Masters of Sex: Night and Day – Paying the Price (Review)


This week in Masters of Sex quite a number of things come full circle. “Night and Day” sees Bill and Gini finally deciding where they stand with one another. Art learns a devastating truth about his relationship with Nancy and Libby makes what may be a life altering decision.

The bottom line with every situation on this episode is that someone must pay a price for their actions.  Whether it be indiscretions, in the case of Gini’s father, or having an open marriage, like Art and Nancy.  In this episode Bill and Gini may well have discovered that they can be a couple, while their two business colleague’s marriage may well be over.

Masters of Sex was a heartbreaker this week. Focusing on Art and Nancy the episode revealed that the love of Art’s life never wanted to marry him.  Among the many lies that Nancy told her husband, including her callous mirroring of his unhappiness at their marital arrangement, the worst was her lie about the pregnancy.

She tells Art that the baby’s father could be anyone of a number of sexual partners.  Later, when he sees her talking to Sully about aborting the pregnancy Art listens to the tape recording and learns the heartbreaking truth.

The baby is his.

Nancy wants to get rid of it to keep her options open. She wants to be able to leave the relationship whenever she wants. Art listens to this and learns the sad truth. This too is another price to pay, not for the open marriage, but for knowing about the tapes and listening in on a private conversation.

This revelation may well affect their defection to New York to open a rival business.  Art has already spoken to Bob Drag but that was before he learned the truth about the baby.

Gini’s father wants to receive counseling from Bill and brings her mother along for Gini to talk into participating.  At lunch with mom, she learns about a long term affair her father was having and it upsets her.

Later she and her father do the intake questionnaire. This sequence had to be, hands down, the oddest and most uncomfortable to date in the show.  There cannot be many people who could face helping their parents solve sexual issues and even less who could handle one of their parents being unfaithful.

Libby gets an epiphany.

Libby and Abe get caught up in Woodstock.  As the lawyer and lawyer to be try to get out of the world’s biggest traffic jam, Libby has an epiphany. She decides to take a detour and attend the concert.  Abe may, or may not, join her but it does not matter. Libby has realized that she needs to dream big.

Louise’s fall off the wagon is interrupted by Bill. He tries to help his friend and mentor (at A.A.) but she is accepting of her fate. She may eventually climb out of her misery but right now she needs the punishment. The two drink and dance together and it is another heartbreaking scene.

This too is someone paying the price. Louise is still paying for her decision to drive while intoxicated the night her husband became partially paralyzed. As Bill says in another meeting, Louise, like so many others who attend, needs the bad feeling.

By the end of the episode Gini has come to the church where Bill’s A.A meeting takes place. (Guy tells her where Bill is.) They talk and Bill finally reveals that he is scared of entering into a relationship with Gini.

Gini  explains that she is also frightened and as they sit there, they begin to alternatively recite classic marriage vows in one of the most touching scenes ever. These two obviously belong together and at long last they have accepted the fact. (Masters and Johnson were married in real life, although it ended in divorce.)

Masters of Sex was all about paying the price this week. It was also about heartbreak and learning truths that maim and destroy the seeker. Art was the one we felt most for in this episode.

While sighing at Gini and Bill finally getting it right, we simultaneously grieved for Art and Nancy. Never have a couple been so wrong for each other for all the worst reasons. We cannot judge Nancy too harshly for wanting her freedom but we can hate her a little for lying to Art.

Masters of Sex airs Sundays on Showtime. This episode “Night and Day” is the penultimate one of the season. The season finale will air next Sunday. Tune in to see if Betty returns to work and what Art will do with the truth he learned this week.


Guest starring Michael O’Keefe as Harry Eshelman, Frances Fisher as Ethel Eshelman, Danny Jacobs as Bob Drag and Niecy Nash as Louise.

Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

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