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The name of the episode itself comes from the term “Off The Derech,” or OTD, which literally means off the path. (Season Two) A couple deals with less-than-ideal digs during a trip to NY; The Guy delivers to an all-female political group. So, it comes as no surprise when – while buying some weed before joining Baruch and a group of former members of the ultra-Orthodox community for Friday night dinner – she confesses that she's only interested in Baruch for a story she's writing. This aspect of the series has been noted approvingly by Jewish reviewers for its representation of contemporary Jewish life. All contents © 2020 The Slate Group LLC. High Maintenance was previously a 19-episode web series, hosted on Vimeo, consisting of gorgeously composed character sketches running anywhere from four to 12 minutes. By my interpretation, anyway. We don’t get a lot of exposition regarding Baruch’s background, but from what I gather he is fluent in Yiddish and English, he does not wear a yarmulke anymore, he has or had a wife, he’s crashing on his friend’s couch, and he’s looking for work. He isn’t trying to copy the club dancers around him, either. Over the phone, Sinclair and Blichfeld say that they’ve been answering the same question a lot of late, one that possibly vocalises their own chief preoccupation of the past year – is High Maintenance going to be different now that it’s on HBO? No one is ever exactly as they seem, whether because they are harboring a secret, or because even the most knowable type, in some quiet moment, is too human to be entirely predictable. Created by husband-and-wife team Katja Blichfeld and Ben Sinclair, High Maintenance follows a nameless cannabis dealer (Sinclair) as he delivers his … Information, interviews, photos and more for Jules played by Kate Lyn Sheil on the HBO original program High Maintenance. Ben Sinclair's web series turned out to be ideal fodder for an HBO show, and High Maintenance's simple-enough concept was certainly able to leap bounds with a heightened budget. But something about this particular incarnation also informs the themes of the episode. The Guy doesn’t handle these questions well, but their inclusion is a signal that Sinclair and Blichfeld know they are now on a bigger stage, before a bigger audience. Critical response has been positive. Without mentioning what, exactly, has happened, the writers manage to capture the sense of shock that envelopes the city: two people are seen crying and hugging on a park bench; strangers are comforting each other; even the social-media obsessed fitness fanatic decides that posting his latest gym-related accomplishment on Snapchat would be in bad taste. Later, Anja and Baruch leave to go to a nightclub, where a woman named Marina (Natia Dune) starts to dance with Baruch. The little gathering Anja infiltrates is a mix of people from different communities: a lesbian couple, one of whom is still married to her none-the-wiser husband. In order to assimilate, you must pretend that it’s possible first. One episode begins by exploring the life of a Pakistani American college student (Shazi Raja), a relatively good Muslim girl in the midst of a minor rebellion. While not Hasidic myself, my Jewish roots placed me in a parallel track of ultra-Orthodoxy that leads me to identify with Hasidic stories depicted onscreen. Her in is a young guy named Baruch (Luzer Twersky, himself an ex-Hasid who was featured in the Netflix documentary, One of Us, where you can actually see him filming some of the scenes for this very episode), who may or may not be aware of the ramifications of letting a writer follow him around. End scene. Ben Sinclair as The Guy in High Maintenance. High Maintenance never sacrificed depth with its brevity, perhaps because it had no plot requirements besides those of establishing character: On any given episode of High Maintenance, the only thing that needs to happen is that you get to know someone very well. The drug dealer, a canny entrée into the life of strangers, is also a canny entrée into a world of acquaintances who can all play a rousing version of the name game. [22] Three episodes were released November 11, 2014, and the remaining three on February 5, 2015. Does he think this is why he’s never been arrested? It’s move to HBO will not harm it or lose it its cult following. “We’re still learning as film-makers and we’re always trying to stretch ourselves to see how we can tell stories in even more interesting ways,” Sinclair says, stressing that it’s not all about looking back however. [HBO] HD. When I first heard that High Maintenance — the HBO series that follows a weed dealer in New York City and his rotating cast of customers — would be doing an arc centered on Hasidic Jews who have left the fold, I was worried.Something serious is at stake when a show you love decides to explore a subject close to you. If High Maintenance, the glorious web series turned HBO show about a weed dealer and his petit-bourgeois clientele, were a person, I … "The guy" is the main character in "High Maintenance" only insofar as he is the thread running between the characters, connecting them in ways they often never know or appreciate. “We’re always trying to be observational or presentational and not trying to play a message,” Blichfeld says. High Maintenance remains a hit of pure unadulterated joy, its deft characterizations and presentational comedy retaining the same surefootedness it had when it inhabited the purer space of a web series. Sinclair and Blichfeld have spoken about writing scripts based on the spaces they had at their disposal, and in spite of no longer having budget restrictions, High Maintenance benefits from this approach they haven’t been able to shake off. [14] The television version continued the practice of on-location photography. Baruch starts to choke on a bite of his bagel and falls unconscious. Behold the visage of a performer from the club they just left (Darrell Thorne), bedecked in an extravagant celestial-themed ensemble and headpiece with flawless galactic body makeup, as he goes about rigging an airway for Baruch through his trachea. That's how the episode ends: a brief moment of connection, of interconnectedness. "[27] Jenji Kohan said that High Maintenance was one of her favorite recent discoveries, calling the episodes little jewels, "beautiful glimpses into people's lives," "really well crafted," "delicious. 'Ghost.' It’s still a challenge to come up with that multiple worlds for that 30-minute block.”, Previously these multiple worlds were inspired by a friend’s quirk or an actor’s personality, with Blichfeld and Sinclair often suiting the form and writing to the artist they were working with. [5][23][24][25][26] The actor Dan Stevens, who later appeared on the show, calls it "a brilliant collection of succinct character portraits from a cross-section of New York society. Series. Backstage at the club, The Guy visits him and his fellow dancers, and they all sing along to an impromptu ditty about Elisabeth Shue. That show is itself a spoof on High Maintenance, with Brett Gelman playing The Guy. [18] Each episode cost less than $1,000 to make. An agoraphobe (Michael Cyril Creighton) caring for his dying mother who appeared in the web series reappears, his mother now dead, but his love for Helen Hunt and crush on The Guy going strong.

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