Hung | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Saturday, May 30th, 2020  


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Jun 28, 2009 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

What do you do when you are not a high school jock anymore? When your university scholarship is over? When your career in the major leagues stalls due to an injury? You go back to said high school as a teacher/coach, and start up a sideline career as a man-whore. What else? This is the case for Ray Drecker (Thomas Jane). Ray is recovering from a failed marriage to Jessica Haxon (Anne Heche), who as a remarried dermatologist's wife fits the role to a T. He moves into his parents' house—which he accidentally sets on fire-and then finds himself at a financial impasse. The prostitution decision is not an immediate one. Ray and his twin son and daughter—moodily portrayed by the eerily similar Charlie Saxton and Sianoa Smit-McPhee—literally set up camp, living in tents in front of the burnt out house. In a fit of desperation Ray attends a get-rich seminar where he bumps into a one-night stand, poet Tanya Skagle (Jane Adams). It is Tanya, herself frustrated with her never ending office temp job, who comes up with the idea of Ray marketing what she considers his best asset.

Hung is Weeds-like in its take on conventional suburban family-oriented individuals turning to a seedy profession to make ends meet. While Ray is unabashedly arrogant about his abilities, there is an air of insecurity in his approach. It's not easy being a man-whore, and Terence Howard was not kidding when he said, "It's hard out there for a pimp." Tanya and Ray discover that just because you have the equipment does not mean you know how to use it. Not every "john" (or is it "jane?") is going to be erection-worthy. And even if after all that, if you deliver, there's no guarantee you are going to get paid. As is the case with HBO original programming, it is all about the characters. Hung is no different with its realistic portrayal of its varied personalities. Even if their situations are unusual, it is the grounded and realistic humanity of these characters that is the show's driving force. Before you decide that ho-ing is the solution to your problems, however, you may want to watch Hung. (

Author rating: 7/10

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