2006_06_rescueme2.jpgGothamist is a big fan of the FX show, Rescue Me - it's incredibly funny, realistic, and riveting but also difficult to watch. And last week's episode was no different, as Denis Leary's character may or may not have raped his estranged wife in the final scenes. The ambiguous scene, where firefighter Tommy Gavin overpowers his wife into having sex (she protests some, but seems to have enjoyed it by the end; he leaves with a smirk), has prompted a lot of debate in the news. And executive producer Peter Tolan even went to the Television Without Pity messageboards to explain and defend the scene. We were distressed by the scene, but it seemed to work with Tommy's overall moral depravity and lack of control when it comes to his personal life (another recent example - Tommy beating his brother to a pulp over said estranged wife in front of his children). And while some critics say the show is merciless towards women, it's actually merciless towards everyone.

What did you think of the episode? And here are a few articles about the scene:
- The NY Post's Adam Buckman has an interesting analysis: As for the rape scene, sure it was tough. But the only thing it symbolized is how permissive TV has become. For better or worse, TV is filled with such scenes. To express shock over this one seems disingenuous.
- The Daily News is in the other camp: "Rescue Me" may have won awards for being edgy, but if edgy means relying on shock value, it's time to step back.
- Chicagoist alum Margaret Lyons writes on Time Out Chicago's blog: Finally, when discussing Rescue, you can’t ignore the fact that the women on the show are universally written as manipulative, sex-crazed, and emotionally unstable. I’d raise a giant stink about it, as I’m prone to do for other shows, except….the men are written the same way.

Rescue Me airs tonight at 10PM on FX.