And yet. The Playbook was non-stop knee-slapping hilarity at every turn. Mrs. Stinsfire! "Youuuuuu son-of-a-beetch." Lorenzo Von Matterhorn! THE TED MOSBY.
Also a pathetic ending for the scuba suit's purpose (way to jerk my heart around and piss me off for having the gang so foolishly talk Barney up as a "good guy." Even before I had my heart jerked around, I didn't think it was a good idea to convince a random girl to go out with him).
But mostly non-stop hilarity.
And slapping is always funny, even when you have that freakish actor who played Lily's dad hanging around, and even when it's so clearly telegraphed that Marshall will wind up delivering the slap anyway. Besides, when you can remix "You Just Got Slapped" in a peppy, upbeat, kids-board-game-commercial version...
I really pretty much hate myself for how much I enjoyed the last two episodes, considering my sworn vendetta against Carter & Bays for their douchetastic handling of Barney/Robin, since my enjoying the post-breakup episodes essentially validates their belief that they did the right thing. *headdesk*
I'm not convinced you couldn't have written these scripts while Barney & Robin were together, though! THAT IS HOW I AM GOING TO JUSTIFY MY APPRECIATION. Yep. The stories worked in spite of the breakup, not because of it. That is my defense.
-The 9th Doctor is set to play John Lennon, and Tosh will be Yoko Ono. I...am not sure how I feel about that, as his hair is really creeping me out. But I do hope some off-the-wall crackshipper's dream just came true.
-Ahhhh. Sedative. Calming, happy-making sedative: season 5's Jim/Pam deleted scenes (plus that one outtake!), nicely packaged in one convenient video. As usual, my feelings are torn between "I'm so glad I get these bonus surprises" and "idiots, how dare you have ever deleted any of this?" But especially:
1. AHHHH, JIM/KELLY SCENE. In which, under her tutelage, Jim is making an embarrassingly glitter-filled "welcome home" sign for Pam. Hah! And then to make it even better, the scene evolves into Jim messing with Dwight. It's perfect. I cannot believe you deleted this.
2. Jim admiring her sketchbook is, all by itself, almost enough for me to forgive the entire art school plot.
3. Oh, Office. You can't fool me:
Jim: Sometimes, I'll just wake up in the morning, and I'll be looking at her in the early light while she's still asleep...
Me: *waits patiently for the punch line*
Jim: And I'll drag this shoelace across her face, and yell "PAM WAKE UP, THERE'S A BUG ON YOUR FACE!" And she wakes up screaming.
Me: Yeah, that's what I thought.
(Not that I'm not totally going to pretend I never heard the second part, though.)
4. OMG, Pam's mom being a bitch has been in the works for a while now! Pam says she was expecting the date with Bob and Phyllis to be like going to lunch with her parents, "But Bob isn't showing me his appendectomy scar, and no one's criticizing how I hold a fork." God, show. You really were determined to run them into the ground, weren't you? Fine, this is one scene I'm glad you deleted.
"Endgame": MOTHER OF GOD, Vance has no point or purpose to existing. Just like this episode! Also terrible: McGee's love life, for any reason. There's a reason I got bored after 10 minutes and walked away the night this aired, followed by ignoring the show for the rest of the month. I don't even know why I came back to try and finish the episode. I ended up skipping every other scene and can't really remember how it turned out. I suppose I could be less vitriolic, but I am reasonably certain this was THE WORST EPISODE EVER. It made Jeanne's arc look exciting and fun by comparison.
[Edit: "Power Down": Hellfire and damnation! I only even tried to watch Endgame because I wanted to see "Child's Play," and I had this OCD fear of missing some minor continuity detail. But then I completely forgot this episode existed and watched the next one anyway. Now I'm too cranky to track this one down.]
"Child's Play": By delightful contrast, this is probably my favorite episode of the season.
I only caught up on the show because I wanted to see the kid episode. I was hoping it would feature one of the child actors I recognized, because surprisingly enough, there seem to be a pretty limited number of kids making the crime show rounds. Or else NCIS is just really good at snagging the cutest ones. Either way. So the episode opens, and after 30 seconds to gape disbelievingly... OMG IT'S BABY BOOTH. BEST!
But he's not actually our guest star of the week. Nope, just for the teaser. Our real star is this frighteningly clever preteen girl. "I'm almost positive it's from a medical show, the question is whether it's House or Shondaland. And I remember her being persnickety, so I want to say House. And now to go check my guess against IMDB."
(playing "Why Do I Know Them" on IMDB is one of my favorite games ever. It's one of the things that makes me glad I watch as many procedurals as I do, because it's always fun to shut your eyes and try to visualize the context for why a particular face looks familiar.]
Results: "Ahaha, FAIL. The real answer is Cold Case last year, the precocious illegitimate surprise!daughter of the gambler who died the day Kennedy was shot. Casey. ...though apparently she was also on Grey's Anatomy, and I just don't remember "In The Midnight Hour." *scans episode description* Ah yes! The girl with the sleepwalking father, the one that Sloan was weirdly comforting to. *shakes head* I always think everyone was on House. They never are. Like lupus."
As for the case itself, yes, it was wonderful. As anything with Gibbs + a kid under age 18 always is. The cupcake offering melted my heart. It was nearly as much fun to have Ducky & Ziva safehouse/babysitting her, even though this was a job that they both ultimately sucked at. It made Ducky less annoying than usual, which was nice. I liked the aspect of coded messages in artwork, especially how the poem about the dead woman in the fountain ended up being far more than simple poetry.
I didn't like the Thanksgiving meal at the end, though. I know it was supposed to be nice from a viewer's perspective, but I just couldn't shake the hatred of all their plans being trumped for a case that really...wasn't an emergency. Everyone else has families, Gibbs. You do too, technically. Shut the case down for a day and LET THEM GO.
-I love, love, love that Gibbs shows up bearing one Caff-Pow and one No-Caff-Pow, so that Abby can choose which to imbibe at this late hour. They are the best thing ever.
-FAIL ON ERIC/ABBY. FAIL. I hate that I have to champion Perpetually Single Abby, but no one ever passes my standards for her, so that continues to be my stance.
[Edit: Uh, my bad. I temporarily confused Eric with Nate. Nate is the creeper; Eric was the one guy I could actually stand in L.A. last spring. Again, my bad! Ignore what I said there! I am more amenable to Eric than I have ever been to anyone Abby's ever dated. Not whole-heartedly endorsing, just...amenable.]
NCIS: L.A.: Abby Gets Grabbed
PLEASE NOTE: here is a perfect example of my 95% judgment accuracy being dead-on. This is the first episode of the show proper that I've watched, and all the things I suspected from the previews that I would hate about it? Hatred: intensified.
My observations include:
-...THAT'S Hetty? Oh, dear God. I hate that little gnome woman! I literally, honestly, cannot stand this actress. I have this irrational need to punch her in the head, and the more Hetty talked the more I wanted to. Right here: this alone is a reason I can never watch this show again.
-Seriously. We need to abduct Kensi and install her on the good NCIS team right now. Or trade McGee for her. OMG, Self, that's a brilliant solution! We should TOTALLY trade McGee for her! Kensi would kick Tony's ass even better than Ziva - plus then she and Ziva could gang up on him, instead of the smug Bros In Arms ganging up on her - and McGee loves the toys in L.A., so he'd be happy too.
MAKE THIS HAPPEN, TPTB.
-Another reason to hate/not watch L.A.: it would force me to deal with twice as much Vance. There's already too much Vance on the FIRST show.
-A serial killer no one else has noticed, huh? This plot was better on Numb3rs. "Disturbed." Episode #100. Look it up. (that said, Abby was brilliant in her part of the story. As always. Because Abby is better than everyone, ever.)
-Oh, my God. Now I remember the real reason I cannot watch this show: THE FUCKING MAGICAL TOUCH SCREENS. I can't even...quite...put into words how violently this makes me want to hurt people? I just hate them. I hate touch screens in any way, shape, and form, and this show uses them in every episode. No, I don't know why I have an irrational hatred of them. But I do. Don't try and talk me out of it.
-I love that Abby's love for animals is a routinely-mentioned fact of life.
-Okay, now I see the point of abducting Abby without Gibbs there to rescue her. One, because he and his team tried to wrangle a G5 to get them there as fast as possible the minute they found out (see! Gibbs raises all hell when it comes to protecting her)...
-...and two, because Eric is definitely an appropriate substitute. He's not quite as cute as I remember, but he's a hell of a lot easier to bear than the gun-toting jackasses or the psychologist whom I can't help but think of as a mouth-breather. And his earnestly smitten crush on Abby is pretty adorable. I approve of seeing them go out for drinks, even at a lame party bar. Not to mention, the signing at the end? Too lazy to look up what they said right now, but always cute.
-Also cute: Abby knowing that the first thing she has to do, immediately post-rescue, is run off and assure Gibbs that she's fine and he doesn't have to beat down any fools for their incompetence. Thank you for placating me, writers. I appreciate the attention to detail.
-Callen & Kensi as a vicious couple seeking a divorce were admittedly funny. Almost as funny as the ruckus Kate & Tony raised that one time, where they essentially behaved like Jerry Springer guests and she was twirling her gum around her finger. I don't even know which season it was; I just found an ancient clip on my computer and found it enchanting.
-Wait, seriously? Callen's supposed to be the guy in charge? Like I believe that. Bring Macy back! My
-In conclusion, this spinoff is terrible, and while I will watch it again any/every time Abby comes over to play...the rest of the time, I shall avoid it like the plague.
-Law & Order: UK: Finished the season! The best part is who briefly shows up as a guest star in episode 12: Anjli Mohindra, a/k/a The Sarah Jane Adventures' Rani! Regardless of my actual feelings on Rani, the fact that I have reached a point where I can start recognizing guest stars on British shows will always be exciting to me.
From episode 10 or 11; I lost track of which --
Matt: What did you do today, Matt? Oh, you know, the usual. Poked through 17 rat-infested, pee-ridden skips in a rubbish dump.
Ronnie: You know what you need, son? A bit of PMA: Positive Mental Attitude. You'd be surprised what people chuck out. That sofa bed in my spare room, for instance.
Matt: No. I've slept in that! You said that was from Ikea!
Ronnie: Well, it was, originally.
Heeeeeee! This is why they're my favorites.
Oh, Matt. Really? Did you have to give Angela a big, ostentatious smooch on the cheek to thank her for a job well done? AWKWARD. I feel like fit, attractive men should take a course in recognizing unrequited love and how to act accordingly, because it seems to happen AN AWFUL LOT in fiction, these men being oblivious to women with super-obvious crushes on them. Which is embarrassing. For me. As a viewer.
That's all I have to say, as the case stopped being interesting the moment Steel and his nettlesome, obsessive bulldogging showed up. It's like, I can't even tell when bad guys claiming innocence are lying anymore - and sometimes I don't care if they are - because I just want to see him lose.
1x13: Um, I don't know; I kind of lost my ability to pay attention somewhere along the way - marathoning this show is maybe not the best idea I've ever had - but I am very fond of Devlin vs. Brooks conflict. Especially if it gives the former an excuse to ask Alesha for secret file-snooping investigations as a favor.
Or for anyone to describe Matt as "your boy-band partner." Heehee.
And to my relief, nothing major or earth-shaking happened to the characters, which is good, because even if this is an international franchise known for longevity, it's also British TV and you can never be too careful about how little you trust them.
Now you are at the "leave a comment" button. If you use it, try to focus on the positive things more than the hatey things. I know there are a lot of the latter, but honestly, I got in one of my "thinking a mile a minute" moods and most of this post came out stream-of-consciousness rather than being edited for some semblance of coherency, and it seems so much easier to write down my cranky thoughts than my happy ones unless the happy ones are utterly overwhelming.