Showtime’s House of Lies Middlegame TV Show Review. House of Lies: Season 3, Episode 6: Middlegame saw Marty Kaan (Don Cheadle) re-evaluating his plan with Dre (Mekhi Phifer). There was also humorous intelligence gathering and fallout preparation in case everything went south.
Kaan’s Francis Underwood moment was a window into his head, a short one, but the comedy that came after it made its brevity forgivable.
Most characters had comedic moments but it was Jeannie Van Der Hooven (Kristen Bell), Doug Guggenheim (Josh Lawson), and Genevieve Angelson (Caitlin)’s that stood out in the episode.
Guggenheim being the butt of jokes was an obvious eventuality given the character’s history on the show while Caitlin, drunk and eager to bloviate, managed to impress not just a new client but his associates as well.
Middlegame was illustration of the shifting dynamics of the group Marty Kaan calls his partners and associates.
Kaan was not immune to this shift, especially in the way he spoke to and interacted with Van Der Hooven. He has an honesty and rapport with her that he does not have with anyone else at his organization. The “mission” he sent her on could have only been executed by someone he explicitly trusted and with as much to lose as himself.
How Van Der Hooven kept Lucas (T.I.) for walking away from her was interesting to see, some of the most realistic first-basing the viewer may have seen on television.
Clyde Oberholt (Ben Schwartz) realized what a monolithic mistake he made with Monica Talbot and that he was the low man on the Kaan totem pole, a team he was formally a key player and trusted contemporary on. When Oberholt got hit below the belt by a newbie, even the viewer felt it.
Middlegame effectively packed more quality drama and humor into a half hour than episodes from the last season Entourage (though that TV show was a victim of stagnation by that point).
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