Santa Clarita Diet Recap S01E03
Joel Hammond is a very supportive husband – but he doesn’t have to love every single thing about his wife’s new habit. Buying a freezer to make corpse-sicles makes him uneasy, chiseling away at stone cold flesh, and before that, it is the blood that makes him shiver. Oh, the blood. Joel’s stomach turns at the idea of all of that viscous splattered redness that comes with keeping his wife happy and not hungry. But, for better or worse is what he pledged, so Joel will help Sheila kill, transport, store and eat humans. Bad humans, young, single Hitlers, if they can be found, it is decided. Creepy dentists in a pinch.
A good man is hard to find.
Less into the new dynamic is daughter Abby, the smart, rational one in the family – just kidding, no one in this show is particularly smart – who is annoyed with her homelife and so is skipping school, along with new buddy Eric (the continuingly good Skyler Gisondo). As they run into her friend Kelly at the taco place where they are hiding in plain sight, it seems truancy in this neighborhood is a bigger problem than a few recent murders and body thefts. Priorities, people, let’s get these kids back to Civics class. The friend’s older boyfriend squeals up in his cool car and he conveniently is a perv, a dealer and a jerk. Later when the kids are trashing him back at Abby’s Mom and Dad overhear and have an Oprah Lightbulb Moment. He may not have started World War 2, but he will do as a convenient tasty scumbag, possibly not only sating Sheila but providing a nice secondhand mellow as he digests.
Plan hatched, weed deal with Cole arranged, on go the the protective plastic coats and out comes the bleach – Joel and Sheila are doing it right this time, taking the unwitting advice of nosy cop neighbor Dan to go for a tidy kill. He happens to be giving advice on ant control, but, chuckle chuckle, we get the inside joke. The Hammonds go to an empty, unsold house, lay down the tarps, and wait.
Santa Clarita’s most supportive spouse
Timothy Olyphant is very funny as he forces himself to go along with killing, and so is Matt O’Leary as Cole the increasingly charming drug dealer – he suggests the plasticwrapped house is because the H’s are coloring each other’s hair, maybe? Just before he is done in, Sheila takes an important call and leaves Joel to bond over a j with Cole. We learn Cole’s not the filth they thought he was, but more importantly for us, we get a lot of the Hammond’s backstory. Highschool stars, that fell in love and married early (the writers addressing the surreal idea that Drew Barrymore could have a sixteen year old. She could, she is forty-two in real life, but she is so… young sweet Drew). Cole leaves, Sheila is furious, yelling at Joel, “I leave you for five fucking minutes and you bond with my dinner?”
Abby gets tough
Cole may have escaped a horrific fate, but his night isn’t over yet. Abby and Co. decide to teach him a lesson. They pinch Eric’s stepdad’s tear gas and gasmask (cops keep those at home?) and smoke him out of his house, Abby going full boss as she strides inside, past the blinded and gasping Cole to retrieve her friend’s favorite sweater.
Meanwhile as her parents bicker on the way home, Joel, possibly still high, gets into a minor fender bender, as while he tries to calm down the other driver, a hunger-crazed Sheila pounces. Well, that might have been an impulse buy, don’t grocery shop while you’re hungry, but now she has leftovers to put into their new freezer in the storage unit, and the episode ends with a calm family dinner where no one divulges what they really got up to that night.
SANTA CLARITA KILL COUNT: Nathan Fillion, 1 rooster and 1 foot, and the angry motorist
A former ABC National, Dallas and Atlanta radio personality, Martina O'Boyle is now making movies and covering culture in London, Dublin, and as far in Europe as the cheapie flights will take her, for Pop Culture Beast.