I got hooked on the American black comedy series ‘Weeds’ after one episode, and ploughed through Season 1, only for it to end on one of the best cliffhangers I’ve seen – I won’t spoil it for you now incase you’ve not seen Season 1, but it does need to be mentioned further on in this review – for those who haven’t viewed Season 1, I would recommend not reading further! I had no choice but to start watching Season 2 straight away.
‘Weeds’ centres around the manic life of soccer-mom Nancy Botwin, who has been dealing marijuana to the wealthy and spoilt inhabitants of Agrestic, LA, since her husband’s death, in order to support her two kids and the lifestyle she has grown used to.
Throughout Season 1, we saw Nancy trying to increase her business through various methods, including by opening a cover business aided by her bent accountant Doug. We were also introduced to Nancy’s two sons – argumentative teenager Silas and quirky Shane – and their dysfunctional Uncle Andy. Later in Season 1, we met Nancy’s love interest Peter, although certain details about him were not revealed until the very last episode of the season…
Season 2 is distinctly darker than the first season, and although there are many hilarious black comedy moments, and brilliantly witty dialogue, the subject matter itself is much grittier, though equally funny. Throughout Season 2, Nancy becomes more involved with the darker aspects of drug dealing, after planning to set up her own marijuana growhouse to supply her customers.
*Season 1 spoiler alert!*
After Nancy finds out at the end of Season 1 that her boyfriend Peter is a DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) Agent, she is mortified and tries to call things off with him at the start of Season 2. Peter then reveals that he has known all along that Nancy is a small time dealer, that he has bigger fish to catch than her and that he’s willing to turn a blind eye to her antics if it means they can give their relationship a try. Worried that Peter could one day be forced to testify against her should she be caught, the pair go to extreme measures to make sure that this is not possible…
Whilst Nancy and her drug associates are working towards their first harvest in the new growhouse, and having to deal with a host of hostile Armenian drug lords, back in the Agrestic community Celia Hodes is disgruntled at the way Councilman Doug Wilson is failing to serve his community, and runs for his seat in council. Some hilarious scenes between Celia, Doug, and Dean Hodes, who is Celia’s husband and Doug’s pot-smoking friend, come out of this situation, as well as some serious marital problems later in the Season.
As well as Nancy and her main storyline, there are various other sub-plots woven throughout Season 2. Silas resorts to desperate measures to ensure that his deaf girlfriend Megan doesn’t abandon him to go to Princeton University and later goes on a secret vandalism rampage. Shane joins the debate team to get closer to his school love interest, Gretchen. Uncle Andy resorts to equally desperate but more religious based methods to avoid being shipped off to fight in Iraq, by attempting to become a Rabbi.
Throughout all the various sub-plots, the show is very funny indeed, containing a very dark type of humour, incredibly witty dialogue and some truly laugh out loud moments (in particular Uncle Andy’s attempt to explain masturbation to his young nephew Shane, which led to a vast increase in the number of bananas going missing in the Botwin household).
The characters in ‘Weeds’ are very strong, and the main characters we meet in Season 1 continue to be present in this second season. Nancy’s character in particular continues to be very well rounded and believable, and the superb witty script in Season 2 ensures that we get to know her motives for setting up the growhouse and selling her particular strain of MILF weed. By now, we are used to the way that she deals with situations, reacting to problems rather than planning moves in advance.
We are also introduced to other characters throughout Season 2, particularly those involved in the drug industry, such as the brutal gangsta U-Turn and his obese comedy sidekick Marvin, who are so insane that despite their dangerous natures they create some very funny scenes.
The acting throughout the Season 2 is excellent – there has not been a single moment where a bit of bad acting has stood out, and the wider range of emotions that Nancy feels in this second season are very well acted.
As with the first season, some people may be put off by the drug theme of this series, but when compared to Season 1, this series shows more of the negative aspects to drug dealing, rather than portraying it as a harmless sideline to make more money. Although a drugs theme runs throughout, there are many other themes to the shows, and they do not glorify dealing in any way. The show is definitely made for adults, and features sexual and violent scenes and bad language in places, but nothing is gratuitous in this show and there are reasons for showing the more adult themed aspects.
I cannot recommend ‘Weeds’ highly enough, and Season 2 is a perfect continuation to the world of Nancy, the drug underworld and the suburban citizens of Agrestic.
Season 2 Episode List:
1. Corn Snake
2. Cooking with Jesus
3. Last Tango in Agrestic
4. A.K.A The Plant
5. Mrs Botwin’s Neighbourhood
6. Crush Girl Love Panic
7. Must Find Toes
8. MILF Money
10. Mile Deep and a Foot Wide
11. Yeah, Just Like Tomatoes
Nancy Botwin – Mary-Louise Parker
Silas Botwin – Hunter Parrish
Shane Botwin – Alexander Gould
Andy Botwin (Nancy’s brother in law) – Justin Kirk
Celia Hodes – Elizabeth Perkins
Doug Wilson – Kevin Nealon
Conrad Shepard – Romany Malco
Heylia James – Tonye Patano