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'House of Lies' fan recap: 'What's Mommy gonna do?'

Season 4 | Episode 7 | “The Next Olive Branch Goes Straight Up Your Ass” | Aired Feb 22, 2015

Let’s not waste any time here: There’s a blah, blah, blah and a jiggity-jig and a this-and-that on this ep of House of Lies before we find out that ELLIS HAS DECIDED NOT TO PAY K&A. That’s right! Ellis Hightower has decided to pay Kaan & Associates exactly nothing for their services. (Gage owes them $2.5 million for their consulting fees, plus a $9.2 million bonus that kicked in when Gage’s stock price reached $200/share before the consulting fee was paid.)

Now, before we recount the details of this episode, let’s just take a moment to collectively breathe. Grieve a little, if you need to. Because, seriously, you guys—it’s just not fair! It’s not cool. That money was going to save the company! The good (bad) times were back! The Where’s the Party App people were going to be kicked out of the office space, and COOL SHIT WAS ABOUT TO HAPPEN. FUN, COOL, AWESOME times were about to be had. CAPS-LOCK-WORTHY, COOL, RAD SHIT. ITALICS-WORTHY, BANGIN’-ASS TIMES!

Okay, that was mildly cathartic. Back to the money: That $11.7 million that’s bringing me close to tears and filling me with rage? K&A is gonna get that money. It’s sort of … their only money.

Despite the fact that they don’t have the payment from Gage in hand, The Pod does have their rep back: “Everyone wants a piece of that Marty Kaan magic.” They’re pulling big clients in. Their very public success at Gage did what it was supposed to do—it pulled Marty out of the gutter. Well, it made things look that way, anyway.

If Marty didn’t still have one foot in the gutter, then he wouldn’t be so relentlessly cruel to Jeannie, who approaches him to talk about the fact that she doesn’t want to leave K&A. She’s at the very end of her pregnancy with their baby, and she’s near tears as she says she needs “two minutes of you just hearing me, without being a complete and total fucking asshole.” There’s the briefest of moments, between Jeannie’s screaming and Marty’s posturing, where the truth of how difficult the situation is for Marty shines through—he really just can’t forgive her.

Feelings aside, though, JEANNIE’S ABOUT TO HAVE HIS BABY. Chill out, grow up, do what you need to do. Enough with the cruelty. Just fake it, Marty. You want her to leave the company? Find a way to talk to her without laughing in her face as she nearly breaks down in tears. Also … you’re only going to get Vulnerable Jeannie so many times. She’s not going to let Marty “shame [her] for being alive” for very long. By the end of the scene, she’s threatening to leverage her 50 percent of the company and his status as a felon in order to buy him out. Of his own company. These two need to figure out how to get on the same page—or something resembling even a similar-looking facsimile of a page that almost looks the same—pronto.

While Marty and Jeannie’s drama is playing out, Clyde, Doug, and Kelsey are working toward launching their app in beta. Clyde has to leave to pick up his father (Fred Melamed) at the airport, and although it’s clear that their relationship isn’t great, his dad tells him that he has stage-four pancreatic cancer during the car ride home. He also has a “service cat” that Clyde is allergic to, and an apparent penchant for bringing up the Holocaust excessively.

While Clyde is driving his terminally ill father and his cat back to stay with him, Doug and Kelsey are at the office working on the app. Then Kelsey asks Doug if he likes getting his ass licked and they have sex. Ha! She’s super-nonchalant about the whole thing, and he’s a big dork about it. (He calls it “magical.”) It’s cute/weird/sad. It’s going to cause a physical fight or something between Clyde and Doug, and it was somewhat predictable. It’s very House of Lies—and it cements Kelsey as one of them, in a way. She’s in the club, and that’s not really a compliment. She did what she wanted, with no regard for the consequences, and went right back to work.

With Malcom’s help, Marty catches Roscoe with thousands of dollars he’s made by selling knock-off bags. While he tells Roscoe he has to stop, Marty also compliments his eye for “a good piece of business.” Marty doesn’t come down heavy-handed, but he lays down the law—which seems to be a far more mellow approach than he’s taken in the past. If Roscoe follows through on his promise to stop, it would be a major sign that these two are building a very different relationship. And that Roscoe’s head for business is dangerously like his dad’s.

Marty calls Ellis until he fills his voicemail when the payment isn’t made. He reaches Ellis at his office, and Ellis flat -out refuses to pay K&A. The Pod heads to the Gage offices the next day with a lawyer, and Ellis is in a meeting with a few randos and … Monica! What a surprise that this nonpayment plan has come from her insane mind.

It seems that she’s concocted the whole thing to get back at Marty for rejecting her (inappropriate) ideas for spending time with Roscoe. For a split second, she’s a sympathetic figure: She wanted to take Roscoe to N.Y. Fashion Week and then to Ibiza, and Marty (correctly) called her “an addict and a sociopath and a fucking unfit parent.” Earlier this season, Roscoe said that Monica was trying to buy his love, but “wasn’t even sure she want[ed] it.” As spot-on as Marty’s assessment of Monica’s unfitness is, she clearly does have it in her to try to be something to Roscoe.

Back to the conference-room confrontation: Monica and Jeannie have words over Monica’s influence over Ellis, and then … JEANNIE PUNCHES MONICA!!!! She breaks her nose!! I’ve never been more in favor of violence!! (Ever!!!)

The bill isn’t paid by the end of the episode, and like Monica said, “Ellis Hightower, Dante Valerio, and Gage Motors could out-litigate Jesus Christ if they wanted to.” Surely The Pod can come up with some creative solutions here—and luckily for us, it seems like all parties are playing by street rules. Let the games begin.

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

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