Hidden Palms Turns Up The Heat
Whew! Last night's full-night Hidden Palms event moved the mystery along... as well as some sexy new developments. Why didn't the first few episodes have more hot scenes like the ones between Cliff and Nikki? Whatever; we're not complaining. We're loving how the show seems to have found its groove -- the ideal mix of mystery and soapy scandal.
Let's take the mystery first. Liza's looking crazier and crazier, even though there's a good chance she's right that Cliff and Greta had something to do with Eddie's death. IMing Johnny pretending to be Eddie, breaking into Cliff's house and snooping through his things -- she's making it hard for Johnny, or anyone, to trust her. And Cliff's on to her. How creepy was that scene when he got in her face and warned her to butt out? He has a way of making everything darkly hot, even threats! But we have to agree that Liza has a few good points. Why would Cliff have Greta's bloody Halloween costume buried in his floorboards? Something's not right there.
Meanwhile, Johnny and Greta made up after she told him that she slept with Cliff the night before Eddie killed himself. She thinks the suicide is her fault! Rather than question why she'd sleep with Cliff, Johnny just makes out with her and then asks a lot of questions about Eddie. Greta has a suicide note that she claims Eddie wrote, but when Johnny tells Liza, she says there's no way Eddie wrote that note, as it cites a poet he couldn't stand. And she says it very definitively, as if she's the authority on Eddie's likes and dislikes. Hmmm. Could there have been something going on between those two before Eddie's death? It almost seems that way...
We continue to enjoy Cliff in every scene. He's so deliciously creepy -- manipulative, but with a soft side (or should we say, a "soft and chewy center?"). When he was beating up on Travis's car, it was strangely attractive. Nikki apparently felt the same way, since she took that moment to finally give in to Cliff's advances and make out with him.
Doesn't it seem like Cliff's got an almost Oedipal thing going on with his mom, Tess? We get that Travis is a tool, but Cliff seemed to go out of his way to drive the man to the brink of insanity. When Travis saw that Cliff had ruined his ride and almost killed the kid, Tess came to the rescue with a gun (and a witty quip about being Texan to boot), kicking Trav out for good. She apologized to Cliff: "You must think your mama's a complete fool!", and they embraced... and call us crazy, but it seemed like the scene had romantic undertones. Or maybe that's just the beauty of Cliff's character -- he can muster up chemistry with just about everyone on this show, whether they're related to him, in cahoots with him, or his sworn enemy.
But just when we think he's evil to the core, he surprised us by wanting to cuddle post-sex with Nikki. And Nikki cracked us up: "Stop being a girl!" She seems to be calling all the shots in this new relationship. Do you like Nikki and Cliff together?
All this going on and we get some new characters thrown into the mix, too. We met Eddie's mom when Johnny clumsily pumped her for info about her son's death... and then we found out that she and Cliff are apparently sleeping together, and have been for some time! Whoa. Just when we felt sorry for Cliff when Nikki played it cool, this pops up! You really can't trust the guy... and that's exactly why we love him.
Then Greta's dad Skip shows up from out of nowhere while she and Johnny are going at it, so Skip's first impression of Johnny is of a naked guy holding a pillow over his privates. Talk about awkward. Skip seems to have a thing for Tess, since he can't stop grabbing her butt... but when they're supposed to rendezvous for drinks, he totally blows her off for some young golf course bimbo. For that, Tess sloshes his face with the last of her martini.
The adult drama's rounded out by the steadfast Bob, Johnny's stepdad. He's always trying to be Johnny's pal and never quite succeeding -- until now. Finally Johnny seems to have realized that being rude to Bob isn't getting him anywhere. Bob's the only character on this show (well, besides Jesse Jo), that we trust. He doesn't seem to have an ulterior motive or a manipulative bone in his body. Of course, we could be totally wrong and find out next week that he's secretly sleeping with Liza or something, but for now we choose to trust Bob. And it looks like Johnny does, too. Wasn't that sweet when he gave Bob a club and asked for another chance? We look forward to seeing those two spend time bonding instead of feuding.
So what'd you think of last night's double-episode evening? Are you a fan of the blossoming relationship between Cliff and Nikki? What's up with Cliff sleeping with Eddie's mom? Do you believe Liza's accusations? Who can we really believe in this town? Discuss in the comments!