Friday, February 29, 2008
You just have to watch this — but you might want to be sure there's nothing breakable around first, because the urge to move might overtake you. To check it out and start doing dweeby dance moves similar to Timberlake's in this video, click below:
Sometimes I think FNL just let its cast grow too big; even I'm having trouble remembering the last time we saw some of these people. Take Lyla: After a several-episode absence, she popped up as the new co-host of a Christian teen radio show that Tim Riggins prank-calls while he's hanging out with Jason Street. (Yes, I said Jason Street. I can cancel that missing persons' alert now.) While the radio show — and the associated makeout session with the boy formerly known as Logan from Gilmore Girls — came out of virtually nowhere, a few things about it worked.
Onto Smash: As skeptical as I am of the idea that his mom and Noelle's parents would throw a dinner party to announce that a black guy and a white girl shouldn't date, this was an intriguing story. Dillon's a place where players of all colors share space on the field relatively easily, but I've also seen how tenuous that racial truce is, and I'd believe an interracial relationship could still raise some eyebrows. I wish I could have seen a little more of that eyebrow-raising before this episode's big blowout, though — not to mention some more of Smash and Noelle actually dating, rather than her acting as his football adviser.
Some other thoughts:
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Other than that, this was really well written, and I liked how the ADAs met up with the SavingsMart execs. Seems like L&O is still a bit apprehensive about giving Linus Roache a lot of courtroom scenes (for mainly two reasons: we like McCoy and Roache is not Waterston in the courtroom). That meeting was a good way to give Cutter some good screen time.The SavingsMart story from the secret relationship to the whole toothpaste scandal was really good, in my opinion. Even if it was totally "ripped from the headlines," the story was believable, despite the twists and turns.
Also ... try imagining Jack McCoy shopping for a pink tricycle for his niece. Hmmm.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Honestly, I'm hoping that this episode signifies the end of it since Sean seems to finally be willing to forgive Christian. They physically fought about it for the second or third time and the whole plot is just stale at this point. Just let Julia sleep with Christian and wait for him to disappoint her. I know he will. Whether they're in love or not, he never was a one woman man. Plus Gina ("Hey asshole." I love it.) is back and I know Christian won't be able to keep his hands off her.
I had forgotten that Dawn donated one of her kidneys to Liz.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
"I Drink Your Milkshake" references have been all the rage ever since There Will Be Blood hit theaters last year. But nothing could be funnier than this parody from Saturday Night Live as the basis for a Food Network show that finds Daniel Plainview criss-crossing the country in search of the perfect milkshake.
Bill Hader does an eerily spot-on impression of the now-Oscar-winning Daniel Day-Lewis, and Fred Armisen makes an appearance as No Country for Old Men's Anton Chigurh, complete with deadly air tank and Javier Bardem pageboy. But you've got to watch to the very end for my favorite part: guest host Tina Fey poking fun at Juno's hipster dialogue. "My kudos to whoever shook this shake, magnum."
So if I recall, the last episode ended with Michael being brought out of the prison, presumably to solitary confinement. After the two escape attempts, the new general put two and two together and figured Scofield had something to do with it. So they threw Michael in some sort of mini-greenhouse/chicken coop cell. In the hot Panama sun, it didn't take him long to revise his plan and start talking to the general.
This was interesting though. Michael went through with this extremely dangerous course of action fully aware that any mess up could get LJ killed. It shows you his motives though. While I believe he truly fears for the safety of his nephew, getting revenge for Sarah's death seems to be at the top of his list. He was willing to lie to Lincoln (recall that "this is part of the plan" crap) to make sure Gretchen got apprehended and as a result, Michael got his face time with her. Getting out of prison is now just supplementary to his main goal: killing Gretchen, or at least "making her pay." Of course, Michael is on to Whistler now too. He now knows that the meeting he witnessed was more than just a casual encounter. Obviously, Michael was always suspicious, but now his curiosity is truly piqued. That and he's pissed.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Monday, February 18, 2008
Subtlety has always been a hallmark of FNL, so I'm annoyed at how the Coach Dickes situation ended. I loved him continuing to be a dick(es) by calling his players "girls" and generally being the opposite of Coach Taylor in every way. I even believe he was capable of tackling an opposing player mid-game just to show his own team how it's done. But for the explanation to be that his wife is dying and he doesn't "have a game plan for that?" Groan.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
It doesn’t take Nellie McKay long to start her crusade against society’s self-appointed thought police. It takes even less time for McKay to pick her first target: feminists. “Feminists don’t have a sense of humor,” McKay admonishes straight away, no refrain. “Feminists just want to be alone/Feminists spread vicious lies and rumor/they have a tumor on their funny bone,” from Nellie's latest CD, Obligatory Villagers. We, the listeners were put on immediate notice that the next 1 1/2 hours would be a different type of experience.
Nellie McKay appeared last night at Kalamazoo Valley Community College. The singer-songwriter is like a young Bob Dylan: hard to categorize, impossible to imitate and subversive, as are all independent thinkers.
She was cyncial, yet also hopeful about our world of violance, corruption and grand stupidity. And she's on a journey of discovery she sometimes shares with the public and sometimes doesn't.
Her music, an unusual mix of cabaret-style songs, rap and jazz, is understandably challenging. If the blonde bombshell can avoid alienating broad cross-sections of the people she depends on to buy her albums, she has the charm, the skill, and the pedigree to make noise in the music business.
At first listen, she’s folksy, talking more than singing. McKay keeps her part of the deal by bringing consistent quality. Perhaps the best descriptor of McKay’s unique sound comes from the starlet herself, who deems her music “schizophrenic voodoo,” a phrase that fits so well.
Did I like the concert? I have to admit "no". I didn't get her type of humor or satire. The good size crowd (mostly the NPR set) laughed at her lyrics or giggled when she went got on her soap box about the election, Columbia University, and her sermon on being a vegan. I personally think they were just being kind and considerate. However, I do have to admit she was a master on the piano. If she just would have played the piano and left the vocals out, it would have been an enjoyable evening, at least for me.
The "CSI Effect" was awesome in this episode. The scenes of the body mechanics (bull and rider) were totally cool. As for the show itself: coming on strong with the quick humor and sexual innuendos. This is the CSI I grew to love over the past eight years.
"Bull" was very well researched and written. Nice to see the gang back in full swing. Nick having excellent mitigation skills. Warrick's is back to work, even though the "office mole" has not been reveled yet. Grissom's is still down over Sara's departure, but seems more open to talk about it. Hodge's forthcoming about his eclectic movie genera (scary). Wendy's demented storytelling. And one of the better bar scene fights I have seen in quite a while. Humor all around. Overall, I did like this episode very much.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
I don't know about you but I really have a problem watching holiday episodes after New Years. I guess, like many people, I have just had enough "holiday cheer" and when I see those references, I feel like I'm watching an old episode. Maybe I should just be happy that there are new episodes at all.
Adding Alyssa Milano to the cast is a stroke of genius. Now Earl can live a more normal life with a girlfriend who is trying to achieve similar goals. Together, they can strive to be better people and make the world a better place. Of course, along the way, their white trash leanings will offer a few rough patches but that's to be expected.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
"New love" could mean lots of things. The most obvious variation is falling in love with someone you've been seeing for awhile. Then there's that person you get your coffee from everyday because you're secretly a little obsessed with them. Or maybe it's slightly inappropriate, like your insanely good-looking and insightful co-worker with whom you'd enjoy spending V-Day in another life, perhaps.
None of these have necessarily been me of course, I'm just saying.
For those of you who have recently fallen hard or are working up the nerve to talk to someone you've eyed from afar, I present a playlist that helps you indulge these feelings. To see some of my suggestions, just hit play.
"The one where The Simpsons live."
That's not to say that the Simpsons were entirely missing from this episode. It was Homer's accidental destruction of Fast-Food Boulevard (1972-2008) that actually helped move the presidential primaries up to a time before the New Hampshire primaries. If you think about it, Homer has probably done more damage to Springfield in the time he has lived there than any alien invader or army could do. If Springfield existed in the real world the place would be utterly and totally broke, or bonded up for so many generations that the ape people who conquered Earth in the 27th century would be left with the burden of paying that bond off.
While there were a few good laughs in this episode, and I found the show as a whole pretty entertaining, there were some disappointing points. One was the amount of time it took to bring Ralph in as the presidential candidate. It took nearly two whole segments before the young Wiggum's name was even mentioned. Then, he only got one segment, at the end, to do what he needed to do. Hey, I understand that this episode was a take on the hype that surrounds the presidential primaries (even more so this time around than last), and they did a good job at showing all of the absurdities.
Perhaps I've gotten used to an episode of The Simpsons being tied up in a nice bow after 22 minutes.
The appearance of Cheesy McMayor seen on the Town Hall Stage. Gee, he looks and sounds an awful lot like Mayor McCheese from McDonalds past.
Bill Clinton asking the air 'When is she going stop holding that over my head' when he asks Hillary what he did so wrong for him to be putting up campaign signs on people's lawns.
A return of the Republican Party headquarters for Springfield as well as those who are part of the committee.
The Democratic Party headquarters is in a Trader Earth's, which is making fun of the Trade Joe's organic supermarket chain.
Homer's phone call to the mailroom guy to get him out of the way so Burns could go home. His use of 'Happier...Happier' is something that is utilized all of the time on the show.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
But this time, I needn't have worried. Yes, the tornado was pretty awful — but it set up a story that put football front and center at last. The rest of the episode outweighed the cheesiness of the setup.
I think I love Friday Night Lights best when Eric Taylor gets to be Coach Taylor, and he was all Coach in this episode. Having a rival at his school was a test of character, and no matter how much Coach told his guys to respect their rivals, things were bound to get messy. (Literally messy, in this case, with shaving cream and food fights and even pee-soaked towels — ew.) Coach tried to set an example, to put his rival in his place while still being civil — but every so often, even Eric Taylor needs to throw someone up against a wall and tell him what's what. Did anyone else literally pump their fist at the TV?
Speaking of close quarters: Riggins living in the Taylors' garage was probably too perfect a setup to last for long, but I love the way it shook up the family and picked on Shelly and Tami's insecurities. Riggins brought their issues to the forefront — Shelly ogling him, Tami accusing her of flirting, Shelly calling Tami on treating her like a child, and so on. Tami telling Shelly it's no wonder she's single is probably the most hurtful thing she could have said; likewise, Shelly spitting back that Gracie's doctor says hello got to the heart of Tami's fears about work and family.
And Julie's part in it was no less brilliant. I'm a little surprised Julie and Riggins ended up at the same party, but hey. How tragic that Riggins stepped up in a big way, slapping Julie's drunken suitor down, just before getting caught hovering over Julie in what appeared to be a compromising situation. Granted, when you're putting Coach's 16-year-old daughter to bed, no amount of "it's not what it looks like" can save you. But Riggins was anything but provocative there; he was downright brotherly.
The tornado's aftermath swept up Tyra and Landry, too — and while I liked their storyline, it also bugged me. Landry has always thought he's tougher than he is, so I wasn't surprised to see him taking on Tyra's suitor. I also wasn't surprised to find Tyra struggling to figure out Landry's place in her life right now; she no longer needs him, and it's true that normally, a guy like him wouldn't be seen with a girl like her. My problem: The murder is practically a non issue now. How would there be gossip about Landry and Tyra being together without any chatter about how, oh, you know, Landry killed a guy, possibly for her? Nothing in this episode seemed like it needed the murder plot to set it up.
Some other thoughts:
Buddy Garrity: Worst salesman ever? His "I love you" pitch to Pam was an honest try, but I think he's going to have to accept that he lost his wife to some tofu-eating hippie.
So Matt and Carlotta are still together. Yawn.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
From now until V-Day, I'm posting playlists that might capture how you're feeling about romance this year. Last week I posted songs for the single person, and today I found this playlist that capture different variations on heartbreak and being "over it" when it comes to relationships. What's sweet for some this time of year can feel like salt in the wound for others, and a solid playlist might help the less lovey-dovey folks among us know you're not alone.
Overall, a good episode with some very strong characters. Like I said, a great start for the Season!
Monday, February 11, 2008
I had two good things happen in this episode of The Simpsons. First, I finally had an episode that didn't focus on Homer. Second, I had a guest voice that was actually utilized. Actually, there were two guest voices used well; I just didn't know about one of them until the credits were rolling. More as I progress.
This was another episode that could be filed under 'Marge's Heart is too Big to Keep Her Promises' with a sub-heading of 'Marge Gets Involved With a Convict. Again.' I know that Marge is one of the nicest people to live within the confines of Springfield. Sometimes, her achievements in niceness backfire on her, as they did this week.
All Marge was trying to do was to get Dwight David Diddlehopper, voiced by Steve Buscemi, to give himself up after a botched bank robbery. But, because she promised to visit this bug-eyed criminal in prison she gave herself more trouble. This is fairly typical Marge when it comes to the criminally insane. When she tried to help Jack Crowley get back to society in the episode 'Pokey Mom' all she got was trouble.
I think that this is Marge's bane of existence. When Homer gets into trouble he can, for some reason, get out of it without too many repercussions. For Marge, though, there's always some type of effect from the promises she makes. Take a look at what happened here. If Marge had visited Dwight he would have served his sentence. Because she avoided it he escaped and stalked her throughout the town. Of course, this is all animated, so none of my ravings mean anything at all.
Now, for a few months I've ranted how the guest voices were not being used to their maximum ability. This episode that argument can stand down as Steve Buscemi had a fairly meaty role as Dwight. Maybe this was to make up for the small cameo he had as himself in the episode 'Brake My Wife, Please'. Whatever the reason, Steve did a good job in the role. He even had a catchy phrase -- a loudly snarled 'Dammit!'. The funniest time that this was used was when he escaped the penitentiary through the prison waste pipe, only to realize that the Clean Spring Water pipe was just a few feet away.
Another guest voice on this week's show that took me by surprise was Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Since she wasn't credited in the promos for the show I didn't realize that she was Snake's (Three D's?) girlfriend until I saw her name in the credits. I wondered why Snake's scene, where he complained about his biography being edited in Wikipedia, was included. It was a small moment in the episode but it was used well.
While I thought the episode was funny and focused well on Marge, I do have one small complaint. When am I going to see some Bart/Lisa episodes? These two have have had very little screen time over the last month ... I don't think Bart said more than one or two words this entire episode.
Over to the highlights:
Blackboard gag: I am not a FDIC-Insured Bank
Firsts of the season: Homer having a conversation with his brain, and an appearance from Gil.
Poor Gil, the man has worse luck than Britney Spears.
Homer working on his Superman novel after arriving early for Lisa's award ceremony.
'Oh great! We're being robbed by Johnny and Clyde.'
Chief Wiggum not understanding that a robbery was in progress. Finally, with stick figures he realizes that it's a 'shootie-stealy'.
Marge's re-marry list: Lindsay Naegle, Booberella, Bly the Dancer, Also: Feed Cat
Krusty is named worst clown of 2007 by Laffways magazine, beating out even Carlos Mencia.
Dwight being hit by countless blue-dye packs, including one shaped like a bank employee.
Chief Wiggum learns hostage negotiation tactics from a DVD of, what else, The Negotiator.
Ted Nugent wants you to say 'No' to a proposition banning crossbows from schools.
Johnny Stabbo's many references to the electric chair.
While scanning the skies of Springfield to land at the penitentiary we see Ralph Wiggum flying away while holding a number of balloons.
In the Itchy & Scratchy episode -- is it me or were the jet pilots wearing X-Wing fighter helmets?
Names of various rides at Plaster Mountain Theme Park: Dilbert's Flying Cubicle, Tilt N' Spew, Mr. Frogs Mild Ride, FedEx Presents: The Bathroom, It's a Long Line
Krusty and Dr. Hibbert meeting up at the amusement park and talking about their harrowing hostage experience. Seems to me they were referencing The Nine in that scene.
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Album of the Year: Amy Winehouse Back to Black, but the Foo Fighters Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace is pretty good.
Record of the Year: Amy Winehouse "Rehab"
Best Male Pop Vocal: Seal "Amazing"
Best Female Pop Vocal: Amy Winehouse "Rehab"
Best New Artist: Amy Winehouse
Best R&B Song: Alicia Keys, "No One"
Best Rock Album: Bruce Springsteen Magic
Best Alternative Music Album: The White Stripes Icky Thump
Even at the ten minute mark, I was pleased with how many actual jokes were in this episode. Randy's "half-circle" joke, Earl's "wrote on a pillow case" joke and especially the "good for pillow" line. It's lines like these, the witty throw-away kind of comedy that shows how witty and clever a sitcom can be.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
So first up, songs that empower and celebrate life as a single person. Valentine's Day can kind of suck when everyone in your office gets flowers delivered except for you. Fear not, for there are plenty of songs that you can stick in your ear to drown out all those happy (or is it sappy?) displays of coupledom and make you feel good about being on your own. What songs do you listen to when you're single? For some of my suggestions, just hit play.
They really are, aren't they? Matt is pretty much full of it, most of the time. Granted he escaped death here, but when I consider his track record (white supremacists, transvestites, Scientology, foreskin removal), it's pretty safe to assume that he'll get wrapped up in something else before too long. That's why I found it so amusing when Sean apologized and Matt said he just really needed to grow up and stop being Sean's "child." Why? So he can graduate to more adult scheming? He's there already! Last I checked, you don't see too many eleven year olds cooking meth and raising a child with a former porn star. Matt has always led a screwed up life, so it's not as if any of this comes as a surprise. Fortunately, the rest of this Christmas themed episode took the torch from previous Nip/Tuck holiday installments and the results were hilarious.
Kimber is a bitch again! Speaking of something terrible happening, Jenna is not safe with Ram and his team of porn star nannies. Something is going to happen to that poor child.
I love the character of Rachel, the Israeli burn victim who's counseling Matt. She's exactly what Matt needs, someone to prove to him that things could be much worse.
Wilber, Annie, and Connor! They're alive!
The snowman got shot by Duke's wife! Again, only on Nip/Tuck.
So... was there anything in that antique box that Sean tried to give to Matt? Or was the whole point that it was empty? So his "dreams" could fit inside?
I loved how the Hedda Grubman Cosmetic Surgery Fund still exists! I had completely forgotten about it and I'm glad that someone finally took advantage of it.
Friday, February 8, 2008
By far, this was the most interesting episode of The Simpsons this season, incorporating humor, romance, and a little bit of science fiction into a tidy little plot. Not only were there elements of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind sprinkled throughout, but there was also a smattering of It's a Wonderful Life and Total Recall added as well. True, it was another Homer-centric episode -- one of too many this season, but the writers gave the show enough of a twist to keep it intriguing for me.
I think the most enjoyable part of the episode was Homer's journey into his memories via Professor Frink's memory machine (a Deja Viewmaster, as Homer mentioned). Using stills from the 400 previous episodes to show the memories he kept was a great idea. Some of those images were from all the way back in the first season. It was actually a nice tribute to the long history that the show has had. And, at least during the journeys without Memory Bart and Memory Lisa, it was taken pretty seriously.
The other part I enjoyed was Homer reliving his 39 (still?) years on the planet as he was falling to his supposed death. I thought it was great how they incorporated all of the stages in his life into such a short span of time. My favorite was all of the costumes Homer was shown wearing during the last part of the scene.
Some other items that tickled my fancy:
The prehistoric squirrel from Ice Age makes a cell-animated appearance in the first few moments of The Simpsons.
Moe's video on how to make the drink that blots out a person's memory. He pauses on a particularly bad shot of him, and his frame-by-frame movements don't make him look any better.
Krusty pulling a Mel Gibson at the Latin Grammy Awards.
Courtesy of Bart, Homer replacing the memory of his very first kiss with Marge with his very first kiss with Apu.
Speaking of Bart, he can whoop the ass of a 10-year-old and 20-year-old Homer.
While Homer is reliving his life he is shown drinking probably hundreds of cans of beer to make some wonderful designs.
Patty and Selma pushing Homer off of the Suicide Bridge than feigning agreement that it was all in the plans for his surprise party.
As I mentioned at the beginning of this review, I don't know why this episode of The Simpsons was kept until now to air. Granted, it wasn't the Best. Episode. Ever. Yet, it was one of those installments that should be given a better slot to gain interest. Frankly, I would have rather seen this during November sweeps than an episode where a guest voice is underutilized.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
I love this video for Ben Lee's song "American Television" for so many reasons. It's entertaining, colorful and so very, very 80s. The best part, though? Tiffani (Amber) Thiessen stars in the video, acting out spoofy scenes of various TV shows that were wildly popular a couple decades ago. And she's funny!
From Bruce Springstein to ALF to Doogie Howser, there's a lot for 80s-philes to enjoy here. To watch the video and see how many references you can spot in "American Television," click on the video and let me know what you spot.
The good news: If that's our last Pushing Daisies for quite some time, it left on a high note, with a great balance between drama and chuckle-out-loud cleverness.
It's a little embarrassing, but I wanted to cry from the second Young Ned took us back to Play-Doh world. That scene of Chuck stomping around in her dino costume was the moment in the "Pie-lette" that I knew this show was a keeper. And it set the tone perfectly for the episode, which was oh-so-cute and yet oh-so-heartstring-tugging — from the aunts comforting Ned and Chuck on the day they both lost their parents to Lily's drug-induced revelation at the end.
About that: Lily is Chuck's mom? Wha-huh? I'm glad there's something tying the aunts (er, mom-and-aunt duo) tighter into the series, but I wasn't expecting this. Lily's so caustic — "motherly" wouldn't come to mind — but I wonder how much of that is due to losing her only daughter. Plus: Does Vivian know? It seems like Chuck certainly doesn't. That twist also answers my question about what the show would do when the secret about Chuck's father was revealed: Why, they'll introduce a new secret!
But as for that first secret: Poor Chuck. Usually so chipper, she was really down in this episode — and no surprise, given that she'd just learned her soulmate killed her dad. She came so close to letting Oscar know her secret, to let it escape and "warm its toes in the sun." But she pulled back, for some reason, so now the only person who knows is Olive — and Olive thinks the whole "I was dead" thing was just a way for Chuck to stop talking. (Olive at her literal-minded best: "Is this an insurance scam?")
It would be easy to skip over the Corpse of the Week, but the case offered some comic relief in a heavy episode. It must have been fun for the writers, who usually work with such cheery material, to create the character of miserable little Abner ("I said lap dance, not tap dance!"). And the Wishy Wish lady being the "killa killa" was perfect, down to the jaunty tune that played as she claimed her victims and the benobo named Bobo who took care of her in the end.
Some other thoughts:
Oh hey, Emerson has a daughter! Yet another new secret.
Sight Gag O' The Week: I've gotta give it to the shotgun through the mail slot and straight into Ned's crotch.
Much as I loved Emerson and Ned's exchange with the coroner in his holiday sweater, Emerson's word vomit line was my favorite: "And you slipped in word vomit and fell on your ass and now you're covered in word vomit."
Oscar calling a bludgeoning "a unique sensory experience" was super creepy. I hope he's back when the show returns.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
The patient du jour was Dr. Joshua Lee. I've seen McNamara/Troy handle some insanely weird cases, so Lee's was nothing too out of the ordinary. Remove the alien implant from my back. Sure. While it was predictable (I knew his actual daughter would show up at the end), it was still compelling. I thought he was a great character. This show has never shied away from tackling oddball issues and I'd love too see the good doctor back again, maybe in four or five episodes to see if he knows "who" took him away. Aliens? NASA scientists?
As far as things being hidden, I was hoping that Sean and Eden's "affair" would stay secret a little longer, but Sean's full circle realization that he is indeed getting older came much faster than I expected. I wonder if his adverse reaction to the Ecstasy had anything to do with all the crap that Aiden's new age doctor pumped into him? Might Sean's problem be an indicator for what's in store for Aiden? Probably not since he's too minor a character for anyone to care if something happened to him. Sean is just old.
The biggest shock, for me anyway, was Kimber and Matt coming clean. Clearly, it was all Kimber's idea since she did all the talking. Whether Matt realizes it or not, Christian making that deal with Kimber was a good thing. Let her go back into porn. Good riddance. She was hurtful to Matt, and I actually did believe her when she said she never loved him. Two things though. First off, she kept Jenna at Ram's place. No way Christian is going to stand for that. Giving up the baby was part of the deal. Secondly, after Christian's tough love session, I really thought Matt would go into rehab. Instead, he tried cooking meth and lit himself on fire. Can he sink any lower? Besides into the hotel pool?
Julia threatened Eden. So what's Eden going to do to retaliate? She'll never sit still.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Henry is a singer-songwriter-bandleader-guitarist. He's young, good looking, and has an ingratiating stage presence. He discusses his music with his listeners, which is his prerogative, which is helpful to the first-timers to hear what he had in mind in composing his music. Some conversation were appropriate because most of his program consisted of new songs.
Henry is a composer with an offbeat sensibility. His lyrics are full of weird images and rhymes. Most of his numbers were quirky love songs, delivered to an unnamed subject, presumably female.
There is an apparent lack of emotion in Henry's music and not much humor. But cumulatively his songs do exert a fascination, marred only by the occasional blurring of a key word in a line through slurred pronunciation.
Henry doesn't have a great singing voice, but it is perfectly suited to his songs. Vocally, he operates in the middle register. His tempos are almost always leisurely and only a couple of numbers built to any real intensity. Henry is laid back in his stage presence and in his music, but that's clearly by intent.
Henry led a superior backup band consisting of an amazing drummer and a wonderful standup bass plyer. The band is onstage strictly for support and there were no solos. But the musicianship was high, even though the sameness of the tempos sometimes resulted in a sameness in the music.
I have to start with Landry, because his confession anchored the episode. Landry has always been at the moral heart of the show, and so it makes sense that once he'd admitted what he'd done, he'd want to be punished. As usual, Jesse Plemons sold every one of his scenes; I shudder to think how bad this story could have been with a less-capable actor. But the whole thing — from the confession itself, to telling Tyra what he'd done, to the decision not to press charges — felt way too neat to me. A cop's son — a Dillon Panther, no less! — confesses to murder, and the whole town isn't buzzing? That's tough to believe. Even tougher: that the police don't care that Landry dumped the body, nor that his father destroyed evidence. True, I would have hated to see Landry go to jail, but why take the show so far from its heart for a story with no consequences?
Speaking of the show's heart: we FNL fans like to crow that the show's not just about football, but I must say, the football parts of this season make no sense. Have the Panthers played a single game yet where they haven't been behind? And wouldn't Dillon be expecting more from its defending state champions?
I am still liking Santiago's development, however — even if his whole force-a-fumble, be-the-hero story was pretty much the landy plot from episode five. He's so tough, but he's terrified; he's the kind of kid who's always given up, and now he's surrounded by people (Coach, Buddy) who won't let him. His scenes from the football game really got me into his head, as he got rattled again and again before learning how to respond.
My favorite subplot of the whole night, though, was Jason's blind date with the pee girl. Jason finally gets the nerve to date while in a wheelchair and ends up with a girl who gets turned on by golden showers? Some luck. I loved the waitress getting the full wrath of Ms. Kinky while Jason cowered behind the kitchen doors. One glaring inconsistency, though: His parents freak when he spends one night with a girl, but they don't care when he sneaks off to Mexico?
Some other thoughts:
Riggins' meth-making roommate creeped me out in this episode, and I'm hoping Riggins is out of there for good. The scene with Coach wordlessly handing Riggins a sleeping bag was one of those little moments this show does so well.
Matt and the nurse: still boring. Kinda cute — making mole, aww — but boring.
Tami and Julie ended up in a good place at Gracie's christening, but it sure took a lot of work (and some crafty playing-dad-against-mom antics) to get there. That "a thank-you would be nice" fight was such a classic mother-daughter moment, it gave me chills.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Another couple whose relationship is changing, but in a very good way, is Sara and Pastor Eric. As soon as he started talking about people who believe they see the chief seeing him, I knew his faith had been restored and he’d return to his calling. And I’m glad. I’m also happy Sara and Eric can admit they're in love. Good luck with that whole no-sex thing.