Indecent Jellybeans: The Client List - Primetime Article From The TV MegaSite

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By Sundi


Who doesn’t love a good hooker-with-a-heart-of-gold tale? Growing up with romanticized versions of prostitution like Pretty Woman and Indecent Proposal,  Lifetime’s The Client List is engaging, although a little familiar.  This show is nearing the end of its second season and all the things that for which some other reviewers are criticizing this show, make me love it all the more.  When I think about what I love about this show, I start to think about things that I indulge in, but are really bad for me; like high heels, or jelly beans. That’s what The Client List is for me… very little substance, but sweet and filling and it does the job it’s meant to. No more, no less.  Sure, it’s pretty light fare, and the writing can seem a little clumsy, but its accessible and approachable and gives vehicle to the beautiful Jennifer Love Hewitt and her INSANE body.

I can’t help but watch. Jennifer Love Hewitt is terribly endearing, and it’s hard not to watch her week-to-week struggle to find the balance for which her character, Riley Parks calls. This season, Riley has taken on more responsibility both in and out of The Rub and this week’s episode, “I ain’t broke, but I’m badly bent” found her facing an indecent proposal of her own.  A charming new client played by Josh Hopkins (Grayson of CougarTown notoriety) offers Riley $50,000 to sleep with him, and he is just handsome enough and rich enough for her to consider it. Most of the rising action of the episode reveals Riley’s conflict over the proposition, and it seems like she is going to take the moral high ground on this one; even going so far as to utter the phrase, “I am not that kind of girl.”  Knowing what I thought I knew about this show, I guessed wrong about how it would play out.

While this show is steamy and mildy PG-13 at times (think JLH in a French maid’s costume), I would have NEVER guessed that Riley would have gone down the sex-for-money rabbit hole. The fact that The Client List took this opportunity to buck the clichéd finger-wagging and dodged the opportunity to lecture us makes me love the show even more. I am not sure what it says about me, but the fact that this character took the money in exchange for sex opens up a new respect for it. In a sense, it gives it chops; much more than you would expect from jelly beans.  And major kudos to Jennifer Love-Hewwit for directing herself in an episode that could have taken a horribly wrong turn, but turned out so enchanting.

As the other story lines ebb-and-flow (I am already tired of the Lynette-in-rehab-bit), I hope that The Client List stays strong in developing Riley’s character. I hope they don’t take the easy way out of this one and sentence us to weeks and weeks of a tortured and hollow Riley. I can manage a lot of things from this show, and I feel like I took it on the chin with Riley’s cover of “Bust a Move,” but I can’t stomach backtracking. I hope they use the same boldness when handling the tentative relationship between Riley and her estranged husband, Kyle.  He’ll be returning home from jail soon, and I think there are quite a few opportunities to show us they mean business.  I am holding my breath to see how the season wraps up, but I predict some fireworks as the relationship heats back up between Riley and Kyle. As a veteran TV viewer, I am not easily shocked by a show, but I’ll absolutely be watching to see how ELSE The Client List can surprise me.

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

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Page updated 6/7/13

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