Hung, 1.01: Pilot
Here we have a new HBO dramedy about a man called Ray (played by Thomas Jane), whose life has been slowly falling apart: his wife (Anne Heche) left him a few years back for a total nerd, his house burned down causing his kids to go live with the ex while he moved into a tent in the back yard, his neighbour is a rich douchebag who wants to buy his property even though it's not for sale, and his job as a high school basketball coach pays him a pittance. The only thing poor Ray's got going for him is his enormous cock. So what does he decide to do?
You guessed it. He becomes a hooker.
I don't know about you, but I'm sure as hell tuning in for that action.
And the pilot was pretty good. Very funny in places, particularly all the scenes featuring the marvellous Jane Adams, who takes on the job as Ray's pimp, and who Ray finds disturbing because the two times he fucked her she came a lot.
Thomas Jane is great as Ray, the ex-jock who used to live the dream but who now doesn't quite understand what happened to his perfect life. He looks perpetually confused and irritated, and while he's full of self pity he's also strangely sympathetic, possibly because there's something endearing about a man who's both handsome and deeply pathetic.
My one complaint -- although to be fair, this is a big pet peeve of mine in general -- is the unnecessary voice over, which only serves to explain what is already narratively clear. I don't hate every voice over ever, but for the most part I feel they either insult viewers' intelligence, by telling us what is being shown and by leaving no room for interpretation, or they're used merely as a lazy storytelling device, for writers who wish to compensate for what they haven't bothered writing into the action and dialogue. (Of course, expository dialogue often drives me batty too, but I'm a notoriously hard lady to please.)
It's a minor quibble though, because I thoroughly enjoyed the episode otherwise, and I'm really looking forward to seeing what happens next.