Californication: Karen Gets in on the Act


Going Down and Out in Beverly Hills
Season 2 Episode 8

“Going Down and Out in Beverly Hills” drags out Hank’s anticipation of Janie Jones for yet another episode, but offers up her cleaning lady for a temp job. Karen finds out about Mia and Ashby. Charlie plays cat and mouse with Daisy, while Marcy sobers up, or doesn’t. And we discover that if we want to see an epic of personal redemption and forgiveness like we remembered Californication being, we might as well watch True Blood.

Hank, fully clothed and accessorized with sunglasses, Scotch, and a cigarette, interviews a bikini-clad Janie Jones and her perfect ass. She thinks Ashby and his girl-who-got-away myth are full of shit. Recognizing that Hank is also full of shit, she pushes him into the pool, but not before explaining why she left Ashby: When she saw him helping a Sheryl Crow wannabe write a song, she realized that the exchange was more intimate than sex and that she was tired of sharing him.

Hank retires to the pool house to change out of those wet clothes and into something more comfortable — specifically, the outfit of a racist idiot. He clumsily chats up the maid in the most offensive Spanglish since that Adam Sandler vehicle. But, whaddaya know, it works. Their tryst is briefly interrupted by Janie’s philandering, domineering husband, Ron, but that just provides knight-in-shining-armor Hank with an opportunity to save a damsel in distress: He warns Ron that he’s committing sexual harassment and that if he fires the maid, he’ll tell his wife all about it. But Janie doesn’t mind sharing Ron with the maid, or sharing Hank with her; she tells him that if he wants to continue the interview, he’ll just have to ask her out.

Meanwhile, Charlie has sent Marcy to her mother’s desert retirement community to kick the coke habit. He also sets up a meeting with the president of Intense Entertainment, who tells them that if Daisy will sufficiently augment her breasts, there’s a lucrative job waiting for her. When Charlie counsels that the great stars don’t need boob jobs, Daisy is so touched by the compliment that she uses her vagina pretzel power to cure his premature ejaculation problem. Even more effective than Daisy’s Jedi vadge trick: a phone call from Charlie’s mother-in-law, informing him that Marcy never showed.

Mia plays the worst Sheryl-wannabe ever, serenading Ashby with a monstrosity that should prove she didn’t write that book she stole from Hank. Hank doesn’t seem inordinately upset to find that Ashby has failed to go cold turkey on the girl, but when Karen and Becca spot Mia jumping into what could only be Ashby’s limo, Karen dives into battle, marching right over to the Ashby mansion to give him a lecture on real estate and age-appropriate dating. It’s an impressive showing, until she somehow tumbles down the stairs. Ashby patches her up — and kisses her to make it better. She storms off, but we can guess all too well what’s going to happen here. If she can’t quite quit the asshole that is Hank, Karen doesn’t stand a chance against this master of assholery.

Still: Mission accomplished, for now. Karen has distracted Ashby from her almost stepdaughter, and she freaks Hank the fuck out when she tells him Ashby’s a great kisser. He — like us — can only gape in horror. Again.

Californication: Karen Gets in on the Act