Six Feet Under: Nobody Sleeps
August 22, 2019 8:25 PM - Season 3, Episode 4 - Subscribe

An opera lighting designer with a heart condition dies peacefully, surrounded by his friends, and his longtime partner arranges a tribute opera in the slumber room at Fisher & Diaz. It's Ruth's birthday, and Bettina nixes her plan to have her teeth cleaned and takes her to get a massage, while Lisa arranges a dinner party for her. Claire and Russell experience a night out with Olivier and an artist friend of his. Nate struggles with the feeling that he's living his father's life.

The obituary from this episode:

Robert Lamar Giffin (1951-2003)

GIFFIN, Robert Lamar - Born September 2, 1951 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Passed away at home on February 20, 2003, surrounded by friends who loved him dearly. Bob will be greatly missed by his colleagues at the Los Angeles Lyric Opera, where he worked as lighting designer for the last 11 years. He will also be missed by his fellow members of the Los Angeles Gay Men's Chorus. Bob was happiest when he was cooking, watching classic movies with friends, playing tennis, or making his annual trip to the Winter Festival in Avignon.

He is survived by his partner of 22 years, Kevin Lamb, and his sister Barbara Peek in Phoenix, Arizona. Service to be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, February 23, at Fisher & Diaz Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Los Angeles Lyric Opera.
posted by orange swan (4 comments total)
This might be my single favorite episode of the show, and it’s the one I’ve always turned to when I need to revisit these characters. Watts Towers! The good good china! “Nessun Dorma”! And Ruth and Claire connecting at the end is so good and gets me every time. I love how low stakes the conflict on this show could sometimes be. “Truly, it was one of the finest evenings I’ve ever spent.”
posted by kickingthecrap at 5:39 AM on August 25, 2019

Even though it's tragic that he died at only 51, Bob had one of the easiest deaths of the entire series: he died laughing in the arms of his partner, surrounded by friends. Then he also had the best freaking funeral ever. Tracy Montrose Blair, who was so anxious to arrange a "resplendent" funeral for her aunt, would have died of envy had she seen it. But fuck Bob's sister for not coming to her own brother's funeral.

Rico got schooled this episode. Knowing David is eventually going to strip all the homophobia right out of him, and I bet he also has a brand new appreciation for opera now. David, Nate, and Rico's reactions to Kevin's speech about his relationship with Bob were all so amazing. It was so clear each of them reassessed their own relationship according to what Bob was saying about his: David wants his relationship with Keith to be what Kevin and Bob's was; Nate gets a glimpse of what real long-term commitment and love really looks like; and my guess is that Rico realized for perhaps the first time that love is love, that gay partnerships can be just as committed and loving as his own marriage.

I loved the way Lisa wanting to throw Ruth a birthday dinner set the entire Fisher family back on their heels. This is such a common thing with inlaws. They do something that seems perfectly reasonable and normal to them, and the family they have recently married into is thrown for a loop because it's Not What They Do. On the one hand, an new inlaw shouldn't try to change the whole family dynamic or make people attend an event they don't want to attend, but on the other hand, inlaws can be so good for a family because their outsider perspective makes it easy for them to see what should be done. Lisa was absolutely right to arrange that dinner party. Of course Ruth deserves to have a fuss made over her on her birthday, especially given all she does for her children, and Lisa, Keith, and Bettina could see that perfectly clearly while Nate and David just got weirded out by the sight of their mother drinking, dancing, enjoying herself, and generally blossoming under all the unaccustomed attention -- she even okayed the use of the "good good china", which seems to be the Ruth Fisher version of an orgy. I think Nate and David's reaction was partly them sulking because they realized they should have been celebrating their mother's birthday all along, despite what she said.

It's hard not to get exasperated with Nate. The responsibilities of marriage and parenthood make him restive, and he doesn't like that he's living the kind of life his father did, but what did he do with his freedom when he had it? The guy's a manchild who never knows what he wants and can't commit to anything.

Olivier could be a very effective and inspiring teacher if he weren't such an asshole. The mind games he plays on such young and impressionable students... he really isn't fit to teach, frankly. Claire still got something out of the evening, which is good.

Claire tells Russell he's hot, which... uh... The guy looks just plain seedy and hangdog to me, but to each her own.

I loved the way Keith clearly really enjoyed Bettina's company.

"This is an unusually gassy family."

"I hope you weren't planning to listen to that Lilith Fair shit all night."

Keith and David have recently watched a porno called The Gaytrix. I kind of want to google that title to see if it's for real, but somehow I can't bring myself to do so.
posted by orange swan at 2:55 PM on August 25, 2019 [3 favorites]

i took one for the team and googled it for you, orange swan. It’s a real movie. (That is just an IMDb link, for those afraid to click)
posted by fancyoats at 6:12 PM on August 25, 2019

The Gaytrix movie you've linked to wasn't released until 2013, so it can't be the one referred to in a 2003 script.
posted by orange swan at 7:54 AM on August 26, 2019

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