Looking – Episode 7 – Review

Nick Gomez
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The penultimate episode of season one starts to bring to the surface the big problems the three leads are having in their lives. Patrick tries to reconcile his relationship issues; both with his boyfriend and his mother. Dom has to learn that sometimes people just want to help you and Agustin FINALLY seems to realize that his idiotic actions have consequences.

As a side note to the creators, is there any way that you could swap out Agustin for Frank or am I meant to put with a character that I loathe for another season?

We open on the main three together once again, just like in the first episode. Agustin has decided to show his friends the intimate photos of him, CJ and Frank. Understandably, their reaction is one of confusion and indecisiveness, as most people’s would be. The idea of seeing close friends mid coitus with a prostitute isn’t something you’d expect to come across, let alone be asked to comment on.

The whole scene reeks of Agustin’s desperation for approval. When he doesn’t get the artsy reactions he wants from his friends, he lashes out and accuses them of being too ‘freaked out’ with their own lives to care about his ‘art’.

His blatant deflection would have got me more riled up were it not for Dom and Patrick ignoring his childish outburst. My gut reaction is to tell him to **** off.

Patrick asks the obvious question, how should they react when ‘you paid him [CJ] to have sex with your boyfriend and you shot it’?

What happened is an even more potentially volatile situation as Frank does not yet know about CJ being paid to have sex with him. Realization dawns on Agustin.

The next morning is the day of Patrick’s sister’s wedding; so we’ve had a two week jump.  Dana, his mother, is skypeing him about the wedding. WASP. Telling/complaining to him how much effort was needed to add Richard to the wedding. Patrick points out his name is just Richie and isn’t short for anything. Hooray, he’s defending him.

Richie arrives and oh goodness he’s shaved his face and put on a lovely suit. I have to say he looks very nice all tidied up. Of course, what you look like on the outside isn’t always a reflection of what’s inside.

They end up running late and rush through traffic to the wedding. Richie is trying to learn how to tie a bowtie through a video from his phone while Patrick drives. He is clearly becoming stressed and tells Richie not to do it while he’s concentrating. Road safety, just saying. Richie ignores this and after a brief shouting match demands he pull over.

In order to calm him down, Richie offers Patrick a spliff, telling him to smoke while he takes over driving. The gesture makes sense, however, the reaction he gets is annoyance from Patrick that he brought pot to his sister’s wedding, also understandable.

This disagreement is abruptly cut short by Richie walking off and deciding that he isn’t going to the wedding. I thought it was rude, but Richie is quite rude. He only does what he wants to do, meaning he is largely happy and carefree but I’d have thought that if he liked Patrick enough he would want to persevere for him.

Meanwhile, Dom, Lynn, Doris and Hugo set about turning a closed down restaurant into a venue for Dom’s Peri Peri night. Dom struggles to look at the whole process and isn’t open to Lynn’s advice. He perceives him as someone who is trying to parent him rather than the business partner he is. Fretting about one area, the kitchen, over the others, Dom is left to wallow by himself as people work around him.

He ends up arguing with Lynn, so Lynn leaves. In the end, Doris tells him that some people just want to help and that he should be open to letting people; of course, in her own Doris way.

I strongly suspect that the finale might take place at Dom’s pop-up or with events surrounding it. This should also set up where he might be going as a character next season depending of the success of the night.

Elsewhere, Agustin decides to drop out of his art show. Later on, while on a hill walk with Frank he confesses that he’s done this and why he has. This is the moment I have been waiting for. He tells Frank that he dropped out the show, to which Frank lets slip that he had to convince the show’s organizers to even let him be part of it. Agustin is enraged by this, though the quick rebuttal by Frank is that he did this for him because he was stuck in a rut.

Frank questions if this was because of CJ; which Agustin wanted to happen, and which Frank said he did for him. Agustin throws this in his face because he enjoyed it. To be honest, if CJ is good in bed, as Agustin would hope, of course he’d enjoy himself. But Frank isn’t the one initiating any of these encounters that are making Agustin so jealous. Then Agustin lets slip that he paid CJ to do it.

Frank wants to know how much. $220 per hour. Yet, Agustin can’t afford rent? I’ll say it now and I’ll say it again, Agustin is a selfish, waste of space, loser. We have yet to see a single redeeming quality in him. Frank breaks up with him, telling him to move out of his house. Bye Frank…

Back at the wedding, Patrick arrives, walking with his mother to the church. Dana notes the horribly brown lawn and comments how it will ruin the wedding pictures. WASP. As they approach the steps to the church, Patrick spies Kevin. It turns out that he knows the groom’s side through his boyfriend.

The sexual tension is deliciously palpable but both boys play it safe, until Patrick needs to have his picture taken. He still hasn’t figured out how to tie his bowtie. I love this scene. When Patrick gets called over for photos,  Kevin immediately starts to tie his bow for him and Patrick is surprised that he knows how to do it, something Kevin thinks would be obvious. Sweet, tender, flirting. The opposite of his relationship with Richie at the moment.

The clash between Kevin and Richie is very much about how different to two are.

In Patrick’s head, Richie is everything that his mother wouldn’t approve of. Kevin, however, is everything that she would want to expect, Kevin is a good candidate because he is good looking, warm and successful. However, avoiding someone like Kevin for someone like Richie, in order to combat how his mother feels, still leaves him wrapped in her opinions.

I was so hopeful that Richie would be perfect when he was first introduced, but that was a ridiculous ideal. Of course, he is a whole person with a history and differences that can’t be understood at a single glance. Kevin is likely the same, with flaws that make him less than perfect. Next season we’re sure to find some of those out.

During the wedding reception, Patrick calls Richie to apologize, still wanting him to come to the wedding. He doesn’t get a response.

Defeated and a little annoyed, he spies his mother looking into the distance outside. He confronts her about why Richie really wasn’t able to come; instead of the food poisoning excuse he used earlier. He tells her that it is her opinions that shape his outlook on every person he dates. She admits she has struggled with him and his sexuality.

In a way, this is the conversation that many would want to have but it’s not one that has any quick resolution. It’s also during this conversation that Patrick spies the pot cookie or rather pot marshmallow crispy square that his mother is munching to combat a prescription drug she has just come off. WASP. WASP. WASPS. Perhaps she and Richie would have found common ground if he hadn’t left.

Lastly, I’d just like to refer you all to my last review where I speculated on what was coming up… because I so called this.

In the bathroom at the reception, Patrick is washing his face, upset after his conversation with his mother. A slightly intoxicated Kevin stumbles in to see to see how he is. As they talk, Kevin stumbles towards Patrick. He laughs and when Patrick asks him why, he says he was going to kiss him.

Then he does.

My heart literally skipped a beat in joy.

Patrick pushes him calmly off and Kevin; disappointed again, leaves. Holy goodness, I can’t wait to see where this goes. The shoe is certainly on the other foot when it comes to apologies this time around. I think a few of us can relate to this, making a hopeful mistake due to inebriation.

Overall, this episode built on what has been pieced slowly and carefully together over the season. I feel like we have a good understanding of our main three characters. Enough that with the cast expansion next season, it won’t feel cluttered.

But only time will tell. Next week, the finale!

About Nick Gomez

From a young age I've constantly been reading, writing, drawing and generally creating stories, worlds and characters for fun. This led to a degree in English Literature and Language at University. A passion for writing, especially about my own experiences, and ideas that pop into my head help me to understand myself and the world around me. Twittering @nickawgomez