Divorce Episode 9 Recap: No More Mrs. Nice Guy

Photo: Courtesy of HBO.
The episode opens at the latest meeting between Robert, Frances, and their lawyers. At the start, Frances asks why the kids haven't been able to reach Robert; he tells her he was asleep for 47 hours straight because he was over-prescribed a medication. Ah, that would be the testosterone stocked in the fridge in the last episode.

The estranged couple has moved on to custody discussions, and in a surprising move for both us viewers and Frances, Robert's lawyer Tony Silvercreek begins to paint Frances as a negligent mother, pointing out that Robert is the one who drives the kids to doctors' appointments and sports practices — an unfair move, considering his work has been unstable while Frances has been the breadwinner, commuting to and from Manhattan. After the sneak attack, her lawyer Max advises her to get a little more physically involved in the kids' lives, for appearance's sake.

And so, Frances shows up for a spring carnival-planning meeting at the kids' school, but the mothers look bewildered to see her; they have no idea who she is until she finally says, "I'm Robert's wife." Their visibly happy reactions at the mention of Robert's name shows us just how much more Robert is involved in the kids' day-to-day activities. Frances being Frances, she tries to take over the planning meeting with her ideas, but clearly the other moms aren't as excited for her input.

After the meeting, she stops Janice — the same Janice with whom Robert had a fling a few episodes ago. She attempts to make things feel less awkward between them, but by telling her she doesn't mind her sleeping with Robert...well, it just makes things more awkward, of course.

Frances' second I'm-a-good-mother play is to bring her kids to Diane and Nick's house for a party. Frances is surprised to see one guest in particular, though: Robert's lawyer, Tony Silvercreek. She asks Robert why he came. Unsurprisingly, he gives a true Robert answer: "He's my lawyer, but he's also become my bro." Frances doesn't have much to worry about, though: Tony is too busy talking up her friend Dallas to pay her any attention. Dallas acts repulsed by his narcissism, but it isn't long before the two sneak off for a hookup session in his "brand-new Porsche" (which he makes a point to mention many, many times).
Photo: Courtesy of HBO.
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Nick shows some interest in Robert's fun space idea, which gives him the confidence to begin telling everyone about his business plan. But he's interrupted by an announcement from Nick and Diane: This is actually their re-commitment party. Their vows to one another — about how getting married is easy, but staying married is hard — nearly bring Robert to tears. But then, Nick is back to his old self, embarrassing Diane in front of everybody about her Champagne-toasting superstition, giving everyone a hint that things might not be exactly perfect again between these two.

On his way out, Robert offers to take the kids home so Frances can stay longer with her friends. But Frances wonders if this is just another ploy for him to make her look like a negligent mom. While Robert apologizes for his lawyer's tactic, Frances decides to talk to her lawyer about how they need to go on the offense against Robert.

But Max isn't up for a war with cutthroat Tony Silvercreek, so he sends her to yet another lawyer: Elaine Campbell, a spitfire who immediately forms a convincing plan of attack to make sure Frances gets what she wants. All seems well until she casually mentions she's more expensive than Max and that her assistant will take Frances' money on the way out — re-enforcing for us yet again just how much money it takes to get a divorce. Sheesh.

The episode ends with Frances and Tom watching Robert coach Lila's basketball game. But Robert's coaching moment is interrupted when a man walks up to him and tells him: He's been served. Yep, divorce papers. Frances looks shocked, and Robert is stunned, kicking the papers on the ground and yelling after the "son of a bitch." Yep, in front of all of the kids and their parents. Frances comes running down the bleachers to tell him she had no idea her lawyer was going to do that — just before the screen fades to black.

I wasn't sure how this show was going to make things get even uglier, but it did! Just one more week until the finale. How do y'all think season 1 is going to end? I'm predicting that things might get even more hurtful between Robert and Frances — which will lead us into season 2. Until then!
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