-Cold Case, 6x19, "Libertyville"
*shakes head* 50 fantastic years, and it still comes down to race. (I'm mangling a quote from somewhere. *googles* Ah, that's right! Doctor Who, "The End of the World." I should really have recognized that on my own)
This is my way of saying, hey, that was a really interesting story, one where I had no idea who the killer might be, and then it turned out to be nothing more compelling than blah, blah, we were such prejudiced jerks back in the 1950's. Why does Cold Case hate 50's nostalgia? Seriously. I'm pretty sure that 2 out of 3 times they solve a case from that era, it uncovers some dark suburban secret to prove that it was nothing like the happy, wholesome, golden time of good values everyone remembers it as. If it's not forcibly closeted homosexuality or battered housewives, it's this. I guess there's the argument to be made that murder didn't happen in the wholesome circles, but...
(admittedly, the pin-up girl story was decent, but this ruins my argument, so let's ignore it)
Also, way to take my love of 50's suburbia and make it ugly. Have factory neighborhoods really been around that long? I thought ugly planned developments were a relatively recent thing. It can't have happened everywhere, or all the 30-to-50-year-old homes in my neighborhood would look identical, which they don't. *is perplexed*
Wasn't expecting the reveal that he was black/Creole, though. That was a nice take, because although the black-and-white filter probably helped, I wouldn't have thought of him as anything except white, but as soon as we found out the difference I couldn't stop staring at his hair, exaggerated features, and everything else that made him look different. Interesting-different, attractive-different - decidedly more Native American than African, though, I thought - but definitely no longer white. Which fascinates me, especially as I don't know what the actor really is. Maybe I was just compelled by the power of suggestion.
[Edit: Yup; according to the suggested google search of "johnathon schaech ethnicity," he's simply white. Power of suggestion is awesome!]
Finally, I know I was watching this after 3 AM and lying down in bed, but I think it says something that I fell asleep as soon as Lily and her dad started talking.
-House, 5x19, Locked In
I wasn't expecting to like this one very much. Nobody with a name like "Mos Def" deserves encouragement, and more importantly, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" made me want to hit my head against a wall nonstop for as long as the movie lasted.
But this ended up being considerably more interesting, albeit not interesting enough for me to remember specific things about why I liked it. Except for the hilarious part where he managed to pick up that there was something going on between House and Cuddy after witnessing them in conversation for fifteen seconds.
Besides, I spent the whole episode preparing myself for a tragic outcome where the condition was permanent, and then they went the lame happy route and miraculously had him at the beginnings of recovery as soon as treatment started. Nrrrrgh. I mean, it was good because he had kids and stuff, but at the same time...it didn't feel very realistic.
In an unrelated note, I'm glad that we didn't have to watch a whole touching scene where Foreman told Hadley how special she was as he slid over a jewelry box containing the bracelet, or the scene at home where they argued about her not wearing it, or the final tag where she got all gooey-eyed over the bracelet and they exchanged I love yous and had sex on the kitchen floor. Their relationship should always be told in speedy exposition form like this!
And Wilson, isn't it a tad hypocritical of you to throw hissy fits about House not letting you have secrets...only to turn around and raise investigative hell the second House tries to keep one of his own? Don't you have a platitude related to reaping what you sow?
"It's a beach. Oh look, there's Taub. Drinking a margarita and mocking us for driving all the way out here."
Because ultimately, the #1 thing I took away from this episode was "DUDE, I WANT MRI VIDEO GOGGLES!!!" Are they real? I'm pretty sure they're not real. Upon Googling, I found out that they exist insofar as they can play DVDs, but no super-cool virtual reality type stuff. (When are they going to invent that, anyway? They've been implicitly promising me those since the days of Wishbone, but I have yet to see them break into the market. They already invented my OTHER childhood dream, video phones...)
-HIMYM, 4x19. "Murtaugh"
The basketball storyline, other than the hilarious part where Lily finally exploded at him for suggesting that he'd treat his own kids the same way and instantly cowed him, was mostly just weird and boring. And although I agree that having fun is a priority in little kids' sports matches, it's just idiotic not to keep score. The goal is to tell them that it's fun even if they lose. Otherwise it's just a confusing free-for-all, like, why even bother having teams?
Otherwise, though, per usual I giggled nonstop and the episode flew by. This is because Barney is just so, so much more entertaining than everyone else. If not for the fact that the other characters are necessary for him to bounce his outlandish actions & statements off of, I'm pretty sure he could carry the whole show by himself.
For example, I could have watched 20 minutes just of him dressed in that hilarious outfit, complete with pink hair, at the rave. Grossly infected earlobe, hunchback and all. Although it was amusing to watch him go through all the other activities, especially once Robin - after getting her jollies out by calling him just to watch him fling the phone down in pain - decided to tag along with him. The annoying 2-person answering message is maybe the most adorable thing I have ever seen in my life.
And, still giggling over "A gentleman's agreement: huzzah!"
Really, though -- Barney being banned from lasertag?? That's too tragic to comprehend. Please tell me has a backup lasertag place he likes just as much as this one? (because I have to admit that watching him hold a kid under his foot while maniacally firing at him, 30 seconds after being given a probationary reprieve from the ban for life, was hysterical)
Also, fact: while you are ALWAYS too old for beer bong, which has got to be the most asinine thing I have ever seen, you are *never* too old for lasertag. Although I think there does come a point where you're too old to play lasertag against children...
Finally, Barney is ridiculously cute when he rolls his eyes at Robin's Canadian examples. Hee! And I loved Lily's giant scarf to hide the belly.
P.S. DUDE. This is, like, the first week I ever noticed that his show has a laugh track. Has it always had a laugh track? WHY HAVE I NEVER NOTICED THIS? Is it because I've been fooled by all the people calling it a "smart" comedy, or simply because I laugh in all the same places?
In a perfectly-timed note, ship_manifesto has just released Barney/Robin. You know what I love about this community? It's like being in one of those mail-order clubs where every month you get a gift basket full of goodies. Except it's free. And delivered to your computer instead of your doorstep. But it's still stuffed with goodies! For example, right here, In addition to the persuasive essay about why the ship is worth supporting, you get screencaps, quotes, bonus links and a sampling of quality fic recs.
-Medium, 5x08, "Truth Be Told
Let's ignore the irritating-as-sin "lie detector" buzzer, or my annoyance that Ariel never got punished for her naughty lying about boy-free sleepovers, and just be content that for once, this mystery kept us all guessing, puzzling all of us until the final reveal, despite what felt like an inordinate number of clues. And it was nice to see the naive girl, Dubaku's girlfriend, from those 3 episodes of 24 I watched this year.
Plus, at least *one* person went to jail, and even though it wasn't exactly 100% fair and balanced, he did commit cold-blooded murder as opposed to shooting home invaders while under extreme duress. I should be satisfied, right? Right.
I would say a whole lot more about the side plot with Joe getting sued for supposedly stealing an idea, except that it involved approximately eight frillion cute moments between him and Allison, and I don't have the patience to watch it again to screencap it, so I'm just going to let those wash out of my head and be surprised the next time I see the episode. Hair-petting and backrubs are all I scribbled down on my notes before I got too absorbed in the mystery to keep up with anything else.
-CSI: Miami, 7x20, "Wolfe in Sheep's Clothing"
Um. UM! Thaaaat, that was one of the most shocking teasers I have ever seen. I would have slapped an extra-cautionary "not suitable for sensitive viewers" label all over that. I know this show isn't exactly kiddie fare on the best of days, but this was exceptionally hard to watch. And I don't just mean the Ryan torture (although, that is mostly what I mean. The Russian ripped a tooth out with pliers. Which we mercifully didn't see in detail, but we saw enough blood to make even the implication horrible).
But I also mean that I am just Not Prepared to see that much skin on Eric. Wow. No. I'm not. You would think I am, given various suggestive comments I may have made about his body over the years, but turns out I was wrong! That's uncomfortable.
And all he was doing was waking up alone in bed. I might have actually had a heart attack if Calleigh had been anywhere except walking down the hall in a nice cotton robe.
I HAVE ISSUES. COMPLICATED, PURITANICAL ISSUES.)
I don't know what to make of the fact that Eric and Calleigh were having a cute little getting-ready routine in the bathroom (although I like how the show just casually slips that in there, like after 2 years of teasing and stringing people along with the barest of hints and glimpses, they're not trying to kill the E/C shippers through shippy overload by dumping everything on them at once). Possibly I will enjoy it more at a later date. Right now I feel like it was just too much to process on top of the giant Ryan plot, and that kind of captured my attention more.
Question: didn't Ryan used to be a pretty good liar? Weren't we all kind of surprised when he turned out to be this bad gamblin' man? Why is he SO RIDICULOUSLY TERRIBLE at fibbing nowadays? I am pretty sure that an elementary school kid could do a better job of fooling people. Kudos to Jonathon Togo's acting, but come on. "Oh, uh, let me handle that! No special reason! I'm not nervous, YOU'RE nervous! Shut up! There's nothing eating me up inside! *eye twitches frantically*"
It would have been even more comical if they hadn't kept inter-cutting it with flashbacks to bloodied-up Ryan screaming in pain. :(
And oh, Ryan, baby, honey, it really sucks that you keep alienating yourself from your only real coworkers, who are even more menacing now they represent a super-united front. Not that I begrudge their distrust, but it really sucks watching Calleigh try to reach out while Ryan insists on pushing everyone away and handling it himself, even though he has proven several times over that he sucks at handling things himself and always needs
I swear, this episode was enough to kick me back into CaRWash land. I haven't been there in a while, accepting TPTB's decision the same way I would have accepted Jo's if she'd gone with Harmony instead (I love how I speak in code and expect everyone to get my references! You do, right?), whatever gives me the shippiest scenes...but I really want Ryan to have someone he can open up to already. Before he self-destructs for the 500th time.
Plus it sort of feels like Eric has everything and Ryan has nothing right now, and there's just a little hint of superiority in that last glower that I doesn't sit right with me. Buddy, you only climbed into my good graces by accident/default. I can kick you right back out of them and remind you that for the first three seasons, the only person I liked less than you was Tripp.
But seriously, Ryan...in what universe did taking over your buddy's debt seem like a good idea? How could that possibly have helped? Why didn't you just put your pal in Witness Protection from the start, if you were that worried? I will overlook all these details - including the melodramatic screaming into the phone IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LAB - just for how worried you were about saving the kid, but don't do it again. I'm warning you.
Also, I think they could have toned down the editing tricks. By about 400%.
But overall, it was really, really good; I loved the purple theme going on in wardrobe (Tara's silk patterned halter top, as briefly as we saw it, was especially gorgeous), I liked all the focus on core characters, the case wasn't too ludicrous, and I'm still impressed by how much they packed into a single ep.
Some bonus reasons this episode was good: Horatio didn't even appear until the second half, and it was 100% Natalia-free. I'm pretty sure that, after careful consideration, this is the newest champion of the "Best Episode of the Season" title.
-NCIS, 6x19, "Dead Reckoning"
Hehe. I forgot how entertaining it is when Tony has to work with one of his sworn enemies. He has a few of them, because man, Tony can hold a GRUDGE. (although, considering the man did once try to kill him, he has a good reason in this case) With snarky results!
"Oh, now we're taking tips from Trent Kort. Why don't we just run with scissors or ask strangers for candy?"
"I see your lips moving, but all I hear is lie, lie, lie"
"Why don't you run down to the gift shop and get yourself something nice, like a mug, or a T-shirt, or a personality?"
Etc, etc. I lost track of all the lines that put me in stitches, but I was really fond of his relationship with the Most Wanted wall. "You lied to me, Wall!" And later apologizing, because of course the Wall is the real victim here. :P
There were a few times I caught myself zoning out entirely (and not just because Marie Callendar's chicken pot pie is sinfully delicious, or because I was reprimanding my dog for refusing to let me eat it in peace), but I have to admit that Perry being the bad guy was a surprise twist. I should have known better. Never trust anyone who looks like Philip Seymour Hoffman.
I also got to watch my girlcrush meter spike as Ziva called in a situation, then planted her feet with guns in hand and smoothly blasted away two guys at once, in opposite directions. "Never mind." Ha-hah! So badass.
"Captain's Industry 3. Capturing all the fun of being a CEO and bulding your own business empire..."
I am not ashamed to admit that I really want to play something like Captains of Industry, but since I don't have the patience to learn all the complexities of any similar MMORPGs or Second Life or what have you, I satiated that desire by alternating Zoo Tycoon and Age of Empires until it was out of my system. It's coming back again as I write this, though. I may need to rotate in AlterEgo, Greyhound, and/or Sim City.
Finally, loved Abby going mock-complaining about how "This is Caff Pow country. And yet..." and the bit at the end where she came out with head hanging, begging Gibbs not to fire/send her to jail because she made one teensy mistake and accidentally ordered a hit on a couple of guys.
-Without a Trace, 7x18, "Daylight"
Stupid misleading promos; I should have known the car crash wouldn't happen until the last 2 minutes of the episode, with everything post-crash being reserved until the next episode. But you know, that's okay. All the other Brian-and-Samantha interaction was excellent. How cute was he, fretting over whether Samantha (or for that matter, Finn) would think he was bailing if his job kept him away from them for the first month. *squishes*
By the way, Jack, if you could not act like a jealous ass? That would be preferable. I'm glad you have a healthy sense of understanding that Brian is a way better catch than you, but...
Samantha (on phone): Maybe I'll show you later.
Danny: Uh, did I just hear sexy talk?
Now let's a take a minute to just REJOICE IN CELEBRATION at the long-overdue return of shirtless!Martin, not wasting any time on moving this relationship up a notch, as his cuts and scrapes haven't even healed, but here he is playing around in bed with pretty Kim whom I am still stubbornly pretending is not evil. RS approves this teaser. Look how cute they are! Let's continue ignoring the distressing part where Martin starts to have cause for suspecting Something Is Up!
Finally, let's take a moment to chastise Elena for the terrible set of bangs she's decided to sport, but then forgive everything for the flaily moment in which Danny casually references "our apartment" and I maybe shot around the room and/or bounced off the walls like a bottle rocket.
(Speaking of hair, I didn't even notice that Martin's was uncombed, but I was very fond of Samantha's sassy, curly ponytail.)
Oh, and then there was something about a case with a therapist trying to prove his rapist brother is innocent? Which was pretty interesting, if only because I know the rapist has played Evil Incarnate somewhere else (I want to say CSI: Miami...no, New York, NO WAIT, one of the crossover episodes! The second one, right? He's very good at looking twisted and manipulative), and because I can't remember where I've seen his brother but I like that actor. It just kinda paled in comparison to all the other interesting stuff going on.
I'll say it again - season 7, highly entertaining in surprising ways!-----------------
Also, dear Television, about tomorrow night: I would like you to know that it's not very nice to make people choose between watching the 200th episode of CSI and the series finale of ER. That is a battle of horrible stakes - geeze, even Grey's Anatomy gracefully bowed out of this ratings race. Since when is ABC more generous than you, CBS? Since when?