High Maintenance: Trick
February 16, 2020 11:50 AM - Season 4, Episode 2 - Subscribe

The Guy delivers to a man looking for a connection who hires an escort for the night. Intimacy coordinator Kym bonds on set with a familiar face.

Full description that I've found way too spoilery for the front page:

The Guy, with new friend "Fomo" in tow, delivers to Matthew, a man looking for a connection who hires a new-to-the-business escort for the night. After bonding on set with a familiar face, intimacy coordinator Kym learns a surprising fact about her new love interest that threatens to derail their romance just as it's beginning.
posted by KTamas (13 comments total)
The asexual magician has been one of my favorite characters since the web series. It would be so great for him to find someone.

He mentions job hopping. We first met him in "Genius" where he quits some desk job (graphic design?) to try substitute teaching. He gets high with a fellow teaching student who later goes on to have an affair with the magician's teacher. (She has a great line in that episode when yelling back at her students: "You wanna get loud I CAN GET LOUDER.")

We next see him in "Elijah" where we get a glimpse of how fucked up his family is.

My wife's career brings her in touch with a lot of trauma therapists, and she said that character absolutely nailed it.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 6:48 PM on February 16, 2020 [3 favorites]

Oh, I didn't remember the magician from previous episodes. He's a great character though and I liked the intimacy coach as well.

The first story felt a bit weak; but even weak stories are quite good in High Maintenance, tbh.
posted by KTamas at 3:01 AM on February 17, 2020

"Kym" the intimacy coordinator was perfectly cast. She seemed incredibly good at her job, and I don't know what I wanted from her story with the magician, but I wanted good things for both of them.

The escort story was one of those awkward stories where I wanted to hide my eyes for a good part of it -- too much cringing awkwardness. Matthew made an interesting foil to Kym, trying to put boundaries around his intimacy.
posted by gladly at 7:12 PM on February 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

I love the little detail that The Guy named FOMO after his greatest fear "because you should always name things after your fears."

I'm going to have to go back and watch those previous episodes with the magician.
posted by miss-lapin at 9:17 PM on February 17, 2020

I loved the whole episode. The escort story was super interesting to me as well. The multiple flips from the escort feeling awkward to the guy who bought his services feeling awkward and back and forth was really interesting. As always it was also great to have the chance to witness a story in a world I don't usually get a chance to see anymore. I also especially loved how the first half was shot, especially the bedroom scene. I need to watch it again and count the cuts, because there were not very many. Just letting the camera sit and show us the awkward pauses in conversation followed by cross-talk, the awkwardness and weirdness of going from 0 to 1 at the start of sex in general, all of it was just wonderful.

I was glad to see Katja as director for this episode. She only did three of last season, and I really like her style. I hope she does more this season.
posted by lazaruslong at 6:17 AM on February 18, 2020

Really stupid side question: in the "Kym doing her job" montage, there's a scene where she hands a guy on set some ice, which he gratefully accepts. Is he... icing his junk?

Has nothing to do with the bigger story, but I was really curious.
posted by COBRA! at 7:42 AM on February 18, 2020

That's how I took it. Trying to get rid of an erection quickly.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 8:14 AM on February 18, 2020 [2 favorites]

Yes, that's also how I interpreted it. Also, that guy is Nick Kroll! Hah!
posted by lazaruslong at 12:37 PM on February 18, 2020

I've been thinking about this episode since I saw it and I think what I enjoy the most is how highlights the difference between expectations of what intimacy means vs the reality. How both characters react to the hand holding at the end was really powerful and well done.
posted by miss-lapin at 1:12 PM on February 18, 2020 [2 favorites]

miss-lapin, they do this type of thing more and more, and they do it really well.

In Namaste the real estate agent's normal dealer feels betrayed when he catches her hitting a vape pen she bought from The Guy, because her doesn't sell those. Later, she feels betrayed when her older friend puts his property on the market and doesn't use her as his agent.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 5:27 PM on February 18, 2020 [3 favorites]

Lots of movies, tv shows, books, plays, etc, are about navigating intimacy and boundaries. But what's so wonderful and moving about these two stories, and this show more generally, is how it plays the game in genuine expert mode. It's not dumb people making dumb boundary mistakes to generate drama, it's realistically smart, experienced adults working through the real complexities of human intimacy and its necessarily fractal boundaries -- sometimes unsuccessfully, sometimes successfully, though what constitutes success is almost always, as in real life, different from what you first imagined. You consume enough of these stories, eventually it comes to seem like there aren't very many surprises left -- until you see something like this show do it, week in and week out, and you realize there's so much more strange weird loveliness out there than you can ever imagine.
posted by chortly at 9:08 PM on February 20, 2020 [2 favorites]

It would be interesting to interview the actual on-set intimacy coordinator in the episode Ruth, when the birdwatcher has to dip the security guard's testicles in a bowl of milk.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 6:33 AM on February 21, 2020 [1 favorite]

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