Opinion: Have these “Weeds” become overgrown?

Dan Jenkins

Dan Jenkins

Dan Jenkins is a freshman news major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].

I first got into the Showtime series “Weeds” a few months after its third season ended. It was February 2008, and my family had just switched over to Verizon FiOS cable TV. I had heard “Weeds” was a great show, so I decided to check it out. Man, was I glad I did.

I became quickly enamored with the zany antics of Mary-Louise Parker’s Nancy Botwin and her many associates, both in suburbia and the ghetto. Parker successfully acted out all of Nancy’s sarcastic and witty moments just as well as she did her vulnerable moments, in particular a scene from season one when she cries on her floor while watching a video of her with her deceased first husband, Judah.

Her ability to navigate through perilous situations while managing to maintain a façade of stereotypical suburban stability was quite compelling and really drew me in. The fact that every single season has ended on a cliffhanger has also motivated me to keep watching to see what happens when the new season begins.

However, things started changing around season four for me, when Nancy burned down her home in the small Los Angeles suburb of Agrestic and fled to the coastal town of Ren Mar.

Over seasons four through seven, she fell in love with Esteban Reyes, the mayor of Tijuana who led a double life as a drug and weapons dealer; bore his child; covered up the murder of his publicist, Pilar, by her middle son, Shane; spent three years in jail; and got out of a halfway house, while also reestablishing her relationship with her sister Jill.

This all culminated with the season seven finale, in which Nancy was shot in the backyard of the Botwins’ new home in Connecticut by an unknown assailant.

So far, I have been satisfied with the direction the eighth and final season of the show has taken. While seasons four through seven were exciting and riveting, I felt there was an element of realness missing from the show that had been present in its first three seasons.

Nancy seemed to lose her focus during these seasons—her children and domestic life came first in the earlier seasons, but during seasons four through seven, she seemed more preoccupied by her business, the multiple men (and one woman) she engaged in relationships with and getting her next cup of iced coffee.

Getting shot seems to have put things back into perspective for her. She has made up for the three years she lost with her and Esteban’s son, Stevie, and has seemingly strengthened her relationships with her two older sons, Shane and Silas.

After watching the episode that aired last week, it seems like she has finally figured out what she wants to do work-wise. The final two episodes air this Sunday. Cast members have said in interviews that the finale is going to be beautiful, and I’m not sure what I’m going to do when I watch them.

But I guess that’s what good TV does to you.