Blu-ray Review: Divorce: The Complete First Season

By , Contributor
HBO's comedy-drama Divorce is both very funny and deeply thought provoking. As the title makes clear, this is a series about a relationship that has reached its breaking point. Frances (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Robert (Thomas Haden Church) have been married for some time. They've raised two kids, both of whom are acutely aware of their parents' problems. Frances has become the breadwinner in recent years, working at a high scale employment agency while planning to open an art gallery. Robert flips houses, consistently overspending on renovations. He also has a sometimes reckless penchant for costly investments (he wants to rent a warehouse to start FunSpace, a recreation center for kids).

What is rather fearless about the series (created by Irish producer-writer-director-actress Sharon Horgan) is how unlikable it allows Frances to be. While roughly equal time is given to each half of the unhappily married couple, Frances edges out Robert as the main focus. She's generally self-absorbed and short tempered. In fact, it's Frances who initiates the divorce proceedings after becoming involved with another man, Julian (Jermaine Clement). When Julian (who turns out to be a serial homewrecker) dumps Frances, she briefly seeks a reconciliation with Robert. However when Robert becomes aware of Frances' dalliance, he seethes with anger and hurt.
rsz_divorce_s1_bd.jpg The ten-episode Complete First Season (now available on Blu-ray and DVD) charts the messy path to divorce. When and how will they tell the kids? What about their parents? Who will their mutual friends side with? Truth be told, Divorce will possibly be too emotionally raw for viewers who have personal experience with this process, be it their own divorce or that of someone close to them. Again, creator Horgan has decided to tackle a very uncomfortable subject that may hit too close to home for some. The excellent acting (not only by stars Church and Golden Globe-nominated Parker, but also by series regulars including Molly Shannon and guest stars like Robert Forster) and sharp writing makes Divorce a funny, bracing, adult-oriented experience.

As for special features on HBO Home Entertainment's Blu-ray, three episodes feature audio commentary by Sarah Jessica Parker (also a producer of Divorce), executive producer Paul Simms, and (for two of the three) the episode writers.

HBO has renewed Divorce for a second season (though a premiere date has yet to be set).

Share this story About the author

Chaz Lipp is a Seattle-based freelance writer whose focus is film and music. His new jazz album Good Merlin is now available.

View Profile
Visit Website

More from Chaz
Related Tags
 

Connect With TMR

Recent Writers

View all writers »

October 2017
S M T W T F S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31