Chance: Fluid Management – A Real Sh*t Show (Review)


Hugh Laurie as Eldon Chance

The season finale of Chance “Fluid Management” walks the viewer into the Blackstone meeting backwards. We start with Eldon being found alive but unconscious on the beach and end with the doctor’s life changing into a, presumably, more violent version of his old one.

At long last we learn about the life altering event that caused Jaclyn to develop her alter-ego Jackie. Along with this information comes the realization that the other psychiatrist’s murder was committed by Jackie.

Raymond cleaned the crime scene up and he too “fell” for Jaclyn/Jackie’s messed up lies and mental issues.

Other revelations include learning that Detective Hynes is, in his own way, as corrupt as Blackstone and that Carl is much more than an antiques dealer.

D can be almost be seen as a sort of violence prone Pied Piper of Hamlyn. Not only does Chance almost blindly follow the man’s advice on all things lethal, so too does Carl.

“Thing you got to love about Carl… You ask him to crash his car, he just does it… no questions, no hesitation. Let’s face it… The guy’s got balls.”

D says this to Chance, neither as a recrimination nor a reprimand, it is just a matter of fact to the big man.  There is little doubt that D trained Carl as well and he is to be joined by Eldon as another changed member of society.

Not having read the books that Chance the series is based upon, there is no indication where this will head next. At the end of this episode, Eldon brings his trainer a cheeseburger, and a malted. He also brings one for himself.

The implication being that the two will re enact what they did to Blackstone but this time it will be Hynes on the receiving end of that blade.  Eldon Chance is over his initial squeamishness and horror at the things D taught him. Just as he has accepted the facts of D and is comfortable with the knowledge that his friend and mentor is just as mentally screwed up as he is.

This is the final message of Chance. Everyone in the show suffers from some sort of mental aberration.  Jackie/Jacklyn are two sides of the same coin, a personality split caused by the death of her baby when she was a child.

Eldon has an obsessive personality and he has passed on this trait to his daughter Nicole.  D lost himself to violent fantasies that he learned to make real by researching military men who served in Iraq and Afganistan.

Raymond Blackstone was, in essence, a control freak who responded well to Jaclyn’s preprogrammed brainwashing drill. The same one she pulls on Chance later. The same one, presumably, she used on Blackstone’s predecessor.

At the end of the season, Jackie/Jaclyn has left for points unknown after revealing the truth of what really happened to her first therapist.  Eldon has returned to D to reveal that another bent cop is thinking of leaning on him for money.

The circle is still turning. This time, however, it appears that Eldon is a willing participant in the upcoming “sh*t show.”

Hugh Laurie knocks it out of the park as Dr. Eldon Chance. After years of playing Dr. Gregory House in House, the English actor can not only play an American flawlessly, he convinces all too easily as a doctor.

Ethan Suplee was the standout performer on this series. His “D” was creepy, deadly and downright un-nerving. He came close to stealing the show from his co-stars.  It is necessary to point out that Laurie clearly had no problem with this as he facilitated the actor.

Laurie also allowed Gretchen Mol the freedom needed to make her damaged dove more than believable. Mad props also go to Paul Adelstein for his portrayal of Raymond. Bad guys with this many layers are hard to pull off but the actor managed it easily.

Show creators Alexandra Cunningham and Kem Nunn really knocked this one right out of the park. This was a fascinating, gritty drama that quickly became required viewing.

Chance, based on the book by Nunn, is streaming on Hulu. Take a moment and watch this one from the start. You will be glad you did.

Cast:

Guest starring Derek Webster as Detective Newsome and Clarke Peters as Carl.

Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, http://MikesFilmTalk.com Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

6 thoughts on “Chance: Fluid Management – A Real Sh*t Show (Review)”

  1. He actually left two goons behind; I assume the other one is also there dead somewhere? (Or was he in the car that Carl plowed into?) I’m surprised how few people have remarked on this – my own writer ladylove thinks I’m silly for getting hung up on it – but a bloody dead body in a show like this needs some kind of explanation!

    I’d say it just has to be Blackstone… but a killshot (or two) while you’ve got a knife wiggling in your heart is a neat trick!

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    1. If you remember, Raymond left one of his guy to look after Jacklyn and instructed him to “shoot her in the head” if he didn’t return. In knowing he was about to die, after being stabbed in heart, in a last effort to show he loves Jacklyn he kills the guy he left.

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      1. Anonymous – your explanation makes complete sense, but were there any visual clues that helped you arrive at the answer? Even so, thanks with coming up with the answer.

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