Six Feet Under

Season 3 Episode 11

Death Works Overtime

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM May 11, 2003 on HBO
out of 10
User Rating
157 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Dorothy Kim Su
David Raymond Monroe
Edward Tully
Nate is still trying to find Lisa. He makes calls frantically to everyone he knows. Lisa's car is found near a beach, and Nate nearby in hopes of finding something out. The funeral home gets a number of cases, and needs all the help they can get. Arthur tries to learn how to interact with the funeral home's customers. Federico is having added issues now that Vanessa's sister lives with them, but has to go into work despite that due to the influx of deaths. Vanessa and her sister go shopping and come home with a big screen television and a fridge, and refuse to take them back. Brenda finds a new place of her own in a questionable neighborhood. She has few belongings and moves in quickly. Brenda's mother asks her to join her and Billy to scatter their father's ashes. Brenda reluctantly agrees. When they do get together to scatter the ashes they argue, of course, and end up throwing them over an apartment balcony. Russell shows up at the Fisher's to apologize once again to Claire. However, she rejects his continued advances. Claire has a review with Olivier, and they end up getting into a very heated argument. Later, Claire takes a pregnancy test, and it's positive. After one of the funerals, Ruth meets a new man, George Sibley, and proceeds to cry all over him.moreless

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  • James Cromwell!

    Not a bad episode, just not very eventful. One of those episodes that if they were shorter, they would be much better.

    Lisa's missing and that drives Nate crazy . . . . Once again, much like in the previous episode, it proved to be a disappointing storyline . Ruth's optimistic reaction was interesting though, but it doesn't take a JJ Abrams to figure out how she would eventually flip out infront of a complete stranger . . . Mr. James Cromwell. I bet there's a very strong reason that such a great actor was casted for a seemingly unimportant character. He'll return I'm sure. I enjoyed Brenda and Billy . . Somewhat. There's something about Billy.... it feels as if he could go insanely crazy at any moment. I like that.

    Claire continously refuses Russel, but now it appears Claire's pregnant. I don't know what to think about this. I don't really like pregnancy storylines anymore because they've been done to death. Nevertheless, this was a good episode. Just not as good as I hope this show to be.moreless
  • 311

    Perfect episode of Six Feet Under. Well, it took 11 episodes to get Six Feet Under back on track, and it definitely finally has. If the last episode and this episode are a sign of anything, it's a sign that we'll be getting a huge payoff in the finale. The title of the episode was very clever. The 3 deaths sprinkled throughout the episode was good.

    We also got some really intense scenes here. We got great interactions between the Fishers. They all broke down in their own way after they find out that Lisa was missing. Claire pregnant with a gay man's baby? Very eventful. Can't wait to see what's to come of this. Claire's confrontation with Olivie was fantastic. As was Ruth's confrontation with the complete stranger. I really felt the pain for the family here, it was a realistic take on things.

    Billy & Brenda? Still really twisted, still interested in seeing if it goes anywhere. The Vanessa & Rico scenes were all in all, pretty heartbreaking. The final scene had me in love with the entire episode. It was also heartbreaking seeing the Fishers in that embrace crying together. Now the only question that's left unanswered... where's Lisa?moreless
  • Three's A Crowd Written by Rick Cleveland Directed by Dan Attias

    "I'm just trying to prepare for the worst so when it actually happens it's not so awful."--Claire

    Dorothy Kim Su: 1945-2003

    Edward Tully: 1955-2003

    David Raymond Monroe: 1971-2003

    When an episode ends on such a cliffhanger like last week's Six Feet Under where Nate finds out Lisa is missing you want to dig right into the episode. However we should all by now (that unless we're living under a rock) that death happens anytime, anywhere and death certainly didn't spare L.A. this evening. In fact, three people died in this week's episode which is very different for the show which usually averages 1 death per episode. We start off with a hold up at a local convenience store where a nervous man is holding the owner at gunpoint. When the woman gives the man all of her money, he fears she will run to the police. So he walks out as a decoy and runs back in to shoot her.

    Nate talks to his Lisa's sister Barb on the phone who says that she had filed a missing person's report. Nate worries and we cut to a very surprising scene where we see a man repairing a power line who dies when he is electrocuted during an earthquake. His dates and title card appear which follows with the phone ringing. David receives a call from Nate who is freaking out about Lisa's disappearance. David tells Nate he will be right over and leaves quickly after. We then cut to a scene in the morning at a healthclub where overweight people are walking slowly on treadmills. The fastest person is very much in shape but loses breath after collapsing and falls over.

    At breakfast that morning, Ruth reassures Nate that Lisa is a very independent woman and that she will turn up and be fine. Nate does not feel so comforted by Ruth's warm words. A phone rings to the call of want from yet another client in need of funeral services, the third of which to call Fisher & Diaz. Nate feels very overwhelmed with such a presence of death in one day and David and Rico will help out as much as they can.

    Seeing that they reach their deadline on time, David and Rico have to bend a few rules since the refrigerator is full and the tables full with cadavers. When Arthur tries to help he winds up getting yelled at by Rico who tells him to mind his own business. At the funeral, David seeks out Claire to help with programs which is of little help when they start talking about Lisa's disappearance in the presence of the mourners. Seeing that one of the funerals is overlapping they have to move them out so another funeral may take place. Arthur does not really understand the concept but what ever has to be done must be and will.

    Meanwhile, Nate receives a phone call from the Santa Barbara sheriff's department that Lisa's car has been found and that he should stay in the area. Nate does so but has no such luck since Lisa cannot be found. He is later comforted by David and Claire but seeks solace in Lisa's car in the early hours of the morning quietly listening to Todd Rundgren's "I Saw the Light".

    Other important events in "Death Works Overtime"...

    *Ruth possibly the only one out of the Fishers is being positive about Lisa's return. The others believe that Lisa is not really coming back. When Ruth totally loses it in front of a stranger, she cries into his lapel leading to classic Ruth when she scores a new boyfriend hopefully filling the shoes of someone like Nathaniel.

    *David quickly runs to his brother's rescue to help him through the difficult time yet problems at home seem to be put on hold when he and Keith are still at odds on the incident that happened in San Diego. David returns to the apartment after Nate leaves to retrieve some belongings and tells Keith not to expect him home for a few days. Keith shows David his good side when he puts a few calls into the Sheriff's department which David looks on in gratitude.

    *Claire is confronted by Russell as she enters her car in the morning and drives off angered when Russell tries to win her over. She has a private meeting with Olivier who tells her to grade her performance her overall school year. She then proceeds to insult him about his poor choices leading to him criticizing her about her relationships. Claire takes the "A" she rightfully deserves and walks out proud. When she begins to vomit frequently, she realizes she may be bind to Russell forever when she learns she is pregnant.

    *Federico continues having fights at home when Vanessa really crosses a line by purchasing several new expensive appliances for the home. Rico blames her sister for her persuation and ongoing manipulation which brings Angelica to deliver a speech on how Vanessa deserves what she has. Federico irks at her comment and leaves for his dancing lesson where he dances with another woman.

    *Brenda moves into a Spanish style apartment in Echo Park where she is welcomed by the sound of a French horn and accepts the place the minute she walks in. She is later reunited with her brother when Margaret wishes to dispose of Bern's ashes. Margaret sees animosity and decides to make the final solution when she dumps Bern's ashes over the balcony. Brenda is later shocked when Billy tells her: he is in love with her. Brenda leaves yet again in disgust and drives home.

    *Favorite scenes: Nate beating the tree with a rake, Claire and David's convo during the wake, Margaret singing Roberta Flack and Nate sitting still in the car at the end.

    "Death Works Overtime" was a very morbid, yet satisfying installment of Six Feet Under eagerly making us want for more.moreless
  • Sinking Faster Written by Rick Cleveland Directed by Daniel Attias

    Bad things seem to happen in three and here, there's a trio of deaths. Dorothy Su is shot in the head by the man robs her convenience store, Edward Tully gets curly fried and David Raymond Monroe passes out after physical exertion. This causes Fisher & Diaz to violate some regulations and when Claire notes that bad things happen in threes, you can't help but note some irony in that statement.

    First of all, we have the search for Lisa, who is still missing and the Fishers (except Ruth) can't help, but think their worst and darkest fears are only made worse when Lisa's car is found sans her.

    It's only the first episode that she's been missing, but you can't help feeling that something bad has happened to Lisa. After all, why would Nate be cracking up so soon? He's reckless at work, smoking to excession and fantasising about her just showing up before he breaks down in front of David and Claire in a scene that will leave most viewers deeply touched.

    But it's not just Nate's woes that are brought to the fore as Claire has her own problems to contend with. Firstly, there's Russell's insistence on making up with her, the argument with Olivier, which would normally make her feel better about herself as she dispatches his tiresome pompousness. This is, after an unsuccessful heart to heart with Ruth, she discovers she's pregnant. Not that she tells anyone, even though she does tell David he was right about Russell and then there's an interesting point raised.

    Okay, screw it. Personally I think Lisa is dead, but was she murdered or did she do it herself? David opts for the latter, but i'm with Claire on this one. If Lisa wanted to kill herself, I think she would have done where she would wanted to found. After all, she did say once that she would like to go out messy, becauses that's what death is: messy. The again, if turns out that she is safe and sound, then this is one nasty trick on Alan Ball's part.

    She's only just appeared in one episode but already Angelica is causing tension between Federico and Vanessa when she takes the latter out on expensive shopping sprees and takes even greater pleasure in criticising the former at every opportunity. Thankfully, instead of bottling it up, Federico actually talks to David about it, who this week in his relationship with Keith, the pair can hardly be around one another.

    She has only just dumped Arthur, but it already seems there's another man to his place as Ruth, tired of suppressing her own anguish unloads on George Sibley, and judging by next week's trailers, the pair will be decisively closer.

    Also in "Death Works Overtime"

    Death of the week: All mentioned in the opening paragraph.

    Claire:"Why all the doom and gloom?"

    Nate:"Lisa's missing"

    Ruth:"She's not missing, we just don't know where she is".

    I don't wanna be mean, but Russell's sculpture was kinda hideous. He's also playing the tortured artist wildcard too much now.

    Claire (to Russell):"Oh for me to throw away? That's funny, you're funny. And that's hideous I don't want it".

    Yay - Julio got some dialogue. Three words, but it's progress.

    Landlady:"You do have family, don't you dear?"

    Brenda: "No, actually they're dead. They got killed in a flood"

    Landlady: "I'm sorry dear"

    Brenda: "Hmm. Don't be".

    Claire: "I'll take an A"

    Olivier: "Undeserved"

    Claire: "Unimportant".

    How did Margaret get Brenda's new number so quickly? Seeing as they didn't seem to have any contact since two episodes ago when Margaret tells Brenda that Billy told her she freaked out on him.

    David:"Smile, not too much. Compassionate but not happy"

    Claire:"That should be no problem".

    Chronology, it's only three days after "Everyone Leaves".

    Brenda (re Margaret):"How long is she gonna go on with this?"

    Billy:"With any luck she'll throw herself over the rails".

    I wanna get access to that song featured at the end. Todd Rundgren's "I Saw The Light". Very nearly brought a tear to my eye.

    Despite the sadness of the episode, there is some lighter moments mostly courtesy of Brenda. There's her telling her landlady that her family's dead. A bit of wishful thinking on her part when she has to endure Margaret horrid discarding of Bern's ashes by toppling them over the balcony and Billy's queezy inducing profession of love to her. But even that's not as horrifying as Margaret's brutal rendition of "Killing Me Softly With His Song". Now there's only two to go and the teaser for next episode has left me giddy in anticipation.

  • After the last episode cliffhanger I couldn't wait to see this one

    With three funerals, business is good for the Fishers. But in their personal lives, everything is going wrong!!! With last episode's disappearance of Lisa, I knew this episode was going to be tense. Everyone tries to handle her disappearance the best they can but Ruth and Nate are having a very hard time. Ruth refuses to believe that anything is wrong and gets upset when anyone says otherwise. Nate is an emotional wreck and even daydreams of Lisa's unexpected return. Sadly this is not to be and things take a turn for the worse when Lisa's car is found. Keith tries to help Nate in his capacity as ex-law enforcement but there's only so much he can do, especially since him and David are at odds after an emotional fight with Keith's Dad. Claire is trying to keep her sanity after she once again has to turn away Russell who continues to pursue her despite her pleas to be left alone. She then finds out that she is pregnant which leads to an outburst at David where she rails against gay men, which turned out to be one of my favorite scenes of the episode. At the end, Ruth opens up and cries to a stranger who just happens to be the great actor, James Cromwell, in his first appearance on the show. As a fan of the show, the Fishers have come to grow on me and this episode makes you feel just a little bit closer to them.moreless
Priscilla Leona Horne

Priscilla Leona Horne

Gym Patron

Guest Star

James Cromwell

James Cromwell

George Sibley

Guest Star

Ivonne Coll

Ivonne Coll

Vanessa's Therapist

Guest Star

Jeremy Sisto

Jeremy Sisto

Billy Chenowith

Recurring Role

Joanna Cassidy

Joanna Cassidy

Margaret Chenowith

Recurring Role

Ben Foster (I)

Ben Foster (I)

Russell Corwin

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions