|I'm sorry...I briefly lost the capacity to think....|
1) As you'll learn as we go deeper into this season, it's pretty grim...thus, we hit the first of a couple of 'breather' episodes, mostly done in one stories to give us a break from the relentless gloom of The Bus Crash Overarc. This one is pretty frothy, although I should warn you--a couple of the others are almost as grim as the thing we're taking a break from.
2) Of course, that doesn't mean the various story arcs set up in the first three episodes are ignored--we get nearly ten minutes at the top of this episode devoted to the continuing Alicia's Got A Past storyline. Trust me--it may look like it's still going somewhere, but...well, it'll go twisting off into oblivion soon.
3) I know that this episode is supposed to be light hearted and all, but Laura Bell Bundy's Julie may be too far into the comedic, becoming shrill and unrealistic. Hell, she's so paranoid that you have to wonder why her fiance'--who comes off as rather nice and reasonable when we meet him--puts up with her.
4) And here in the middle of everything, we have the first mention of the Fitzpatrick family, who are going to pretty much be nightmares for Veronica for the rest of the series. We'll talk more about them when we get to their first onscreen appearance.
|"And I will grow a mustache ttttthiiiis big!"|
5) Seriously, why was Tessa Thompson cast? Weren't there other African-American actresses more capable of expressing emotions in a way that was more realistic than her? If her earlier 'I's so proud of my man' moment was bad, wait until you endured her jealousy hissy fit when Wallace heads off to help Veronica. Totally and thoroughly unbelievable.
6) As mentioned earlier, I do rather like Michael E. Rodgers' Colin in his one extended scene. It's played for laughs, with Veronica trying to play temptress, but he's an excellent straight man.
7) All of Laura Bell Bundy's goofiness is worth it just to see Keith finally deliver a little truth to his daughter. At this point, Colantoni and Bell are so comfortable with each other that they can do what might come off in a lesser show as an abrupt shift in character tone and make it make sense.
|"Is this a good psycho face? Be honest, now...."|
8) Of course, the brilliance of this is that while Keith takes the high ground, he turns around and starts invading his girlfriend's privacy in his desire to get to the bottom of the whole situation with her and her ex. And it's doubly hypocritical when we see that Veronica chose not to invade Duncan's privacy when it comes to reading his emails to Meg.
9) Gleefully, writer Dayna Lynne North once again drags in the Curly/Aaron Echolls connection as part of her continuing campaign of misdirection...plus it gives us a logical excuse to have Veronica confront Logan anew, keeping that relationship still percolating.
10) And speaking of Duncan...we get the first murmuring of his storyline. You'll see throughout the year that Rob Thomas is determined to streamline and refine his supporting cast, writing some out and reducing the importance of others. As we'll see, some of these movements aren't entirely successful...and I'd kind of put Duncan's repositioning in there, as we'll see.
Overall...an okay episode muddled by those storylines that really don't go anywhere and a truly broad performance that sort of makes you want to root against Veronica making things work out for Julie.