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When death is your business, what is your life? For the Fisher family, the world outside of their family-owned funeral home continues to be at least as challenging as--and far less predictable than--the one inside on Six Feet Under.

Genres: Comedy | Drama
Station: HBO (US)
Rating: 9/10 from 2 users
Status: Ended
Start: 2001-06-03

Six Feet Under Season 3 Air Dates


S03E01 - Perfect Circles Air Date: 02 March 2003 21:00 -

The surgeons are dismayed when Nate's blood vessel ruptures and he suffers a hemorrhage, and his blood pressure continues to rise, then Nate dies...At least, the family and Rico are in shock, grieving, while Nate himself is dining in a hated restaurant with his father, impatiently waiting to get to his own funeral. He arrives early, sick of the food, and sees his funeral (open-casket, not a memorial service after cremation as he wished)...then hears David speaking to him from the next room where he sees himself paralyzed and with speech problems struggling to relearn. He continues through the home and witnesses himself completely healthy living with Lisa and Maya; at Christmas dinner with his family, including his father, who never died; living with a woman he has yet to meet and their son; spending his time lazily, watching TV and drinking beer with a woman. Returning to the funeral room, he meets his father again, who doesn't give him a straight answer on whether he's alive but suggests he just traveled through parallel worlds and must open a white coffin to get his answer....7 months later: Nate, Lisa, and Maya live with Lisa's self-absorbed actor boss Carol, where Lisa is a cook. David and Keith, now a reluctant security guard, are in therapy to find a healthy relationship, and David is advised to find an activity for himself so applies to the Gay Men's Chorus. Claire is attending LAC, enjoying it less than she anticipated, and starting a relationship with rock-band member Phil. Nate learns an interesting secret about his own life from Ruth and all the while sees scenes shown in his surgery that make him wonder if this life is meant to be.


S03E02 - You Never Know Air Date: 09 March 2003 21:00 -

Telemarketers Andrew Wayne Milne, Matthew Clark Hazen, and Martin Jacobs are shot by their insane former co-worker Daniel Grant Showalter who then commits suicide. Fisher & Diaz gets both the Milne and the Showalter funerals - but Rico objects to having the killer's, especially on the same day his victim's is to be held, so makes David's life miserable by refusing to pick up his body or do his job quietly. Stuck picking it up himself, David misses therapy with Keith, and Frank Mushler encourages him to view his own feelings about David without him around to defend himself. Lisa and Nate manage to invite David and Keith over for a barbecue dinner for a while before Carol barges in and literally demands Lisa's attention, but it gives Keith and David plenty of time to reflect on what problems their relationship has. Though she claims their own marriage is wonderful, Nate's dream of whether it was meant to be begin to crumble as several minor arguments arise with Lisa. Ruth's trip to Tapenga Canyon to give Sarah some Vicodin turns interesting when she learns her sister is addicted to it, and she befriends her spirited friend/caretaker Bettina.


S03E03 - The Eye Inside Air Date: 16 March 2003 21:00 -

Callie Renee Morimer flees a group of jeering young men calling to her as she walks alone in the dark, who turn out to be some joking friends, but stops in the street and is hit by a car upon realizing it. David enjoys singing in the choir but turns down an opportunity to go to a member's open house - he and Keith are spending the weekend at a hotel out of town, but from the moment they get there David worries about seeming too obviously gay in front of the straight couples. Carol finally crosses a line when blaming Lisa's family for not allowing her to give her constant perfect emotional support, so Lisa quits and she, Nate, and Maya are forced to temporarily move in with Ruth. For her own part, Ruth is happy to have them, and happy in general, with Bettina instructing her in the arts of receiving massages, shoplifting, and just enjoying life. Claire continues to accept Phiil's player attitude until it gets in the way of their personal schedule, so leaves him, and is intrigued by the unorthodox artist teaching her class in place of the one she took it to see.


S03E04 - Nobody Sleeps Air Date: 23 March 2003 21:00 -

Robert Lamar Griffin's rare heart disease finally takes its fatal toll, leaving behind his boyfriend Kevin Lamb, a scene-designer of the opera company where he was a lighting-designer, who requests Fisher & Diaz to allow him to create a Chinese opera set for the funeral. David suspects Rico's views of homosexuality are narrow and defends it, while the couple's having been together so long offer new insight to his relationship with Keith. With Ruth's birthday approaching, Lisa prepares to throw her a party despite Nate's warning that she prefers her birthdays without any celebration. But with fun-loving Bettina invited and at Lisa's insistence, Ruth breaks her own standards of not using the best china or dancing. Claire is the only one not to attend the party; she's out watching the introduction of ultra-radical artist Scott Philip Smith, and is invited to dinner with Russell by Olivier and Smith, later learning what her potential may come to and wondering what it will be. After a while, Nate retreats from the party, too, disturbed by the growing similarities between Lisa and Ruth. He dreams that his father hints that between the wife he married by default and his hated inherited job, Nate may soon wish to use the old apartment he used to escape from the same things, and Nate retorts that he's less secretive, he loves his family, but Nathaniel wonders...why shouldn't he have loved his own, if he remained with them?


S03E05 - The Trap Air Date: 30 March 2003 21:00 -

A lost pair of hikers discover the wrecked remains of a car with the skeleton of the driver, William Aaron Jaffe, inside. Nate is surprised by the son who never knew him not seeming to be troubled by it, and worried by the remarried widow's remark that they weren't right for each other and married too hastily - his own relationship with Lisa has become strained when she encourages him to cut back on his spending and considers staying home with Maya for a few years, without even letting him be the first to know. Things are further complicated when Nate runs into Brenda, and Lisa suspects the drinks they had together weren't just for catching up and apologies. David's enjoyment of the choir is overshadowed by one of the members recognizing him from a shameful experience several years before. Claire's invitation to go with Russell to his brother's wedding is forgotten when Olivier asks her to be his assistant - which turns out to mean his driver. Keith is ready to quit his job. Rico convinces David to hire an apprentice, despite Nate's and Ruth's doubts, to assist in Claire's place, and hires nerdy Arthur Martin, who turns out to be oddly like Ruth. Later, Nate is accused of living in a marriage that will surely fall apart and be bad for their offspring the way Will Jaffe's would have, but Nate rejects the prediction...without convincing himself.


S03E06 - Making Love Work Air Date: 06 April 2003 21:00 -

Karen Postell Pepper suffers a hemorrhage to the nose while preparing to enter the "Making Love Work" TV studio with a question to ask Dr. Dave. Nate prepares to go on his first camping trip in 2 years (where he went without Brenda), with Lisa, Maya, and Dana, Todd, and their toddler daughter Spencer. By the time they arrive, though, he realizes he won't be able to drink 3 cans of beer that night or smoke cigarettes. Ruth becomes interested in Arthur the more she gets to know him, and rents a movie whose score he says he favors. David believes Russell is gay, though Claire doesn't and defends him from Olivier's harsh criticism. An obese man's body causes trouble for everyone when it falls from its extra-large coffin and Arthur Ruth, Claire, and Russell must move it back. Lisa is annoyed with their friends' constant claims of affection for one another, but Nate simply grows jealous and worried that he can't seem to have any of those moments with Lisa refusing to smoke or hike with him. After mutilating a snake and forcibly demanding why no one will join him, he hikes alone to a towering mountain where he finds Brenda has been pursuing him. He agrees to kiss her but then sends her away - and she leaps off the cliff, and Nate wakes up from his dream. When he and Lisa finally do go out hiking, it's anything but peaceful when she takes his remark on how they differ from Spencer's parents to mean he rejects her, and he retorts that she won't accept him without change. They end up sleeping together passionately before returning home.


S03E07 - Timing and Space Air Date: 13 April 2003 21:00 -

Surrounded by his family, Bernard Asa Chenowith dies of stomach cancer, and when Nate learns of it he requests Lisa's permission to attend his funeral since Brenda was there after his father's. Lisa agrees, and Nate plans to leave Maya with Ruth, but she's out secretly stalking Arthur jogging. Claire chooses to go shopping with Russell at an arts store, where Russell buys her a gift of an expensive bottle of paint she refused to purchase. David takes a reluctant Keith to Terry's party, where he's humiliated at playing a game and eventually leaves David to take his drinks alone. Nate doesn't want to leave Maya with Arthur and almost drops her off at the Diazes', but Vanessa is so distracted and on edge he decides against it. He informs Rico, though, who worries that she's depressed over her mother's loss and despairs of getting her to talk about it openly. Nate ends up taking Maya to the funeral, which angers Lisa, who believes Nate still loves Brenda rather than her, along with the fact that Brenda touched Maya.


S03E08 - Tears, Bones and Desire Air Date: 20 April 2003 21:00 -

63-year-old polygamous family leader "Daddy" leaves behind 5 wives and numerous children of The People clan, making the Fishers intrigued about their spiritual and cultural beliefs, like their guarding his body throughout the embalming. Ruth gives Arthur an unwanted kiss and instantly breaks her vow not to do it again, so struggles to find a new way for her to express her passions for Arthur. Terry and Patrick invite themselves to Gay Paintball Day - which plays right into Keith's hands since he chooses to be on the opposite team as David as revenge for being taken to the hated brunch. Lisa schedules an appointment with Brenda under a false name to see if she and Nate are still passionate, but hears that Brenda has gone through some difficult times love-wise lately but is ultimately content now. Claire becomes suspicious of Olivier's motives for not letting Russell go on her errands with her when, in Azusa, a former assistant tells her she enjoyed sleeping with him as her job, then asks if this is a year he's chosen a male as his partner when Claire says she's never been in that position. Rico's concern for Vanessa and her possible depression turn to certainty of and anger for it when, despite his pleas for her to try to reconnect with her family, he finds she's neglecting them.


S03E09 - The Opening Air Date: 27 April 2003 21:00 -

Melinda Mary Bloch shuts herself in he garage in her activated car by way of suicide, leaving behind only a guilty ex-lover who worries Rico when he mentions she'd actually received treatment for depression, and Nate when he admits he'd tried to end their relationship more than once but wound up staying longer than he wished. Lisa, who's been having arguments constantly with him, officially meets Brenda at Claire's art show where Billy also has a display, and Brenda confronts her about her sneaky meeting and assures her she isn't close to Nate. When she and Olivier run into Billy, Claire learns that Billy slept with Olivier when he was his student, heightening her worries about Russell. David and Keith, after both their secrets of paint-ball and 3-way sex have slipped in counseling, get approval from Frank to do the latter if both of them so desire, but David's agreement in public doesn't match his private doubts later on. Arthur gets close, in both senses of the word, to Ruth and they almost sleep together, but then he leaves abruptly, puzzling her.


S03E10 - Everyone Leaves Air Date: 04 May 2003 21:00 -

Jeanette Louise Bradford has an allergic reaction to a bee-sting in Balboa Park, causing Keith to go to San Diego for his aunt's funeral and David to join him, encouraging him to discuss sleeping with a third man with him and to confront his father on his abusive childhood after the funeral. Russell admits he was sleeping with Olivier and an angry, betrayed Claire demands he leave her alone from now on. She and Ruth talk with each other about their relationship problems when Ruth learns Arthur is a virgin so there's nothing new to be gained from spending time with him. Vanessa is now again living life to the fullest, taking dance classes with Rico, but then collapses one night from too many medications. Billy, remarkably depressed after watching a poor video version of his and Brenda's beloved childhood book "Nathaniel and Isabel", kisses Brenda, who goes to visit Nate. Alone with Maya while Lisa goes to visit her sister's family in Santa Cruz, Nate consoles Benda until she begins to appear to want to become closer to him, and she quickly stops herself and departs. Keith and David are relieved to hear that Taylor is doing fine with Lucille and Roderick, but when Keith finally chooses to tell his father he's willing to forgive him for beating him and his sister, it's met with denial and quickly becomes a fight...and when David tries to calm both of them down for Keith's sake he's insulted by Roderick and unappreciated in his efforts by Keith, so leaves. When Nate calls Lisa's sister's, he learns Lisa hasn't yet made it to her place as expected, and isn't worried when he can't get through to her phone the first time...but he does start to be when he continues to call with no response.


S03E11 - Death Works Overtime Air Date: 11 May 2003 21:00 -

Convenience-store owner Dorothy Kim Su is fatally shot during a robbery. Nate is forced to file a missing-person report when he continues to hear nothing from Lisa. Construction-worker Edward Tully hits some electrical wires in the site where he's working during an earthquake, is electrocuted, and falls to his death. Nate calls David, where he's sleeping with Patrick, and tells him he's starting to panic, especially after the earthquake. Ruth has convinced herself, as usual, that everything, including Lisa, is fine, but doesn't convince Claire, who is set to believe she's died. David Jordan Monroe suffers a fatal heart attack while on a treadmill at his health club, giving Fisher & Diaz a full schedule of 3 funerals in one day, 2 at the same time. forcing David and Rico to quickly escort the mourners out. Brenda is now living in an apartment to avoid Billy, but Margaret forces both of them to show up to dump Bern's ashes, and when she can't be persuaded to place them where her kids know he would have preferred them, she chooses an unorthodox place to put them. Vanessa sees a psychiatrist who reduces her medication and her pushy sister Angelica comes over to help...by encouraging her to spend freely without Rico's consent, and ignore any practical advice he gives. Claire again refuses to take Russell back and confronts Olivier - before discovering that she is pregnant. Ruth finally accepts something terrible must have happened to Lisa and ends up crying on a man's shoulder when he comes to reclaim his glasses in the funeral home, but Gerge Sibley is accepting and sympathetic to her worries. When Lisa's car and cell phone are located in a state park, deserted, Nate checks into a nearby hotel and waits in despair, while David and Claire try to console him.


S03E12 - Twilight Air Date: 18 May 2003 21:00 -

Woman-killer Carl Desmond Williman finally receives the death penalty by a lethal injection in Texas, and his unemployed daughter hires Fisher & Diaz for the funeral, and sleeps with Nate since they're both miserable and want to escape their problems, but he treats her unsympathetically the following day out of sheer guilt. David breaks up with Keith after spending more time with Patrick. Claire chooses to get an abortion and calls Brenda when she learns she needs a driver, who accepts. Ruth considers marrying George but does decide to slow things down a bit after learning he's been through 6 marriages. Angelica continues to give Rico grief at home. Claire tries to convince Nate to speak to Brenda after her favor to her but Nate's too wrapped up in thinking up everything that could've happened with Lisa to welcome her in, or pay attention to much else.


S03E13 - I'm Sorry, I'm Lost Air Date: 01 June 2003 21:00 -

A piece of "blue ice" broken off an airplane strikes Anahid Havanessian, whose husband goes to Fisher & Diaz for a funeral...but changes his mind when, frustrated with the government for hiding that such deaths are common and suspecting Nate's silence is indifference, he's snapped at by Nate, who then snaps at David and Rico for telling him he lost them money by not demanding payment for the meeting when they "switched to the local chapel". Walking in the early hours of the morning to clear his head without success, and drinking heavily and sleeping with a bar prostitute, he's in bad shape and can't accept the news of his mother marrying George. David and Claire are also reluctant, since David is worried about his brother and believes it should be delayed and Claire is worried they haven't known each other long enough to wed, but they know they'll marry either way. Claire visits her father's grave and learns, along with the fact that he's OK with the marriage himself, Lisa, Gabe Dmas, and her child are all with him. David is encouraged by his father to make up with Keith, which he does at church by talking with him so long they forget to go in. They're both present for their mother's wedding, but Nate isn't - after getting the news that Lisa has been found drowned, he continues to drink heavily and gets into a bar fight. Rico gets into a situation almost as bad when getting the bad news that his sister-in-law, despite being a nuisance, won't leave yet. Angry with Vanessa, he goes to dance class without her then is invited to a strip club where he sleeps with one of the dancers, Sophia. Brenda prepares to date, but not sleep with, her charming neighbor Joe. Nate finally leaves the bar after losing the fight, drives drunk, and is haunted by visions of Lisa and Nathaniel urging him to drive off a bridge, and finally ends up at Brenda's.

Six Feet Under Actors

Lili Taylor(Lisa Kimmel Fisher)

James Cromwell(George Sibley)

Frances Conroy(Ruth Fisher)

Mathew St. Patrick(Keith Charles)

Peter Krause(Nate Fisher)

Lauren Ambrose(Claire Fisher)

Michael C. Hall(David Fisher)

Justina Machado(Vanessa Diaz)

Freddy Rodriguez(Federico Diaz)

Rachel Griffiths(Brenda Chenowith)

Richard Jenkins(Nathaniel Fisher)

Jeremy Sisto(Billy Chenowith)



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