The Big C: Season 2

The Big C

On DVD: 
Tuesday, June 7, 2011

I've been a big fan of The Big C since its 2010 debut. The heavy subject matter is deftly delt with by using dark humor through characters who engender true and deep feelings in the viewer. Lara Linney (Catherine Jamison),  Oliver Platt (Paul Jamison), John Benjamin Hickey (Sean Tolke), Gabourey Sidibe (Andrea Jackson), and Hugh Dancy (Lee) all turn in fantastic performances for this second season of this critically acclaimed series. 

Cathy is still dealing with her melanoma in secret. She doesn't want to burden her friends and family and more importantly, she doesn't want to be treated like sick and dying person. She doesn't want the sweet syrupy sympathy, she doesn't want people to make allowances and feel sorry for. Nor does she want people to exalt about her strength to keep on living. Cathy just wants to live and to be treated like any other person.

Last season Cathy finally accepted treatment and let her husband know that she was sick. However, keeping the secret from her best friend, her son, and her brother is beginning to weigh on her. She wants to share and connect, but is afraid how they might react. Will they become so scare of their own mortality that they will abandon her? Will they treat her with pity?

It turns out hiding her illness from her brother was one of the worst decisions Cathy made. Sean (Cathy's brother) had been doing well. After spending the first season not treating his mental illness and living on the streets, he was now in a relationship with Cathy's best friend, living in the house across the street from his sister, employed with a baby a on the way. Sean becomes unraveled when he's told what Cathy's going through. He feels betrayed and is unable to cope with the idea of losing his sister. He starts living on the streets and eventually goes missing.

Cathy enters into a clinical trial with a doctor who has an incredible reputation for successful treatments. There she meets Lee and they become great friends. Hugh Dancy as Lee has one of the best story lines of the season. Through his brilliantly acted character Cathy learns what she really wants and needs from life and as they both deal with this deadly disease. Dancy  delivers a wonderfully funny and touching performance that will stick with you after the season is over. Halfway into season 3, I find myself still thinking about him.

Andrea (Gabby Sidibe), a student living with the Jamison's finally gets a storyline of her own. She falls in love with the very attractive, eastern European Myk, who is just as crazy for her. He loves everything about her and really works to win her heart. As a fat, black lady myself, I loved this storyline like candy. Myk & Andrea quickly get serious and become engaged, however, Myk isn't everything he appears to be.

The second season finale is so very good at hitting high notes of success and depths of sorrow, you can't miss it. The balance of emotions is handled very well by the writing staff and I can't say enough about the calibre of talented actors. The only flaw in The Big C is that the episodes are so short! However, I am constantly surprised at what they can make you feel in short 30 minute span.




Maria Jackson
Review by Maria Jackson
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