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Hung - (S03E10)

Drama . Comedy

The survival of Tanya and Ray's business depends on Charlie's whereabouts; Jessica is accused of negligence by Matt; and Lenore tries to get Sandee out of the picture for good.

Episode Title: The Whole Beefalo
Airs: 2011-12-4 at 10:00 pm
  • Alan Sepinwall

    Hung has more to offer than just John Thomas jokes. Amidst all the sniggering humor about how Ray has been taught to "do your best with the gifts God gave you" is some smart comedy about the state of 21st century America in general, as well as a superb lead performance from Thomas Jane.

    Newark Star-Ledger Full Review
  • Brian Lowry

    Jane and Adams' interplay, the willingness to let the story gradually unfold and the project's disarming sensitivity (exemplified via a splendid fourth-episode guest shot by Margo Martindale) helps elevate Hung well above its gimmicky title--and gives HBO another improbable series that actually looks well worth hanging onto.

    Variety Full Review
  • Heather Havrilesky

    Hung is much more subtle and charming and odd than its name or its concept imply.

    Salon Full Review
  • Staff (Not Credited)

    You will find yourself cheering Ray onward and upward! And yes, I am ashamed of myself.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Verne Gay

    What's new here? Nothing, really. Jane is likable, Adams is, too, and so--believe it or not--is Hung. That's another problem. Hung needed to be scabrously funny. Instead, it's just middlebrow amusing.

    Newsday Full Review
  • Tim Goodman

    The pilot, directed by Alexander Payne ("Sideways"), is superb, and the first handful of episodes (there are 10 in the season), prove that the writing is consistently strong, the characters multidimensional and the tone assured and surprising in its depth.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Paige Wiser

    Hung is worth watching. There are worse ways to spend your nights than with Ray Drecker: male prostitute.

    Chicago Sun-Times Full Review
  • Randee Dawn

    The show is pretty darned funny, especially once you get past the 45-minute pilot and into the half-hour regular episodes (smaller is better, actually).

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Ellen Gray

    Jane is utterly believable as the hapless Ray, who, during the show's first four episodes, lurches from one disaster to another. But his character's a little too weighted down - and, no, not by the equipment you never actually see - to make his leap into male prostitution seem like anything but a plot device forced on him by writers trying a little too hard to make a point.

    Philadelphia Daily News Full Review
  • Alessandra Stanley

    While it sounds like a one-joke conceit, and a sophomoric one at that, this HBO series is oddly beguiling, a downbeat screwball comedy in R-rated clothing.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Matthew Gilbert

    This promising series is really about a failed optimist, driven by the recession and his own midlife depression to sell his body to rich ladies.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Mary McNamara

    Despite some less-than-stellar story lines--Ray's feud with his rich neighbor, his constant referral to how things have changed since his parents' day--Ray comes across as a genuine Everyman. Who just happens to have a certain God-given talent that will allow him to survive.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Jonathan Storm

    The premise, and all the talking around it that we're forced to do in the name of propriety, is kind of laughable. Tomorrow's premiere, in which Drecker's house, and all the memorabilia from a legendary high school sports career, burn up in a fire--not so much. But the show picks up.

    Philadelphia Inquirer Full Review
  • Troy Patterson

    This show makes a virtue of vice in its own way. Co-imagined by Alexander Payne, who directed the pilot, Hung is a purposeful lark about emasculation.

    Slate Full Review
  • Glenn Garvin

    Thomas Jane exudes a convincing odor of despair as Ray. So does Jane Adams as Tanya, one of his former one-night-stands who abandons her abysmally failed career as a poet to become his pimpette. If anything, they're too convincing; the humor in Hung tends to get blotted out by the melancholia.

    Miami Herald Full Review
  • Robert Bianco

    Its virtues have been buried under the kind of meandering plots and underpowered dialogue that mark so many TV comedies these days, which seem unable to decide whether they'd rather be unfunny comedies or insufficiently serious dramas.

    USA Today Full Review
  • David Hinckley

    HBO bills Hung as a comedy, but it uses comedy the way it uses sex--to set up darker, more interesting and complex points. It's amazing how many of those are out there.

    New York Daily News Full Review
  • Dorothy Rabinowitz

    Thomas Jane and Tanya Skagle's performances aside, Hung remains, despite all efforts to inform it with larger meaning, trapped in being all about just what that title says.

    Wall Street Journal Full Review
  • Tom Shales

    Since the show steadily improves as the first few episodes progress, Hung can hardly be written off as a failure.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    Thomas Jane, though, is a revelation--he plays hopeless haplessness without coming off wimpy, and his initial uncomfortableness as a pro gigolo is charming. But Hung's awkward tone becomes frustrating.

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • Maureen Ryan

    Hung, despite some droll humor and the occasional dry insight, is even more of a disappointment.

    Chicago Tribune Full Review
  • Rob Owen

    It's possible that Hung will lighten up as time goes on. The weak ending to Sunday's pilot is trite and feels like a half-hearted effort to be uplifting. It doesn't work.

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Full Review
  • David Zurawik

    That is profound stuff--if only the series did a better job of capturing it. The idea that all he has to sell is himself is an interesting one intellectually, but it doesn't play very well onscreen.

    Baltimore Sun Full Review
  • Emily Nussbaum

    It’s not impossible that the show might become, as it seems intended to be, a sitcom take on Susan Faludi’s Stiffed, a perverse fable about the way a man emasculated by the economy learns to strut. But to do that, it would have to have a grander, more empathic vision of the world around Ray. Right now, it just doesn’t go deep enough.

    New York Magazine (Vulture) Full Review
  • Michael Murray

    Lacking the poetic and poignant touch that might help make the ridiculous sublime or the sublime ridiculous, HBO, under cover of a dangerous and racy premise, has created a middlebrow comedy that, like its main character, looks good but has little to say.

    Slant Magazine Full Review

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