Friday, April 17, 2015

Lewis on House Husbands

I just finished watching season two of House Husbands.  I loved it and look forward to watching season three one day.

I'm feeling a bit disturbed about Lewis (Gary Sweet), though. I adore him, as I adore every character on that show. Yeah. I think I'm kind of in love. I mean with the show in general...NOT Lewis in particular.

Okay, but something bothers me about Lewis. He seems a bit over-controlling to me.

First there's the camping trip. Mark (Rhys Muldoon) stops being a house husband and goes back to work full time. He kind of goes into workaholic mode. On the day that he's supposed to have a major phone conference with a potential client, Lewis pressures him and the other guys into going on a camping trip.

On the camping trip, Mark does the workaholic thing and isn't a very fun camping friend. Okay, workaholics are annoying at times. And when workaholism is a chronic condition, intervention is valid and needed. For example, it was lovely in Hook, when grown-up Peter Pan's wife did away with Peter's phone. He needed that. The guy was pretty much always neglecting his family.

Mark's not like grown-up Pan. He's a good family man and a good friend. But even people like that have times in their job where they need to be very focused. Lewis wouldn't have it. On the camping trip, he makes a point of sabotaging Mark's video conference.

In the end, Mark realizes he doesn't like being a corporate man. He wants to go back to being a stay-at-home dad. So maybe Lewis wasn't in the wrong. Maybe he helped Mark realize he was on the wrong path. Maybe he knows Mark better than Mark knows himself. That would be lovely.

But I can't help wondering if that might not be true. What if Lewis didn't know what Mark really needed or wanted, and he only truly knew what Lewis wanted?  What if it's just a matter of Lewis wanting things to go his own way? He didn't like that Mark was too busy to hang out as much anymore. He didn't like the fact that his friend was changing. So he acted in a very unsupportive way. And then maybe by a lucky coincidence, it turned out that he did the right thing for Mark.

OR maybe Mark "realized" the corporate world wasn't for him, BECAUSE the conference call had failed. What if it had succeeded and Mark got a promotion?  Maybe then he would have felt the corporate world was his calling.

Towards the end of the season, it happens again. Justin (Firass Dirani) has had a shit year. Because his (sort of) wife died. Before her death, Justin and his friends were renovating a house so Justin and his family could live there. Lewis was especially into the project. After the death, Justin was a bit lost. Understandably.  Towards the end of the season, he decides to sell the house and move his family to a place where he knows he can find work. He wants to start over.  At least twice, during the season, Justin remarked that the house had been for him and his wife—meaning that now that she's gone the dream has kind of died for him.

Though I think it would have been sad for Justin to leave, it made sense to me that he wanted to do this. Sometimes people need a fresh start. Sometimes they need a change of scenery. And I can totally see why, at the very least, he'd lose his excitement over the house.

But Lewis doesn't. He's so pushy about the whole house thing. He becomes very sulky about Justin leaving.  The other guys join in and pressure Justin to stay.  Their pressure, along with pressure from Justin's sons, gets Lewis what he wanted. Justin decides to stay in the house.

Is it what Justin wanted?


Maybe it's what he needed and wanted all along, and Lewis understood that. Maybe he's that good of a friend.

Again, though. I wonder if it's more about him being a selfish friend, and a friend who can't let go, even if it's the right thing to do for someone.

I don't think Lewis should have waved a simple casual good-bye.  Yeah. I get it, Mate. Good luck to you.  But how about just talking to Justin? Ask him how he's feeling and get an understanding of WHY he wants to leave.

My feeling is Lewis is controlling, needy, and resistant to change.  He imagines he wants what's best for his friends and family, but I think what he really wants is what's best for him.

I'll be interested to see what he does in the next season....