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

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Prison Break: VS

There are four hours left of this final season of Prison Break before it’s all over, so I guess they can be allowed a slow episode. This episode was entitled “VS.” or “Vs.” depending on where you looked. That’s because there was an ain’t-you-clever double meaning there. There are now three factions fighting against one another, each one with a member of the Burrows-Scofield family. Mama Christina is trying to broker a deal for Scylla. Lincoln, working with the company, is trying to get it back for The Company so he can earn his freedom from their machinations. And Michael and Sarah just want to see it all come crashing down.

Surprisingly, Michael has the least well thought out overall plan at the moment, though he also has the most relevant and valuable information. Of the brothers, Michael has always been the brains. Maybe that’s why they’ve got Lincoln and his crew basically failing to get true information out of the other meaning of the title, a man by the initials V.S.

Vincent Sandinsky insists he’s an innocent pawn in all of this; he doesn’t even know Christina Scofield. Good thing for him Michael and Sarah stole his Blackberry because it tells a very different story. So that’s where the main plot is headed, though I don’t know yet what Christina wants with VS.

The problem with these teams on this show is you can never trust all of your players. In this case, as in many cases, that means Bagwell. Apparently, since the General doesn’t trust Lincoln, he has T-Bag working on the side for some sort of other deal I’m sure he has no intention of following through on.

T-Bag revealed to the General that Christina has Scylla and that they’re all in Miami, so now the General is heading south. So that means there will be all four factions fighting pretty soon. Things are definitely heading to a dramatic climax, and the clock is ticking.

But not just for the imminent end of Prison Break, but for Michael and Sarah’s chances at a normal life. Sarah is preggers. That means they have less than eight or nine months to have this thing completely done and be settling down to raise little prison breakers of their own.

I wonder if the writers will actually give the brothers a “Happily Ever After” when this long nightmare of theirs is over? It would almost seem too good to believe, but after all they’ve gone through, they deserve some happiness.

Mahone deserves some peace as well, though I’m not sure where he would find it. On the flip side, I want to see Self and Bagwell get what’s coming to them, and I mean in the worst possible Saw scenario way.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

CSI: If I Had A Hammer

"If I Had a Hammer..." was marketed as the episode which had the CSIs likely releasing a person who was convicted of a crime that he had no part in. The episode started out this way, but it quickly turned into something different, leaving me feeling a little duped.

It was Catherine's first solo case and the technology and requirements for conviction were primitive compared to 2009. Jeremy Kent was convicted for robbery and the murder of an elderly man. What Kent didn't know at the time was his court-appointed attorney was conspiring against him and had another one of his clients testify in trial, saying that Kent made a full confession while in his cell.

I was taken aback by this, quite frankly. To think that your lawyer would do such a thing is pretty frightening, especially for someone facing a murder rap and would be facing the possibility of life in a state penitentiary.

After eighteen years of reading books about the law, Jeremy Kent decided it was time to file an appeal and managed to get the evidence reviewed once again. It's rare for this show to depict a guy representing himself in court.

Kent wasn't innocent of the murder. He was involved, but what the CSIs did learn was that he wasn't the only one who was guilty. His then-girlfriend was an accomplice. She was pregnant at the time and went on to have the child while the father rotted away in prison.

Sabrina was in for quite a shock when the police showed up on her doorstep and brought up what happened that night. She had a husband and a few kids and thought that she was done with that night.

Kent seemed to know that he wouldn't get released from prison, but at least with Sabrina going to court, he'll finally get to see the son he has never seen. It's too bad that Sabrina kept the boy from his father like that - Kent probably would have never appealed the conviction. This story seemed to take a while to get where it was going, but it proved entertaining nonetheless.

At times CSI reminds me of House when there are glaring science problems. In this case, I had an issue with the recovery of the hammer. It's unfathomable to think that the blood and the fingerprints would have survived. Wind, rain, and the tree encasement, all would have removed those pieces of evidence from the murder weapon.

This ridiculous use of creative licensing with the science and the terrible acting in the scene where Sabrina and her husband parted ways dragged down what was only a decent story to begin with.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Supernatural: Jump the Shark

Well, not really, but the writers were having some fun with one of the tenets of the phenomenon. Occasionally referred to as “Cousin Oliver Syndrome,” the sudden inclusion of new family, especially children, is an oldie, but goodie, in the shark jumping world. And more often than not, it brings with it disastrous results. Thankfully, while Sam and Dean did have a shiny new brother to meet, that’s where the similarities with the ill-fated Cousin Oliver ended. Although, I had to admire the attention to detail with Cousin Oliver’s diner.

I’ll admit it, when I first heard rumblings that Sam and Dean were going to meet their long lost brother, I was not amused. I know, I should be much more trusting than that with the Supernatural writers. But even after assuring myself that there would be more to the story, I still came into the episode sure that I didn’t like the new Winchester before I even met him. And then two surprising things happened.

First, I actually did like Adam. As he convinced Sam and Dean that he was the real deal, and then as they argued over what to do about him, he quickly grew on me. I started thinking that this could maybe work as an occasional recurring character. Of course, that all went out the window with surprise number two, the fantastic double reveal as Sam and Dean both found out just what was going on at the same time.

Ghouls! I was right with Sam that it wasn’t really Kate, but when Adam turned to say, “I know,” it totally caught me by surprise. The following torture scene was pretty grisly, and had me on the edge of my seat the whole time. I kept thinking, “You don’t want to make Sam angry. You wouldn’t like him when he’s angry.” Kate’s little comment about his blood tasting different opened the door for dark Sam to make an appearance. Alas, it wasn’t to be, but the big showdown, complete with a ghoul head being blown completely off, was outstanding.

There wasn’t a lot of bigger picture to the story. At least not where Castiel, the seals, and the coming apocalypse are concerned. But they did continue down the long slow trail of the changing Sam and Dean. It was interesting that both of them saw Sam in Adam, but had wildly differing reactions. Dean’s felt like a logical extension of how he once felt about Sam, tempered with all that has happened since he returned. And Sam’s felt like the ratcheting up of the tensions that are pushing him in what is becoming a more and more destructive direction.

Bones: The Girl in the Mask

A friend of Booth’s, from Tokyo, calls and wants him to look for his sister whom he hasn’t heard from in while. They find her head in a marsh.

The brother brings this well know Japanese scientist with him. The scientist is like the Japanese version of Bones. The funny part of the show is that Angela and Hodgins have a little bet going as to whether the scientist is a “dude” or “dudette”. And you know Sweets, he is like “does it really matter?”…. uh yeah!

They realize the victim was drowned, and then decapitated. All in all, the sister had a roommate who was a prostitute. She had a “john” who liked to get” rough” with the girls. So when he got too rough with the roommate, the sister went to visit the “john” and warned him that she had a brother who was a cop. He got a bit angry and decided to drown her. Then he called the pimp to clean up after him. So the pimp cut her head off and put it on a stake to warn the roommate and other prostitutes to stay in line.

Unfortunately they could only get the “john” because he is the one who killed her, and they had to make a “deal” with the pimp to get the “john”. Got it?

So now the scientist is getting ready to leave so Angela boldly goes up and giver him/her a hug to find out….she comes back to Hodgins, Camille and Sweets saying ”it moved, he’s a guy”…lol.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Fringe: Bad Dreams

I really love it when Olivia works someone over, like she did in the this photo. But wow, this episode of Fringe was one psychological creep-fest from start to finish. They really had me feeling like something eerie was about to happen, and sure enough, a bunch of eerie stuff DID happen.

Just the idea that someone could possess mind-control abilities is creepy, and now it looks like at least one of our main characters -- Olivia, a.k.a. "Olive" -- might be in that situation. The scene on the street with Nick gathering followers and taking them to the rooftop gave me goosebumps. Olivia was really in a tough spot. Either shoot the guy with the mind-control powers, or let everyone die.

It was a good call on her part. And darkly funny when one of the people launched themselves off the roof and crashed into the car below, leading Walter to quip, "I sure hope Agent Dunham meant to do that." It's indicative of the Fringe writers' ability to be both creepy and funny at the same time.

And it's finally getting back around to ZFT and William Bell (and how cool to hear Leonard Nimoy's voice at the end, saying "Do we know what triggered it?") But oy, that video that Walter was watching. I've known that someone experimented on Olivia when she was a child, but did I know for sure it was Walter Bishop and William Bell? I think this was the first time I had something definitive on that. And how does Nina Sharp fit into it? She must have been part of it from the beginning.

I'll leave you with Nick's chilling rooftop monologue to Olivia: "I think they meant for us to forget. I did what they told us. I waited to be called up, stayed fit, stayed focused, stayed ready, the call never came. It never came. That man with the glasses showed up at the hospital. He spoke all the old words. He said, they're coming, what was written will come to pass. He said he knew how to wake me up. I want to stop hurting people."

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Chuck Vs. The Colonel

How many kinds of awesome (and Awesome) can you cram into one episode of Chuck? I think Ie found out, as "Chuck vs. the Colonel" finds Chuck running off with Sarah, Casey assigned to find them, Fulcrum hot on their tail, and some serious drama going down at the Buy More.

Let us now praise Captain Awesome. Ever since Devon caught that glimpse of General Beckman on Chuck's computer screen, I'd been wondering how long it would take him to find out about Chuck's spy life. It starts out as concern (Chuck hasn't been coming home) and grows into suspicion (why, that John Casey seems downright obsessed with Chuck!). Jeff and Lester give Devon the rundown on Casey's stalker-like behavior — which even an accomplished stalker like Jeff thinks is sick — and before long, Devon's trapped behind gates in Casey's apartment. There's no explaining that away, really, so Chuck confesses: he's a government asset, Chuck and Sarah are his handlers, and right now, he needs Devon to be, you know, Awesome. Devon accepts his mission with a jaunty salute, but he can barely get words out when Ellie confronts him. Good thing he's got prewedding jitters to blame.

Speaking of which: Chuck returns with Ellie's "wedding present," one Stephen Bartowski. But that doesn't come without a fight — one complete with government bombers. Fulcrum's had Chuck's dad locked up underground working on the new Intersect; little does anyone — including Chuck — know that he's actually building a program to get the Intersect out of Chuck's brain. The scene at the drive-in had so many wonderful moments: Roark taking his Steve Jobs-esque keynoting to the big screen; the identical agents in their identical cars; Stephen telling Chuck it's OK for him to open his eyes ("It's all for you"). I love the scene of them driving away as the theater behind them goes up in a wave of flames and the small smile on Chuck's face when his dad tells him he's really free.

Meanwhile, Emmett's fully installed in Big Mike's old job at the Buy More, even arranging for marlin removal. He tries to woo the now-friendless Morgan to the dark side (love the callback to the "ass man" gag), and it takes Anna's urging to get Morgan to admit he has dreams beyond the Buy More: being a Benihana chef in Hawaii ("I'm way past my prime, I'm not Asian, and I don't even know where to get the knives!"). Ultimately, he falls on his sword, takes off his shirt(s), and walks out in a blaze of glory to a slow clap. Dude.

Some other thoughts:

Chuck and Sarah make out! For real! And they'd totally have done more if not for Morgan swiping Chuck's wallet condom some indeterminate amount of time ago.

That's the best part of the hotel scenes, but there's also Casey getting chained to the radiator, then pulling the radiator out of the wall to get free, and then using the radiator as a weapon/shield. ("You can't kill me with that radiator. It is far too confined in this car for you to get the appropriate torque.")

Aww, all Casey wanted was to be invited to the mission!

So does Casey still get to be a colonel? It was sweet of him to praise (and protect) Sarah, but I hope he still gets his promotion! And will he ever kill that guy who keeps coming back?

Not only did Sarah and Casey get some good "stay in the car, Chuck" moments, but Chuck got one of his own, telling Sarah to stay put in the motel and then having her disappear out the bathroom window.

Really, the power goes out and all the holding cells in the Castle open?

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bones: Double Death of the Dearly Departed

This episode was pretty much one of the funniest ones they had. I am just going to cover the funny moments…but believe me….they are funny.

Hank, a worker at the Jeffersonian, died and everyone is going to his wake. No, I had never met Hank in all the years Bones has been on TV, but that’s OK. At the wake, Bones is confused as to who Hank is, but yet everyone else comes up with some story on how Hank helped them. Bones just has this dazed look on her face like “who was this guy”, heck, even Booth knew who he was.

Each one of the “squints” gives there respect by visiting the casket. As Bones approaches the casket, she starts looking at this guy a little more closely, too closely. She starts to touch him and even feels around inside his shirt. This freaks out Booth and he comes over, only to have Bones tell him that Hank was murdered or “translated” as Booth made up a code word for murdered.
Since Bones wants to take the body to the Jeffersonian to prove he was “translated” (lol), her and Booth decide to sneak the body out of the funeral home. So picture this: Hodgins is giving a short little eulogy when he sees B&B outside in the courtyard, carrying the dead body (Booth at the head and Bones at the feet), very clumsily. So as they are dropping him and fumbling, Booth motions to Hodgins to keep talking. The look on Hodgins face is priceless. His face is turning red, and is somewhat choking, but the people just think he is getting emotional as he talks about Hank.

So now that Bones and Camille take the body back to the Jeffersonian, Booth has to keep everyone from viewing the body (that’s not there). They close the casket and tell some people that the body is seeping fluid…YUK! that is just gross, but what do you expect from the squints.
Now that Bones is back at the funeral and figures out how he was killed, she sends Sweets and Hodgins to go and bring the body back. The widow and the bimbo that Hank had an affair with argue. Then Booth sees Camille and Sweets trying to carry the body back into the casket room and take the same route B&B did. Believe me they are just as funny in carrying the body as B&B were. So to distract everyone, Booth gets everyone to start singing “Swing low, sweet chariot” and even does a little jig while he’s at it. (very funny).

Sweets: “This is why I hate funerals”
Angela: “This is why I love funerals”

Good episode

By the way, the step mother killed him, so her son could get the inheritance.