The mommy issues are strong with this lot.
While the premiere had more flash and bang, Filthy Rich Season 1 Episode 2 delved more into some characters, touching upon a vulnerability that was lacking.
Everyone has an angle and weakness on Filthy Rich.
Eric's wife, the aptly named Becky -- in all of her basicness, remains a caricature. Nevertheless, her opening monologue -- a recap in the form of prayer was hilarious.
So far, the series has not pulled off any significant twists that are shocking. Eugene's warm-blooded existence wasn't a shock, and now we have to patiently await the moment he comes face to face with his family and the mess he made.
This was supposed to be the first grandchild, not that thing. That baby, a little demon here to shatter our world.Becky
They fed us too much to make the Mark/Jason fiasco a surprise, and we all knew Eric was too knowledgable of
Sin Saint Wagon.
There's a spark of interest with Antonio and what type of player he is here. It's a relief that he isn't blindly hero-worshipping Margaret seconds after meeting her.
The revelation that his mother is there in New Orleans, and she has put him up to playing Margaret is intriguing. It changes the stakes of things and muddies the dynamics.
Thus far, Ginger has been the leader among the illegitimates, and initially, it did seem as though she had all of their best interest in mind on principle.
But she, much like the Monreauxs, doesn't know either of these men well either. She took for granted that Antonio was naive instead of considering that maybe he's working an angle of his own.
Antonio wants his money, and then he doesn't want any parts of the Monreauxs. He wants to provide the best life for his son, and he wants to leave things at that.
However, he has his mother to deal with, and she comes with some baggage. She's the one who put him up to doing what he needs to get the money, but it's disheartening to know she spent his $10,000 paycheck on settling some debts.
I wonder if they had to do with his fighting? It was also interesting to see that while Margaret finds his MMA fighting barbaric and too risky for a single father to partake in, Antonio's mother is training him and maybe sees him as a meal ticket because of that.
People of faith are not that fickle. That's the beauty of faith.Margaret
And that's not to say that she doesn't care about her son. It's another one of those instances where the class differences and mindsets are glaring.
Antonio is loyal to his mother now, and he's putting her ahead of Margaret, but something tells me Antonio's puppy-dog act with Margaret isn't an act after all.
If Antonio's growing frustration with his mother continues to clash harshly with what Margaret and the Monreaux life does for him, then it could tear him and his mom apart.
It does make you wonder about the nature and circumstances of the relationship between Antonio's mother and Eugene. She's gung- ho now about Antonio getting his piece of the Monreaux fortune, but why wasn't she before?
She doesn't come across as a woman who wouldn't have struck early on.
You have two mothers who put their children up to collecting, and then you have Ginger's mother who wanted no parts. It's Ginger leading the charge in her vendetta against the Moreaux family.
Jason, well, Mark -- his mom encouraged him to go through with this charade to help their family with the real Jason's medical expenses.
"Not Jason" was surprisingly chill about Rose discovering the truth, and he seemed more into the idea of her crushing on him than any repercussions from the exposure of his secret.
Jason feels the most disconnected from the Monreaux shenanigans. His only connection to the storyline and the entire show is whatever this is with Rose. And it's such a weak point of little interest that's a disservice to both characters and their potential.
It also remains a source of confusion regarding the weird location slipups. Real Jason is in a coma in Colorado, so fake Jason had to fly a plane (?) to get DNA and return to New Orleans.
Rose took a 20-hour car ride to Colorado to see him, and then they rode back. But it looked as if Eugene saw them riding past him, but Eugene was resting up with his Swamp Angel in Lousiana, so what the hell?
It turns out that Not Jason and real Jason are adopted kids, so they have no blood relation, and the woman at the hospital isn't their birth mother.
Peak soap goodness could be if (Not) Jason's charade is complicated further by Jason's birth mom popping out of the woodwork. Anything else would help liven up (Not) Jason's portion of the story.
But there's something there with Jason's car accident, yes? An accident is never just an accident, so what happened to him? Also, what if the location thing is wonky because of Eugene?
Wouldn't it be something if Eugene had a connection to Jason's accident? What if it's connected to whomever wanted Eugene dead?
Maybe we'll find out more about Eugene's involvement now that he's had a proper pep talk from his Swamp Angel, who is sending him on his merry way to atone for his sins.
Franklin: These are complicated times.
Luke: Times aren't complicated. They are.
Franklin: Look here, the Monreauxs are a good Christian family, and they've done right by me.
Luke: A lot of good Christian folks down here have done a lot of bad things to people like you and me, yeah?
Franklin: Margaret is good.
He has a mess ahead of him, but these are the complications that make for good TV. The return of Eugene should be epic. He's been gone for a month. In that time, powers have shifted, his secrets are out, and the truth has upended his carefully crafted life.
But the love of his life, and I'm talking Tina, not Margaret, now resides in New Orleans with his pistol of a daughter.
Tina is an unexpected piece on the board, and you'd never imagine she would be of much interest, but she is.
Because while Jason and Antonio's moms sent their sons running to New Orleans, Tina didn't want Ginger entangled with the Monreauxs.
Luke surmised that Tina has a story, and he's right. Tina has felt like she's in Margaret's shadow in more ways than one. She loves Eugene, but he was married to Margaret, and she bore his child, who looked up to Margaret for years.
We could already see that Margaret and Ginger are too similar for their own good, and that's why they clash so much, but Tina expressed how true that really is.
Ginger grew up watching Margaret on Wings of Dove, and she always knew Eugene was her father, so she probably spent most of her young life imagining what it was like taking her place in the Monreaux family.
She knew part of that was her birthright, and it had to be difficult on her growing up poor with a single mom whom she had to take care of knowing that she could've had the Monreaux life.
I raised my daughter, but you inspired her.Tina
It also makes sense of how she would hold some resentment toward her mother. Luke struck a nerve with his questions, but wouldn't you ask the same?
Tina's love for Eugene outweighed everything else. She was intent on protecting him, but in the interim, Ginger suffered. How does it feel growing up as a secret? Tina never got any money from Eugene, nor did she sign an NDA.
Tina's love for Eugene is so steady. Did they continue an affair over the years without Ginger or Margaret knowing about it? Does she know he's still alive? What is their story?
Tina's interactions with Margaret were unusual. Tina has some trepidation around Margaret, but she also gave her insightful information that Margaret could use against Ginger.
You can trust and believe Margaret has an advantage knowing that Ginger was obsessed with her growing up and that Margaret shaped who she is.
On top of that, Tina not only embraced Margaret's Baptism suggestion, but she encouraged Ginger to go with it. For someone who felt like Margaret has the life that she wanted, or she has some pull over the people she loves, Tina's willingness to have Ginger succumb to the Monreauxs is odd.
She called Ginger out on wanting to get the attention of her new "mom," and she told Ginger that Margaret and the Monreauxs could protect Ginger in a way that she never could.
But protect Ginger from what? And if that's the case, then why did it take until Ginger's adulthood and Eugene's "death" for Ginger to fall in line with the Monreauxs?
Ginger: I'm going to build my brand on the back of yours because I'm that bitch.
Margaret: And I'm this bitch.
And that's the root of the issues for Ginger versus the Monreauxs, no?
The Monreauxs never bothered to know her. They dismissed her as a "whore" upon introduction and expected her to fall in line anyway.
Do you think the tit for tat thing Ginger and Margaret have going on would've existed if the Monreauxs didn't start things off by trying to buy off and erase the illegitimates after insulting the hell out of them?
Even Margaret's next offer was a hard pill to swallow. She wanted Antonio to give up his passion and work for her before he saw a cent of the money he's entitled. She wanted Jason, whom she has barely interacted with at all, to give up his legal weed business in Colorado for the same.
And she wanted Ginger to take the money, shut down her business, and go away. It's a slap in the face altogether. It didn't help that they learned they're making these sacrifices for a weekly allowance that Rose got as a teenager just for existing.
It meant they would have to fall in line with the Monreauxs' lifestyle while also being excluded and erased from their lives.
It's fascinating how Margaret, someone who apparently grew up poor, and who also can recognize that Ginger wants acknowledgment and a seat at the table, is utterly incapable of compromising using that knowledge.
She draws out the ire instead, and it's a battle of the wills as each woman tries to get the other to submit. It's too bad they can't learn from each other.
Rose: I'm sorry this is the same allowance I've gotten since I was 16.
Antonio: You've been getting $10, 000 a week since you were 16?
If they came from a place of acceptance in the beginning, then Margaret's entitled children could've learned something they never got the chance growing up like she maybe did. Eric's "Moral clarity" is more like extreme judgment, along with a wife who thinks that "equality is unfair."
Rose could've learned how to stand on her own two feet and assert herself from the likes of someone like Ginger.
And maybe Margaret could've learned a few things too. She's hard to place. She has a lot of "bad bitch" energy, but it's mostly directed at other women.
Margaret's rightful power move against Reverend Paul lost something when she had to beg for his help and admit she was "wrong" for being honest with her viewers and the world. Paul had to come in with the save for the Sunny Network.
Margaret: When did everyone in our world become a transaction?
Franklin: A long time ago. You just didn't know about it.
She had to cater to Eric, throwing him a bone because of his inability to articulate his feelings and assert himself to his mother about his insecurities and self-worth.
And Franklin went to a now unemployed Luke requesting help in lifting Margaret's spirits and helping her image with puff pieces. In a sense, Franklin isn't so much the confidant as he is the man who steers Margaret in Eugene's absence and coddles the woman he presumably loves.
Margaret's unawareness of the extent of payouts and the distribution of money over the years to right wrongs speaks to how often she let others run things in her life.
But then, she also gave off the impression that she wasn't surprised that someone wanted Eugene dead and that maybe she was on the top of that list.
Still, Margaret's cunning ways come out most when it comes to Ginger. Even the idea of a baptism came from Reverend Paul. Surprisingly, he didn't come across as a villain during this installment, but the control he has over Eric and Margaret is disappointing.
He's someone else who wrote Ginger off, and he was taken aback that the heathen actually knew the religion.
Ginger's rant about Mary Magdelene's minimization was fantastic, and it's right up there with her breakdown of the significance of the number five.
You have to love a girl who can put some respect on Mary Magdelene's name.
As an aside, I covered a religious series called The Chosen a while back, and one of the most refreshing aspects of it was how beautifully they portrayed Magdelene and how well they recognized her importance to Jesus. If you're into that sort of thing, I highly recommend it.
Instead of considering that maybe Christians come in all forms, Paul saw Ginger as someone who could be saved because of her knowledge. And it looks good if they can "save" her on television.
Despite Ginger's attempts, she's still being used by the Monreauxs to their advantage. She needs to think bigger and smarter, though.
She could be a force if she played along better, but she only managed long enough to rise from the water exposing herself and the new website for her fetish cam site.
Ginger knows people, so she already suspected that the same pearl-clutching folks would be hitting up that website later. And that includes her brother.
I almost wish the show leaned harder into the satirical hypocrisy of some Christians and the Evangelical culture.
But Ginger and Margaret will keep going back and forth with one another. What will be of interest is how Eugene factors in when he arrives.
I think somebody wanted Eugene Monreaux dead, and they pulled that plane out of the sky to make it so. If they think taking my jib is going to shut me up then clearly they never met a hungry freelancer.Luke
Tina is very passive, and she doesn't want Ginger poking the lioness, but she doesn't try to prevent it either. If anyone can rattle Ginger, it's going to be Eugene.
And Eugene will probably have a soft spot for Ginger. It could change so many dynamics.
They already drew a parallel by having father and daughter baptized at the same time. Both of which tied in with the installment's name: John 3:3, a scripture which reads, "Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again."
Ginger's sister, Rachel, is an unexpected player in this too. For all of Eric's bluster and moral superiority -- or even his confusion as to how his father could lie down with women who he deems beneath them, he's in love with Rachel.
He's a regular subscriber to Sin Wagon, but he's kept his identity secret. It isn't much of a revelation, but it is something that makes sense when you see how lost Eric is.
He turns to Paul for paternal reassurance and attention. Paul had to be the one to tell Eric not to turn his back on his mother. And Becky has about as much depth as a puddle after a drought.
He's not close to his sister, and he feels as though Margaret doesn't respect him. His relationship with Rachel is where he feels seen and not judged and where he doesn't have a reputation to uphold or expectations.
The well-kept secret can't stay buried for long, especially now that all of the girls are in New Orleans. Ginger already suspects that Eric subscribes to her site.
But Rachel recognizing Eric's voice in any number of ways they could bump into each other is inevitable.
Spilling Sweet Tea:
- I am thoroughly entertained by how they manage to incorporate Corey Cott singing in every episode.
- I can't be the only one who thought (and was secretly rooting for) Jesus to squeeze his juice bottle all over Becky when Antonio leaned into their car.
- Franklin and Luke's conversation made you wonder what their history was and the extent of Franklin's background with the Monreauxs. You can tell Luke doesn't respect them and feels as if Franklin "sold out" in some way. And Franklin has never had issues with the Monreauxs because they always did right by him.
- So far, Franklin and Eugene shielded Margaret from a lot of things. How often were they compromising their morals and paying people off, and for what?
- Ginger's casual Bi/Pansexual reveal via bedmates was reminiscent of a scene from Lucifer.
- Is anyone else itching for more of the characters to interact and overlap? Can you imagine Eric and Antonio bonding over fatherhood? What would happen if Reverend Paul realizes (Not) Jason isn't who he says?
- What if we got an unlikely team-up between Reverend Paul and Ginger? He was intrigued by her.
- Swamp Angel's reference that God is a woman made me chuckle.
Over to you, Filthy Rich Fanatics.
What are your latest theories and speculation? Did the Jason/Mark thing surprise you? How about the revealation that Eric is in a cam relationship with Rachel?
Did you think Margaret made the wrong call exposing everything? Should she have listened to Reverend Paul? What do you think will happen now that Eugene is back? Hit the comments!
You can watch Filthy Rich online here via TV Fanatic.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.