reading-book 4

Episode Four – The Raw and the Cooked


Who’s Who At This Point

  • Hank Moody = Nick Carraway
  • Lew Ashby = Jay Gatsby
  • Janie Jones = Daisy Buchanan (Only mentioned, not seen)
  • Trixie = Jordan Baker

Parallelisms & References

  • The dinner scene at Hank’s apartment is akin to the gathering at Nick’s in Chapter 5 of Gatsby. This is a major pivot chapter in the novel and in the story-arc of Season 2 as both reach high-points in obtaining “dreams” and “love”. The remainder of Gatsby and Californication are affected by the actions which take place during these scenes.  Although they are at first blissful moments, they become the moments which doom both relationships.
  • While in the novel Gatsby and Daisy are brought together, believing that they have found “love” again, and Gatsby having achieved his “dream”, Hank has proposed to Karen, which she accepts, in an attempt to obtain his “dream”.
  • After it is revealed that Sonya is pregnant with Hank’s child and the dinner party ends, Hank and Karen have a conversation with major Gatsby undertones:
    • Karen says to Hank, “We tried to pick up where we left off…do you have any idea how…dysfunctional that is?” This is similar to Gatsby and Daisy in attempting to do the same, picking up where they left off five years prior, and when Nick reminds Gatsby that he cannot resurrect the past, to which Gatsby replies, “Why, of course you can!” Karen commenting that it is “dysfunctional” also foreshadows the negative consequences which are to come in Californication as well as those in Gatsby.
    • Hank replies, “…it’s like a dream come true.” Gatsby’s dream is being with Daisy, just as Hank’s dream was being with Karen.
    • Karen states, “It was a dream…thinking…everything would be as it was…if it ever was as we thought it was…” and Hank agrees, “Because we just imagined it.” They are voicing that which Nick writes about after having witnessed Gatsby and Daisy together – being in love with the idea of love. Both Hank and Gatsby have romanticized the concept within their minds so thoroughly that they project a false image of it upon Karen and Daisy. It is the culmination of building a dream up to such great proportions that, once the dream is realized, its truth cannot stand up against its concept.
Cultural References
  • Karen says, “Judas Priest, Hank.” when he proposes to her, an obvious play-on-words of “Jesus Christ”.
  • Karen refers to Mia as a “Vunderkind” or “Wunderkind”, a child prodigy.
  • Hank says, “I love gentleman callers…” when referring to Damien arriving to see Becca. A gentlemen caller is a suitor, and most famously referenced in Tennessee Williams’ play The Glass Menagerie.
  • Hank asks Damien, “What are you thoughts on Roe v Wade”, the famous Supreme Court case which legalized abortion.
  • Runkle states that Julian’s novel is “…selling like Michael Jackon’s ‘Thriller’ album…”, ‘Thriller’ is the greatest selling album of all-time.
  • After Julian leaves a floater in the toilet, Hank claims, “Now it’s like Jaws 3, now it’s personal.”, the tagline of ‘Jaws: The Revenge’ was ‘This time it’s personal’. (Note: Jaws: The Revenge is actually the 4th movie in the series, but Jaws 3-D is generally not regarded as part of the overall story-arc.)

Episode Five

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