Season Three of Weeds Lights Up the Screen

For fans of Weeds, the hilariously taut third season premiere, which airs tonight on Showtime, is not to be missed.

This week's installment ("Doing the Backstroke") picks up right where Season Two left off, with Nancy (Mary-Louise Parker) facing down the gun barrels of two rival drug cartels in the kitchen of the grow house, after Silas took off with the pot crop and Nancy's DEA husband Peter (Martin Donovan) got himself, you know, killed. (For those of you hoping that Peter is not really dead, unless Ned the Pie Maker shows up in Agrestic, this DEA agent is, um, pushing up daisies himself.)

With the crucial pot stash missing and death for her and Conrad (Romany Malco) a distinct possibility, Nancy is forced to think quick and contend with rival Armenian and African-American dealers, her criminal son Silas (Hunter Parrish), and the evil, evil machinations of neighbor Celia (Elizabeth Perkins). Things are complicated even more by the fact that Silas has gotten himself busted by Celia for stealing all of her precious security cameras and, well, Celia decides to liquidate Nancy's crop. Literally. This is a scene that will have you wanting to reach into the TV set and slap the smile right off of Celia's face.

And, oh, did I mention that younger son Shane (Alexander Gould) has been kidnapped by Andy's kooky ex-girlfriend Kat (Zooey Deschanel)? You won't believe how things, er, go off the rails between the two of them, who are being pursued (unknown to Nancy) by Andy (Justin Kirk) and an Alaskan bounty hunter on Kat's trail. All this, plus a drug-induced, er, measurement competition between Andy Milder's Dean and Kevin Nealon's Doug that is as hilarious as it is pathetic.

Touching, gripping, and caustically hilarious, this episode is Weeds at its very best. My only complaint about the season opener: that I'll have to wait to see what happens next in this "to be continued" two-parter. As for you, my gentle readers, you can check out the first episode of Weeds Season Three right now, online at Showtime (the password is MONDAYS).

How's that for a nifty gifty this Monday morning?

Weeds airs Monday evenings at 10 pm ET/PT on Showtime.

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Jace is an LA-based television development and acquisitions exec who watches way too much television for his own good and would love a TiVo for every room in the house. (He’s halfway there.) His blog, Televisionary, can be found at