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If you haven't watched the show much, but have heard people rave about it, you should know that part of the enjoyment comes from running motifs that blossom in bizarre ways through different episodes. Also, the more you get to know the strange and selfish characters, the more they subtly endear themselves to you. We started watching at the second episode, and it was only after catching the first on DVD that we really understood what was going on. It's not too late to check out the DVDs before this new season starts. Also, this Wikipedia article covers the basic premise and the relationships among all the major characters. Oh, and just one of the many enjoyable facets of the program is that it's also a wicked social satire of Southern California and the United States. So catch up, or count down, and remember the show is on Mondays this season.