Five reflections on Weeds

Stuff I mused over after enjoying the entirety of Weeds for the second time…

(Fair warning: major spoiler alerts if you haven’t seen the end of the show.)

close up of a weed plant

1) Silas and Shane should switch names

Their names are way more suited the other way around.

Okay, so there is a little something about Silas that reminds me of my college bestie guy friend named Shane, but I don’t think it’s just that.

Silas has a more exotic feel to it. Silas evokes a deep, troubled soul. A man with darkness in his eyes and a glass of bourbon in his hand. Silas is Shane.

Shane brings to mind a blond, carefree, surfer type of dude, who likes to party and get laid, but will also get up for work at 8AM and get his shit done. Shane is Silas.

2) We needed to see Nancy in prison

I have to say, I hate how we just skip over an entire three years while Nancy is in prison. While the show did a decent job of picking things back up again, we lost so much time.

More importantly, Nancy is exactly the same person she was when she went away – i.e., thinking special exceptions should be made for her at the halfway house, because she wears short dresses and looks cute sipping iced lattes.

I’m not buying it.

There’s no way someone spends more than a quarter of a decade behind bars and doesn’t come out at least slightly altered in some way.

3) Nancy and Shane have a complex and slightly disturbing relationship

Nancy has a bond with Shane she doesn’t have with her other two sons.

Shane is a mama’s boy from the beginning. He sometimes displays an unhealthy obsession with Nancy – a little something from the fourth season in particular coming to mind here – but also just an overall attachment to her Silas and Stevie don’t exhibit.

Of course, Stevie is Nancy’s baby, being the youngest. But I think she loses a little bit of her relationship with him during the three years she was in prison, and for the short while afterwards when her sister had custody of him. 

Furthermore, in the end, we see Stevie has grown into a rather fine young man, ready to go off to boarding school. Silas is married with a baby and a good job – he’s also clearly grown into himself. Conversely, Shane at the end is a cynical alcoholic with a trashy girlfriend, still dealing with his issues.

Did we mention halfway through the series he murdered a woman with a croquet mallet?

Despite being probably the most intelligent person on the show, Shane is undoubtedly the most messed up in the end, and I think it’s because of that inexplicable pull towards his mother.

Maybe he latched onto Nancy so much because of witnessing his dad’s death as a child. Who knows.

For Nancy’s part, while she undoubtedly loved all three of her sons in her own way, she only went to prison for one of them, perhaps in doing so displaying her own intense attachment for Shane.

4) Nancy should have ended up with Conrad

Out of her four husbands and the multitude of other men, I firmly believe Nancy belonged with Conrad.

Behind the cool guy exterior Conrad really cared about Nancy. He had that campus security guy beaten up for her, he pissed off the all mighty Heylia to have a scrap of a relationship with her, and, he was the one who took her son Silas under his wing and taught him how to grow pot – which of course, paved the way for Silas’s niche in the whole weed world.

Conrad could have married Nancy, been an awesome stepfather, and eventually partnered with Silas for the family business.

But instead, Nancy kind of treated him like crap. They finally had sex, she didn’t seem to really care, and then she went and banged scummy Sullivan.

When reunited later on, Nancy continued to pile crap on Conrad when she said, “We only had sex one time!” Conrad, clearly stung, reminded her it was actually two times. Ouch.

As we can see at the end by Conrad getting married and having children, he’s perfectly content in balancing the thug life with the suburban life – a lifestyle Nancy also enjoys.

She doesn’t need a decent but inevitably boring guy like David. She doesn’t need a Mexican gangster who’s exciting, but dangerous and controlling like Esteban. She needs someone in between, like her.

Conrad was that perfect match.

Of all the poor decisions she made, I truly hated to see Nancy throw away what probably would have been her best and most fulfilling relationship.

5) Several things happened in the beginning that mirrors stuff in the end

In the first episode, Nancy holds Shane and tells him, “I’m very fond of you.” In the last episode, Nancy holds Shane and tells him, “I’m very fond of you.” (More evidence on the borderline creepy Nancy/Shane connection).

Silas gets his girlfriend pregnant, intentionally, so she wouldn’t go to college but would be obligated stay with him; she has an abortion. In the end, after having his fun with several different girls and women, Megan and Silas end up together, married, with a baby.

Nancy’s Jewish husband has died shortly before the start of the show. In the epilogue-like ending of the show, we learn Nancy’s fourth husband, also Jewish, has died.

Interestingly, Nancy’s second and third husbands are murdered, while the Jewish gentlemen die of more normal causes – a heart attack and a car accident. In any case, we start with a Jewish dead husband and end with a Jewish dead husband.

There are undoubtedly more beginning/end juxtapositions I haven’t covered, but I do have to touch on one more: Nancy and Andy. We can’t talk about Weeds without talking about Nancy and Andy.

There’s sexual tension from the beginning. He clearly wants her; she desperately needs to get laid. Although Andy did legitimately care about Nancy, I found his desire for her to be in that, he-only-wants-what-he-can’t-have kind of way; he wasn’t in love with her.

Similarly, I believe Nancy’s attachment to Andy was not based out of desire for a relationship, but more of a need to not be alone. 

I never thought they were in love or meant to be a couple. 

They were, however, meant to have sex, as was hinted at from the beginning that they eventually would. Finally, after stringing him along for years and years, they do.

Yet another beautiful moment of the plot coming full circle: where they have sex.

While in the beginning they couldn’t be together out of respect for Judah’s death – because Judah was Nancy’s husband and Andy’s brother – in the end, they not only had sex in spite of Judah, but did it in the exact spot where he died.