The Big C: Karma Is a Bus

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The Big C S03E08: “Killjoy”

Today’s lesson: Don’t mess with the Cancer Lady.

I’ve been hard on Cathy this season, mostly because so many of her actions haven’t made sense and she really HAS acted pretty incredibly selfish and nearsighted. But man, it was nice to see her get a little revenge on those who've ACTUALLY wronged her lately. I’m all for being a crazy-eyed lunatic when the situation calls for it.

Being scammed by a pair of awful human beings with a penchant for lying REALLY well? That’s an appropriate situation.

Cathy drove Maxine and Dave out to the middle of nowhere under the pretense of giving them the Mustang when she randomly pulled over and revealed that she knew they were lying about Maxine being preggers. She forced them to strip down to their skivvies (at gunpoint, no less!) and fired a warning shot into the trees—just to make sure they were taking her seriously—before packing up their discarded clothes and driving home. Bad. Ass.

Paul took a more conventional approach to vengeance and vowed to sue the criminal couple for everything they were worth (which, realistically, probably isn’t very much) and there was some obligatory arguing between Paul and Cathy over the fact that Paul was more upset over having lost a huge chunk of cash than having lost out on being a parent to Maxine and Dave’s baby. Paul argued that they'd actually HAD the money, whereas they'd never actually had the baby, which led to more arguing about how all Paul cared about was his career. Paul and Cathy were both right, in their own way. I’m just glad the baby storyline is finally over. I was never wild about it. You can’t just replace your sullen teenage child with a shiny new baby, Cathy.

In the wake of losing out on the non-existent newborn, Cathy seemed to have a renewed interest in actually parenting the kid she has, which was refreshing and wonderful and oh, Adam has reached new heights of being unbearable, hasn’t he? He gave Cathy a grown-up lecture after walking in on her smoking a joint. It was amusing for about ten seconds before I was reminded of what an obnoxious little ass Adam has morphed into this season.

And Cathy totally called it, “Everything that comes out of your mouth has an air of self-righteousness.”

Thank you, Cathy. Now fix it. That was a good start. I have faith in you. Only a little so far, but it’s there.

I lost faith in Paul as soon as Joy started flirting with him, though, and my lack of faith was totally vindicated when he started flirting back. And by flirting, I mean grabbing her ass, which is actually a few steps above flirting in my opinion and definitely in no way “innocent.” To be fair to Paul, he'd found a matchbook for the Naked Turtle, that bar that Cathy likes to hang out in and pretend to be a widow named Alexis. He met “Alexis’s” friends and found out about her “dead” husband and that had to have been a pretty stunning blow.

Still, the appropriate response was NOT to initiate cheating. Did you learn NOTHING from your past, Paul? NOTHING?

I was pulling for a heart-to-heart chat. I really was. I just want to know how Cathy justifies her behavior. I can theorize to myself all I want: It’s an escape, it’s a game, it's proof that she’s an awful human being, etc. but Cathy really impressed me in “Killjoy” and I’d like to hear her side of the story.

But Paul and Joy’s illicit liaison was never meant to be. After Ababu spilled the beans about Joy and Paul’s weird vibes and Cathy herself stumbled upon a damning email from Joy in Paul’s inbox, she tracked Joy down to confront her about her advances on Paul. Joy laid out some pretty brutal truths: Cathy is a downer. Cathy is selfish. Cathy is driving her family away. While that’s all pretty much true, it doesn't give Joy an excuse to sleep with Cathy's husband. As a result of her not-okay advances and horrible rationalization of the cheating, I officially welcomed Joy into the Everyone on This Show is a Terrible Human Being Club.

Unfortunately, I didn’t even have time to put her welcome package together because in the midst of their heated argument, Joy ignored the cardinal rule of crossing the street and got plowed over by a bus. Marlene (Hi, Marlene! I miss you!) exited the bus and serenely said, “Some people miss the bus. Some people not so much.” Karma, kids, it’ll lay the smackdown on you eventually. So go forth and be nice to children, always tip well, and whatever you do, don’t try to sleep with the Cancer Lady’s husband.

I swear, every week, this show finds a new way to make me scratch my head and ask, “Who DOES that?”