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TV - Jan 9, 2018

Divorce: get ready for next explosive season

Season Two of the popular HBO series starts on January 14. Bonus: non-subscribers can get a free sampling of four episodes of the first season.

“How do you go from eight years of a happy marriage to wanting to blow someone’s head off?” Not the typical one-liner audiences expect in a weekly comedy – and definitely not one many of us expect to come from the lips of Sarah Jessica Parker, whom we’ve long associated with Carrie in Sex and the City. But Parker’s portrayal of frustrated, divorce-seeking Frances in the HBO series Divorce, which returns for Season Two on January 14 (10 p.m. EST), calls for a different set of acting chops.

When Divorce first aired, we described it as the “spiritual sequel to Sex and the City.” Frances is on the cusp of middle age, trying to extricate herself from a seemingly loveless marriage to Robert (Thomas Haden Church). The Golden Globe-nominated series is an unflinching close-up of a couple going through divorce, which makes for a steady fodder of sometimes ugly, sometimes embarrassing moments. Like when Robert asks his unhappy spouse, “When did it start to go off the tracks, in your mind?” Frances’s unfeeling reply: “Perhaps when you grew the moustache.”

Quickie divorces aren’t the stuff of this unromantic comedy (click here for glimpses of the couple’s explosive separation), and that’s OK. Some of the best scenes are played out in lawyers’ offices. The negotiation over the custody of the pet snake is hilarious. Best line from Robert’s lawyer, played by a straight-faced Dean Winters (Ryan from HBO’s award-winning Oz): “Would the snake’s terrarium travel or would we stipulate a second habitat on custodial weekends?”

Not a subscriber yet? No worries. HBO Canada is inviting non-subscribers to watch the first four episodes of Divorce for free until March 16 on Rogers On Demand (Ch. 100 in the Freeviews folder within the Channels or TV Shows folder) or on the go with the Rogers Anyplace TV app.

Remember to mark your calendar (January 14 at 10 p.m. EST) for the Season Two opener to learn how the family recovered from the Season One finale in which confusion over the after-school pickup leads to a traffic accident, the same episode where someone discovers that their financial assets have been frozen. Plus, there’s an unexpected kiss on the night of a gallery opening. Sticking to the tenor of the show, however, the season ends on an explosive note. Can these two remain together long enough to get a divorce?