Weeds: Season 8
DVD | Box Set
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The last time we saw Nancy and the Botwins, it was through the scope of a hit man's rifle. Nancy had sprung from the joint and gone to New York City, where she made a fresh start doing what she does best - selling pot and making enemies. Now, everyone's wondering who put out the hit...and who got smoked.
• WEEDS Season 8: The Wrap Up! – Q &A with creator Jenji Kohan and producers Roberto Benabib & Matthew Salsberg
• "Clippin' the Buds" Featurette – interviews by cast and experts - an upbeat, humorous and educational piece
• "Everyday Advice from Guru Doug"–Guru Doug takes us through a live class
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[Contains some spoilers below]
Season 8 does unfold slowly when compared with the gripping and fast-paced season 7 and the characters, while still entertaining and compelling, aren't as funny as they used to be. I remember laughing a lot less this season than previous ones and it seems that the creative energy is slowly drying up as we move through the first two or three episodes. Unfortunately for me, I never really liked Nancy's sister as a character, so her more prominent place in Seasons 7 and 8 left me feeling a little frustrated but she does, in the end, become more tolerable and perhaps even slightly likable.
Into episodes 4 and 5, the season picks up a little bit and things get more light-hearted but there's always that sense that the end is near and the writers are stuck for where to take the characters. Probably the highlight of the season is episode 11 when Nancy, Andy and Silas return to Agrestic (now Regrestic) in an attempt to re-hash old business opportunities and rekindle old sparks. The sad news is that everything in the episode feels rushed and stale so while dragging it out would have been a very bad idea indeed, more interesting dialogue between the characters would have made this episode shine brighter.
Then comes the season finale (in the form of a one hour double-episode) where we take a leap into the future to see where the characters have ended up. I can see why they chose to wrap up the series as a whole rather than just the season as it stands. I thought that doing a whole hour-long episode devoted to the future of the Botwins and their various friends and allies was a brilliant way to end the series. The writing for this episode (as expected) was obviously the best it can be as Weeds creator Jenji Kohan, by tradition, leads out the season. My problem doesn't stem from the acting, the story or the lack of quality writing - it stems from disappointment in exactly where the characters end up. I won't say much but I will say that it isn't the ending I would have written for Nancy. I still felt sympathetic towards her after all these years and I would have liked things to have ended a little more happily for her. The strange conundrum here is that while I'm not thrilled with the way things turned out, I appreciate that what happens as a result of the way things have turned out is absolutely realistic and that's probably the best way to handle characters which seem very real to most of us.
As others have said and I will echo, I will miss the Botwins very much so. The series was truly one of the best out there and was a little piece of genius in my book even if the last season wasn't its best. I am always disappointed somehow with season finales because I never feel like the writers do a good job of handling the nostalgia, the sadness and the progress of a final episode. I must say though that as a whole, the final episode of Weeds is well-written and handled as it should have been apart from the slight disappointment I spoke about earlier.
Anyone who is a fan of the series should of course get the final season: to complete your collection, to revel in nostalgia and to pay respect to the show itself, the writers, the actors, crew and all those involved. It was a bit of a mediocre season overall but we needed closure for these characters and that is exactly what we get in the eighth and final season of Weeds.