Season 1 Episode 7

Cliff Mantegna

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Sep 09, 2003 on FX

Episode Fan Reviews (6)

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out of 10
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  • Ya no más mi lumía

    Repaso el capítulo en ffx2 para no olvidarne de algo. Capítulo revelador. Estupenda esa rubia tostada en ese rojo cuero "I´m the one with candle-wax burns on her ass". Hey Jude, don´t make it bad... she is married! A mí me fascinaría que mi chica me espere en la cama con su delantal BDA (y con una amiga a su lado jaja). Por suerte Megan sigue rondando. Alguna vez buscaron a alguien so similar with the one you are in love with? I did. Y por suerte nunca tuve que lidiar con esa ¿que? reunión de padres degradándose7degradando? I´m not a lesbian. I like her, I don´t love you anymore...
    You like him, you don´t love me anymore... so...
  • Shut Up and Swing

    I found Kimber really depressing in this episode. She's clearly a damaged woman, who is madly in love with Christian, and willing to fulfill all his desires in order to make him love her like she loves him. Unfortunately, she's realizing this is impossible. The scene where she begins making out with the girl at the party made for uncomfortable viewing, seeing as she really didn't want to do it, but ended up doing so only to try and please Christian. She's a really sad character.

    Meanwhile, the Matt threesome storyline reached a conclusion, and you can't help but feel bad for Vanessa. While she did lie to Matt about her feelings, her slow realization in both this episode and last episode that Ridley doesn't love her was heartbreaking to watch, especially since Kate Mara gave a consistently great performance. I really liked the "sexual intervention" in this episode, especially when you considered how embarrassing Sean was being as he made bad jokes to lighten the mood and then brought up lame references to Marilyn Manson.

    I found it interesting that both Sean and Julia have ended up having affairs. In both cases it's understandable why they're doing it. Sean isn't being fulfilled in his relationship with Julia, and Megan is a genuinely kind soul, who has a lot of chemistry with him. With Julia, she has always been in love with Christian, and when, as Christian says, a low-rent version of him shows up in Jude, can she really be blamed for being attracted to him?

    Another excellent hour all about loss and deception, most of the characters end up in bad places as the episode reaches it's conclusion, but the strength of all the central performances and the audience's eagerness to find out what'll happen next makes sure you never give up on the show.

    Director: Scott Brazil
    Writer: Brad Falchuk
    Rating: A
  • It looks like Kimber and Christian's relationship is heading downhill fast.

    It looks like Kimber and Christian's relationship is heading downhill fast. Christian already has Kimber acting out fantasies for him that included dressing up as a hooker, a nurse and having hot lesbian make out sessions at The Scene (which I found rather lackluster and uneventful given all the buildup to it throughout the episode).

    Christian is already bored with Kimber, and is having a hard time with a monogamous relationship ("If I'm going to do this one women thing it can't be...with only one woman.") Kimber may think that by acting out his fantasies everything will be fine, but the audience knows that truly things never will. Christian obviously still has eyes for Julia (the sparks were flying between them in the last scene), and Kimber is just a way for him to pass the time.

    Last week Sean helped Megan realize she was beautiful; this week Megan helps Sean to always be honest with himself. I think what makes Sean's affair with Megan unique is that it's not fueled by sex. Sean and Megan really are reaching out to eachother fueled only by loneliness, and they fill a void that both feel that they have in their lives while brining out the best in one another. Their relationship really is so tender that one can't help but root for them.

    I found the meeting between the parents of the threesome fascinating and shocking. On one hand we have ignorant conservative parents who wanted no knowledge of their daughter's sex life; and then on another hand we had one mother who, thinking that twelve years old getting blowjobs was normal, thought that their children’s ménage was just "kids being kids". Sean and Julia laid somewhere in between those two views, although on opposite sides. I thought it was good of Sean to listen to Matt's side of the issue with an open mind, instead of just going into it one sided like Julia was. Julia's attitude really didn't help except to get Matt more frustrated and angry, causing him to lash out by discussing Sean and Julia's material problems in front of the other parents.

    I was surprised when it was revealed that Matt and Ridley were having a relationship behind Vanessa's back. Matt acted so hurt when he first found Vanessa with Ridley, and then he goes and does the same thing to Vanessa. Vanessa had a very personnel aspect of her life revealed in front of a group of people, and her tears at the betrayal done to her and her embarrassment were very effective. I was a little disappointed in Matt, like Sean was, but on the other hand Vanessa did cheat on him first.

    Final Notes and Quotes

    - Julia: "Can't a woman do something nice for her husband?"

    Sean: "A women can defiantly do something nice for her husband. You drive twenty minutes out of your way to bring me lunch, sounds more like a woman wants her husband to do something nice for her."

    - I thought it was a bit hypocritical of Christian to fire Jude, saying Jude reminds him too much of himself. Not that I'm sad to see Jude go.

    - No Grace or Liz in this episode.

    - Jude says he makes $200 an hour personnel training. As someone who has a parent who's a personnel trainer, let me tell you that's very expensive. Jude's only 26 and what, he can't have more then 4 years of experience can he?

    - I liked how Sean kept acting like her forgot who Megan was and what she did, when really, as his erection showed, she's been on his mind for awhile.

    - Christian: "For every beautiful woman there's a guy tired of screwing her." Which really makes me wonder if he and his beloved Julia finally got together, would they really last?

    Final Rating: First time I saw it I wasn't impressed, but I liked it a lot more the second time. 2 1/2 out of 4 stars? Maybe a 3?

    - Tim Bronx
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  • Good episode!

    Kimber, dressed like a prostitute, waits on the side of the road for Christian to pick her up. He does and they start having sex in the car. When Kimber continuously bumps her head on the roof, she complains and gets out. Christian pulls around and gives her a ride.

    The next day Christian does a consult with Cliff Mantegna, a swinger who wants to get rid of his man breast. While consulting with him, he picks up the name of a swingers club and learns that he must send in body shots of himself to join.

    Jude takes Julia back to his place to study. There, Jude tells Julia that he wants to become a plastic surgeon and would like her to ask if he can intern under Sean. Julia finds some half naked photos of Jude and keeps one.

    Sean has just told Nurse Linda to not charge Megan anything when Julia arrives with lunch for Sean and asks about Jude. Sean says he'll run it by Christian.

    When Julia gets home, she walks in on Matt, Vanessa, and Ridley having another 3-way. When Sean gets home the couple talks with Matt and they soon begin to argue. Julia informs them that she is inviting the parents over to discuss the incident.

    Christian returns home to find Kimber in a nurse's outfit. Christian informs her he doesn't want a nurse and starts taking photos of her. When she learns what they're for, she seems hesitant but Christian talks her into it.

    At the office, Sean and Christian discuss the 3-way incident and when Sean complains of neck pain, Christian suggests he see the chiropractor he treated a couple of weeks ago, Megan O'Hara.

    That night, Sean and Julia talk with the parents. After being blamed for the incident, secrets come out, like Vanessa telling her parents about Matt's self circumcision, Vanessa's parents finding out she's a lesbian, and Vanessa finding out that Matt and Ridley have been secretly dating since the first 3-way.

    The next day Julia is back at Jude's house and talking about Matt. Jude doesn't see what the problem is and informs her that he is going to a swingers club tonight.

    Christian and Kimber arrive at the club and learn about the rooms. Christian's eye is caught by a brunette and takes Kimber into the girl-on-girl room. There, the brunette and Kimber make out while Christian watches. Later, Christian spots Jude and what appears to be Julia. When he confronts her he learns that it is just one of his newest patients and leaves with Kimber. At home Sean finds the picture of Jude in Julia's book.

    Sean and Christian both agree the next day to terminate Jude as an intern. When Christian does, Jude threatens to tell Sean that his partner loves Julia. After making some threats as well Jude leaves. Christian also has to inform Cliff that he has Hepatitis C.

    At home Christian works out when Julia arrives upset that he fired Jude. The two kiss and Julia informs him that she was thinking of Jude. Sean visits Megan and expresses his feelings for her and the two kiss.

    This episode was really, really good! I like it!
  • Where The Indiscreet Meet Written by Brad Falchuk Directed by Scott Brazil

    For anyone who has the Season 1 DVD, you’ve probably noticed I’ve used some of the teasers for certain episodes as teasers for my own review, like with this episode. Alternatively, I could’ve called this “The Cheating Curve” after a certain episode of Sex And The City as after all, all of our main protagonists have been or are about to unfaithful to each other, whether it be physical or emotional.

    Let’s start with Matt. He agreed to do a three-way to partly help Vanessa keep Ridley and to be close to her but it backfired on them and him and Ridley became more closer, leaving Vanessa in the cold. When Julia catches them in the act and instigates an intervention with everyone’s parents, which does more harm than good. Julia’s one-sided look at the situation was enough ammunition for Matt’s unapologetic stance of his actions but it was Sean’s good hearted liberal thinking that made Vanessa’s parents come up as morons. Suffice to say the intervention was a disaster and Sean later castigated Matt over his reckless handling of Vanessa and Ridley’s feelings. Vanessa didn’t have a choice in being gay but Matt’s actions towards Ridley weren’t as easy to sympathise with, although in fairness this is the least complex out of all the emotional and physical adultery in this episode.

    Which means the most complex is a toss up between Sean and Julia. Christian made an accurate assessment that both of them are in fact too honest to cheat, in the sense they’d feel incredibly guilty over but the recent miscarriage and unresolved tension they’d had since we first met them has also kept Sean and Julia on opposing paths and it’s not just on their parenting skills either but for some odd reason, I find Julia’s need to look elsewhere more superficial than Sean’s. Put it this way, I’m not a fan of jude. He excudes a certain confidence, which at first was fine but this episode showed him being completely smug. He knows Julia’s attracted to him and uses this as a way of getting an internship in McNamara/Troy (he loses by getting bedding a client) while at the same time attempting to use Christian’s attraction to Julia as a blackmail tool. This episode has you initially thinking that Julia wants Jude but it’s really Christian she desires. Both men are actually quite alike but as Christian dubs it, Jude is really th poor man’s version of a suave playboy.

    Julia and Christian’s scenes at the apartment were quite electric and boy did he get knocked back by her cutting remarks at the end? Christian still lusts for his best mate’s wife and it’s part of the reason why he is making no effort to work out things with Kimber, who like a prized lapdotg gives into his every whim whilw he wonders why he’s still with her. A part of me feels for Kimber but not as much as I was screaming “get a back-bone, already” at her.

    And before I forget the emotional cheating I really do understand out of the bunch is Sean and Megan who try to dispel their attraction before giving in. I don’t condone adultery but there’s something not so clear cut with these, it’s kind of difficult to condemn. Both of them seem to bring better elements out in each other (Sean encourages Megan to feel beautiful, Megan encourages him to be more open with himself). Their scenes are so touching and tender, it’s hard not to like.

    Also in “Cliff Mantegna”

    Main patient of the week: Cliff Mantegna wanted his breasts removed so he could fulfil his swinger lifestyle which was cut short when Christian had to tell him he had Hepatitus C.

    Christian: “Are you doing this because you were rejected by a woman?”
    Cliff: “One woman? Try thirty in one night”.

    Another set of cool Nip/Tuck imagery was Kimber and Christian’s red and orange colour combination in the opening sequence.

    Julia: “Can’t a woman just do something nice for her husband?”
    Sean: “A woman can do something nice for her husband. You driving 20 minutes to bring me lunch sounds like a woman who wants her husband to do something nice for her”.

    Matt (re threesome): “You guys are lucky that was all I was doing. I know kids hooked on crank and kids who are plotting to blow up the school”
    Julia: “Congratulations. You win the award for least screwed up teenager”.

    Some character bits – Jude’s surname is Sawyer and he’s a personal trainer, Kimber is up for a Neutrogena contract and Ridley’s mother in on alimony.

    Vanessa’s mom: “What’s a lezzie?”
    Ridley’s mom: “Your daughter likes vagina”.

    Chronology – none was specified in this episode.

    Julia: “Do you know what I was thinking about?
    Christian: “What?”
    Julia: “Jude”.

    There’s a lot of stuff that does actually happen here and some it’s quite brilliant but others are slightly wide of the mark to a point. “Cliff Mantegna” is a fine but ultimately a rather fillerish episode, which like a few we’ve encountered feels more like a set up than a pay-off.
  • Probably one of the first season's more shocking episodes. Episode summary in review.

    Now at the mid-point of its freshman season, Nip/Tuck had proved it was willing to shock their audience in ways mainstream networks wouldn’t dare. Already they dealt with self-circumcision, teenage threesomes and porn. Despite this controversy, there was still artistic merit. Following this episode, things would only improve to an unforgettable season finale. This episode is provocative, but doesn’t have much dramatic impact as later episodes.

    Cliff Mantegna is looking to boost his status as a swinger by having his man breasts removed. “Thirty women in one night” have rejected him because of them. Despite the pain that will come with the procedure, it’ll be the end of a lifetime of ridicule and the ticket to The Scene, an exclusive club for swingers. During a special blood test Christian ordered, he found that Cliff has Hepatitis C and won’t likely be allowed at parties like The Scene ever again. This storyline draws parallels to Christian and Kimber’s ongoing dysfunctional relationship.

    It isn’t a good sign that they are already bored with each other. Now Kimber’s desperate to please Christian, role playing as a prostitute and a nurse to arouse him. Maybe this would work if Christian was more willing to fulfill one of Kimber’s fantasies, but Christian can be selfish. Although she is uncomfortable, she agrees to go to The Scene and fool around with a girl for Christian’s enjoyment. When they leave she thinks they’ll be alright, but we know they won’t.

    Jude is a mid-twenties answer to Christian. Listening to some of their dialogue it could’ve come from either of them, especially regarding their stance on women. They use their charm to lure ladies. While Christian likes a variety of women, Jude focuses more on middle aged women. He makes Julia a fancy snack during their studying. When he is waiting to meet the doctors on the first day of his internship, he charms another woman enough that later she accompanies him to The Scene. Jude’s magnetism sent Julia over to McNamara/Troy to convince Sean to give him an internship.

    Returning home, she discovers Matt’s threesome. Why didn’t they lock the door? Of course there is tension between Julia and Sean because their lack of communication over how to discuss sex with their son is still flawed. Sean’s secret urge to congratulate Matt doesn’t help either. Julia is right that there are consequences, explored later in this episode, but Matt doesn’t care because he thinks threesomes aren’t as destructive as drugs or violence.

    Sean and Julia had a good idea to have an “intervention” to discuss Matt, Ridley and Vanessa’s threesome. An open dialogue is important to establish trust. They lose because the girls’ respective parents’ personalities are two extremes. Both are not realistic dealing with sex. Ridley’s mom believes that kids are going to do it regardless and doesn’t do much to interfere. She’s read about preteens giving sexual favors, so she thinks her daughter’s sexual experimentation is normal. Vanessa’s parents are the other extreme. Instead of encouraging a reckless attitude about sex, they prefer to repress and ignore it. They deny her lesbianism and prefer to believe she is still a virgin who will live a “traditional” life. Sean and Julia represent a moderate perspective, but their lack of connection with Matt didn’t help. If they had continued, perhaps these dialogues could’ve yielded positive results.

    Matt took some advice from Christian about the three-way in the prior episode. His influence continues when Vanessa confronts Matt with the fact that he has been secretly seeing Ridley. Vanessa loves Ridley, even though Ridley was more into experimenting with girls than falling in love. Matt knew this and pursued Ridley anyway. Vulnerable, Vanessa is heartbroken when Matt betrays her and the trust they formed in this threesome.

    Multiple partners aside, this episode also dealt with another sexual taboo, the less exotic, but still destructive adultery. The tension between Jude and Julia is getting strong in this episode. He’s attracted to her because he likes women her type and she’s attracted to him because of his resemblance to Christian. When she finds suggestive pictures, place conspicuously near their school books, she steals one, discovered by Sean later. This turns to be a pivotal reason for what he does with Megan next.

    Before finding Jude’s picture, Sean had been indirectly hinting at wanting to see Mrs. O’Hara again. While complaining of back pain, Christian suggests seeing her, since she’s a chiropractor. Sean pretends that he forgot her profession. We know this is a lie because Megan’s impact last week was too big for him to forget. His back problems are a way to get him to see her, even though the ulterior motives were clear. Perhaps he subconsciously slept irregularly or exaggerated his back problems.

    During his first appointment, he gets an erection, an obvious sign of his feelings for her. Initially he doesn’t want to admit this, which ties into his back problems because he has tension accumulated from repressing his emotions. He has kept his feelings for Megan to himself, along with many other issues in his life. Starting an affair with Megan is the only way he sees to address this. Dramatically this affair turns things around, even if it isn’t the best thing to do morally.

    While Sean is drawn to Megan, Julia is turned away when she learns of Jude’s lifestyle. Jude is trying to get into The Scene as well, which explains the body shots Julia found. She finds out about this when she seeks advice about how to deal with Matt’s threesome. Her appalled behavior contrasts with Jude’s indifferent attitude towards her son’s experimentation. This revelation is what keeps Julia from straying, although she still has thoughts about it.

    Jude going to the party draws the ire of Christian, especially since his date was the woman he charmed on his first day as an intern. The next day, Sean and Christian decide to fire Jude. Christian reason isn’t much for going to the swingers’ party, since he too was there with a patient, but because of this patient’s resemblance Julia obviously knew that when she confronts him at the end. He did it because he wants her but can’t have her and a guy who is much like Christian is trying to. Because he hurt her friend, she hurts him back by kissing him, leading him on and saying he was thinking about Jude when it happened.

    This episode deals with sexuality and the consequences. It can break hearts (Vanessa), make you literally sick (Cliff), divide your relationship (Christian and Kimber) or drive someone away (Julia) or towards someone, even if the conditions are morally reprehensible (Sean). The second stage of the show is complete. Although the threesome plot was suddenly dropped after this episode, it won’t be the last interesting thing to happen to Matt. Megan and Sean’s affair, while on the surface not encouraged, is understood because of all the sadness and lack of fulfillment in his life, and it would serve well for future episodes. Many of the more controversial elements of season one are featured here and while it isn’t one of the best episodes, it is still a worthy establishment to advance the story.
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