Tuesdays 10pm on FX. Check your local listings.
It's one of those shows that consistently f's with the audience. Things too tense, here's a comedy show. Laughing too much here's some heartbreak. That guy is your favorite character, well now he's dead.
Seriously this entire show's catalog is a roller coaster of emotion.
This week's episode went a little too far.
And I love it.
The entirety of "Torch" is pretty messed up. Denis Leary's Tommy finds he can't cry after years of alcohol, death, and loss. So he drinks an entire bottle of Jameson and takes a blowtorch to his leg. Then while patching himself up he gets his cousin's widow to have sex with her, in an very S+M borderline rape scene.
But that's not the troubling part.
At the very beginning of the episode, Tommy's Fire Engine squad report to a three car pile up.
The joke, they laugh, and they get to work.
Lou, Tommy's friend, is trying to get Tommy out of the house so he can bang his Hooker/Thief girlfriend (it makes sense if you watch the show) when he stops dead in his tracks and begins to weep.
The other guys run over and all start vomiting and crying. Except Tommy.
It's a kid they say.
Tommy says he'll handle it and goes and gets a blanket.
Movies might be the high art of film, but TV when done right can nail powerful emotion without being explicit.
Tommy kneels in front of the camera, which is tight on his face.
Tommy begins gathering the kid into the blanket.
And when I say gather, I mean reaching in different directions. The camera never leaves his face and never shows anything horrible.
When he stands up the blanket isn't covering a human shape. It more resembles a pile of dirty laundry.
I still can't get that scene out of my head.
It was a master's class of staging and writing, and I applaud Leary and company.
Watch it people.
Update:// Here's the clip while it lasts