In Which We Want To Lick Him All Over

As the show In Treatment becomes the most entertaining thing on television, it behooves us to revisit our senior contributor Karina Wolf’s five part series on the show’s debut. Recent developments on the show, including the emergence of Paul’s wife in therapy with Dianne Wiest’s Gina, have us so excited we forget to breathe sometimes.


Five Beautiful Nights of In Treatment

by Karina Wolf

“They are like an artist’s hands: I watch them all the time,” said Nian Fish, a fashion publicist in New York. In her mind, Mr. Byrne and Paul, the 50-ish psychotherapist he plays, are fused.

Episode One: Freud’s Kitten

Episode Two: Control of the Story

“He’s a hunk, totally,” said Elizabeth Easton, an art curator in New York who is among the smitten. “He’s hot.” His sympathetic response to patients “makes him even hotter.”

“Running, Returning” – Akron/Family (mp3)


Episode Three: All Attention is Good Attention

Episode Four: The Sparring Couple

Episode Five: Linda Was Her Name

Similar responses are posted on the Web, where chatter about the show and its brooding protagonist is mostly of the uncensored kind. “I could lick Gabriel Byrne all over,” a fan calling herself Therealzenobia confided on an HBO message board. Another viewer, Kleds, seemed to hang on the actor’s every gesture. “I love, love, love when he licks his lips,” Kleds wrote, “or when he simply sticks his tongue in the front of his mouth near his lips for a second. Sooo sexy.”On such occasions, Mr. Byrne’s sympathetic hands seem repellently waxen. “To me they look like instruments of manipulation,” Ms. Fish said. “Physically, Paul gets disgusting. But I’m still rooting for him to have a victory over his weaknesses.”

“Honey Came Home” – John Alagia (mp3)

You can watch In Treatment online here. You can download full episodes here.


Neko Case in Poetry magazine.

They are soldiers.

The glory of Nina Nastasia.

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