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The Big C: Quality of Life

Cathy plans Adam's sixteenth birthday party. Andrea struggles settling in with her new room-mate at fashion school. Paul brings in a new assistant.

Episode Info

Episode number: 4x1
Airdate: Monday April 29th, 2013
Special Airtime: 10:00 pm
Special Runtime: 60 Minutes

Director: Michael Engler
Writer: Darlene Hunt

Alternate Airdates:

UK (MORE4) Sep 19, 2013
AU (Gem) Jan 13, 2014

  • Currently 7.5/10
7.5/10 (4 Votes cast)


Special Guest Stars
Phyllis Somerville
As Marlene

Guest Stars
Alan Alda
As Dr. Atticus Sherman
Connie Ray
As Principal Connie Schuler
Emily Tremaine
As Dina
Kathy Najimy
As Therapist
Liz Holtan
As Amber
Michael Ray Escamilla
As Angel
Roslyn Ruff
As Nurse
Samantha Futerman
As Lydia Hye
Emma Noble
As Amanda
Heather MacRae
As Stephanie

Booch O'connell
As Restaurant Patron
Main Cast
Laura Linney
As Catherine 'Cathy' Jamison
Oliver Platt
As Paul Jamison
Gabriel Basso
As Adam Jamison
Gabourey Sidibe
As Andrea Jackson


The episode begins with Cathy snorkeling, when she suddenly experiences some discomfort and is later seen, being rushed to the hospital. Five months later, in September, Cathy watches from the window of her house. Adam, Paul, and Andrea, burying someone’s ashes in the backyard. The ashes are of Thomas, Marlene’s dog. She has a talk with Marlene, who only she can see, about the surgery she underwent for her cancer. After the burial, Adam leaves with Andrea, so he can drop her to her dorm and also get an opportunity to drive. He is soon going to turn 16 and is really excited about getting his license. Cathy tells Paul that they should throw Adam a party because turning 16 is a big deal. ..

Read the full recap
Warning: The Big C season 4 episode 1 guide may contain spoilers
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