2. So I was trying to find a "___ demands an explanation for this bullshit" macro via Google, and I thought there might be a good one I could pull up from Doctor Who. So that's what I typed into Image Search. HELLO MY EYES AHHHH ASSAULTING WAVE OF PICTURES FROM "JOURNEY'S END"! God, the one episode I still have to dodge...luckily my reactors kicked in and turned it into mostly a blur of a color as I backtracked at top speed before I could register anything specific. ExceptDonna's eyes being all weirdly, glowingly golden colored, as if imbued with TARDIS heart, yet somehow more reminiscent of the Doctor's eyes when possessed in "42." Either way. It sort of feels bad. Especially after regular Google Search gave me the phrase snippet "if Caan is responsible for what happened to Donna." *continues fretting*
TV kind of broke my brain last week, and I still haven't watched most of it, since I spent all of my free time yesterday working on the latter two reviews in this post (and then I watched How I Met Your Mother, to which my reaction was basically "HAHAHA THIS IS AWESOME HAHAHA THIS IS AWESOME" repeating on loop without pause, which pretty much says it all. However, Future Self has informed me this is not sufficient for the archives, so that's what I'll be processing this evening).
House, 5x17, "The Social Contract"
Most of the shows I was less than favorable toward in State of the Networks found a way to turn themselves around shortly thereafter. Not this one. I don't know what it is, but I seem to be losing interest at an exponential rate. I literally cannot remember anything that happens until I go online and read detailed reviews/recaps. And even they're not being very helpful this week.
Let's make a numbered, stream-of-consciousness list!
1. As proof of how burned out on this show I'm getting, I can't even blame Foreteen - all the reviews say it was Foreteen-lite, yet I did not notice one iota of reduction in my boredom while watching. There was a bit less rampant hate, I suppose, in retrospect.
2. I fail to see anything spectacularly jerky about the thoughts in that guy's head? I guess there was something in the fact that he almost never said anything positive, but then again, he was sick and presumably not especially comfortable, and I'd be prone to irritability in his situation too. Crap, does this mean I'm secretly a jerk and don't know it?? Don't answer that. Was rhetorical question.
3. I'm just saying, I didn't find it all that difficult to get annoyed at the wife's gawping stupidity re: keeping her daughter in the room after her husband had proved his inability to shut up. And it's not like I've never thought about the size of a character's nose before (*cough*Robin).
4. I liked the Wilson's brother storyline, at least once they gave up the ridiculous mystery and brought it into the light. (Sometimes I like House's Investigative Mysteries, other times it just annoys me that he can't let anyone have one scrap of personal business) Especially when House, in his reticent and roundabout way, offered to do nice things and go with him.
5. Wilson's story about hanging up on his brother in a time of crisis and then feeling forever guilty about turning him away was sad. *hugs Young Wilson*
6. My favorite part of the night was when the Ducklings called, and their ringtone is still set to "MMMBop!" Although I keep thinking he should adjust that for the fact that he technically has four ducklings, or at the very least 3 ducklings + a big sibling ducky. Wow, I almost turned Foreteen into a vaguely incestuous metaphor, didn't I?
7. Randomly, I just started thinking about how maybe to get around that, Foreman could be an adopted sibling, like a baby swan next to the mallard ducklings I always picture (crap, now I'm accidentally calling him The Ugly Duckling. Undo, undo!)...and then I realized for the first time how wonderfully demographically diverse this group of doctor ducklings is. Hand over your diversity honors, Grey's Anatomy!
8, Where was I going with this giant tangent? God, this show is so boring I can't even make myself WRITE about it without my attention wandering.
9. I'm sorry, did they actually say the family had a great big Rottweiler that peed all over the house? And they just let it get away with that? It cannot be that hard to housebreak a dog, come on.
(Although I assume it's difficult, which is why I'm never going to own a puppy and am only adopting dogs who are already housebroken)
10. I actually thought it was kind of cute that House brought Cuddy in just to watch the guy sexually harass her in complimentary ways. It's twisted, but there was a hint of niceness at the core of that gesture.
11. Damn it, I know there were at least two quotes (House and/or Wilson related) that made me laugh out loud, but I can't find anything to jog my memory and I refuse to sit through this episode again. Maybe I should start taking notes again.
CSI: Miami, 7x17, "Divorce Party"
Opening music: All the single ladies...all the single ladies...
Me: OMG. STOP FORCING ME TO HEAR SONGS I HAVE BEEN DELIBERATELY AVOIDING.
Fortunately, Beyonce does not have the same addictive, hypnotic power over me that certain other hip-hop artists do. I think. I hope. If she makes it to the Music of 2009 post, I'm suing for emotional damages and hiring the angry face as my lawyer. >:(
Although, it's kind of a weird choice for the opening, considering that he DID like it, and he DID put a ring on it - twice, in fact! But we'll get to that - and that what we're watching is a woman celebrating her divorce with a vaguely sickening parody of a wedding ceremony. This immediately blows so many gaskets in my brain, it's a wonder I don't stroke out. First, EW. How tasteless and tacky can you get? How do you even show up as a guest to that party and not feel unclean? I know this is taking place in Rich Miami, a place more notorious than Hollywood, where most people don't have souls and none have consciences, but still.
Second, you do not celebrate the breaking of vows - have a healthy sense of humility about you, please. I'm not saying people can't be happy or relieved when bad marriages are over, because I've been watching "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" and waiting for Amy's dad to get the hell out since July, but drawing attention to it in such a public, ostentatious, shameless way is gross.
On the other hand, I did get a good chuckle out of the hanged groom dropping through the trapdoor, followed by the entire little stage collapsing during the subsequent investigation.
Message from the Universe: "Divorce parties suck."
By the way, this got long, so I'm breaking up sections with subheaders. In a manner of speaking. Mostly they're sentences I bolded after the fact.
And now let me circle back to my originally planned introduction
Promo: "What if you found out your dead husband had another family?"
Me: *throws up hands* ALL RIGHT, COME ON. How many of these "men with two secret families" are running around in the world? How often does this happen, for real? Because it seems to happen quite a lot on crime dramas and I just cannot believe it is that mainstream an occurrence.
But better yet, because this is Miami, where everything is Bigger, Better, and More Explosive, we get a 2-for-1 special on ridiculous occurrences: not only does the man have two wives/families/identities, he's got two children around the same age who are half-siblings, live in the same general area, and naturally not only meet each other, but fall in love. Because as I've stated before, half-siblings obviously emit some kind of special pheromone that only society's taboos keep in check under ordinary circumstances.
Wait! It gets better! We actually get a 2-for-1 with a hidden bonus prize - the half-siblings are having an incestuous little baby together! AWESOME. And because they are not merely anti-abortion but TOTALLY IN LOVE, they are determined to keep this baby and stay together. Of course, since overbearing fathers are always dragging their slutty teenage daughters into abortion clinics and forcing them to have the procedure as the law allows them to dictate (oh wait), when their father told them they couldn't be together or have this baby...they obviously had no choice but to kill him! Immediately! It was a literal matter of life or death!
The stupid is hurting my brain again.
I'm going to focus on the fantastic fact that the wives were played by two of the greatest TV wives ever - Kirsten Cohen and Jordan Cox (I could look up actress names, but this way's easier for me to recall). They were even true to their previous character roles - Kirsten was the soft-spoken, doe-eyed homebody wife, and Jordan was the outgoing, brash, take-no-prisoners (ex!) wife I'm glad it wasn't either one of them...and I totally called the kids as being the murderers, albeit not together. First I suspected the son, but then when he seemed to hero-worship his dad and the daughter got like zero focus, I switched my vote to her. So technically I was at least 50% right?
Last notes on the case, mostly from the opening 5 minutes:
-Enough. WIth. The "flashbacks." I counted no fewer than three times that we saw the groom drop - in the first act.
-Fail on "watch-on-right-wrist = left-handed." It might be that way on MOST people, but I'm right handed and my watch is on my right wrist. It makes so much more sense to glance down at your wrist that way when you're writing and want to check the time - tilt your head to the right, the way you read the titles on book spines.
-Eep! Poor Tara! And yay for continuation on Calleigh calling people "babe," as in "Oh, babe, come this way" while quickly leading her away from the Head-smacking Boards of Doom.
-Prior to the theme song butting in, for two seconds there, I actually forgot Horatio was on the show. IT WAS STRANGELY PLEASANT.
The Further Adventures of
Alas, as I knew he was due to show up with Julia (and by adjunct necessity, Kyle) drama, my happiness was short-lived. Sure enough, there's Kyle, speeding down the road in what I can only assume is the Porsche that Mommy used to buy his love, with said Mommy lolling about the passenger's seat in a drug-induced haze. From the description you might think he's rushing to the hospital, but nah, they're just late for her job interview. Because that's how Julia Winston rolls!
This actually leads to a legitimately funny confrontation between the parents (Julia: A lecture from YOU on parenting?"), which allows me to briefly indulge in my fantasy scenario whereby they've always been his (divorced) parents, rather than the stupid reality in which the 3 of them met more-or-less out of the blue less than two years ago.
The end result is Kyle immediately becoming a morgue intern, which, all right. I'm not even going to start trying to untangle the paperwork there. The best part, for me, is where someone says something about how he's not going to do anything that will "jeopardize this opportunity." Wait, you mean the opportunity his dad forced on him this morning as punishment? (or a learning experience. But it was motivated by "maybe this will teach you not to be a dumbass" sentiments) HARDY HAR HAR!!
Actually, I'm a tad disappointed that Julia didn't get to be crazier in this episode. I swear you could actually hear those Wild West Showdown sounds when she and Horatio squared off against each other in accusations.
But now, let's skip to what I really took issue with: the ending scene. For a brief, shining moment I think we're actually about to see the Mythical Home of Horatio, and have the whole apartment v. condo v. house question settled once and for all. Alas! Turns out that since Julia's a crazy, child-endangering whackjob who nevertheless won full legal custody, Horatio's coming to the rescue the best way he knows how - fistfuls of cash to pay for Kyle to live in his own apartment.
The first thing I want to know is: how is this an apartment?
Seriously. That thing is all of two stories - more like a duplex, possibly with walk-out roof? I see both plants and a balcony rail... - and I'm going to assume that there are stairs inside which lead up to another apartment on the upper floor, because otherwise this is the size of small house and generally way too much for a teenager. Spoiled entitlement much? Also, is Kyle not due to be heading off for college pretty soon?
YOUR CONTINUITY PROBLEMS, PLEASE ADDRESS THEM NOW.
Kyle's birthday is July 6, 1991 (they gave it to us on a platter and everything). He is still 17 and cannot legally have his own apartment, I don't think. Furthermore, he is also still in high school, so unless he's on spring break right now, he is not in the market for a full-time job, nor a part-time job that begins at 8 AM unless they're working weekends. I sort of doubt he's working weekends since he was driving his mother to a job interview, was he not, and she seemed to be in the type of clothes that one would wear in a business that works daytime hours Monday-Friday.
But hey, let's say that all works. Let's say that all of the conditions about working on spring break apply, Horatio pulled strings/skirted the laws a bit to let him have this apartment in his name or something, or that it's skipped to July in this universe. It still strikes me as a dumb-ass idea to let Kyle live on his own, considering he can't seem to stay out of the local law enforcement's eyesight as it is.
Wasn't Horatio was fighting for custody a year ago, presumably both to keep a better eye on him and to do some actual bonding-type stuff? Aha, we have revealed the ugly truth - Horatio nobly wanted to keep Kyle out of Julia's evil clutches, but he wanted no part of the tedious day-to-day business involved with feeding, clothing, supervising homework, and otherwise bonding with a kid, even a teenage kid, living at your home.
(maybe Horatio's secretly like House, and has a parade of prescription drugs and strippers at home that he didn't want to expose Kyle to, and which he masks at work with the flat, dull monotone and constant squinting? I SWEAR, I AM THIS CLOSE to writing crack that makes "Horatio the Magical Pickle Fairy" look like somber classic literature, just to vent my frustration with his lack of normal human emotions)
What I've Been Avoiding
End scene: Tara slipping the missing OxyContin - the one she implicitly blamed on Julia - into her pocket.
Me: WHAT WHAT WHAT? TARA! WHAT. THAT IS NOT OKAY.
Not kidding. I don't care where you go with it; if you can get Natalia out of hot water, you can immediately correct the assumptions about Tara & explain WTF you meant by this. Because if it's what it looks like, I am not okay with it on eighteen different levels. This is Alexx's successor! You shot her first successor and then nettled us with that one jerk until Tara Price showed up like a breath of fresh air and settled easily into place, and I sighed in relief at how instantly and perfectly she fit in. You do NOT get to make her a drug addict, recovering drug addict, and/or person who baldface lies to Horatio's face...although! She mostly lied to his back, as you can see. (How bad are his manners here, seriously.)
Maybe it was because his Spidey sense already told him she was bad news. Which gives me an excuse to make this into an elaborate macro possibly only funny to me:
(paraphrased from Coach, the most awesomely douchey, self-delusional Survivor player EVER. Coming to a CBS screen near you March 18th!)
-Travers continues to annoy me. However...what's-his-name, Ryan's AV friend with the ponytail? HE IS AWESOME AND I WANT TO SEE MORE OF HIM. Even though the ponytail + his unfortunate choice of shirt color made him look very much like he was standing there in a prison jumpsuit on work release, he was still instantly likable. Very personable. Good choice!
-The sickest part is that I have to consider this one of the better episodes of the season, because for New Miami, I have to measure things in terms of how big a reaction they get out of me. And this one involved a whole lot of words.
P.S. I wanted my mom to read the very beginning part of this review, because I knew she'd get the angry-face-as-my-lawyer reference (deleted scene on The Office), so I had her look up the song real quick so she'd know what the melody was like. And then were were both just transfixed by how terrible the video for "All The Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)" is. I mean, even just the bit where they're inexplicably spanking themselves...not gonna lie, this thing makes me laugh almost as hard as the Filet-O-Fish commercial.
The Office: "Golden Ticket"
Um, that was amazing. In every way. BUT ESPECIALLY: Michael, at least temporarily, being more likable than he has ever been in the history of the series. Clearly, he should dress up like a character from a beloved childhood movie every week, and we would have no problems. (Next I want to see the Sorcerer's Apprentice from "Fantasia." Mouse ears optional, wizard's hat mandatory.)
I'm not kidding. He was the definition of adorable in his Willy Wonka outfit. Between the voice, and the hat, and the umbrella (and the backwards skipping in the warehouse!)...I actually went "aww." How could Pam possibly keep a straight/completely uninterested face in the face of that?!
And to be fair, the idea of golden tickets was rather excellent in concept; it just needed a second pair of eyes to execute it properly. I would have liked to see Pam be a part of this, actually. Way more fun than the road trip. I mean, come on, he didn't just cheap out on dark yellow sheets of copier paper - he got GLOSSY GOLDEN CERTIFICATES going on. That's the attention to detail we need, people! (Well, along with the "limit: one per customer" detail.)
I know it sort of weirdly worked out in the end - in a coincidence I'd say is impossible, except that Michael's managed to seriously date 3 women in the last 4 years so it's not the most unlikely thing ever to happen to him - but it still made me sad to watch the part where he crashed and burned.
Weirdest Part of Plot: I actually felt bad for Michael when Jim and Pam played along with the whole it-was-Dwight's-idea thing. I know it made sense because they had stood to lose the most, but still. When Pam was making a big show of hugging Dwight and Jim mentioned that he'd even dressed up to pitch the idea, I was like..."YOU GUYS. STOP IT. YOU ARE CRUSHING MICHAEL'S SOUL." And then I went out back to punch myself for a while, but the stubborn Michael-sympathizing part of me just would not surrender.
Best Part of Plot: ANGRY!JIM! *shivers & is pleased* "I'm a little pissed. Cause I lost a ton of money today, and I've got a mortgage."
Also: "Well, Jim, you should have thought of that before you bought a house to impress Pam. That is why carnations exist."
While I hate when people get one over on Jim, and it especially pains me to award the point to Michael of all people...BURN!
Second Best Part of Plot: The pleasure of watching Jim behave like a responsible grown-up, actually doing his job and being rather good at it. Look at that, offering up legitimately good business ideas in the meeting, pleasantly negotiating with customers one the phone while inwardly cursing and killing Michael with his eyes, responsibly calling Corporate to head off fiascos...I dunno, it's kinda hot.
Voice: What are you, contractually obligated to mention some way in which in Jim is hot for every single episode?
Voice: *mutters* Not to mention clearly attention-starved and/or in need of real office work experience.
RS: You know what, I thought you were retired to the Caribbean and supposedly unreachable. What happened to that?
Voice: That's the beauty of traveling at the speed of sound.
A List of 8,000 (?) Other Things I Loved
1. THE KGB VILL VAIT FOR NO ONE! *ROTFL* Oh my God, I have never laughed that hard at anything on The Office. Anything. Ever. And I watched Dwight fall down amidst his wrapping-paper desk and chair like 50 times.
That is definitely on my list of Top Ten Cold Opens ever. I mean, I was happy enough just watching Pam both do her job and impatiently deal with Michael the Toddler (Mommy's on the phone!), but then I got to see Dwight slap Michael, as part of a hilarious joke (his words). And see Michael start a girly, wrist-flailing slap fight in retaliation, whereupon Jim's face instantly lights up like a little boy on Christmas morning.
You think surely that's enough, but no, we've barely started the fun! Because then Jim starts his own round of KGB joking, complete with singsong "ding dongs" while waiting for an answer, and ultimately slapping Dwight anyway. GOOD TIMES. If I were Steve Carell, I'm pretty sure I could do this scene a hundred takes in a row with real laughter every time. The best part is that this is the gift that keeps on giving, as it reappears in the ending tag, and we get to watch it backfire on Dwight in a whole new way. Heh. Oh, Jim.
(Also, Jim was totally fighting to hide a smile at Michael's "Buddha this bread" joke. Watch him.)
2. Profiligate? I love when Michael makes up words. Which reminds me, I'm having a thought here - is Michael dyslexic? Beyond the obvious number mix-up in "Stress Relief," it would explain things like "Astird," and actually provide an explanation for all the random not-quite-right words he comes up with, if he learned them by reading rather than in conversation. I know when I come across complicated words in books, I sometimes just go with the first gibberish sound that looks right in my head rather than trying to sound it out (despite being taught better...and then I'm always screwed the first time I want to use it in real life). Now imagine that happening constantly. Hmm.
3. Is it lame that my first reaction to hearing Jim answer the phone and reply "Hey, Tom" was to gasp and anxiously await details of the rehearsal dinner, tuxedo rental, or other things related to the wedding until it became apparent that this wasn't Tom Halpert? Good, then I won't mention it.
4. Michael: Hey, hey, hey! You idiot!
Darryl: Start over.
5. I'm not sure I've properly explained how much I loved Jim's face while talking to the Blue Cross rep - first while ignoring Michael (Daddy's on the phone!) and then with exaggerated responses for his benefit to "And did they say limit, one per customer? Nope..."
6. Oh, Jim. "A month or two" before you ask out a woman you like? Pining after Pam really did warp your sense of reality, didn't it. (CRAP. DOES THIS MEAN HE LIKED KAREN MUCH EARLIER THAN PREVIOUSLY SUSPECTED? Way to ruin the early part of season 3 for me even more)
7. Oh, Michael. "Shoe La La" is actually kind of a clever idea! STOP MAKING ME FIND YOU ADORABLE. I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DEAL.
8. Despite the fact that I am busy sympathizing with Michael all over this episode, it does not stop me from being even happier that Jim is trying to keep Dwight from being an idiot and unjustly losing his job. *pets*
9. Dwight has a diary! To keep secrets from his computer! I think this point speaks for itself.
10. I'm running out of steam to keep adding to this list, even though I'm pretty sure I could come up with at least thirty more things if I took a good hard look at it. I mean, I haven't even mentioned all the great Michael/Dwight stuff. I don't always have the patience for their interaction - like when he was buying his condo; that was EXCRUCIATING - but I really loved it in this ep.
So let's just assume everything else was excellent. This is an easy contender for 4th favorite of the season so far.
Two Things I Did Not Love
-Can we be done with Kevin's love life forever, now, please?? That woman should have run screaming in the opposite direction as soon as he took three steps towards her. The question of his asking her out shouldn't even be on the table. (Kevin: officially the new low man on the totem pole. Congratulations, Andy, you're moving up slightly in the world!)
-I've blocked most of the Michael-Dwight-David Wallace phone conference from memory. Started drawing too much from the Gross Joke bin.
Partly Cloudy With A Chance of Sunshine
1. Alas, Andy was back this week, and being more unsufferable than ever. I'm beginning to think that turning him into a crippled shell of a man wasn't as much of a victory as previously assumed, since he's become the whiniest crybaby ever. But! For once this wasn't completely horrible, and I didn't mind him butting into Jim-and-Pam scenes, because it meant we got to see them clash over the best way to woo a woman (speaking of which, if I were Kev, you know whose advice I would probably take in that situation? The woman's).
I'm going to ignore the uncomfortable part of my stomach in which Pam rejects the idea of the overly shy guy - although it does explain how she dated Roy in the first place - because as previously mentioned, even I think Jim's advice is reserved to a ridiculous degree.
Pam: I don't think Jim means you shouldn't touch her --
Jim: No, that is what I mean.
Besides, I'm too busy being in love with her little "Hush" (and implied "Quiet, you"). See, that's how I like my assertive Pam! Doled out the context of "I love you, but right now you should just let me handle things."
Part of me is wondering how different this conversation would have been in season 2. Imagine Pam all self-conscious when she talked about brief touches being romantic, and Jim all half-intrigued, half-heartbroken as he tried to figure out whether this information was useful to him or merely torturous. Oh, the possibilities!
2. In the 3-way arguing TH, does anyone know what Jim and Pam actually said? I think I can get hers word-for-word if I try hard enough, but his is infuriatingly muffled. Where are those sound-separating techs from CSI with their magic machines when you need them?!
The only thing worth remembering from Andy's outburst, which unfortunately dominated the scene was "two hot people with a perfect relationship wouldn't understand!" Cue slightly abashed looks from both of them, with the only disappointment being that we didn't then cut to a pair of follow-up TH's in which Jim and Pam are asked if they really do have a perfect relationship.
Regarding Deleted Scene #2: Wait, I thought they said the doc. crew didn't have cameras in the elevators! Clearly lies. My only question now is, how come I haven't yet seen secret footage of Jim and Pam making out in them? And don't give me that they're-too-refined crap, Brain. Someone is clearly holding out on me!