The North Coast Curmudgeon is a big fan of Six Feet Under, but was very disappointed in the last installment.
In this episode, David is found transporting a body in his van when he stupidly picks up a hitchhiker. From the first moment he encounters this guy it’s obvious that the hitchhiker is a psychopath. And, sure enough, David is forced to take money from his ATM at gun point, has the body tossed out of the van and on to the street, is taken to MacArthur Park to buy crack, and is generally abused by the guy.
The hitchhiker eventually forces David to drive to Long Beach, where at an abandoned warehouse, he douses him with gasoline and threatens to shoot him, only to uncharacteristically suddenly disappear from the scene. When dealing with human nature anything is possible, but in real life this psychopath would have just shot or set David on fire.
All through this, David is his usual submissive, whinny character. It seems to me that it would have been much better if, in this situation, David became assertive, and beat the daylights out of this guy, maybe even killed the hitchhiker through one of those ingenious schemes similar to the way each episode begins with somebody dying.
We had a chance to witness a flash of self discovery, but instead got a very illogical and unsatisfying ending to this episode.
Perhaps there was a reason for all this that will be revealed in future episodes.
The North Coast Curmudgeon certainly hopes so.
Update 8 August, 2004:
Subsequent episodes have revealed that David was so traumized by the whole affair that he’s almost incapable of functioning.
So there was a good reason.
The North Coast Curmudgeon will never question these things again.