Six Feet Under
It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

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Zed's Dead, Baby. Zed's Dead.

Fade back up on a half-undressed Lauren Ambrose. No, really. That's what happened. I don't make this stuff up, you know. She's actually just wearing pajamas, but she covers up quickly with her robe when she finds Nikolai lying on the downstairs sofa. He greets her warmly, and even teases her a bit for being bashful, saying, "Don't worry. I don't see nothing." And sadly, despite a valiant effort with the pause button, I don't either. Ruth comes in to deliver some hot tea and also set up the pain pills that Nikolai will be taking later. She also explains that they waited half the night at the hospital, and there was no place else for Nikolai to go. The real comedy gold in this scene, however, doesn't occur until David walks in and executes a classic double-take at the sight of Nikolai. In fact, the scene is edited like there was supposed to be a line there, but Michael C. Hall's expression was so perfect that they just ended right there. Cut to the kitchen, where the children are bemoaning the fact that Mom's boyfriend will be living on their sofa for the next eight weeks. And on top of that, David is horrified to discover that Mom is even paying all the medical bills. Not, however, as horrified as he is when Mom instructs him to help lift Nikolai into his wheelchair.

Now it's time for Biker Santa's funeral, as the solemn strains of the Allman Brothers play over a stirring eulogy being delivered by Pete. In the back, Nate enters with a bouquet of flowers, noting with surprise that they're from (avowed motorcycle enthusiast) Jay Leno. "Oh sure," says Bitsy. "He always sends flowers. But he never comes." Heh. I wonder if Leno actually dissed the show's cast members on an appearance, or if the motorcycle connection was just too good to pass up. The eulogy is suddenly interrupted by the arrival of the "the In-N-Out truck," and Pete announces that "we're gonna put on [the DGDJ's] favorite song, and everyone can get themselves some grub." And with that, "Born to be Wild" starts up on the soundtrack, and everyone files out past the melancholy widow.

Outside, even more bikers are milling around as Claire gives Toby a tour of the Fortress. The highlights include David's loft above the garage and a garden hose that once sprayed blood after a plumbing problem in the Body Shop. Toby is suitably disgusted, but manages to be all smiles when Ruth steps outside. He's even super-polite when introduced to her, which contrasts nicely with Claire's snarky reply when asked if she plans to wear jeans to Christmas dinner: "No mom, I've got my Laura Bush pantsuit on underneath. I just didn't want to get it dirty." And speaking of dirty, that's precisely how I would describe the look Loser Toby gives Claire for being rude to her mother. He and his evident holier-than-thou attitude follow Ruth inside, leaving Claire alone. She overhears one of the bikers talking on a cell phone, and when he asks, "What did you get me for Christmas?" her own flashback begins.

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