Thursday, December 9, 2010

AUS Television: Rake, Episode 1.6 "R vs. Langhorn"

Season One, Episode Six, R vs. Langhorn
Original Air Date:  December 9, 2010

Radio personality Eddie Langhorn is arrested for inciting racial hatred because of controversial comments she made on her radio show during an interview with Joe Sandilands.  She turns to old friend Cleaver Greene to represent her.  Cleave makes another appearance in tax court.  This time, it doesn't end so favorably for him.  Missy gives Cleave some expected, but unwelcome, news.  Cleave must deal with a family emergency when his father has a stroke.  Barney comes to Scarlett's aid during a trial she's prosecuting.

Radio personality, Eddie Langhorn (Rachel Griffiths) interviews Joe Sandilands and pulls no punches in her questioning of him.  She wants to know what will be done about crime, particularly a series of rapes that haven't been solved.  She blames him for the vigilantes who have starting working in some of the neighborhoods.  A group of young men with ball bats brutally attack and bash another group of young men and leave them where they fall.

Scarlett is still not home with Barney.  Her sister comes into the nursery to feed the baby and tell Scarlett that she received a phone call from her boss, Warrick (the Director of Public Prosecutions).  Cleave is awakened by Nicole as he was sleeping beneath his desk.  He gets up to get ready for court and is caught buck naked in the men's room washing up.

The police place Eddie Langhorn under arrest for causing a riot and inciting racial hatred.  She isn't bothered by the charges in the least and the officers that arrest her are quite star-struck.  David, Missy and Joe, on the campaign trail, spend some time with some of the "less controversial ethnic groups" and even do some dancing for the cameras. 

Cleave is still hitting the cocaine pretty hard.  Before making an appearance in tax court, he picks up a black rubbish bag to take in as his "evidence".  David is still prosecuting the case and wants Cleave to produce the documents he requests under subpoena or be held in contempt.  Cleave assures the court he has the documents with him and presents the rather smelly bag of documents.  The smell invades the court room and the judge orders him to remove the documents immediately.  The judge holds Cleaver in contempt and orders him to remand.  As he is getting into the vehicle to take him to jail, he receives a call from his sister, Lilly, informing him their father has had a stroke and is in hospital.  As he will be occupied for the next couple of days, Cleaver promises he will try to get up to see their father on the weekend.  Cleave arrives in jail and all the unsavory characters in the cell know him. 

Warrick briefs Scarlett on the arrest of Eddie Langhorn as she will be prosecuting the case. 

Missy goes to see Cleaver in jail.  She knows he's doing cocaine again.  Cleave isn't as kind to her as he usually is and is actually rather rude to her.  She leaves after telling him he will die if he keeps his behavior up.

Scarlett goes home to pick up a file and finds a woman she doesn't know there.  Scarlett's son, Adam, is home from school with a fever and Sylvia is watching over him.  Scarlett gives Barney an angry call because he didn't let her know Adam was sick and because he is parading Sylvia around in front of the children.  Barney is quite pleased with the way he handled the conversation with Scarlett once she hangs up.

When he is released from jail, Cleave gets another call from Lilly.  Their father keeps asking to see him.  He asks to borrow Nicole's car for the weekend to drive up to see his father.  Nicole is moving them into yet another new office previously belonging to a Tolga Urdan.  Cleave enters the room and finds Eddie Langhorn sitting in his chair waiting for him.

Cleave doesn't agree with Eddie's opinions and wonders why she chose him to represent her.  She feels justified in her actions because of the gang rape she questioned Joe Sandilands about.  He refuses to represent her and leaves the office.  She goes after him and they are caught by a group of reporters.  She makes a heartfelt statement to the reporters and Cleave interrupts wanting to know if he can say something.  When Eddie steps aside to allow him to speak he asks if any of the reporters can lend him a car for the weekend.

Cleave goes to Wendy who lends him her car and insists Fuzz go along to see his grandfather and to give Cleave time to talk with their son about his teacher/girlfriend.  Wendy makes note that he is defending the "gorgon".  He denies that and she reminds him that the last time they saw Eddie she ruined their marriage but Cleave claims he did that all by himself.

Fuzz listens to loud music on the drive up to see the elder Greene.  At the hospital, Cleave's father awakens and is "better" for seeing Cleave.  Cleave spends another few uncomfortable seconds in the room then gets up and leaves.  They go to see his sisters Lilly and Jane who both start into Cleave.  Even they make comment about him defending Eddie.  He maintains he isn't defending her and continues to talk about how their father wasn't good to him.  They remind him that he was a handful even as a child. 

On the way home, Cleave pulls the car over and tells Fuzz if he wants nothing to do with him then he can get out.  He's tired of people passing judgment on him.  Fuzz gets out of the car and starts walking and Cleave gets out to stop him and the two argue.  As Cleave is telling his son how much he loves him, a lorry swerves around a corner and bashes into Wendy's car.  Cleave calls her and tells her the damage is "largely superficial" but the car is a mess.  He promises her he'll pay for the damage as he's "good for it". 

Missy and David meet with a local woman, Elspeth, who has a complaint she thinks he should handle.  She is having issues with the weekly collection of garden waste and he needs to take care of it.  He gets her vote as she likes him.

Cleave and Eddie meet for lunch and he asks her if she really believes what she says on air.  She does.  He is familiar with the rape cases she is rallying against and feels it doesn't have to be anything but it suits her to make it mean something.  They get into an argument over different ethnic groups and their customs then end up in the bathroom kissing and snorting cocaine.

At the courthouse, Scarlett expresses her opinion of Eddie Langhorn to Cleaver who says that democracy is built upon the inalienable right to express moronic opinions.  Scarlett feels she is "the Devil".  In her opening arguments, Scarlett makes it clear that Langhorn knew exactly what she was doing in trying to incite violence.  She questions one of the young men who committed the beatings and he admits he doesn't know if he would have done the beatings if he hadn't listened to Eddie.  Cleaver then makes the case that the young man didn't understand what Eddie was talking about as he couldn't define many of the words she used in her broadcast. 

Joe, Missy and David try to figure out a piece of artwork.  Joe thinks it's a human organ while Missy is certain it has to be an animal of some kind.  When Joe steps away for a second, David asks Missy the name of the town where her parents renewed their wedding vows.  Joe steps back with them and a woman walks up and notes that the camel has caught their eyes. 

Scarlett questions the general manager of the station where Eddie works.  He's clearly happy with the performance Eddie has done on the station and with the revenue she's brought in.  Ted Gorman, another personality at the station will be leaving and Eddie is a candidate to fill that position and Scarlett suggests everything could have been a publicity stunt.  He doesn't see things that way at all.

In his office, Cleave asks Eddie why she neglected to tell him about Gorman leaving the station.  She accuses him of humiliating her listeners, the boy from court.  If he didn't have the opportunity for a good education she is proud to speak on his behalf.  She tells him they are both advocates for hire; two sides of the same coin. 

That night, Scarlett is walking in a park and is followed by a group of boys.  She gets on her knees and they pass her by but she is severely shaken by the encounter.  She calls Cleave, who is asleep at his desk and he immediately goes to her aid.  He finds her hiding beneath a bridge.  The next day, Cleave finds Barney and tells him Scarlett was attacked the night before.  He blames it on Eddie Langhorn.

David tells Missy that after the election and before he gets sworn in, they should take a trip to Italy and end up in the same town where her parents reaffirmed their vows.  He says he thinks they should get married.

Barney wants to talk over the Langhorn case with Joe over a game but Joe declines saying the case is off limits.  When they are getting ready to leave the gym, Joe picks up his bag, says goodbye to Barney and leaves.  Barney sees some papers on the bench where Joe's bag was sitting and calls to him that he forgot them.  He picks them up and sees they are the case file for the Mary Drouin case, Eddie Langhorn's cause. 

Eddie claims in court she only wanted to get answers about the Drouin case and the other rapes from her on-air conversation with Joe Sandilands and did not mean to cause racial unrest or a riot.  Scarlett acts her to clarify some of her on-air statements.  As Eddie is testifying, Barney enters the courtroom and sits down to watch the proceedings.  When Scarlett sees him, she requests a brief recess.  He gives her the Drouin case file and fifteen minutes to read over it before he must have it back.  He tells her Sylvia is an agency nanny that charges $32 an hour.

Once back in court, Scarlett questions Eddie about knowing Mary Drouin's sister who came to visit her a week before the broadcast.  Eddie had given her $20,000, which she claimed was to help Mary with her medical and psychological needs.  She claimed Mary's sister came to her with a wild story she didn't believe.  That the rape didn't happen as Mary had described it and that it was perpetrated instead by a family member.  The story about the Muslim gang was invented to cover up the family rape.  Eddie's general manager, unhappy about the new information, gets up and leaves the courtroom.  Cleaver objects and asks the judge to strike the evidence from the record.  The judge agrees and orders the jury to not take the information into account.  Eddie is acquitted but Cleaver knows the truth about her.

That night, Cleaver cooks his steak on his iron.  Missy pays him a visit and asks if he's going to rehab (which he isn't).  They kiss and she tells him she and David are getting married.  When she leaves, he looks through the photo album Lilly gave Fuzz.  He goes back to see his father and takes one of the photos from the album with him.  He listens to the radio (which has Eddie now playing easy listening) until his father awakens and asks him to "turn that wretched harpie off, son".

The case Cleaver works on in this episode isn't as wild as some have been in the past.  After all, bestiality and cannibalism are pretty hard to top, aren't they?  Cleave is old friends (well, more than friends, exactly) with his client in this case but they don't see eye to eye on hardly anything.  Still, he comes through for her and manages to get her acquitted.  However, that acquittal comes at a price to her.

As always, everything seems to be crumbling around poor Cleave.  His cocaine usage is getting worse.  Missy knows he's using again but even her pleas for him to get help fall on deaf ears.  He pushes her away when she comes to visit him in jail.  That was more a defensive move on his part than real anger at her, I do think.  His father has had a stroke and he must come to terms with his feelings for him.  Fuzz is still bitterly angry at him for how he treated his girlfriend/teacher.  He's on speaking terms with Wendy again, but now that her car got trashed in his custody that might change.  And worst of all, Missy drops the news on him that she and David are getting married.  I can't help but believe Missy isn't truly happy at the prospect of being Mrs. Melissa Potter.  She still has Cleave in her heart and head too much to truly be dedicated 100% to David.

I thought it was quite big of Barney to extend a professional olive branch to Scarlett.  He's clearly still very angry and hurt with her having slept with Cleave but he put that aside for a few minutes and did the right thing.  And I won't believe he wasn't genuinely concerned when Cleave told him Scarlett had been attacked.  His reaction wasn't one of an angry husband but one of a concerned husband. 

The previews for next week look great.  We might just see the ice melt a bit between Cleave and old Barnyard.  I sure do hope so as I love Barney and look forward to seeing him and Cleave working together again.

Rake airs each Thursday at 8:30 p.m. (AUS time) on ABC1.
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