Appropriately entitled “Wreckage,” the season premiere of House of Lies picks up the pieces from last season’s finale which saw Mary Kaan (Don Cheadle) leave Galweather & Stern, Clyde (Ben Schwartz) go to work for Monica (Dawn Olivieri), and Jeannie (Kristen Bell) in control of the new Pod which includes a far more dickish Doug (Josh Lawson) and new recruits JC (Brad Schmidt) and Benita (Lauren Lapkus). And, yes, each and every one of them are miserable.
We get a glimpse into both life inside the Kaan-less Pod as well as Clyde working for Marty’s crazy ex-wife and his new co-workers (Milana Vayntrub, Eugene Cordero) trying to save an account Marty hopes to torpedo and offer to Jeannie as a peace offering by letting it be known Monica cooked the books. “Wreckage” also introduces Marty’s new team (Genevieve Angelson, Rob Gleeson, Ryan Gaul) who are a bit disappointed that the legend of Marty Kaan doesn’t match the current version who takes them 6,000 miles only to struggle with signing the owner (Daniel Stern) of a mid-size grocery chain with the possibility of becoming an organic food giant.
Although the new set-up allows for plenty of in-fighting between former friends and colleagues there are a ton of new faces to get used to in only a single episode most of whom aren’t all that memorable. Based on Marty’s actions it’s hard to tell whether he’s using Jeannie to destroy Monica’s company or he honestly wants to make amends (which I don’t see happening without an awful lot of groveling and honesty, neither of which is Marty’s strong suit). I’m a bit surprised how quickly Doug has turned into the new Pod’s asshole (but not surprised how the mere appearance of Clyde turns him back into himself). As for Clyde, the hell-hole of his own choosing (including a boss spreading rumors that he’s a rapist) marks him as the first likely candidate to jump ship and change sides in the new merry-go-round season.