The Family Nowhere Man – We found out for sure who Adam’s kidnapper was in previous episodes. The problem is in catching him and bringing him to justice. But what everyone’s waiting for is to find out who Adam really is. And why does Danny Warren continue to have such doubts about his supposed brother’s identity? Investigative reporter Bridey Cruz has used her relationship with Danny to creep into Adam’s bedroom to steal a Q-tip containing Adam’s DNA. Bridey has the sample subjected to a paternity test. “It’s not him,” Bridey tells Gus, her managing editor at the newspaper.
Review and recap The Family Nowhere Man (Episode 6)
Episode 7 has a lot of twists and turns as Bridey confronts Willa, expecting the whizbang campaign manager will be glad to see her. Bridey is openly gay, you see, and the two women swapped spit at the end of last week’s episode, leading you to believe that Willa is at least ‘bi-curious.’ “I’ve come to show you something,” Bridey says.
Thinking Bridey was there for some un-serious business, an angry and confused Willa blurts out that’s she’s “not interested in your lady parts.” In a later meeting, Willa has confronted her sexuality and succumbs to her attraction to Bridey, though the real purpose of Bridey’s meeting was to show her the results of the paternity test. As she told her boss at the newspaper, John Warren is not Adam’s father.
Willa already knows this dark family secret but covers it up with another and better lie. Willa tells Bridey that Adam is her mother’s son; Adam’s biological father was a man with whom her mother had an affair decades ago.
It looks like a duck and walks like a duck but we’re still not sure it’s a duck because, toward the end of the episode, we see in flashback that there are two boys in the pit the kidnapper has built. Which boy was returned to the Warrens? Apparently the wrong one, as we learn when mom Claire compares the medical records of the vanished ten year old with that of the nineteen year old Adam who returns to them.
The dialogue is spicy and sharp-edged, sometimes funny. When Claire is comparing x-rays shown to her by the doctor, she asks the doctor if he’s mistakenly picked up the wrong x-rays. Why? Because her Adam had his appendix taken out when he was five years old. The imaging photo she’s been showed is that of a boy with his appendix intact.
“Well, I assure you that I didn’t put them back in,” says the doctor.
The irony of kidnapper Doug is that presents himself as not even half as weird as Hank Asher, the bonafide pedophiliac who spent years in prison as the result of Adam’s disappearance. Doug is a friendly handy man, a cabinet maker, and a soon-to-be dad. His pregnant girlfriend and presumed fiancé simply adores him, not suspecting for a moment that he’s building a sound-proof wooden box to capture children in. Oh, and Doug is also practicing drugging techniques on his Labrador retriever to see how long it takes to put the dog asleep.
The Family producers take pains to mention that no animals were harmed in the production of this episode or any other. The creators of the show also apologized on Twitter for “ruining” Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London” as the background music for Doug’s creeped out preparations for another kidnapping.
The basic plot line continues with the police wanting to use Adam as bait, thinking they’ll be able to lure the kidnapper in if they put out feelers in the media and place Adam under surveillance in the center of a mall. This is well publicized on local TV and sure enough, Doug shows up on the upper deck, looking down on Adam who suddenly has an anxiety attack. Therefore, Doug gets away to kidnap another day.
Hank Asher continues in the series as a misunderstood pedophile who tries to fly right. He has agreed to voluntary injections of a drug to suppress his sexuality. He tells the doctor that he’d “rather be a eunuch than a monster.” Not everyone regards him as such. A woman at the pastry shop where he buys his desserts feels a connection with his lonely nerdiness. She comes to his house and offers herself to him in a way that passes the 9:00 p.m. slot TV sensors – but Hank stops her from fellating him (The big SAT words sound so much more clinical and thoughtful – I didn’t write this stuff).
The Family is picking up some strong ratings and, judging by the comments of Twitter followers, is generating considerable excitement. Its unconsciously repressed low-key weirdness is heightened by good direction, a discordant sound track, weird camera angles, and murky atmospherics.
If the actors are occasionally asked to do the implausible, they do it convincingly so that you react emotionally rather than rationally. I’m liking it pretty much, mostly for its off-center ironies that keep you off balance and second-guessing what you thought you knew already.
Other episodes of The Family reviewed on TV Eskimo include:
Characters and cast of The Family Nowhere Man include:
Claire Warren – Joan Allen (Face/Off, The Bourne Ultimatum, The Bourne Supremacy, DeathRace, Room, Luck, Nixon)
Willa Warren – Alison Pill (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Milk, Midnight in Paris, Goon, The Newsroom, The Pillars of the Earth, In Treatment)
Det. Nina Meyer – Margot Bingham (In Between Men, Boardwalk Empire, Matador)
Danny – Zach Gilford (The Purge: Anarchy, Friday Night Lights, The Last Stand, Devil’s Due)
Adam – Liam James (2012, The Way Way Back, Psych, Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, The Killing)
Bridey Cruz – Floriana Lima (Allegiance, The Mob Doctor, Poor Paul)
John Warren – Rupert Graves (V for Vendetta, The Madness of King George, Death at a Funeral, Maurice, Sherlock, Last Tango in Halifax)
Hank – Andrew McCarthy (Weekend at Bernie’s, Mannequin, The Spiderwick Chronicles, St. Elmo’s Fire)
Gus Flores – Felix Solis (Colony, The Good Wife, The Following, The International, The Forgotten, Man On a Ledge)
Pock-Marked Man – Michael Esper (Shades of Blue, Nurse Jackie, A Beautiful Mind, Frances Ha, The Drop)
Agent Gabe Clements – Matthew Lawler (God’s Pocket, Knight and Day, Law & Order)
Gov. Charlie Lang – Grant Show (Melrose Place, The Possession, Devious Maids, Big Love)