Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Review - In Treatment Season 3 Episode 1 Sunil: Week One / 2 Frances: Week One

In Treatment is a show that could work on radio. It's about 90% talking, and the visual cues only add to the ongoing discussion. On a medium like television which is heavily reliant of what viewers look at, it's odd that In Treatment would be such an enthralling show. The way the entire season plays out is nothing short of remarkable. Each year, Paul meets the patient and the layers are slowly uncovered, all while Paul deals with his own problems on the side. In the end everything comes together to a conclusion for all characters.

The third season of In Treatment, premiering well over a year since the end of the second season, starts with a clean slate. With the Israeli series BeTipul gone as a guidebook, everything is new. There's no Gina, no leftover patient stuff from previous season.

The first patient we meet is Sunil, a transplant from Calcutta who moved in with his son, Arun,and daughter-in-law, Julia. Recently, he's been a shut-in, refusing to eat and be normal in general. As Paul talks with the three of them, rarely getting a response from Sunil, we get a some kind of idea where things are going. Arun adapts to what Julia wants, not the other way around, and Sunil, who is forlorn over the death of his wife and displacement from homeland, is resentful towards her.

While we get a pretty good idea of where Sunil's story is going, the second patient, Frances, is more of a mystery. She's the sister of one of Paul's former patients and does no reciprocate anything Paul inquires about. Clearly there's something wrong with her. But at the same time, her suggestion that her sister's cancer being related to their mother's cancer is the jumping point for one of Paul's development. After the session, he tries to get in contact with a neurologist, knowing his father died of Parkinson's disease.

Score: 8.9/10
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