This is the eighth installment of A Guy Recaps Lady TV in which Noah Garfinkel -- a guy who mostly watches CNN and the History Channel -- watches a lone episode of a television program geared toward women and recaps it. Here, Noah takes in the series premier of Lifetime’s new Jennifer-Love-Hewittian drama, “The Client List."
Going into "The Client List," I thought I was about to watch a show based on the prostitution ring at the heart of the Eliot Spitzer scandal. That really appealed to me because I like political dramas. It turns out, though, that is not at all what this show is. It’s about much less interesting things. Way to go, Lifetime. Let’s begin.
We open on Jennifer Love Hewitt changing behind one of those changey-clothes-room-divider things while a man lies on a massage table.
Jennifer Nervousness Hewitt seems nervous. The man mentions that he heard Jennifer New Hewitt is new to whatever place they are in. She confirms that she is indeed new. Suddenly we smash cut to the title of the show. OH SHIT! Here we go. We are so fucking in the middle of it right now.
We are transported through the magic of television to a backyard birthday party for Jennifer Marriage Hewitt’s husband, Kyle. A friendly subtitle alerts us that we have been taken back to four weeks ago. Their two kids gather around Kyle as Jennifer Generosity Hewitt gives him his gift, a leather jacket. Kyle is immediately upset that she spent so much money on a gift.
They go into the house to have an expository fight about it. And, this is happening on Lifetime so there’s about a 68% chance he’s about to hit her in the face.
During the fight, we learn that Kyle works in construction, but was injured and is now receiving disability checks. Also, Jennifer Rubs Hewitt is a masseuse but isn’t having any luck finding a new job after she lost her last one. Jennifer Safe Hewitt doesn’t end up getting punched in the face, but it’s clear that Kyle is totally a dick anyway. Whoa, Lifetime. That’s very progressive of you. An angry male character who doesn’t hit his wife. Who would have thought?
Next, by way of abundant establishing shots, we see this is all taking place in Beaumont, Texas. That’s where my mom was born! Awesome.
Jennifer Ambitious Hewitt starts looking for a new job. As she exits an interview at a hotel, she runs into an old masseuse friend of hers who is driving a nice car.
The friend reveals that she’s working at a spa in Sugar Land, about an hour away. That’s where I grew up! It’s like this show is about me! Apparently she is getting really big tips at this new spa. “The harder I work, the bigger they get,” she says. So then Jennifer Intuition Hewitt says, “Ohhhhh, I get it! You’re a prostitute!.” Just kidding, she doesn’t say that because this is Lifetime and she is Jennifer Density Hewitt. Instead, she completely ignores this blatant innuendo and inquires about perhaps also working at this spa. The friend says she’ll help her get an interview.
Jennifer Desperation Hewitt then goes to interview at the spa. She meets with the owner who is literally named Georgia Cummings.
Georgia Semenings IMMEDIATELY hires her based purely on what she looks like. You know, the way you hire a prostitute. Jennifer Naivety Hewitt explains that she needs her hours to be flexible. Georgia Spermjuicings responds by telling her not to worry. “This job is all about flexibility,” she says. Jennifer Obliviousness Hewitt smiles.
Jennifer Triumph Hewitt returns home to share the good news with her family. Kyle tries to act supportive but is clearly upset that his wife will now be the “official bread winner.” He is a dick male character on Lifetime, and, if he’s not going to punch a woman in the face, he’s at least going to be disturbed my nontraditional gender roles.
The following day, Jennifer Duhface Hewitt arrives at the spa for her first day of work. A client grabs her ass, and she gets VERY upset about it. The client explains that the girls who don’t “give extras” don’t get good tips. Jennifer Harrumph Hewitt storms out of the room and confronts Georgia Ejaculatings.
Ms. Jizzings explains that many of the girls boost their tips by providing “extras.” While that is encouraged, the girls are also free to be completely “legit.” So, even at a professional prostitute place, they still consider NOT prostituting as the “legit” thing? Weird. But, also, it’s become very unclear at this point whether there is actual sex happening. Like, it kind of seems like maybe it’s just hand jobs. But, if that’s the case, then why is the show called “The Client List”? Who keeps a list of people who just want hand jobs? Surely, you have to get to third base to warrant any kind of record keeping. Right? Ladies?
Whatever degree of sexual acts it is taking place at this spa, Jennifer Standards Hewitt refuses to take part. She only wants to give “legit” massages. And, because of that, she starts getting only GROSS clients. You know, because it’s the gross guys who are always super into regular, professional massages. It’s always the fat, hairy guys and dudes with sniffles who don’t demand weird sex stuff. Just the lats, ma’am.
Jennifer Discontent Hewitt finishes her gross dude massages and heads home only to find that her husband has left her and the kids. It’s a real slap in the face, but a figurative one instead of a literal one because Lifetime is continuing to chill out a little bit.
So, now, Jennifer Defiance Hewitt is like, “I’m going to give hand jobs or whatever it is that’s going on for money!” We have come full circle to the opening scene where she is behind the changey-clothes-room-divider things while a man lies on a massage table. She comes out from behind the divider wearing lingerie that the guy asked her to wear. Do guys ask masseuses to wear lingerie just for a hand job? WHAT IS GOING ON?
Also, now that she’s decided to give hand jobs and/or vagina jobs, there are no more creepy guys! Only real fucking ripped dudes pay for orgasms.
Yup. Everything checks out here.
Jennifer Change Hewitt ends up bantering with the other masseuses about their work. One of the women starts talking about how her boyfriend knows all about what she does and they’re both INTO it. “After eight hours of foreplay, by the time I get home, I am so randy that I can barely make it through the door. And by randy, I mean HORNY!” Hahaha, okay. By randy she means horny. She doesn’t mean that she becomes Randy Travis. Good thing she clarified. But also, “foreplay”? So, it’s not actual sex? I still have no idea what’s going on.
After that, Jennifer Just-One-Of-The-Girls Hewitt, goes out to her car to discover SOMEONE HAS DEFACED IT.
“Whore”? So there is sex going on? You’d think there would be a more concise insult for someone who just gives a lot of hand jobs. Right? Perhaps the person doing the graffiti is confused, too. Here’s how that vandalism should have gone down.
Eventually, we find out that the woman who wrote that on the car is the wife of one of the spa’s clients. That woman and Jennifer Protagonist Hewitt end up having a confrontation during which it is revealed that the woman’s husband still very much loves her, and that it’s not to late to save the marriage.
It’s a ridiculous bit of dialogue that I’m not going to fully describe here, but at one point Jennifer Wisdom Hewitt explains that “A man doesn’t go looking elsewhere if he’s getting what he needs at home.” Oh, Lifetime. What has happened in your life to make you like this?
Some other bullshit happens with Jennifer Parent Hewitt’s kids’ play and the episode ends with her estranged husband calling her cell phone. She says, “hello” and the screen blacks out. The end.
Sooooo, is that what was going on in Sugar Land when I was in elementary school? Was it really just a bunch of gross guys getting regular massages and ripped guys getting hand jobs and/or vagina sex? I had no idea! Can’t hardly wait for episode 2!