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Our favorite couple came oh-so close to having their relationship outed to the one person who hasn’t figured it out yet in “Swan Song,” this week’s episode of Castle. For a woman who earned her way up the police chain of command, Captain Gates is kind of blind when it comes to Castle and Beckett. I mean, they’re not exactly being all that discreet around the station.
This week’s victim was a guitarist in a moderately successful band who happened to have a film crew tailing them for a documentary. Unfortunately, the murder was the only thing the crew couldn’t seem to catch on film, and it was up to our detectives to figure it out. But thanks to Gates wanting good PR for the department, the crew turned their band movie into a documentary chronicling the investigation.
Of course Beckett wasn’t comfortable in front of the camera, but Esposito went a little nuts under the lights. At first he was being kind of a big, goofy tool about the whole thing…busting out terrible and cheesy lines, showing off his body in tight shirts and trying to be bad-ass to the point of ridiculousness, but by the end he came around and showed the cameras the real Esposito, the guy who is a really great friend and partner to Ryan.
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What makes Homeland a good TV show, an entertaining, thrilling TV show, are its stories about terrorism, spycraft, politics and lies. What makes it a great TV show is that it is above all about the people involved in those stories — and in particular how being entangled in a world of lies and conflicting demands stresses them, damages them and in particular breaks them.
“The Clearing” advances the thriller subplot slowly, and takes our characters down some blind alleys, but it’s very revealing of Homeland’s human story. Each subplot is about a relationship whose members have genuine connections but also private motivations. Each wants something from one another, each knows something is wanted from them — even if they don’t know what it is — and each wants to figure out what in their world is real or, failing that, how to escape.
If I were to quibble about the season so far, it would be that Saul Berenson, a fascinating character in Season 1, has not had many spotlights of his own. In the first season he was integral to the terrorist hunt and an important counterpart to Carrie: just as her work cost her mental stability, his work cost him his marriage. And one of the most revealing episodes for him last season took him on a cross-country ride with terrorist suspect Aileen, the privileged, radicalized American terrorist. You might think they had little in common, but their shared sense of hurt and humanity let Saul forge a key connection with her.
Now Saul needs Aileen again, but we find that there are limits to his understanding of her. He pleads with her; he confronts the warden who resents Saul’s attempt to bigfoot him; he brings her wine and cheese. He feels that he knows her, he genuinely sympathizes and he again works a key revelation out of her.
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The seventh episode of Showtime’s “Dexter” for this season is titled “Chemistry” and Sunday night’s show starts with Dexter laying on his kill table, naked with Hannah. She climbs atop him and puts the knife to his throat. She asks if he does that to all of his women. Dexter doesn’t really have women, though, so he has no frame of reference. They wind up having sex again on the killing table.
Meanwhile, Debra is on a date with the crime writer, Sal Price. They’re doing a mix of flirting with discussion about Hannah and her family. Dexter drives Hannah back home.
Dexter: This can’t happen again.
Hannah: Which part? The horse tranquilizer?
Dexter: The sex part.
Hannah: Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.
She asks him if he’s still going to try and kill her, and he says no. She gives him a kiss on the cheek and leaves. As Dexter gets ready to go, he sees Price watching from his car. He knows Dexter covered up the blood evidence for Hannah, and he tries to get Dexter to go on the record with him. Dexter offers to give him Wayne Randall’s last words and thoughts instead, and Price says he’ll give it some thought.
LaGuerta talks to Debra about the Bay Harbor Butcher, and Deb says they may be sidetracked because they’re still trying to clear Sgt. Doakes, rather than just looking at the evidence.
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Of all the people best-equipped to deal with altered realities and venturing into them, you’d think that Walter Bishop would be at the top of most lists. But, as Friday’s Fringe demonstrated, things aren’t always as they seem… Here’re five questions about the wonderfully-titled “Through the Looking Glass and What Walter Found There”.
Who is Donald?
For the second time this season, we find out that someone called Donald – who Walter doesn’t remember, and the show seems suspiciously determined to hide from our view – helped Walter organize the plan against the Observers before the Fringe team was ambered. It’s clear that Walter’s identity is going to end up being something that’s important to the overall arc this season, which makes me wonder if we’ve already met Donald, in some other guise. My guess, based on little other than a suspicion that I’ll partially explain in a second? Donald is Captain Windmark. That’s why Windmark is so obsessed with capturing Walter, and yet can’t quite manage to do it…
Who is the “we” that helped Walter design the Pocket Universe? (And how did they do it?)
“We designed this for you,” VideoWalter said. But since when did Walter have the knowledge to construct alternate universes, never mind designing them so that they resembled Escher paintings? Was Donald part of the team…? Or was September, the Observer that crossed sides and teamed with the Fringe team at the end of last season, responsible? If that last option is the case – and it seems to be the most likely option at this point – then what else did he help Walter do before his disappearance?
Who is the child?
The questions of who the child Walter abandoned in the Pocket Universe was and why he needed to be hidden there were central to the episode, and left entirely unanswered purposefully. He was an apparently integral part of the plan to defeat the Observers, but why…? (Weirdly enough, the fact that he came from some Fringe case that Walter doesn’t remember struck me as odd, as well. Did the Fringe team have cases after the Observers invaded? Doesn’t that strike anyone else as weird?) Is he an empath, as Olivia assumed? Is he an Observer? Some kind of human/Observer hybrid? Either way, expect to see him again before too long, I suspect.
Last Resort changed things up a bit with “Another Fine Navy Day,” by using Memento-like story telling. In the middle of the episode, it got a bit confusing, but it ended up working brilliantly and I loved it. It was particularly nice to see Sam and Christine together, even if their interactions were just hallucinations.
Up until now, the leadership of the USS Colorado has been focused on their own survival and that of their crew. The hallucinations provided them an outlet to focus on their own personal needs and feelings.
Sam desperately misses Christine and worries about what the separation will do to their relationship. They have no mean of communication. While he recorded her a taped message, he hasn’t heard back yet. (Check out our interview with Jessy Schram for more on that video.) They are isolated from each other. And, the photo of Christine and Paul didn’t help the situation.
Even more telling was that shocking final reveal that Sam was hallucinating that Sophie was Christine. Sure he was hallucinating, but for him to connect Sophie with his love for Christine showed his growing feelings for Sophie.
Marcus continues to struggle with the loss of his son. He has pushed his feelings deep inside, so he can lead the USS Colorado through this crisis, the pain is still there. I loved his hallucination of the carrots being crayons and then the bedtime story.
His loss is going to stick with him and if he doesn’t deal with it, it could prevent him from doing what’s right or necessary for his and the crew’s survival. His outburst at Curry during the negotiations could be tame compared to what could happen.
This week on The Vampire Diaries, ‘The Killer’ comes out to play. When Connor takes Jeremy, Matt and April hostage in an attempt to draw out the vampires of Mystic Falls, things don’t go go to plan. Stefan is forced to try and keep Connor alive during the rescue, which means vervain-ing (and therefore annoying the heck out of) Damon, who wants Connor dead. But it’s Elena who eventually murders the hunter, pushing her closer to the end of the crazy-cliff, and inadvertently making Jeremy the next hunter of the Five…
Firstly, sorry for the late review, dear reader. I had a one hell of a headache yesterday which, coincidentally, is probably what the entire population of Mystic Falls has everyday. I wouldn’t blame them, either; this episode was like a showcase for Stefan’s bad decisions.
I get him not wanting to tell Elena about the possibility of a cure, because the only thing worse than a disappointed Elena is a hopeful Elena. That never ends well. But I really wish Stefan had followed through and told Damon about the cure like he initially wanted to do. It would have saved him from Damon’s anger and would have given him backup at the Mystic Grill, which means Elena probably wouldn’t have gone there.
And if she hadn’t gone to the Grill, she wouldn’t have killed Connor. I like that she did, I really do — he threatened the people she loves and it made sense for her to kill him. In addition, it threw a spanner into the works for Klaus and Stefan, which was great. Alas, now we’re left to deal with angsty, crazy Elena. Can someone please convince that girl to shut off her humanity before she angsts the rest of us into a coma? (If Elena would then kill annoying April, I’d be much obliged.)
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Beverly Hills, what a thrill! When Max wanted to take Naomi on a camping trip, things weren’t quite as fun as they were in Troop Beverly Hills, but there were interesting developments nonetheless. Into the Wild” was all about Naomi trying to tell Max about that certain kiss.
Here’s a refresher: Two weeks ago, Naomi Clark-Miller – as she’s apparently calling herself – attempted to butter up her husband’s business partner Alec. Little did she know that Alec was setting her up in order to make it look like they kissed and she betrayed Max. Somehow in this whole equation, Alec told Max what he did and Max ended up mad at Naomi for NOT telling him.
Max wasn’t mad that his best friend and business partner set up his wife to make it look like they were kissing. Instead, he was peeved Naomi didn’t share it with him right away. Did it ever occur to Max that Naomi was scared of his exact reaction? She was afraid he wouldn’t believe her, would turn away from her and ultimately side with Alec no matter what. I’d say Naomi’s fears were confirmed. Yes, trust is important, but shouldn’t that trust extend to believing that your husband’s business partner isn’t scheming against you?
I’m Team Naomi on this one, sorry Max.
Speaking of trusting people, Silver should know better than to sign off on having nude photographs taken without reading the fine print. I know she’s stressed, but have the words “nude photos” ever ended up linked to something positive in a sentence? No. It always ends up that they were leaked, hacked and are now all over the Internet. I have to say that this new side of Silver could be interesting, though. If it makes her feel sexy and more alive then sure, go for it.
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I know I keeping saying it week in and week out, but honestly The Walking Dead keeps on managing to be create more emotion that has everyone on the edge of their seat while watching. Once again the writers have proven no one is safe in this new world, and we should hold our loved ones close while we still can.
We start off with what is a seemingly normal day at the prison, the group is moving cars, cracking a joke about Maggie and Glenn in the guard tower when suddenly things shift after they notice the fence has been cut open and walkers are making their way into the prison guards.
The group is split, with Rick leading Daryl and Glenn on a mission to shut off the sirens that are drawing walkers, while T-Dog after being bitten makes it his mission to lead Carol to safety. Hershel and Beth find shelter behind a fence, while Maggie, Carl and Lori are forced to hide in a boiler room after Lori enters labor.
While we see the tension filled ride through the prison, we are also treated to a more talkative day in Woodbury. The loyalty and bond between Andrea and Michonne isn’t as strong as it once was and Merle wants to try and find his brother. David Morrissey continues to play the Governor as a borderline psychotic character, whose every action seems like it could have ulterior motives.
This week’s episode of “Arrow” picks up pretty much exactly where last week’s episode left off: Diggle awakes from his poison induced unconsciousness to discover that his employer, Oliver Queen, and the murderous vigilante, Arrow, are in fact one in the same. Throughout the course of “An Innocent Man,” Dig struggles to come to terms with Oliver’s criminal killing hobby as he decides whether or not to take Mr. Queen up on his offer.
Oliver Queen very much became the 1970s liberal, and he was contrasted with law-and-order beat cop and cosmic do-gooder Hal Jordan, a.k.a. Green Lantern. The two emerald-clad heroes set out on a road trip through America, helping loggers and Native Americans, stopping drug lords, facing the perils of overpopulation and pollution, and even dealing with a Charles Manson-type cult leader.
Later at the Queen mansion, Laurel drops by to make sure Oliver is OK post-shootout. The possible-future Black Canary still doesn’t know he’s Arrow, but she has noticed he tends to disappear. “I care about the lives of other people, Oliver.” A lecture from Laurel and John on the same night? Looks like it’s time for a bad dream.
Once again Oliver is on the trail of a wealthy, dishonest businessman who had a whistleblower murdered and framed the woman’s husband for the crime. Now on death row and awaiting execution, Oliver assists Laurel in getting the evidence she needs to free the man. Without a doubt this was the least threatening villain Oliver has faced. This whining twerp isn’t the slightest bit believable as a ruthless businessman, especially when he exclaims in a pouty cry, “She’s going to come after me!” in referring to Laurel.
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On this week’s The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon befriends Stephen Hawking in “The Extract Obliteration.” Penny signs up for a college course without Leonard’s knowledge. And once she tells him about an upcoming assignment, everything goes downhill.
Penny went back to school and didn’t want to tell Leonard because he’d make a big fuss over it. I suppose that’s fair, though it once again returns to the overarching Penny/Leonard problem of Leonard being eager to the point of obsessive and Penny insisting on keeping him at an arm’s length.
Sheldon’s superiority complex of being close with Hawking and his willing Hawking to play provided laughs. The best part was when Sheldon tried in all seriousness to use a Jedi mind trick to get Hawking to participate. In the end, I was a bit surprised that Sheldon threw the game. That may be the first time we have ever seen Sheldon let someone best him. It was especially poignant after he reprimanded Amy for helping him with a word. Can you think of any other instances?
This episode had a bit more of a classic Big Bang Theory feel to it, partly because the writers ditched the new Raj/Stuart bromance for a week and renewed the good old-fashioned Raj/Wolowitz pairing instead. Seeing the duo rock out to Star Wars Kinect was hilarious – much more fun that actually playing the game would be, I imagine. Between that and Raj’s forced American accent, he really stole the show in his brief scenes. For whatever reason, the writers got a lot of mileage out of characters doing mock impersonations of other characters this week.
Sheldon gets overexcited about the game and then stresses out about it. (“It’s been three days! Why won’t Stephen Hawking play a word!?”) When Howard warns him that Hawking is a sore loser, Sheldon throws the game just to stay on his hero’s good side, only to suffer through a gloating phone call from his new “friend.” (The title is official, since it’s right there in the game’s name.)
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