"In cooking, as in all the arts, simplicity is a sign of perfection." - Curnonsky

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Eli Stone: Grace

Well I think we all know what the big to-do was regarding this whole episode: Mrs. Tom Cruise. If she wasn't married to Tom Cruise, I can guarantee you that there wouldn't have been nearly as big of a deal made about a former star of Dawson's Creek appearing on Eli Stone. Certainly she didn't make herself into an international sensation with her performance on Batman Begins. Hell, she was replaced in that for the sequel.

So how did Mrs. Tom Cruise do? Well, I won't say that she brought a whole new level of magic to the show, because it has plenty of that already. But she proved a nice diversion, and not too distracting from the ongoing plotlines. From her opening musical number, in which she performed very well, to the final moments on-screen with Eli, she showed quite a range of talent. Maybe Tom will let her out of the compound more often to get some more acting gigs. She should remind him that's what she did before she became Mrs. Tom Cruise.

Legal Motions

In the end, I'm not going to say that I completely understand the point of Eli's vision, or of Nathan's actions in response to his dad's notebook. I guess Dad knew Nathan would find the notebook at just the right time and then wanted him to send Grace the ticket but not tell Eli about it. Man, Dad's visions were a helluva lot more specific (and far reaching) than Eli's. Maybe Eli's will grow with time.

The continuing evolution of Jordan Weathersby is interesting to watch. I fully expected him to get huge resistance from the rest of the partners, especially Posner and Klein, and it was great to see Katey Sagal back in that latter role. It's such a turnaround from how Jordan's character started last year, and it seems to have come upon him so abruptly I can certainly see how they'd think he'd lost it. I'm not even sure he hasn't.

Isn't it a shame that no matter how many times Eli proves himself to Taylor, by the very next episode she's resisting everything he says or does or thinks. At least he has Maggie in his corner. Poor guy.

The "visions" have been tremendously toned down this season thus far, as have been the extravagant musical numbers. Is it a budget issue or a modification of the direction of the show? Maybe less visions and more traditional legal maneuverings is on the horizon. Personally, I hope not because as goofy as some of them could be, it was those visions that really made Eli, and Eli for that matter, stand out. In fact, the case that was at the center of this week's episode was pretty mundane.

Ultimately, I'll say Grace was a bittersweet presence for Eli Stone. I'm not sure that I buy into the notion that they were just there to show the other that happiness was still possible for people like them. I think I'd have rather them choose an actress with some more availability than Mrs. Tom Cruise and actually give Eli a relationship for awhile. They could always kill her off if they wanted to move in a different direction.

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