Six Feet Under

Season 2 Episode 2

Out, Out, Brief Candle

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Mar 10, 2002 on HBO
out of 10
User Rating
161 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Joshua Peter Landmead

Brenda is stressed about a dinner she is having for an ex-boyfriend and his wife. She wants to appear happier, more free, and generally just superior thus proving that he missed out by not being with her. Nate is attempting to deal with his condition with the help of a young man that died very young. Claire finds out that Gabe is changing in incredible ways, which includes stealing from her and her family. David and Keith are attempting a friendship again.


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  • 202

    A very powerful episode of Six Feet Under what with Nate's diagnosis coming to light as he admits to David what he's going through. That scene was just so painfully sad, and I think this is where Nate's story line became real for all of it's viewers. It sure did for me.

    There were other things that I liked too, like for instance, Claire's discovery about Gabe. I never liked these two together, so I really hope things just end between them with this episode. The embalming fluid scene was just a great tie in too the premiere.

    Ruth's story line was okay, it felt unfinished by the end, may be we'll get more of it in the next episode. I feel like they need to focus more on the dead person like they did in season 1. Too soon to tell, but I think that's what's "different" this season. Overall though great emotional installment.moreless
  • Unusually dodgy writing, but overall very good.

    Very interesting episode, I liked it. Nate's inner struggle was very well done and well concluded by the end of the episode. Though I didn't understand how the dying kid at the start of the episode got connected to all this. It just felt a bit forced. Rico asking the Fishers for money was alright, but his reaction to "no" was bad. It was really upsetting to me. Honestly, why does an employee think he can get as much money as he wants anytime? Keeping the business going is more important.

    The Keith/David scenes were good. On the girl's birthday party especially. Although, yes... them hanging out together just like that was a bit strange, but it's easy to just overlook it.

    But to me, the best part was Claire and Gabe breaking up. Now that was real drama. Gabe not only confessing he robbed a shop (last season) he also stole from the Fishers.. some sort of compound to boost the effect of drugs. Hmm... nothing is looking good for Gabe, I think he's going to have a dramatic exit soon...

    Sidenote: I liked the ecstasy joke at the start, little references back to the previous episodes are always fun.moreless
  • Review

    I don't think there is a better classification for this episode then "Out of Character". After coming out of the gate of season two with an amazingly written epsiode, this one didn't deliver in the way that season two needed too. I don't get why Keith would let David hang out with him in this episode - considering that last episode he made it very clear that one on one time wasn't going to happen. And now in this episode they are playing raquetball together and going over one of Keiths relatives house. Speaking of which, that scene just wasn't that powerful to me. If they were together at the time I could have seen in meaning something, but I really don't view Keith as a main character at all. The young boy that died in this episode seemed to haunt Nate throughout the whole episode and I didn't think they had the best connection. Nate didn't really change anything in his real life because of the kid dying other then the fact that he admitted to David that he has the AVM thing in this brain. I was wondering last season if this would ever be brought up again and it seems like its going to be a series / season long story arch. Brenda and Nate scenes with Brendas old boyfriend weren't the best scenes of the episode. Claire and Gabe seemed to be broken up - and I think it was worth the wait if this is seriously it. At this point I would say that I would think that Gabe has to die. Everything is going against him and he is just slipping and slipping. Overall - the worst epsiode of the series for me. A lot of scenes where I didn't really care about the outcomes (Keith + Rico) and overall just a lot of out of character moments from the cast.moreless
  • A funny and interesting episode!

    I liked this episode but it wasn't as good as the opener. I really enjoyed watching the man that died appear to Nate. His reactions were very funny, I know there was a sad meaning behind this but it was still great. Thank god Claire finally realises what Gabe is, he was really getting on my nerves but judging by the next time it looks like he's going no where at least for a little while. I wish david and keith would just get back togther already. Fedirico showed an angry side with his wife but I was glad she was able to reason with him. Overall a good episode.moreless
  • The Flame Flickers Written by Laurence Andries Directed by Kathy Bates

    Nate's AVM story continues to get tapped as the death of a college football player (Joshua Peter Langmead)continuously haunts Nate and his own fears of his mortality so much that he begins contemplating telling those around him. His attempts of confessing with Brenda after dinner with her ex, Trevor (yes THAT Trevor) and his family but Brenda is too busy harping on about unsatisfying her own life, that Nate doesn't get a word in.

    Thankfully in a touching final scene he gets the courage to tell David. Men don't cry in fear of putting their masculinity at challenge? In any other series sure, but having Nate break down and tell someone was a sigh of relief and better still that it was David,as Krause and Hall are given some excellent scenes together and it isn't just here.

    Enter Mitzi Dalton Huntley - Kroehner's regional director, who continues to try and tempt the men into selling Fisher and Sons to Kroehner. Yes, it seems that this story thread from last season is still going to used for a while, but thankfully, unlike Gilardi (who finally gets his marching orders) at least Mitzi has some humour and a ballsy enough attitude to make herself a respectable enough foil for the Fishers. Well, just about.

    But she isn't their only problem as a disgruntled Federico is furious to learn that Nate and David chose to buy a "casket wall" display instead of lending him the money for a down-payment loan on a house for him and his family, forcing Angelica to get one up on Rico.

    After Andy has a nasty side effect, due to "Fry" (regular drugs dipped in embalming fluid - it seems Gabe nicked some supplies from the Fisher's), Claire finally sees Gabe for what he is and decides to cast the pathetic loser aside. It's about frickin time she saw sense with Gabe and it looks like things can only get worse as the cops are now after him. Not long before time.

    The seriousness also continues as Keith and David visit the former's niece, Taylor for her birthday. As Keith argues with her drug-addled mother to sort herself out, David has an illuminating conversation with Taylor and ends up confessing how he wrecked Claire's easy-bake oven when she was little and presumably less sullen. If last epiosde kinda showed how mismatched Keith and Eddie, then this one really will. I mean even if Eddie wasn't working i'd say he still would have taken David to tag along to see Taylor.

    And then there's Ruth attending Robbie's graduation from a self-help group known as "The Plan", headed by Alma who Trekkies would normally associate actress Alice Krige as the Borg Queen. Was it me or did Ruth seem a little too interested in the seminar? Maybe she'll be their next graduate.

    Also in "Out, Out Brief Candle"

    Death of the week: See opening paragraph. Nice fake out. I totally thought it was the All American looking football who was a goner.

    Brenda (re Trevor):"Of course not. So what if he's the man who's masterly touch ushered me into womanhood. The one I ultimately compare all other men to"

    Nate:"Okay, okay fine. But just so you know, you only have yourself to blame when I go all Alpha Dog and beat him to a bloody pulp in front of his wife and kid".

    David really is bad at racquet ball. Nice to get a glimpse of that.

    Mitzi (to Gilardi):"You know just because I fucked you, it doesn't put on a first name basis".

    Claire (to Andy):"Woah, you are not on the list of people who get to touch my tits".

    Robbie's flower gesture to Ruth was lovely. Ruth throwing back his "forgiveness" was also hilarious.

    Mitzi (to David):"You didn't put rat poison in it, did you?"

    Nate:"Drink it and find out".

    Peter Krause managed to look extremely hot and still pissed off during his scenes with Mitzi.

    Chronology wise, it's August 2001, a month after "In The Game".

    I liked Brenda and Dawn comparing each others book experiences and maybe it was me but I didn't find Trevor all that bad.

    Claire:"Everyone was right about you"

    Gabe:"You are the only good thing I have left. Please don't give up on me. Please".


    Standout music: Goldfrapp's "Pilots".

    I liked this episode. It wasn't as good as the premier, but it was fun and insightful in a lot of places and a much better directorial effort from Bates than her last episode. Let's hope they retain the quality as we get further into the new season.moreless
Drake Johnston

Drake Johnston


Guest Star

Evan Arnold

Evan Arnold


Guest Star

Susan Merson

Susan Merson


Guest Star

Aysia Polk

Aysia Polk


Recurring Role

Nikki Micheaux

Nikki Micheaux


Recurring Role

Marina Black

Marina Black


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions