2. *snert* Probably someone has already brought this to your attention, but I just ran across it and since I'm giggling helplessly, it must be shared again.
3. I was skimming the equivalent of the fine print in EW, which of course always leaves me behind the times, so I only just learned that Angela Kinsey separated from her husband. WHAT. They just had a baby! She's adorable! Minor-league celebrities & behind-the-scenes people are supposed to be immune from the inevitable divorce proceedings that plague Hollywood! I reject this reality; reject it hardcore.
4.. CSI, 9x15, "Kill Me If You Can"
I go back and forth on how I feel about the multi-case stories. I tend to think that splintering the episode up like that is too chaotic, and I get sick of the inevitable repeated parts as timelines eventually cross and meet up. But once I past the confusing 2-minute montage o' murders at the beginning, I think I liked how this one was handled. Brief and snappy to have three self-contained stories that met up at the end, and...yeah, I mainly loved it because there was an animal in each one.
Actually, what I really liked were the title inserts. Kept things organized.
Lifestyles of the Rich and Felonious
Firstly, I stand by my claims that we should not only boot Riley out the door, but in order to avoid a repeat of poor casting judgment, Wendy should just take over her job. I love Wendy! She is my favorite of all the lab techs since Greg changed hats - well, maybe tied with Archie - and she just has the most shining personality. Pairing her with Langston only made things more fun, because I know he gets along with everyone, but they were just particularly great.
And then! AND THEN! They met an adorable little mewing black and white kitty, and Wendy got to sweet-talk it. She did not at any point get to pick it up and cuddle it, but let's presume that happened off-screen. ...yep, I think that's all I got for this segment. I got so distracted by the cat (and maybe the cool vase-aging process) that I didn't even know what the murder was until the fourth act.
Hooray for Hollywood
It's a toitle! Or a tortoise. It's still pretty darn cute in a way that should be impossible for reptiles, yet isn't. So much love for the shell-swabbing in the lab, with Mandy fretting about having to use the "mildly toxic" substance and grumbling that the SPCA was going to shut them down, and could we please hurry up, because the poor little thing's been traumatized enough. By Hodges. XD
I really like Mandy, too. Not quite as much as Wendy, because her particular brand of sarcasm is sometimes too much for me, but when she uses it to put down Hodges, it's all good. This was also where I finally got a look at Man Of Many Names. Turns out he was last seen playing House's PI. I hated that guy. But that's all right; we can ignore him for a while longer, and focus on the hilarity of the actor and his terrible flirtation skills with Wendy.
He plays Grace's dad on Secret Life of the American Teenager - I got show crossover going on all OVER the place this week - and he strikes me as kind of a sleaze even there, where he's super-religious, so. Mostly I was transfixed by how terrible his fake crying was, despite the fact that his character was supposed to be a famous actor. Said character must be the worst actor ever.
Missed the title here
Awww, poor David's bad back, and Nick all "Come on out of there, Super Dave." Hee! But my favorite part was when they were in the morgue, looking at the guy all twisted and contorted. Riley says "This reminds me of David's back," and Nick doesn't even bother to dignify that stupid observation wtih a response. Was GREAT. Let me quote my recently-resurfaced hero, Kat Warbler: "You know, sometimes you can do THINKING without SAYING."
The fact that it had Riley in it apparently prevented me from remembering not only the title, but anything else significant.
The Brother He Never Wanted
Do you think there's something to be read into the fact that Rob named a bunch of animals after his brother? Not just that it was convenient or some kind of weird tribute, but that he actually thought of his BROTHER as a sort of pet? In the sense of being inferior, helpless, unable to take care of himself? Given his kind of psycho responses to Brass's interrogation, I'm convinced it was a private-joke form of insult.
I liked how everything got tied up at the end, although I didn't guess the whole stole-his-brother's-identity until the CSIs were practically on top of that theory themselves. Gareth was so obscured with the curly hair and glasses that I couldn't tell if they were identical twins or not, otherwise I might have drawn that conclusion sooner. For a while I assumed they were just triplets or something. The whole thing was really well shot with the flashbacks and stuff, though...the last act felt less like CSI and more like an edition of "48 Hours" or similar true-crime show.
I think this was my favorite Grissom-less episode to date.
And completing my show/actor crossover, the fiancee was on CSI: Miami not too long ago. Never mind that dead-eyed, heavy-jowled guy whose name I can never remember, one of those administration-level doctors on ER, or used to be.
5. I've missed the last couple episodes of Secret Life, for no particular reason. Time to play catch-up!
1x18 (still actively refusing to care about titles, yes)
"I'm having a baby with Amy Jergens."
"That doesn't mean you should BE with Amy Jergens."
"Then what does it mean?"
*throws up hands* That you hooked up this one time at band camp without using protection? HONEST TO GOD. It must take a special kind of lobotomy to actually write this stuff. *fingers twitch* I wonder if anyone has parodied this show yet...it so openly lends itself to be mocked.
Not much to say about this one [edit: clearly, that'll end up being a lie!], especially as I spent half the episode stifling screams and wanting to sit character after character down and just shout obvious facts/conclusions at them for half an hour or so. Or I did until I got the fantastic scene at the bus stop, wherein one of the less-lobotimized writers decided to commandeer Ashley to be the Voice of the Viewing audience, and also slip in sneaky meta lines "Is everyone stupid but me? Am I the only one who can see the big picture?"
Furthermore, Ben and Ashley don't usually have much interaction, but they really should, because they have an extremely interesting dynamic going already. Even though she's only in middle school, and you can see a little of that "what do you know, young one" attitude coming from him, I have to remember that she's also only two years younger than them, and that makes her very much a contemporary. In their conversations, it's already the equivalent of college students discussing with a high schooler, maturity-wise - despite the younger sibling status, she's more a peer than a kid. And she seems to like Ben well enough, so it's nice when she tries to keep them together/talk sense into him.
I'm continuing to ignore a lot of things, including Adrian, something about Grace and birth control pills, the latest Ricky nonsense, and the inability of people on this show to treat adoption as anything less than some horrific barely-better-than-abortion travesty, in hopes that they'll all just go away soon.
Skipping to the ending scene - Ben got smart! Phew, it was a little scary duriing that brief period where he succumbed to the thick-headedness that permeates this show. He came over full of calmness in the face of her hot-tempered shouting, and said wonderful, mature things about their relationship and biological vs. caretaking parents and "I understand you and Ricky are going to have to share the baby throughout his life. But I hope you understand that I have no intention of sharing you with Ricky." And, well, then he lost it a little bit when he stayed on his high horse of forgiving her rather than admitting he'd been an idiot lately, and/or resumed his silly, annoying attitude about adoption.
Sigh. But is okay, I can still salvage it with a bit of fantasy tape. I mean, any guy in his 20's saying "I want to be your husband. And the stepfather to your son. I want to be a family" would be in blinding white-knight armor, wouldn't he? Yes. Let us content ourselves with that. And with pictures! Because I've begun to realize that Ben/Amy adorableness is not always a given thing anymore, and YouTube has disappointingly not come through with as many fanvids and shippy clip collections I was expecting.
Ergo, mini picspam:
(seriously, this is maybe my favorite scene in the series to date. I seem to forgotten to upload a shot of the actual kiss, though. Whoops. Oh well; am too lazy to get it from other computer, and is not so important, really, anyway)
By the way, I really liked how Amy stood up and grew a spine throughout this conversation, between yelling at her eavesdropping family, ordering everyone out, and admirably meeting all of Ben's calm and reasonable statements with defensive posturing and acid-tongued remarks about not wanting pity and giving him a taste of his own medicine re: needing time to "think about it" and not just blindly accepting his I-love-yous.
I like even more that Ben stood his ground and accepted the attacks, and that despite all the lovely kissing and hugging, Amy's still reserved and doesn't look entirely happy. Good girl. You're allowed to be angry with your boyfriend/fiance/husband even when you love him, after all.
P.S. One last screenshot, in response to everyone hearing Ben's white-knight speech about wanting them to be a family vs. giving the baby up for adoption:
I'm shocked...I don't think anything worth overt mocking happened in this episode! Of course, I skipped several chunks of it. That might explain matters. I decided that the best way to deal with Grace is just to ignore her at all times, and Jack is just too boring for me to care about how that candy-bar-selling thing turned out (they got stolen from him at one point...but after remarking on his impressive pratfall - it was like an artistic twirl! - I gave up on that storyline).
I want to care about Ashley's storyline, if only to keep her from being invisible, but...while the kid she's hanging out with is a little cute (heyo, is that Tommy Halpert from CSI episode "Lying Down With Dogs," the teenage kennel worker?), mostly there's just something kinda creepy, with a vibe of sleaze, going on there, and it makes me uncomfortable.
I'm trying to ignore Adrian's storyline, less because the dating her stepbrother squicks me and more because said stepbrother's face is closer to a lion's than a human's. At the very least, he'd be a good candidate to play the latter title character in "Beauty and the Beast." That being said, I'm frankly amazed by how easy it was for her to actually pursue this born-again virgin stuff in hopes of a real relationship - way to tell Ricky off! - and it kind of sucked that the kid went from "I'm courting you" on date 1 to "it's date 3, you know what happens then!" -.-
She so broke my heart with the prick of disappointed tears in her eyes and "so the courting's over?" Damn it, kid! Way to send her horrible messages! (girl needs a Big Sister, STAT. Or some kind of female mentor, at the very least; someone with more experience/gravitas than Grace) Also, it is my fondest wish that that someday, Adrian finds someone who actually cares about her and will do things like this
without being related to her by marriage unless as her husband (I lied; the stepbrother thing kinda squicks me). I don't know where, how or why I developed this soft spot for the school slut I once swore I'd never forgive - oh wait, it was when she ran crying after Ricky, pleading with him to talk to her - but I do. I have fallen into the writers' trap and found sympathy in a multi-layered character. Sigh. OK, on to good stuff.
Jobs at the Hot Dog Hut...huh. I don't even know what to say to that, I really don't, except that I'm glad Anne is enjoying it, and also...I'm really not sure what Amy's complaining about, since as far as I can tell, her only job is to translate orders. I don't see her serving customers, preparing dogs, scrubbing floors, or doing anything else one might expect of a fast-food employee. Talk about attitude/entitlement. If my mom literally handed me a job, even there, I'd be damn grateful!
Finally, another two steps forward and one step back with Ben; probably I should just learn to be content with that. It is still progress, I suppose. I mean, the AWESOME VERBAL SMACKDOWN with Ricky? I threw a small party in celebration that he stood up for himself and put the jerk in his place. The snatching back of the chocolate bar was a particularly good symbolic gesture. And then, wonder of wonders! Rather than letting RIcky poison his ears with snake-like insinuations about how Amy only wants him for his money, he embraces the sentiment and turns it around to "I can give you and your baby the best of everything."
Which, even as he said it, was an obvious recipe for his disaster - even if his dad *hadn't* been listening to that conversation, it was maaaaaybe just a TEENSY bit presumptuous to presume that just because your dad is well-off and you've been pampered all your life, he'll happily extend the same coverage to your girlfriend's baby-who-is-not-related-to-you. Ugh. Couldn't watch that.
I know Ben's attitude stems from a place of ignorance/naivete rather than spoiled entitlement, but it was still painful as hell. I personally think it'd be good for him to get a job. I'm sure he could find something more impressive than fast food, even if he is only 15, and not only would it be good character-building experience, he could set an example for Amy.
P.S. Whoa, whoa, WHOA, did I miss something? George really *does* have money squirreled away somewhere that he's been hiding from Anne? Bastard! I've been giving you the benefit of the doubt and thinking Molly Ringwald was just being irrational and unrealistic due to her lifetime of avoiding money management! My apologies, ma'am.
6. Numb3rs: 5x16, "Cover Me"
Hey look at that, Amita's back! Which is excellent, as I was this close to accusing her of having run off to the East coast to start a "quietly ditching our boyfriends off-screen" club with Megan. Amazingly, even for the scenes she wasn't in, her mere presence appears to have instantly whipped the show back into shape and churned out one high quality episode. Or maybe it was Rob Morrow directing. Tough call, really.
*exhales* How can I possibly attack this...I have a pretty lengthy running commentary, but I don't think it'll translate so well to a blog post. Perhaps some arbitrary categories.
Liz Warner Rocks My World
Firstly, WOW. *eyes pop out of sockets* I don't even have a word for how different she looked in that opening outfit - I wanted to go with "skanky," but like...in a high-class-hooker sort of way. Only way more powerful and self-confident than a hooker; a lady with connections. Whatever it was, it was really hot. Impressive push-up bra, big hoop earrings, don't-mess-with-me shades, makeup, the many necklaces, little black dress and strappy heels...even I had trouble believing she wasn't really a drug distributor.
Especially when broke out the cigarettes without batting an eyelash...hardcore. (and then the creepy sleaze started telling her to strip. Me: "Too hardcore!") As far as the stripping-down went, I have not been that uncomfortable watching something on Numb3rs since...probably her & Don's little bedroom romp. SVU, sure, but Numb3rs is supposed to be relatively considerate of my squicks. It took everything in me to go "Okay, you know what, let's just...pretend this is a lingerie catalogue shoot. For Kohl's." Because, I mean, she did have very pretty set of lacy underwear on. And a perfect figure, complete with model-esque pose, to show it off.
In general, really incredible performances all round, from dealing with Pritchard to her struggle over what to do when she found out Cam was using, and the stuff between her and David. However, perhaps my very favorite exchange of the episode was during the drugs-for-Liz exchange.
Cam: Let her go first.
Pritchard: Um, no?
Also: she had a very, very pretty Chinese-patterned silk shirt in the second part of the episode. *nods*
Y halo thar, Cam
I can never remember where I've seen this actor - ahaha, CSI: NY's s.2 finale! And apparently also from ER, though I don't remember that directly - but I really liked this character, despite his foolish tendency toward drug abuse. (is it even possible to be an undercover DEA agent who doesn't use and/or get addicted to the drugs at some point? Not according to all the TV I've seen) He seemed sweet underneath it all, and they had great interaction I'd very much like him to get clean in rehab and then, I don't know, give Liz a call.
But hey, at least he didn't get tragically shot during the exchange! Which I admit, I was afraid had happened.
David the Handler
I don't always like when David gets the spotlight. I liked him in this. Really liked his reactions to everything - especially his eventually getting the promotion, yay! - but I almost want to chalk it up to Colby hanging around the edges, providing level-headed commentary and/or the snarky humor. Like Don shutting down the yelling match and ordering everyone into the conference room. "What did I do??" Or ragging on David about his hypothetical future 16-year-old daughter.
Absentees I Didn't Miss
One, Nikki. No Nikki always means good times! Two, no Larry. Sorry to say I didn't even notice his absence until somebody else mentioned it online. I don't know what it is about him; I always think I like him, but lately I've been happier with him in small doses. Maybe it's because Alan always seems to butt into any scene he's in, at the house or Cal Sci, and I subconsciously dread it.
Charmita (or, "Respective Valedictorians")
Opening scene -- "Amita? Amita! Curled up in a chair with a book, as she seems to do rather a lot - excellent. If I had more impulsion, I might start tracking her reading list." I don't know how I managed to retain that much coherent thought before I devolved into a mess of squee over the adorable cuddling. It was so, so...well, like this, which is sadly in tinypic form and where I managed to screw the colors up:
"My model didn't predict anything like this." Is that a strain I hear in his voice?
"Charlie.." Oh good, Amita heard it too, if her half-sympathetic, half-cautionary tone is anything to go by.
The rest to follow at the end of the next section.
Basketball Math (or, "Eppes Family Fun")
-Have they really not won a game in over 20 years?! That's crap. There have to be some high school students who are both skilled athletes and geniuses. They don't have to be mutually exclusive things! And/or surely the school could afford to hire a decent coach!
-Teehee, Charlie still convinced of his superior swimming skills after all these years...
-Heh, leaving Charlie hanging on the high-five
-No woman should be able to look good in a basketball jersey, but Amita does. Also, heh, "I don't hate basketball..." I just strongly dislike and/or find it stupid! Wait, that was me.
-SO MUCH LOVE for her admitting that she wasn't that into basketball, but she did like spending time with Alan. Awwww. I was just happy about all the future father/daughter-in-law bonding, and then! Then they went and spelled it out for me, with Amita boldly mentioning something about eventually being part of the family, and Alan volleying back: "You're already part of the family. Even if Charlie hasn't gotten his act together and made it official."
I think I popped my own eardrums with the squee. So much so that I didn't even hear Amita's "Yeah, what's up with that?" response the first time around.
As if that weren't enough, before I'd even begun to finish digesting that gem, we were in the house and in what felt like five seconds later, Don and Charlie were having an honest-to-God pillow fight. *giggles uncontrollably* Fantastic. Especially since it seems, at least temporarily, to have snapped Charlie out of his obsessive and depressive downward spiral in the face of unstoppable crime.
Hey, is that Amita in danger again?? (THIS IDEA WILL NEVER GET OLD. NEVER.) Probably not, considering the lack of mention in the official summary, the lack of truly distressed reaction from Charlie in the previews, and my resulting suspicion that the promo monkeys ramped up the "ooh, lethal robots" factor to draw in audiences, but...a girl can dream, can't she?