Divorce Episode 5 Recap: War, What Is It Good For?

Photo: Courtesy of HBO.
In episode 5 of Divorce, the couple has officially declared war, and the fight is already bloody. Here's how their inaugural battle plans panned out:

Team Robert
Robert threw the first grenade last week by opting to skip out on mediation with Frances and get a lawyer instead. But as we learn in this episode's opening scene, his new attorney Gerald Watkins Mayfield is well-versed in wills, trusts, estates, but not divorce. He also works from home. And his assistant is his wife. And his professional website is full of clip art. Basically, homeboy does not seem like the best person to handle a divorce, which becomes even more apparent when he decides to give Robert a call — and doesn't realize it's a house phone number. Obviously Frances picks up. D'oh! You never give the plan of attack to the enemy, Gerald!

At first, it's not looking like Robert is going to win this fight, especially because he's still running full-speed-ahead into his Fun Space idea. He decides to wine and dine his friend Nick at a local salad bar steakhouse (classy!) to continue to convince him to invest in his new venture, but Nick points out that Robert should be focusing his energy on getting Frances back — instead of this crazy business idea. Especially because he heard through the grapevine (aka his wife Diane) that Frances hired a big-time fancy lawyer.

It doesn't take long for Robert to roll up in front of Gerald's house in the middle of the night to fire him. While in his pajamas (#poorgerald). And then, Robert makes a move of his own. But first, let's see what Frances has been up to...

Team Frances
Frances points out to Robert that things were going fine (well, as fine as fine can be when you're getting divorced) between the two of them before he decided to get lawyers involved. She makes sure he realizes that one day, when he looks back and wonders when things got ugly between them, that it was Robert's fault, not hers. "You did this the moment you hired a lawyer, okay?" she tells him. The duo's relationship is usually more snarky and funny than sad, but here, I really feel for Frances.

So of course, Frances goes and gets herself a lawyer — but a high-powered Manhattan one to one-up Mr. Watkins Mayfield. After unloading all her wrongdoings on him (which range from cheating on Robert to erasing his most "annoying" shows from the DVR,) her new lawyer tells her that the more he knows, the easier it is to help her get what she deserves. "What do I deserve?" Frances asks, confused. "Happiness!" he responds. We can see on her face that it's never even occurred to Frances that the whole point of putting herself through this ordeal is to eventually find happiness.

Frances then one-ups Robert again; while he's struggling to get investors for his new business idea, she already has the keys to her new art gallery space. Things are looking good for her, especially when she hits the town with her girlfriends for a champagne-filled gallery showing (in a scene that's as close to reminiscent of Sex and the City as we've gotten this season).

But after a tipsy night out, she gets a call from Robert's new lawyer: Tony Silver Creek. That's right, Robert has gone for a shiny big-time lawyer himself, and his name alone is enough to make her friend Dallas gasp. "He's one of the most ruthless, disgusting, go-for-blood lawyers in divorce," she informs her friend. And the icing on the cake? "He hates women. He won't even represent a woman." The episode ends with Frances tossing Nick's belongings, which she'd packed up with care at the beginning of the episode, into the dumpster. I can't say I blame her.

BATTLE WINNER: Robert. We're pulling for our girl Frances, but we have to admit, Robert won this one by not only beating Frances to the punch by getting a lawyer first, but then getting getting an even bigger one — who's more ruthless than hers. Ah, the art of war. Here's hoping Frances will come out on top next week.
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