Hung – Season 3 – Final
“They say necessity is the mother of invention. That’s one thing we’ve got here in Detroit; necessity.”
In its third and now final season, Hung follows teacher-turned-manwhore Ray (Jane) and his pimp Tanya (Adams) as they find ways to relaunch Happiness Consultants in the hurting economy of Detroit. By acquiring a loan, they open a wellness center [see: Ray fucking women]. And cousin, business is a-boomin’!
Just when it seems Ray and Tanya are finally successful — a scene with them riding in Ray’s new car is a clear symbol of success and relief — Lenore (Creskoff) reappears into their lives. With her, a younger male prostitute named Jason (Stephen Amell), whose only difference with Ray is age.
Season 3 attempts to fix the problems Season 2 had (character treatment, weak and repetitive storylines) by using old and new characters to complicate things for Tanya and Ray while also toning down the annoyingness of Ray’s ex-wife (Heche) and his kids. At the same time, the series continues to mix comedy and drama through its gratuitous fuckfest scenes and heartfelt moments.
While Jason poses a threat to Happiness Consultants, his girlfriend Sandee (Analeigh Tipton) changes drastically once she figures out what he is doing. Eventually she gets involved with the main characters. Ray’s cop client Lydia (Ana Ortiz) and former high school student Logan (Kaitlyn Doubleday) complicate things for Ray. Meanwhile, pimp Charlie (Lennie James) gets stuck with trying to evolve Tanya into a businesswoman. Jessica is fresh from her divorce with Ronnie (Eddie Jemison), so she’ll have to go job hunting after spending two seasons as a housewife.
“When you’re young, you get all worked up about what people think of you. But that’s the good thing about getting older. You realize, ‘Fuck that. It’s what you think of yourself.’”
The biggest highlight of Season 3 is when the show goes into LGBT territory with a two episode arc with Ray’s client Kyla (Jamie Clayton). Thanks to lesbian director Angela Robinson (The L Word), Hung was handed a win-win situation: a transgender character was realistically showcased — the high school reunion scenes when people find out about Kyla were poignant. At the same time, Ray was allowed to evolve as a person. Both Clayton and Thomas Jane handled that storyline very well thanks to treating it with subtlety, having good chemistry with each other and without turning it into a public service announcement — unlike other shows doing LGBT storylines [see: Glee].
After two years, Hung finally manages to find its footing. New and old characters work well to make the show watchable along with balancing comedy, drama and sex. The writers may have fed Thomas Jane the best lines, but Jane Adams is still the show’s best asset. She handled her storylines with ease (Charlie, managing HC, etc.) and her chemistry with Thomas Jane was displayed better than in the past two seasons. Kudos to Analeigh Tipton (Crazy, Stupid, Love.) for turning Sandee into a cheery bitch. The rest of the supporting cast played their parts well.
Unfortunately, the show was cancelled — despite Thomas Jane earning a third Golden Globe nomination — and left viewers with unanswered questions regarding Lenore, Jason and Sandee, and the future of Happiness Consultants. But for what it’s worth, Hung managed to show signs of improvement and deserved one more season to wrap things up properly.