is carried over to Uncoupled. But it looks like they’ve learned their lessons and are making the Netflix comedy-drama less cutesy and more effective. Organization and structure are the headlines of Episode 1, which ends on a sensational note.
It’s our prayer and hope that Uncoupled doesn’t just become a one-dimensional show with skewed priorities. The characters we meet seem meaty enough to flesh out full-fledged people with interesting stories to tell. Episode 1 is a pretty good start for the show that feels just heavy enough to tick off the serious touchpoints in the dramatic fabric of the storytelling. Neil Patrick Harris seems like a capable leader and the character is surely feeling something where he can rediscover his form.
The next episode
|Expect a full season write-up in the near future!|