Season 5 Episode 8

Duke Collins

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Dec 18, 2007 on FX

Episode Fan Reviews (9)

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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.
  • 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.
  • 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. :P
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • i never in nip tuck´s time felt so bored on an episode

    boring, boring, boring, thats what i thought all the 45 painfull minutes of this episode, i so not right to cristian and julia to be togerther, they so dont match, and frankly every time i see cristian i want to puke he is SO ANOYING i cant stand him any more, the only thing y like about this season is eden lord it reminds me of ava moore, gratest antagonist, i hope she comes back, also nip tuck is becoming much like a soup opera and not as it used to be, the problems with the pasients, nip tuck was my favorite show by far, that till it downfall in season 3, then in season 4, it become a little better but now season 5 sucks the worse by far, and my final critik is julñia being a lesbian i so not real, actually i was happy when in seasn 4 she was leaving, she had become kind of boring, bring gina back she was great too, im tired of not liking nip tuck.

    PD: If i right some thing rong is beacause i live in Argentina
  • Deck the halls with lots of mauling..Christmas with the 'crips', a touch of betrayal, deadbeat Santas and a bullet in Frosty.

    Great Christmas episode. The outcomes of the decisions we make and the need for forgiveness/understanding can be seen throughout. Most prominently in Matt's story. Christian, Julia, and Sean rush to hospital to see their son who's just recently burned himself accidentally in a meth lab explosion after losing Jenna and being forcibly 'orphaned' by Christian. Sean does the tough love tag team with Christian this episode. After he and Christian debride Matt's back, Sean tells Matt that his promises don't count for **** and that he's through with him. While Matt's in the doghouse, Christian and Julia sneak around and try to avoid hurting both Sean and Olivia. After a near miss of the two getting it on earlier in the episode when he comes home early from work, the truth finally occurs to Sean after Christian gives Julia a particularly expensive set of earrings for their annual 'secret santa' gift exchange. The gradual dawning on Sean's face coupled with the look he gives after Christian declares he and Julia are in love is particularly heartrending. Christian and Julia may love eachother, but whether or not that is compatible with their maintaining a closeness with Sean is another matter.

    Perhaps a sneak peek of Sean's ultimate reaction to Christian and Julia pursuing a relationship can be seen in his reconciliation with Matt. Over the course of the episode Sean finds out the title charater Duke Collins, instead of being a Santa wrongly shot in the face by a disgruntled kid with an unfilled wishlist, is actually a deadbeat dad (still wrongly, but more understandably) shot by his disgruntled son whom he abandoned. After examining the mess that his patient has made of his son's life, Sean visits Matt in the hospital in one of the most touching scenes this season. Sean asks for Matt's forgiveness and offers him his 'dream box' and a place at the Christmas table. Matt gracefully turns down the offer and vocalizes his need to grow up, and find his own dreams in order to b/c a decent person and father. The show ends with a warm if somewhat uneasy Christmas gettogether. Happily we get to see Wilber, Conor, and Annie as well as Liz aka 'Ebenezer Cruz' in a snazzy beret.
    Other Highlights:
    -Eden apparently taking a page from the poisoner's handbook decides to add a malignant probably slow acting secret ingredient to Julia's fruitcake. -A portion of the heda grubman fund goes to repair Christmas Carol's carolers' who had a holiday run in with the crips. Later Frosty, the caroler, takes a bullet and gets carted off by the EMTs to a hilariously haunting rendition of "Frosty the Snowman"
    -We're introduced to Rachel ben Natan, Matt's burn counselor, who was disfigured by a suicide bomber attack. She helps push Matt towards health and independence. Hope we'll be seeing more of her. Overall, a great episode. Almost like a lull b/f the storm.
  • Ho, Ho, Ho. And No, I'm Not Talking About Eden.

    Christian and Julia's relationship doesn't exactly ring true. It was sad to see the writers going through the same motions again with Sean angry over their sleeping together, and then followed by a tearful reunion moment at the end. I also hated that they're all acting so supportive of this new relationship, when Olivia is still being lied to. I really hope she runs off with Liz after she finds out the truth. You can see the sparks they have, people!

    The scene where Julia hid in the closet from Sean was extremely disturbing. Firstly Sean just stands around watching as Christian did naked exercises and claimed he does it all the time after masturbating (gah!), and then proceeds to hang around the house until Christian's done masturbating for a second time. I know these guys are close, but all that was a little too close...

    Kimber's personality was a little too inconsistent compared to what we normally see of her. She came off as straight-up evil, which is never how she's been written in the past. Whenever she does something cruel, there's always a sadder reason inside her that explains it away. But her treatment of Julia was particularly nasty. She needs to get back to her old self.

    I really loved Matt's counselor Rachel. She's an inspiring woman, and I loved that she's somebody who isn't afraid to wear her scars so openly. In an image-obsessed city like Los Angeles, it's refreshing to meet somebody like her. I was really impressed by the make-up job too, and Maggie Siff in the role. I hope she becomes a recurring character.

    The patients of the week were pretty good. Mary Pat Gleason was hilarious as the Christmas caroller who totally knows "crip talk", and I liked the constant twists and turns of the Santa story. Also loved the kid actor that screamed out "Santa's just got shot!" in the flashback scene, he was great.

    A more grounded episode compared to last week's non-stop craziness, Duke Collins succeeded in most of the dramatic stories, but some of the humor was a little too sitcom-y than usual. And the whole "spiked fruitcake" weirdness was a little lame...

    Director: Elodie Keene
    Writers: Lyn Greene, Richard Levine
    Rating: B
  • Not as great as last week, but still an amazing season for Nip/Tuck!

    So another Christmas mess for poor Sean! I swear every year he's been crapped on! This year it's the worst for him, finding out that not only are they sleeping together but that Julia and Christian are "in love" I only put that in quotes because of her little affectionate giggly touching of Olivia towards the end, but I do think these two are really in love. However, it seems that it could be short lived, with psycho step daughter poisoning her and all. Ohh, Eden, I wish I could believe that was just a little vanilla extract! Even though I'd really hate to see Julia be killed off, it's extreamly great writing keeping us in slow suspense over weither or not it's actual poison!

    Julia and Christian going to see Kimber and her man-whore seemed pointless of a scene except to see how much of a witch she has become. If she thinks she is more of a fit mother, she is so mistaken. Christian can pull just as much dirt on her as they have on Matt. Plus, who's better fit to help take care of a baby, Matt's multi-doctor grandparents or Kimber's partners in her porn buisness? I have a problem believing a judge would award her custody if she's exposing her child to that much smut! I hope that they ban together to take that child away! I'm about ready for Kimber to be busted back down to when she was Meril's traded toy!

    Next week they bring Dawn back...I have mixed feelings about her, she's entertaining, but only good in small doses! Although getting closer on whatever happened to her and Freddy will be nice, and probably extreamly hilariuos!