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A HBO comedy series that first began airing in 2009 and ran for three seasons with a total of 30 episodes. It stars Thomas Jane as Ray Drecker, Anne Heche as Jessica Haxon, Jane Adams as Tanya Skagle, and Eddie Jemison as Ronnie Haxon. The series is about a down-on-his-luck, divorced father whose house is burned down and can't come up with the money to fix it so he can get his kids back. Solution? Become a male prostitute, of course!


Tropes:

  • Allergic to Love: Specifically, Ray supposedly causes Jessica to break out in hives in season 2.
  • Arab-Israeli Conflict: Plot point in the appropriately-named episode The Middle East is Complicated, when Ray is sleeping with his Israeli neighbour and an Arab client at the same time (though not together). They try to force him to "pick a side" over a very minor issue: has a specific type of dish been invented by Arabs or Israelis (which he knows nothing about of course), and which of the two women prepares him the better one?
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: The entire premise revolves around this, of course. Ray's package is the one thing his ex-wife will admit he still has.
  • California Doubling: Averted; the series is both shot and set in the Detroit area.
  • Dueling Shows: With Secret Diary of a Call Girl on Showtime.
    • Also arguably with Eastbound and Down. Both shows about former athletes, down on their luck, teaching gym class in their hometown. On the other hand, they're both on HBO, so they don't really duel.
  • Epic Fail: Tanya trying to "fire" Ray's "client" Jemma. Jemma pretty much just blows her off, as well she should since Tanya had the stupid idea to try and do this at Jemma's workplace.
  • Fan Service: Thomas Jane is stripping naked in the opening credits. He appears naked several other times throughout the series. The ladies have no problem getting used to this.
  • First Father Wins
  • Idiot Ball: Ray, especially in later episodes as he pursues somewhat of a relationship with Jemma. Tanya qualifies for how she handles it.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: They usually begin with one of the main things going on in the plot, then "or" and have a humorous double entendre. Example: "Take the Cake or Are You Packing?"
  • Jaded Washout: Ray became this without realizing it. Albeit a still very good-looking Jaded Washout-type.
  • The Missus and the Ex: Parodied in the sixth episode when Tanya and Jessica meet for the first time. Played straight when Jessica sees Ray kiss his now "girlfriend" Jemma at the basketball game.
  • Motor City: The series is set in Metro Detroit (Fridge Brilliance when you consider that Michigan's economy, being in the toilet longer and deeper--heh, heh-- than any other state, is the perfect excuse for having an unemployed man become a prostitute), and filmed in West Bloomfield (one of the wealthier northern suburbs).
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Promos make it look like a pure sex comedy, but the show's really more of a dramedy about a middle-aged man dealing with a bad economy and the aftermath of a divorce.
  • Odd Friendship: Ray and Tanya. In season 2, Tanya and Charlie, sort of.
  • Taking the Kids: Seemingly inverted in the pilot until the house fire forces Ray's kids to live with their mother Jessica (Ray's ex-wife) until the house is repaired. Jessica then claims that the kids will be remaining in her care.
    • "Who do I have to fuck around here to get my kids back?!"
  • The Immodest Orgasm
  • Took a Level In Dumbass: Ray after episode six. He would become better at his job in certain intervals but then backslided by continuing service with the obviously crazy Jemma, who paid him to come to one of her therapy sessions so she could yell at him without explaining anything about what was going on to him. He then completely ignores Tanya's authority and asks Jemma to "go steady" with him i.e. date him without payment. He is now either the best or worst male prostitute ever.
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