Sunday, June 20, 2021

REVIEW: 'In Treatment' - Colin Invades Brooke's Life to Investigate the Reasons for Her Recommendation in 'Colin - Week 5'

HBO's In Treatment - Episode 4.18 "Colin - Week 5"

On the heels of receiving Brooke's recommendation, Colin makes a surprise visit - prompting a collision of his therapist's personal and professional lives.

In 2020, the television industry aired 493 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of HBO's In Treatment.

"Colin - Week 5" was written by Zack Whedon and directed by Karyn Kusama

Colin shows up at Brooke's house one night. It's incredibly inappropriate. And yet, it turns into a makeshift therapy session. He believes it's a good idea because he needs to get out his anger over her recommendation to the court. He is frustrated that she says he still needs to spend more time in therapy. He views it as her continuing to hold his fate in her hands. She is the one with the power. She can do whatever she wants with it. She can make him suffer because he wasted her time in the past. In reality, she argues that Colin has made progress but needs to reflect even more on his life before she is willing to sign off on him being an outstanding member of society once more. He is free. He still has conditions to maintain that freedom. Brooke controls a certain aspect of that. He lashes out because he doesn't feel that there is anything special about her. He doesn't believe that she has the right to prolong his suffering even more. She enlightens him by saying her recommendation is a statement of support. That's baffling considering just how brutal and vicious their last session turned out to be. Moreover, the professional lines are crossed even further here. He gets an invite inside. He makes a drink for himself. They have a conversation on the couch. It's not technically a session. As such, Brooke feels the freedom to speak even more candidly than she should. Professionally, she should still monitor the words she uses because of the impact they can have on this troubled soul. She can't really do that though because she has already started drinking for the night. Of course, Colin also encourages that. He sees her as even more helpful after she has had a few drinks. He wants her to do so before all of their sessions moving forward. He likes her even more while drunk. Sure, he has to be more confident with his own ego in order to handle all the things she has to say. She can deconstruct his entire narrative in one monologue. It's not that difficult to do so either. The issues that plague his life extend far beyond him. He is simply a straight, cis, white man in society who believes he has to do something revolutionary in order to be seen as a success. As such, he uses that to determine just how happy he is. He has spent his life chasing that goal. He has presented as a charming person lying until he makes it. That resulted in legal consequences for him. And now, he presents as a stereotypical story of a white man's internal crisis causing so much damage to an entire community. Brooke has her own thoughts on the subject. She believes all philanthropy that needs a public declaration is just a way to appease a wealthy person's mind regarding the heinous abuses his or her actions has inflicted on humanity elsewhere in the world. Brooke has clarity on the subject. She also wants to carefully manage these dynamics. She wants Colin to feel comfortable sharing his turmoil and continuing to put in the work. As such, she goes above and beyond the call of duty to provide this safe space for him after he barges in. Moreover, Adam demands that same kind of dignity and respect. He isn't wrong to have expectations about this relationship given how he feels about Brooke. It remains a one-sided dynamic though. He is in love with her. She wants to share those same feelings. She goes through the motions believing all of this is healthy for her. In the end though, it's just pure dysfunction. Her life is a mess too. Her drinking has essentially made her question everything in her life. She is investing in dynamics that shouldn't be nurtured or indulged in for this long. It's destructive behavior. One that only inspires the same in return. This session with Colin is different. The issues remain the same though. The audience is meant to be the objective observer to the events now. Brooke can no longer be trusted with that responsibility. She has her own personal failings. That should be expected of any protagonist. It just makes the situation more precarious when she is meant to serve as an emotional caretaker for others in need. She can't provide that service impartially. She believes she knows how to manage these relationships and any situation that may erupt. She can move easily between her personal and professional lives. Those lines blurred awhile ago. She speaks more bluntly now. That is apparent. It just leaves people leaving the room or the house entirely even more lost and confused than ever before. That is an extension of Brooke's overall unhealthy behavior and inability to see past her own addiction.