Well, here’s why you don’t get too close to your clients. With the season finale approaching, “Together” shows the dangers of management consultants becoming too friendly with their prospective partners and friends. House of Lies has shown what happens when the pod mixes the lines between personal and professional before, but here we see directly how dangerous things can become when those lines blur.
The episode begins immediately following the events of “Comeuppance,” with Lukas’ body being laid in a body bag and officers taking Dre’s statement. Marty and Jeannie decide to head to their respective homes, separately.
The next day, Jeannie arrives to work, sporting a chipped tooth she got as a result of a fall she took last night. She tells Doug to check DollaHyde’s pro forma revenue models before the Barneys meeting because the figures look a little funky to her. Yes, despite the shooting, Dre intends to proceed with the meeting. In addition, she asks Doug about the status of the Deutsche Bank on setting the final IPO for WON, but Doug informs her that Clyde is taking care of that. Where is Clyde?
At the Amberly Hotel with Marissa in San Francisco, not Los Angeles. He’ll be right over, because apparently a flight from San Francisco to Los Angeles can’t take that long.
But Doug has pressing matters to discuss with Jeannie: ever since he’s been sampling the WON product, he’s noticed a slight enlargement in his pectoral region due to a spike in his estrogen levels that could be related to a recent diet change. If this is at all related to WON, it would be a giant clusterfuck for Monica.
When Marty arrives, both he and Jeannie admit that neither of them slept, but Dre is still on their minds. The shooting looked too much like a gang hit, so maybe it’s time to give Dre a call.
When Clyde arrives- that was fast- Doug tells him that Lukas’ death got him thinking about his life and taking stock of what matters the most to him. Ergo, he needs to work on his marriage. It’s always been about Sarah, except when it was about Caitlin. But Doug admits that even though he lusted after Caitlin, he never acted on it. Partially because he came off as a dick, but fine, he never acted on it. Doug’s day isn’t made any better when Jeannie comes in and spills to Clyde about Doug’s new boobs.
Soon, Clyde meets up with Marissa at a restaurant- that was also fast- and the two recap on their mornings. What, they haven’t been apart that long! But Marissa has been doing well. Great, even. She just sold off McClintock for $4.2 billion. After quiet negotiations for over a week, she finally closed a deal. Never mind telling her consultant and supposed boyfriend. As far as the money goes, she may just blow it on heroin. Who knows?
Yeah, turns out that Marissa is done with Kaan & Associates. She got what she wanted, so time to move on. And while Clyde thought they’d have each others’ backs, Marissa isn’t going to just write Clyde a check just because she let him put his mouth on her vagina. And Marissa rightly reminds Clyde that he came to her by sober living just to drum up business. Not the best way to start things off, Clyde admits, but he thought they had moved past that. Guess not. Well, Clyde decides to just end it. Marissa’s response is simple:
Yep, just like that. Clyde calls Marissa self-centered, but hey, he’s the one ending things on the grounds that he wasn’t getting what he wanted.
While Doug frets over Sarah not returning any of his calls or texts, Jeannie is more preoccupied with an independent clinical study on WON and tells Marty to look at the date.
So the two then grill Monica, whom they believe just wanted the manpower to push her through an IPO. That way, she could sell her shares for a fat sum and screw over everyone else. Monica doesn’t see how the study was relevant, but Marty and Jeannie correctly assume that if they’d known about the study, they would have asked for higher fees, which they will. But they want to ask for enough that Monica will learn a lesson- not enough that she’ll leak it to someone and still find a way to screw everyone over. They settle for 75 percent of Monica’s WON shares. Monica laughs, but it’s the final and only offer. Agreed? Agreed. Jeannie plans to call a few lawyers to draw up contracts.
When Jeannie heads to her office, Monica tells Marty that this WON product was supposed to be her ticket back. Taking so many shares will just leave her with scraps. Marty, however, is burned. He thought that the two of them were going to a new place that began when he invited her over. He wanted to believe it, but he realized that if you leave the door unlocked, you can’t be surprised when someone comes in and takes a shit on the floor. Probably could have used a better metaphor, Marty.
Monica sets her sights on Jeannie and begins to antagonize her. She calls Jeannie a smug, self-satisfied cunt, but what’s sad is Jeannie apparently believes her own bull. She’s a small town girl who made it to the big leagues. As a tough, disciplined, independent woman, Jeannie is still just a remora clinging to a shark’s back. She would still be at Galweather if Marty hadn’t plucked her out. In Marty’s eyes, according to Monica, Jeannie was just a desperate girl eager to shake off the sticks and have her vagina open for business.
The only reason she rose so quickly at Galweather and has any career at all is because Marty wanted to fuck her. Granted, Jeannie’s played the game well by not sleeping with Marty- as far as Monica knows, anyway- but when the two finally do make love, Marty will see Jeannie for what others already see her as: nothing. Though just an attempt to get under Jeannie’s skin, it does appear to leave some impression on her.
She doesn’t have much time to mull it over, as Dre arrives for the relocated Barneys’ meeting. Apparently things are crazy over at the DollaHyde office right now. The Barneys’ executive, played by Kristen O’Meara, suggests moving the meeting back to give Dre time to cope, but he’s ready to work now. Though he still can’t believe that Lukas is gone, he knows that Lukas would want DollaHyde to soldier forward as a testament to his future. Even if that future includes Barneys, which Lukas wasn’t a fan of. But Dre is. Heck, you could even say that Dre would kill to be at Barneys. Well, Marty says that, anyway.
Marty and Dre take an elevator down to the parking garage. Marty flat out asks if Dre had something to do with Lukas’ death. Dre counters that whoever did it was a professional- they wouldn’t miss. And he can’t have Marty screaming about something like this from the rooftops.
Jeannie, however, doesn’t do any screaming, but she does do a lot of crying at the dentists’ office after having her tooth fixed. The dentist, played by Bil Dwyer, tells Jeannie that crying is a side effect of having so much anesthesia that will have her exhibiting strong emotions.
Doug pays Sarah a visit and she finally answers the door. At first, Doug doesn’t know what to say, but then he just spills it: he isn’t the guy that women ever go for. After all, he took his cousin, of all people, to prom. But then someone as beautiful as Sarah comes along and actually wanted to be with him. It didn’t make sense and Doug admits that he didn’t appreciate how amazing she was. He held Caitlin up as this ideal. Sarah does need Doug to say that Caitlin is a boring little bitch, though.
When he does, the two kiss and make up. They head inside and Doug sees that Sarah still hasn’t sold the couch where they shared many memories. Sarah brings it all back to reality by reminding Doug that he hurt her, but Doug appears to be remorseful. All is now well, except for one little thing: Sarah had an abortion last week. Doug is a bit upset since the baby was partially his, but Sarah went on a bit of a spree, and she already wasn’t a fan of using protection…
Marty pays a visit to Dre’s wife to talk about Lukas and his theory that Dre had him killed. However, she can tell that Marty has never been in a good relationship where you open yourself up to another person, share secrets and make important decisions together- good and bad. She and Dre talk a lot a lot, even about him, so it’s best that Marty head home to fix his business instead of coming to fuck with what Dre has with his wife. That will never happen.
So Marty does just that, and finds Jeannie waiting for him. Jeremiah let him in before heading to Chantelle’s, and Roscoe is on a field trip. Very convenient in a television sort of way. Jeannie’s brought him an alcoholic gift, and Marty reminds her of what happened the last time they shared a bottle. No matter. Even if Marty doesn’t want to do something stupid, she does. The two talk and get much closer and drunker at the same time.
They talk of Jeannie’s visit to the dentist, of some photos Marty has of his family and something that Jeannie once said that she feels she shouldn’t have.
Soon enough, the two cross that line between personal and professional. After it’s all said and done, Marty tells Jeannie that he loves her. Never mind that you’re supposed to tell the girl that before you get between the sheets, not after.
“Together,” more than any other episode this season, I feel, showed the dangers of getting too close and blurring the lines between personal and professional. We want to form new connections and bonds with people we meet, but we don’t want to get in so deep that it clouds our judgment, as was the case with Doug last week. Does being together always equal happiness? When dealing with absolutes, of course not. Flaws become exposed the more we’re attached to people. We talk too much about what we hoped for instead of being grateful for what we have, and put our expectations on other people, again, like Doug holding Caitlin up to some ideal. This episode both broke and restored bonds, which will leave things quite messy as we approach the end of the season.
And since I’ve mentioned Doug twice, let’s go straight into him. His ‘revelation’ about Sarah was all too convenient. Were he a better man, he wouldn’t have neglected Sarah in the first place, but this is Doug. I did like how honest he was when he met up with Sarah and told her how he’s not the first guy that women would ever go for. Many men are extremely prideful and arrogant. We don’t like to admit our flaws because we like to feel invincible. Doug’s basically saying that Sarah is too good for him, and despite that, she chose him anyway. That shows how much she really cared for him.
Doug isn’t great with words or even charming at all. He’s awkward. Maybe not Peter Parker awkward, but he’s very close. While it takes a lot for Doug to admit he’s flawed, he’s only doing this because he screwed up his chances with Caitlin by putting his foot in his mouth. It’s just easy drama.
Had he not messed up that opportunity, he’d still be pining for her, given how certain he was that they had something special. Doug was an ass, and good on Sarah for calling him out on that, though I wish she’d been a bit more aggressive when Doug tried to win her back. She was open to forgiving him and it’s great that they reconciled, but now it seems like their relationship is still up in the air due to Sarah having an abortion. Great that Doug cared for a child that might have been his, but he should have shown that affection sooner instead of approaching a woman in a vulnerable moment.
Which brings me to Clyde, who finds himself in a similar predicament. He came to Marissa when she was in a treatment center for her drug addiction. He made her an offer to help her reclaim her title atop the McClintock empire, and he succeeded. However, that does not mean she was indebted to him. In fact, the sex and drugs may have been payment enough. Like last week with trying to screw over Monica’s talks with Vincent, Clyde thought he made a great play with Marissa, but she’s under no obligation to be with him and could have dropped him at any second. It’s what made it so easy for her to accept the breakup. And it isn’t as if Marissa is in the wrong. Clyde came to her. Ending the relationship isn’t as important to her as it is to Clyde because she has what she needed. Clyde is irrelevant.
And poor Marty. Jeannie warned him from the start about getting too close to Dre and now he knows why. Sure, Marty’s always known that dealing with DollaHyde would be dangerous, but for Dre’s wife to pretty much warn him to back off shows that he’s in too deep. And as mentioned, Marty doesn’t have a deep or strong relationship with someone who can share his most intimate details and secrets- not even someone like Jeannie, Jeremiah, or Monica. With each person Marty opens up to, there’s always something else to hide. And he doesn’t make all of the important decisions with Jeannie because they disagree so often. That said, I did like the brief look he shared with Jeannie during the DollaHyde meeting with Barneys, as it validated everything they both suspected about DollaHyde.
Now I’ll focus on those two later, but for now, I wanted to talk about Marty’s relationship with Monica, or lack thereof. When Marty called Monica over during “Brinkmanship,” I got the sense that he started to reconnect with her since they had both hit low points. But with the WON revelations, Marty feels more disappointed than anything else because he genuinely wanted Monica to turn her life around and not be so duplicitous. Both of them are screwed up, but they had a connection. Granted, Marty is in no position whatsoever to call someone out on their double talk, but I doubt he can fully see things from Monica’s point of view because he hasn’t been fired or hit rock bottom yet. That and no one from his team has stabbed him. Yet, anyway.
And then there’s Jeannie, who had her own concerns with DollaHyde and has acted on them, just without Marty knowing. Despite what Monica said, Jeannie has risen to her position due to her own volition. The confrontation between two of them felt like an attempt for Monica to rattle Jeannie by calling her nothing. Much like Clyde and Doug, Monica has preconceived notions of Jeannie’s character without knowing that Jeannie worked her way to parity at Kaan & Associates. Remember, Jeannie gutted Marty and can take what she wants, whenever she wants.
And while it seems that Jeannie doesn’t appear to be affected by what Monica said, I have to wonder why she went to Marty’s in the first place. Was it to prove Monica wrong? Monica should be small fries for Jeannie, so I’m confused as to whether she did it to prove a point or to actually do something crazy. Given Jeannie’s strong will, I’m surprised she didn’t just brush off Monica altogether.
Or maybe it’s the anesthesia and hysteria due to her dentist trip. And Jeannie’s chipped tooth was one of the more humorous subplots of the episode. There was quite a bit of comedy this week with Jeannie and Clyde ripping Doug for his ‘fun-bags’ or Jeannie saying that her chipped tooth makes her look like a meth addict. Even in the dimmest of situations, the writers manage to inject a good amount of humor into House of Lies.
As for Marty and Jeannie being together, all might seem well, but given how Jeannie told Samantha about incriminating information she swapped for the DOJ contract, these two won’t be so lovey-dovey for long.
As stated, “Together” restored and broke down bonds. The horizon may seem bright for Marty and Jeannie, don’t expect them to stay that way for long, given what happened the last time they drank together. And because of how damaging the information Jeannie gave is, something that big doesn’t just go away. And it’s a setup that I expect will make for an explosive season finale next week.
I rewatched season 3 ep.12, 12, season4 ep.1-2 and I have a different perspective on Jeannie’s motives for what she did. I’m thinking in real life she was not just acting without provocation to make a power grab. I think she had been acting s a “woman scorned.” On numerous occasions prior to her horrendous miscalculations with the FBI, she had been treated very callously by Marty when she expressed her love for him, even after saving his butt when his files were erased. I have seen this many times in corporate America. Yes, she wanted success, power, and professional recognition. But even more, she had come to really love Marty and coud not process his seeming deliberate indifference. Afterall, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” But she massively underestimated how her actions could become uncontrollably destructive. But that is the problem with anger: It can easily take on a savage life all it’s own.