WEDGER: EPISODE 5: WISHING YOU A VERY WEDGEY XMAS

Warning: SPOILERS for the HBO series Wedger from pilot through Episode 5.

Someone in the programming division at HBO got a bawling out for this, as the Xmas episode of new drama Wedger aired in the middle of April, but then again the scheduling makes a perverse sense put along side the perverse logic of what is becoming television’s most perversely weird show.

After the cliffhanger of last week’s bottle episode, left our hero (Robert Downey Jr.), his ex-wife (Mia Sara) and enthusiastically cuckolding brother Simon ‘Paint Bottle’ Wedger (Matthew Modine) in apparent danger, it was disconcerting for the show to begin with Wedger smoking a crack pipe just before his helicopter pilot’s license exam. It’s testament to how much we’ve warmed to Downey Jr in the role and that actor’s inexhaustible charisma that this scene was played out for comic relief, with the crash into the school bus played for laughs despite its gory realism.
As the episode progressed, we were suddenly aware that time had jumped. The murder of the therapist was six months in the past and the Wedgier (Kirstie Alley) had been caught. Chief Balaton (Jeff Daniels) is coming over for Xmas dinner at the reunited Wedgers’ house, along with Paint Bottle and his new wife Clara (Ellen Page). But all is not right and any minute I expected Bobby Ewing to step out of the shower. In a series of flashbacks – as the festive repast is enjoyed – we see how the case unfolded and how Wedger was instrumental in catching the Wedgier although receiving a severe groin wound in the process, a groin wound which ironically draws them together and ultimately mends the marriage.

Of course, no such happy ending can be allowed especially not as the show still has three episodes to run, so it wasn’t a great shock to see the Wedgier receiving a visitor who ominously remarks: ‘Stay put. We almost have him where we want him.’

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