EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

'House of Lies' fan recap: When dad and mom and everyone else fight

Season 4 | Episode 3 | “Entropy Is Contagious” | Aired Jan 25, 2015

You know the title of the episode is important when it’s actually said in the episode.

What is “entropy”? Yes, it appears to be one of those big thousand-dollar words that doesn’t often get thrown around in the average tweet. Its meaning is quite simple, though: “lack of order or predictability.” Or, better yet: “gradual decline into disorder.” Currently, it’s also sweeping through House of Lies, both at work and at home.

The episode opens with everyone waking up. Marty wakes up next to an unnamed female, but considering how often I’ve rewatched The West Wing, I can tell you that it’s guest star Mary McCormack (ASIDE: And she is playing Denna Altshuler, and no, her name is never said in the episode, nor do we really have a clear idea who she is/what she does, but she’s waking up next to Marty, so she must be important. END ASIDE).

Jeannie wakes up and tries to have a little bit of fun before her stressful work day begins, but she doesn’t succeed. Clyde wakes up with his sleep apnea mask. And Doug wakes up with Sarah holding his limited-edition, super-collectable, mint-condition faux Star Trek action figures. Sarah is waving the boxes in front of his face, because she wants a baby, and appears to be using Doug’s toys as leverage for it.

The company of the week is a “folksy” skincare line, Krolls, that is run by an elderly mom-and-pop couple. Right off the bat, Marty and Jeannie have completely different views as to how they should pitch the company. Marty wants to make them a “rock star.” Jeannie wants them to sell sell sell, grab the money, and enjoy being grandparents. When they arrive in the meeting, Marty takes the lead—as usual—but Jeannie suddenly hijacks everything. She starts informing the Krolls that they could easily sell and retire in a pile of money. The Krolls are into her idea, but take the night to think about it, much to Marty’s displeasure.

That night, the boys go out—sans Jeannie, who “crashes early,” meaning she doesn’t believe she’ll be welcomed—and they get superdrunk. Actually, Doug gets super-drunk and starts going off about the crazy stuff Sarah has been doing. He asks if Sarah might murder him in his sleep (to which Marty and Clyde agree), then drops the information that Sarah has been arrested. Also, she frequently partakes in nude stalking. She’s done it before with prior boyfriends, and has had a few visits to UCLA psychiatric. Her antics are staring to weigh on Doug, and he begins to air his grievances maaaaybe a little too much. Marty and Clyde suggest that he should say something, but are quick to add that now is not the time to be confrontational—especially since he’s drunk.

Doug drafts a text, a very mean text, that even Clyde thinks is awful. They don’t believe Doug is going to go through with sending it, and they tell him not to go through with sending it, but he’s so drunk off of absinthe that he hits SEND unknowingly. Spoiler alert, guys: Sarah doesn’t take well to the text.

The next morning, the episode’s magic words are said: “Entropy is contagious.” Mr. Kroll is referring to the fact that Marty and Jeannie are clearly in disagreement with one another, and no company can function like that. He can see right through their bickering. He explains that he thinks the company is at war within itself, and guess what, it is!

Marty continues to be incredibly cold toward Jeannie. She walks into his office after the fallout with Krolls, expecting to be yelled at like she has before. But Marty doesn’t have any reaction. His reaction is not having a reaction to the situation. This includes the lack of a reaction to the fact that Jeannie is pregnant with his child. This omission hurts Jeannie more than anything he could have said.

Things only get worst back at home, where Marty’s brother, Malcolm (Larenz Tate), announces at the family dinner that Jeannie is pregnant with Marty’s baby. Marty had previously told his father, Jeremiah, who clearly informed Malcolm of the situation. Know what Kaan family member hadn’t been told about the baby? Roscoe.

Roscoe has the typical teenage reaction and freaks out. Roscoe freaks out in the way Marty should be freaking out about Jeannie and the baby. He lashes out at Marty, then at Jeremiah. Jeremiah scolds the teenager, explaining that family goes through these “disasters” together, because that’s what it means to be a family. Roscoe offers up a meek “Yes, sir” before storming out.

However, maybe the one with the best spirit of entropy is Sarah, who has lived up to Doug’s nightmares. Doug returns home—after he learned that Sarah had frozen/depleted his credit cards—to find an empty house. Not just empty sans Sarah, but all of the furniture too. And Sarah broke the seal on his collectible toys. And she’s outside in the bushes, nude-stalking him.

Billable Things

  • Clyde has started befriending one of the girls at the skateboard/app company, Kelsey (Valorie Curry). She turns to Clyde for assistance in helping her with her newest app idea: “Uber, but with doctors.” Something tells me they’re going to become more than just casual business acquaintances.
  • The one thing we learn about Mary McCormack’s Denna is that she’s good at investing. Marty asks her why she won’t invest in his sinking Kaan & Associates. She mentions that they’re too small for her, but if she could grab a bunch of management consulting firms and cut the fat from them, she might be interested.
  • I hereby motion for Jenny Slate to guest star in everything for the rest of time.

House of Lies airs Sundays at 10/9C on Showtime.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

You May Like