Dead to Me – Season 3 Episode 7 “Can We Be Honest?” Recap & Review

Can We Be Honest?

It is a new morning but the same old story for the ladies at the start of episode 7 for Dead to Me Season 3. Jen still cannot believe she is pregnant, even though the baby is in pristine condition.

Ben is in rehab and she has to deal with the baby alone. Her annoyed rant is both funny and depressing and that is what the show is all about. Judy gifts Dr. Ashmani a painting of her boat (she keeps a picture of it in her office). Judy will be tested again in two weeks to see if the chemo worked or not. If it did, she will have another round to shrink the tumor. If it doesn’t, well…

The funny thing is, she has not told the secret to Judy yet. To keep up appearances, she buys a poncho. It hides the bump rather well and Judy does not seem to notice. When Judy says she has prepared a wine tasting for Jen, she is caught in a lie but recovers well. She has a house showing anyway and it is Karen’s. The two are se[rating and Jeff insists on selling to move away from his married life. Certain smells can upset the fetus and that will make Jen vomit, as she does when Judy brings in Gorgonzola and Chorizo.

She goes outside and sees Ben standing in front of the house, back from rehab. But he comes as a bearer of bad news – for us, not for Jen. He is leaving town and going back to his life in the North. He emphasizes he has no “reason” to stay back as Judy tries to elbow Jen to make him stay. She knows Jen has feelings for Ben and wants her to admit them before it is too late. Jen does not budge and reluctantly sees Ben leave. The entire scene reeks of awkward energy making for comedy gold.

Judy pushes Jen to tell the truth to Ben about everything – Ted, Steve, all of it. But Jen does not think it is a good idea. She tells Judy about the pregnancy and Judy gasps in horror and excitement. But more of the former as she walks into the swimming pool (yes, “walks”, not “falls”) and screams in anger at God for not giving her the opportunity to become a mother. She has flashbacks to the time she was pregnant and miscarried after the accident happened. Jen and Perez have a fight when the latter presses Jen to reveal who was behind the hit-and-run.

When she says Ben, the detective says she will go through with the investigation either way. Judy and Jen reconcile to some extent, although Jen understands why she feels a bit repulsed by the new baby. Jen watches an old video of the family, while Judy shuts her laptop in horror after googling survival chances for Stage IV patients.

Nick takes his findings to Perez. He confronts her about not sending the evidence to the FBI. But he thinks it is because Perez does not trust him and thinks he is a bad cop. Judy shows up with Ben after having previously told Jen she should tell him the truth about the baby. But she actually told him that it was Steve who hit Ted with the car. Ben too was in it that night. He apologizes but the police soon show up and arrest him.

The Episode Review

It is extraordinary how Dead to Me oscillates between drama and comedy. The transition – and at times juxtaposition – is so effortless you’d think it was happening mechanically. Episode 7 highlights the strengths of the show’s fabric in thrilling fashion. As expected, Nick was quick to connect the dots and serve up the solution to the mystery on a platter to Perez but she already knew that.

His appeal to his boss that he is a good cop was touching and shows how even outside the core attention, Dead to Me has layered characters. One of the best moments in the episode was when Judy slides down into the pool and screams. It is such a real emotion and interpretation of what she felt when her best friend revealed to her she was pregnant.

Season 3 has flirted quite frequently with the juxtaposition of Judy and motherhood. While the expression has been subtle, when you look back at them, the impact is huge.

Cardellini has been massively impressive in this season, showing her amazing depth and range. This was a genuinely heartfelt moment that became even more penetrative due to the actress’ manifestation of it.

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You can read our full season review for Dead to Me Season 3 here!

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