Season 5 Episode 8

Duke Collins

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Dec 18, 2007 on FX
out of 10
User Rating
152 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Sean discovers the secret between Christian and Julia. A hospitalized Matt bonds with his rehabilitation counselor. Eden suspiciously makes peace with Julia. Kimber and Ram reveal their future plans.

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  • Fruitcake Written by Lyn Greene And Richard Levine Directed by Elodie Keene

    Duke (to Sean/Christian): "I like kids. I don't want to spend my life being afraid of them".

    It's another season of bad tidings. Christmas comes once a year and once again, it's not pleasant for our new LA residents. So far both "Joy Kringle" and "Reefer" have been far from classics and "Duke Collins" while better, isn't really one either. Still it's better than some of the other episodes so far this season.

    For Matt, he's in a pretty crappy place as he begins to deal with the consequences of his actions. Getting him hooked to crack and being married to a total **** like Kimber has seen him lose the skank (which to him is a bad thing), Jenna (which is just a bad thing) and because of his own stupidity nearly his own life.

    It's lucky for him that he's still alive even though he doesn't really feel lucky as such. He barely got out of that motel pool alive and he's all covered in burns. However while Matt might be in a lot of pain, not everyone is quick to express their sympathy for him.

    Julia and Christian largely keep their anger at bay and try to be supportive. Sean on the other hand out of worry and genuine frustration just lashes out on Matt. To be fair, Matt deserves the verbal ass kicking and what Sean says isn't any worse to what some viewers probably feel about Matt anyways. Now I do feel sorry for Matt but he never seems to really learn anything from his mistakes and if a lecture from Sean can achieve anything then by all means let Sean yell away. Matt isn't a child anymore and if he really wants to be a responsible parent for Jenna then he does need to buck up and pronto.

    The frustrating thing is that even though Sean is right, the writers still attempt to make him feel guilty for what he says to Matt. This is blatantly obvious when we meet title patient Duke Collins who as Santa got shot in the face by a child at the mall. To really amp up the tension, the child happened to be his son.

    See Duke is something of a crap father, who hasn't bothered his arse in taking any kind of interest in his kid, even to the extent of not paying child support. Of course Sean only discovers that bit of information when the child's mum comes in and lets Duke have it for wanting to get his face fixed.

    It seems the child isn't the only Duke has damaged by being a feckless loser. Nope, ex-wifey is inches away from sending Duke into the sky but instead the silly bint ends up shooting a caroller dress as Frosty The Snowman. Hey, even during Christmas this show's dark sense of humour doesn't rest.

    Anyways the problem now arises with Duke having to take care of a child he doesn't want and the child being with a father he hates. Sean figures that he's partly to blame for Matt's problems and tries to extend an olive branch. Matt accepts but declines the offer to spend Christmas with his family as new pal Rachel and kids in the burns ward are a better option for him.

    Rachel is a burns counsellor and also a fellow burns victim but unlike Matt hers are far more severe even if she does have a rather sunny attitude to life in spite of what has happened to her. Her ability to joke about being in the army and college in her search for a husband is well judged humour.

    Heck Rachel even goes as far as to reject Christian's offers of plastic surgery. I'm not sure what Christian's motives were behind that. Perhaps he was being genuinely grateful or perhaps he's mistrustful. Much as I like I'm uncertain of getting attached to her as a character.

    That's because Matt likes and aside from Vanessa, we all know that Matt has the worst judgement in women. Considering the fact that his ex-girlfriends consist of paedophiles, racists and gold diggers, I would like for Rachel to be a normal woman and not some nut job. If not then Matt should maybe consider dating guys. Perhaps his judgement there would be a lot better.

    Either way, male or female, Matt does need to be with someone who actually cares about him. Kimber more than made it clear in the last episode that she never cared for him and she continues with that stance when her attitude towards Julia and Kimber at a Christmas porn party is atrocious.

    Now Kimber might be justified in her resentment towards Christian but what the hell has Julia ever really done at her and where does Kimber get off trying to look down on her? Seriously Julia mightn't win 'mother of the year' but she at least loves her kids. Has Kimber shown any feelings towards Jenna at all?

    Dressing the kid up in tacky outfits and boasting how much of a better Ram would be than Matt isn't a good indicator of that. And am I the only who wanted to seriously punch her for goading Julia with Jenna? A part of me really hopes that Kimber is being set up for a fall. I'd love to see Christian call social services on her ass. Matt might not be a suitable parent right now but neither is Kimber.

    Kimber is so infuriatingly awful in this episode that not even the other blonde parasite Eden can outdo her. That should be strange seeing as Kimber is just being a malicious shrew and Eden is more or less plotting Julia's demise. I should also point out that she's doing it with the genius of fruitcake too.

    So far Anna Lynne McCord's acting on this show hasn't exactly been overwhelmingly brilliant but here but she does a damn good. I like that Eden lulls Julia into a false sense of security and then her stepmother's (in a way) love of fruitcake. Eden's finally gotten into the crazy territory and it makes somewhat more interesting than when she getting it on with Sean or try to destroy Annie's self-confidence. I doubt it's likely that's Eden genius plan will actually work (then again with someone supposedly set to die this season, it just might), you got to give the girl some points for effort alone. If there's any chance that Eden can give Ram that recipe as a precaution for Kimber that would be sweet. With both Kimber and Eden coming up with their own ways to be genuine pains for Julia, it probably wasn't the best time for her and Christian's rather boring affair to be outed by Sean. Given the way these two have been acting for the last couple of weeks, I'm impressed it's taken Sean this long to figure it out.

    They nearly got caught at it when Sean came home in the afternoon but the big reveal was just Christian being stupid enough to buy Julia earrings during their secret Santa. Yeah, good move there, slick. Christian might as well as put up a sex session between him and Julia on YouTube for all the subtlety of that brig revelation.

    Anyways as viewers we have to listen to Christian and Julia go through a barrage of lame excuses. Look Christian; there are two ways to look at this. One is that Julia is no longer married to Sean and whoever she sleeps with is her own damn business. Sean wasn't particularly worried about Julia when he was screwing around with Eden, now was he?

    There's also the unwritten rule of not hooking up with a friend's ex. Sean and Christian's friendship barely survived the last time Christian and Julia had a thing and now they're both stupid enough to embark on an affair again? Given these two's penchant for disaster, they won't last a year.

    Christian is still unable to keep his dick in his pants and will screw the first bimbo in sight and Julia is always looking to see if the grass is greener on the Otherside. These are both flaws they know about each other and yet they still think they can make it as a couple? Delusional much?

    I liked Sean being angry at the two of them. They did deserve it to an extent and his refusal to give them their blessing was right. The writers need to scrap this storyline and fast. Julia was better off in New York if this is what the writers had planned for her all along. The characters need to move forwards, not backwards guys.

    Then there's Olivia. Neither Sean, Christian or Julia really seemed to take her feelings into account. I mean out of everyone, she's the only person I feel sorry for more and it feels rather annoying that we'll lose her when Julia and Christian's affair gets exposed. Olivia is better for Julia in ways that Christian will never be.

    As for Liz, eight episodes in and the woman still has sod all to do. She's the best character in the damn show and yet she's pushed to the side in favour of Eden and Kimber. What the hell is up with producers? Don't they know how much viewers love her and Roma Maffia? They should do by now.

    All Liz did in this episode was yell at carollers who kept singing in the operating and talking about her hatred for Christmas. Okay she was funny during those scenes but that no longer cuts it. Just give the woman more to do already. I demand for more stuff for Liz. Shouldn't she be getting a love interest by now?

    Also in "Duke Collins"

    If you thought that Liz was being mean to the carollers, then what do you make of the crip gang who beat them up except for Carol herself.

    Sean: "We've been doing secret Santas since college. It's tradition"

    Christian: "So is mince pies, whatever the hell they are".

    This is the third Christmas episode in a row where not all of the family have been completely there. Perhaps the next Christmas episode will do that.

    Matt: "Don't give up on me, okay"

    Julia: "No-one's giving up on you".

    Julia (to Christian): "That was fun. Let's never do that again".

    Does Julia have a fear of confined spaces? Some of the stuff between her and Christian hiding made me think that.

    Liz (to Sean): "I love that our Saviour was born. I hate the party and the music".

    Matt: "You think you're lucky?"

    Rachel: "I lost my taste for Falafel but I still have my life".

    Who the hell brings a child to a porn party? I thought Kimber and Ram had sitters to take care of Jenna.

    Eden (re Olivia's ex-girlfriend): "She was a real **** but a dynamite pastry chef"

    Julia: "Well at least there was something about her you liked".

    Matt: "Didn't you want to defend your country?"

    Rachel: "No I wanted to find a husband".

    Linda's love of golf was a nice way of explaining why she wasn't in this episode at all.

    Christian: "What is this, tough love?"

    Rachel: "Honesty. Try it!"

    Sean: "You guys are screwing each other"

    Christian (re Julia): "Sean, I just bought her some earrings".

    Standout music: "Fruitcake" and "Frosty The Snowman" by The Spirits Of Christmas. They were the only group to have music featured throughout the entire episode.

    Christian (to Sean): "We're not doing it to cause you pain. We're doing it to see if it's finally right".

    Julia: "I know how hard this must be"

    Sean: "Not being here would be much harder".

    Chronology: December 24th 2007.

    With Christmas out of the way, I didn't really want a reminder of it. "Duke Collins" is a very good episode and would've been better if Julia and Christian's affair wasn't such a lame aspect of the episode. Seriously writers do us all a favour and end it soon.moreless
  • Christmas time again!

    Another superb episode. Im loving season 5. This episode was exactly what Nip Tuck should be all about. Great relationship drama and excellent surgical storyline.

    I think there's finally hope for Matt to once and for redeem himself. I thought that during season 3 and season 4 but we all know how that turned out. Although Rachel is just like any other character Matt hooks up with....... way too controlling. Seriously. Remember Ava? Always telling Matt what to do in front of his parents. Remember Kimber? Forcing Matt into scientology. And now Rachel.

    But, this time around, all this could play out positively.

    Loved the comic relief of the episode, which involved Christian hiding Julia in the closet. It was well done and I was glad the writers included a scene like that. Nip Tuck tends to get way too serious from time to time, so having a similiar scene to that every now and then is good.

    Loved Sean this episode. Him rejecting Matt at the start - wow. Really didn't see it coming. Eden poisoning Julia on the other hand was.... just not cool. It's way too soap opera-y, and honestly, I don't really see it being neccessery. In fact, Idon't see how Eden is revelant to the plot anymore since Sean and her... well... split up.

    The case of the episode was fantastic, didn't see the ending twist coming. Overall, a great episode of N/T.moreless
  • Wow.

    Everyone's just hurting everyone. It's like a logjam in a sawmill and there's blades flying everywhere.

    Kimber and ... Ram. How charming. Yes, porn stars and orgies are more stable than a rat blowing himself up in a meth lab, but at this point a judge might be more willing to hand the child off to Gina. Surely Kimber's not testing clean for meth either.

    Rachel was pretty amazing. It's kind of incredible the way strength and personal charisma shines through even that level of disfigurement. I loved that despite the shallow man-hungry label she keeps slapping herself with she's managed to find more than a small amount of depth.

    Matt seemed a little stronger in the end. And this episode was really Matty's life in microcosm. There's an explosion he's injured in that he's more or less responsible for, Sean yells at him, Christian tries to console him and Julia smothers him, he remains emotionally immature, he comes to some sort of epiphany and he straightens up and flies right for at least the last few minutes of the episode.

    And at the center of the pain is Julia.

    Julia, who wants to spare everyone from painful realizations, and by her very dithering manages to make everything worse. Christian thought she was committed to him, and at the party she was all over Olivia. Christian's asking Sean for a blessing for something Julia doesn't seem entirely committed to either. And of course Sean is so messed up re his feelings about Julia that ...

    Oh, Sean. You're like one week removed from an E-induced cardiac event with your ex's new gf's daughter. Yes, those waves crashing over you are shame and self-loathing, but never mind. She's poisoning your ex so soon everything's going to fall completely apart for everyone anyway.

    Why, it's like a child shooting his father in the face and missing and hitting a singing snowman. I'm sure that's exactly what happened in the first Christmas story, from the Book of Tarantino, Chapter 2. I knew I'd read that somewhere before.

    Look, there was a lot of pain and a lot of victims in this shooting gallery of an episode (honestly, one of you has been shot and you're still singing? RUN! RUUUUNNNN!!!) But that's no reason to let our Christmas spirit go all to heck.

    Look. Eden's made us some fruitcake.

    Chomp. :Pmoreless
  • Pretty good

    Well.. It's a hell of a episode.. compared with the others that I can tell for sure. I really liked that santa story.. it had a twist and i love stories with twist, those which make you go "wow". Anyway, Kimber.. I don't know what happened to her. She's back to that devil action so quickly and unexpected.. it's very weird and hard to believe. And Juliaaa I find her so freakin' annoying!!! C'mon just stick to one person just this time!! I really hoped that thing with Olivia lasted, but frankly, I doubt it. It was quite predictable she will end up (again) with Christian which is quite boring. But. General speaking, good episode.moreless
  • This show is really brighter that you think.

    Haha. They have wound the character`s on this show so well. Julia and Christian are the arc of the story line. Sean gets tortured, girl with bad gas, lolita girl, haha. Kimber is evil, not because she is, cus, that is how people see her successful. The show really is back to season one. The way they built the characters to scheme each other. Matt gets stuck with a tranny, a neo nazi and a porn star. Now a agressive nurse, he really is a strong actor. Episode 9 will tug at you. They are a real sharp bunch. The show is moving in light speed, someone unique is on its way.moreless
Mary Pat Gleason

Mary Pat Gleason

Carol McCrackin

Guest Star

Joel McKinnon Miller

Joel McKinnon Miller

Duke Collins

Guest Star

Keith Pillow

Keith Pillow


Guest Star

Portia de Rossi

Portia de Rossi

Olivia Lord

Recurring Role

AnnaLynne McCord

AnnaLynne McCord

Eden Lord

Recurring Role

Joshua Henry

Joshua Henry


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Although Julia got the first, and only, slice of the fruit cake which Eden cut, it was clearly an inner cut of the cake, even though we witness Eden cutting off the outside piece of it for Julia, which is baked all the way around.

    • Carol mentions the Hedda Grubman Plastic Surgery Fund during the initial consultation with Christian and Sean. In the Season 4 episode "Conor McNamara", it was revealed that Mrs, Grubman had left all her money to this fund for people who wanted surgery but couldn't afford it.

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Christian: (To Matt) The surgery went well.. We'll just gonna do some grafts... Take some skin from your ass, you know, the place where you keep your brain.

    • Carol: There we were in our red hats and scarves, singing "Winter Wonderland" and watching the sunset on the beach when a tattooed man in blue approached, and advised us that we were in "crip" territory. Well I happen to speak "crip", so I told him "chill, we were friendlies". But then five men in blue approached, and asked if the red scarves meant that we were sent by the Bloods to diss them. I said "fo schizzle, we were just spreading the word" and "please not get up in our grills". And then I reached for my pitch pipe...
      Christian: They beat the crap out of you?
      Sean: Maybe they weren't music lovers
      Christian: How did you escape unhurt?
      Carol: I took their advice and hauled my cracker ass out of there...

    • Liz: (In response to the carollers singing) Go! Away! Bah humbug!
      Sean: Ebenezer Cruz, where's your Christmas spirit?

    • Ram: Don't you think that the little girl's gonna be a little bit better off with Kimber and me, rather than some punk who's willing to be filmed taking it up the ass so he could score a little bit more boo-yah?
      Christian: That's my son, you dick-sucking pimp!
      Kimber: Didn't you guys know that Matt worked here? Oh yeah, Ram cast him in First-Time Fairies... as a bottom. That's the one...
      Julia: Stop it Kimber, you're lying!
      Christian: That's the only thing she's good at, except for spreading her legs.

    • Christian: It takes at least two to tango with Kimber. Preferably eight, one for each tentacle.

  • NOTES (3)

    • Music Featured In This Episode:

      Carol Of The Bells - The Spirits Of Christmas
      God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Carol Of The Bells - Durbin Elf
      O Christmas Tree - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Jingle Bells - DJ Rob E
      Fruitcake - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Santa Baby - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Deck The Halls - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Frosty The Snowman - The Spirits Of Christmas
      Silent Night - The Spirits Of Christmas
      O Tannenbaum - Christmas Carol and the Carolers

    • John Schneider receives the 'and' credit.

    • Portia de Rossi is credited as a Special Guest Star.


    • Liz: (to the carollers) Go! Away! Bah humbug!
      Sean: Ebenezer Cruz, where's your Christmas spirit?

      This refers to the perennial seasonal favourite A Christmas Carol, written in 1843 by Charles Dickens. The main character- Ebenezer Scrooge- is a miser who dislikes Christmas and dismisses it as 'humbug'. These terms have passed into common usage.