Real Life Update: So, after an extremely long and torturous Thursday night during which I wasn't actually sure I would get the paper done at all, I finally dragged my way, line by line, through 4.5 pages of incomprehensible crap just in time to turn it in at the beginning of class. It was supposed to be at least 5 pages, but that just didn't happen, so I figured I had to at least get points for making an effort. I was feeling quite good about finally having conquered the homework pile...until I headed off to U.S. Lit, where the prof shattered my world by agreeing to cancel class next week. I was understandably devastated, and spent the next two hours hanging out in the Quad lounge and journaling. On the bright side, he saw me on his way out and stopped to apologize for canceling the Hawthorne day I'd been looking forward to, adding that I could always come in and talk Scarlet Letter. :)
With that cheery thought in mind, I headed home and caught up on LJ for a while before realizing I'd been awake for a stretch of 33 hours, whereupon I abruptly collapsed for the next 13.5. Then I shook myself off and dove into my pile of TV.
You know how I tend to think this show gets boring and complacent, and then every 7 or 8 or episodes it blindsides me with a jaw-dropping display of emotion and intensity that completely restores my faith in it? This was one of those times. I don't know if I'm just really partial to stories of kidnap/being held captive in enclosed places (The Girl in the Box had a major impact on me), or the disturbing notion of bodies found in ice chests or what, but I was completely riveted the whole hour. I was on the edge of my seat wondering about clues like "Defactor 3," and who the killer would end up being and what the hell his motive was. It was all very chilling, although other crime dramas will be hard pressed to top the haunting feel of the montage of detectives finding body after body. And the angry/grieving families in the beginning were hard not to connect to. Usually I roll my eyes when parents start with "the police don't care!" rants, but theirs seemed justified.
Ah, Lily...I usually don't have a ton of sympathy for her family woes, but was that a bit of guilt over her mom I heard, when she talked about "dying alone"? That was actually the first place my mind jumped to, before it occurred to me that she was just as likely projecting onto herself. Which is sad. Man, whatever happened to Joseph the Cat Owner? He was a keeper. Every time I start to feel like shipping Rush/Valens, I remember the glorious life they could have led with their feline friends, and start sulking all over again. You know Spy's never-ending campaign to bring Robin back to Numb3rs? Joseph is my Robin.
My only complaint is with the overly dramatic ending suicide...doesn't it take a lot of force to slit your own throat? He seemed incredibly apathetic and lazy about doing it. I fully expected Scotty to be able to stop the bleeding with one hand. Otherwise, solid 10 for the plotline, with an amazing ending. I liked that for once, Lily wasn't the only one with ghost victim vision at the end of the case. And while I usually ignore the ending montage unless I happen to like the song, and even then I tend to enjoy the song more than the scenes, I loved the grandma picking up the earphones to listen to the (possibly only) non-horrible rap/hip-hop song in existence. I didn't believe the kid when he claimed it was different and about hope, but then there it was. And it was very touching to see her, belatedly, discover that. (incidentally, said song is "You're Gonna Make It" by KJ-52 and Blanca Reyes, and none of this information is familiar to me at all, proving that non-horrible rap/hip-hop music is in fact unpopular and obscure)
Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go track down "Put Your Records On" because it's stuck in my head. I think I can finally hear it without missing Antonella.
It took me way too long to realize that was the title of the episode and not just the warning people put up before discussing it.
This gem of a half hour made me even more paranoid about eating around other people now, because I'm afraid I chew loudly. Or perhaps make the same irritating gulping sound while swallowing that I have complained about in other people. Thanks, show. I'm also slightly worried about how often I say "literally," correct people, and/or use annoying catchphrases in my reviews (I will not define what these might be, so as not to ruin the Rainbow Stevie Experience for you).
You know what else I'm paranoid about? The internet's speculation that there's some sort of tryst brewing, if not secretly going on, between Robin and Barney. I shouldn't have to worry about the shared smile/smirk after the former saying "I didn't want her to choke...at first."
In other words, even without taking into account the gross and idiotic video Barney kept going on about, not my favorite episode. Although the shattering glass sound effect never got old. And I kind of liked Marshall singing at the bar in the end, which I think I just barely recognized as a Valjean/Javert song from Les Miserables... Remember that fun day on the Megan Mullally Show, when he and Neil Patrick Harris sang the "Confrontation" duet?
3. CSI: Miami: Permanent Vacation
According to IMDB, the Michael Welch Crimeshow Count is now up to 8. Seriously, kid's prolific. With that in mind, I spent the entire first half of the episode chanting at Horatio to turn around and arrest his ass, since he was clearly his brother's killer ("No, don't SYMPATHIZE with his fake, fake tears!"). I would have died of shock when he turned out to be innocent of that crime, except by that point he'd already attempted to kill someone else. So I wasn't completely wrong about him.
I don't recognize Dean Cain as Superman. In fact, pictures of him as Superman are so unbelievable that I burst out laughing, and assume they're from Halloween. I definitely do recognize him, though - from playing Scott Petersen on the horrible CBS movie about the case, to whom he is eerily similar. It really wasn't that difficult to imagine him as the bad guy here, although I knew that he hadn't whacked the bellhop with a crowbar, because said bellhop specifically identified "some white dude," and Dean Cain most definitely does not look like a stereotypical white dude. I was actually pretty sure he was Hispanic until I looked it up.
What with all the angry father scenes and discussion about how close the brothers were, I fully expected there to be some revealing bit of reflection from Horatio by episode's end, especially what with one of them being murdered and the other off taking revenge for it (I mean, Marisol wasn't the only person Riaz killed), but I guess that's all going to remain in subtext. That's okay. I'm sure someone will eventually write fic about it.
There was something very dark and twisted about Horatio essentially paying off the bellhop in the end. He can dole out all the money he wants to helpless young mothers
Finally, just out of curiosity, has anyone ever sat down to figure out how many people Horatio's killed so far? Everyone knows his suppressed emotion has led him to become a homicidal maniac, but does anyone know exactly how maniacal? I keep meaning to compile this information, but I haven't gotten around to it yet. Note to Self: +1 for this ep.
Natalia's weird "the dead speak to me!" moment at the beginning was twenty types of stupid. So was her being rattled by the scene just because Alexx wasn't there. HONESTLY, WOMAN. Are you a CSI or aren't you? Wait.
The dead brother looked way, way older than 18. Like 10 years older.
Shouldn't a bullet to the face have created a lot more mess?
Icon Time: Horatio's ducked head and smile while removing his sunglasses as Torres pointed at the flaming bike. Most adorable smile I've seen all season.
Close-up of how the shooter's DNA got on the gun: GROSS and DO NOT WANT.
Stupid woman! Way to care about your other son, who is now going to be brotherless AND motherless. I mean, even if Shane WERE going to jail (which thanks to Horatio, he's not), he would have been out within 10 years. Instead he gets to visit you in prison and otherwise live alone with the father who apparently hates him.
I did not think it was possible to invent an editing trick more annoying than dancing subtitles. But apparently it is! Namely: making the TV look like it was on the fritz with a series of random blackout cuts.
Ryan tearing at his hair
Notes from the Fashion Show
-RYAN. Did you...no, no, I'm not going to go there...yes I am. Did you happen to visit Horatio and Stetler for some odd reason this weekend? And possibly come out the loser in something? Because neon Day Glo green is not a sweater color anyone chooses by choice. Not even people who wear sweater vests.
-Eric: Return of the Gray Suit!
-From a distance, Natalia's blouse, with its splashes of pale blue and green, looked pretty. Up close, though, it looked more like she let a little kid decorate it with finger paint. Also, I'm ignoring the high-waisted white pants, I'm ignoring the high-waisted white pants...
-Calleigh, Calleigh, Calleigh. Again with the all black. Maybe it's a way of subtly attracting Horatio's attention - like colors and all.
-Alexx's yellow-white horizontal stripes looked like they belonged on a 5-year-old. Her hair was fantastically crimpy today, though.
4. NCIS: 5x08, "Designated Target"
Boring episode, as African civil wars are only one step above international terrorism on the ladder of Non-Interesting Things, and McGee Relationship Drama is my very least favorite type of character development. However, there were a few things worth noting.
1) Past her initial happy buzz about how she now does things like sleep at night and eat food, Caffeine Free Abby is sad and boring. I don't like her at all. I do, however, love the beautifully decorated cup of decaf coffee she provides Gibbs, followed by his subsequent trashing of said drink, which he follows up with "Don't let that hurt your feelings" and a cheek kiss. Cheek kisses make everything better. They're my favorite bonus event in any given episode.
2) Bonus #2: Headslap! That's my second favorite thing.
3) Bonus #3: Tiva! "Do you ever think about soulmates?" WHY, ZIVA, I'M NOT SURE WHAT YOU MEAN. ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY YOU WONDER IF TONY MIGHT BE YOURS? IT'S SO HARD TO TELL. All sarcasm aside, and as brief as it was, I enjoyed that scene. Mostly because for as much chemistry and visible potential they have, and I like to think of them as sort of inevitable (not necessarily on the show, but at some point), I don't think I'd put them in the soulmate category quite yet. Grissom and Sara, now, that's a whole 'nother story. Speaking of which, I haven't watched Thursday's episode yet, so don't go spoiling it for me. I still live in a fun bubble of denial where they're still happily engaged and possibly secretly married.
4) Further on Tiva: I preferred the more suitably subtle bit in the car, where she grabbed his arm to emphasize a point, and forgot to let go. I prefer subtlety from these two.
5) "You've been here for 2 years, assimilate already!" Someone's weirdly cranky today. Besides, Tony, what would you do for entertainment without Ziva's constant misspoken idioms to correct? And while I don't mind her not using contractions, because I have a friend who never uses them either, I'm pretty sure she would know what they are. Foolish writers.
6) Random thought: You know, for being Sayda's soulmate and all, Tomas moved on pretty quickly. How old would you say his daughter looked? Because I'd say she looked at least 4, and they were only apart for 7 years.
7) Ziva looks so pretty in that final freeze shot. It's icon-worthy. There's a reason she's my lone TV girlfriend.
5. House: 4x07, "Ugly"
MAN. Why would you fire Brennan, and yet keep Taub around? Is it to torment me? It is, isn't it? It's specifically designed to torture me. Getting my hopes up and then dashing them is even crueler than keeping on Kutner, whose mere existence is a thorn in my side, which STABS ME WITH PANGS OF AGONIZING EMBARRASSMENT every time he opens his mouth to talk. I really, really wish he would go away.
He isn't as bad as Cameron, though. See what happens when you give her more than a minute of camera time? She uses it to kill me with embarrassment. My God, no one cares if you say "I love House." Most people are not as stupid as you, and do not need to have it explained that said phrase does not always equal romantically in love with. When you start stammering and "qualifying" things, that's when people become suspicious. Somehow I feel like I am being hypocritical when I say this, as I'm sure I'm guilty of over-emphasizing how much I'm FRIENDS with certain people of the male gender, but we're not here to analyze my unrequited attachments. We're here to mock Cam. And feel sorry for Chase, whose girlfriend clearly doesn't love him. Aw, I miss Chase. That phrase still sounds foreign to my ears, and yet I find myself saying it on a weekly basis. Is there a way we could bring him front and center while leaving Cam to wither in the ER?
Loved House worrying that beautiful women were making him stupid. I loved even more that he felt "actual guilt" over wanting to fire Terzzi barely a week after getting her to leave her career for a stable and serious job offer. (Although really, he should have sensed how dim-witted she was when she gave said career up for a job that was initially described as "I have a position available on my penis.") Personally I'm glad she's not going to be around for the long haul; her eyes have a permanently vacant look to them, like she's on the verge of falling asleep.
I can't believe the kid actually had Lyme disease. Not that I'm not cool with normal diseases 2 weeks in a row, but come on. We just did this last season. Were the writers already plotting out what to do with their free time during the strike?
Dr. Gregory House, the Doctor Who Cares! I DIED LAUGHING at the documentary's portrayal of him. I needed that.
6. Bones: The Boy in the Time Capsule
-My favorite 80's mention: STIRRUP PANTS! Awesome. I had a pair of those in gradeschool (which...was actually early 90's. But still.)
-I love the descriptions of them all in high school, which perfectly aligned with their current personalities. Except maybe for Angela - she was into Barbie in high school?
-If only Booth hadn't pushed so hard to make Sweets look at the case...I've been tolerating him, considerably better than I did Sully, but if you're going to make a damn pscyhologist a major character, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD GET GORDON WYATT!
Best line --
Booth: Now I know why I'm not allowed to bring my gun in here.
Ah, Booth. Always threatening firearm violence. Some people might take that as a warning sign.
-Moment of win: Hodgins kissing Angela's neck. "My geek princess." Awww. I want so badly to let my guard down and let myself believe that they're destined for eternal happiness. Except I did that with Abby and Luka on ER, and last week my eyes started bleeding, so. Letting down your guard causes an automatic jinx.
-Major Nitpick: You know what you get when you cross super-smart nerds with blonde bimbos? Children who take after their mother and have to repeat a grade or two. At least, that's what I have to assume from the fact that this kid is a high school senior even though he's 19 years old. Why did no one seem to care about this particularly glaring timeline error? Did the writers all forget how old they were when they graduated? (cracks made at writers so far in this post: 3. Hm, needs more insult.)
7. Law & Order: SVU: "Blinded"
Finally watched SVU (for the first time in ages), just because the previews lured me with Injured Elliot, and there can never be enough Injured Elliot for me. Not as long as it provides me with shots of a worried Kathy sitting by his side, holding his hand. Certainly not when it feeds both my ship addictions at once, such as the squee-worthy bit right after he gets attacked, where Olivia cradles his head in her arms
Also loved Liv's defensive attempt to shield him from Casey's warpath. I love Casey, but there are times when she is just a little too hell-bent on certain outcomes. I'm not sure I believe that what she did was bad enough to warrant the threat of being fired and possibly disbarred, though.
Quite a compelling case, although you can count me on the "yay death penalty" camp. Mental illness is no excuse. I never understood why insane asylums went out of fashion in the first place. Although...I suppose they had a point when they said that if you can get the death penalty for rape alone, there's no incentive to stop you from also killing your victim. I still think I liked the storyline better when it was just about a serial kidnapper/rapist, and not an insane serial kindapper/rapist.
Lastly, how great was it to see Jack McCoy? If it means we get to see him rather than her usual grump of a boss, on the admittedly rare occasion we see said boss at all, then I'm quite happy about him being the new DA. I like Jack. Not enough to sit through the original L&O on a regular basis, but enough to enjoy watching him a few minutes at a time.