Unfortunately, my anticipated “easy week” didn’t turn into such an easy week after all. Only two series, Atlantis and Dracula, took the week off and I had the 80-minute Doctor Who special, so I didn’t really gain anything. Worse yet, I go completely overboard on two shows this week so you know this is going to be long. Next week though, that’s when I get my break, it looks like shows that air Wednesday – Friday, at the very least, are taking a break.
Almost Human #1×03 – “Are You Receiving?” – It’s funny how they’re airing episodes of Almost Human. Clearly, the “second” episode that they showed last week was not filmed as the second, nor intended to be the second, it took a huge jump from Kennex being uncomfortable with Dorian to him being completely comfortable. They aired them out of order in hopes that the sexbot storyline would garner higher ratings during the end of the November sweeps. This episode is what really got filmed second and therefore, their relationship shifts backwards a bit. Let’s get to the episode. A group of armed men rush into a building, shoot a guard and take over the 25th floor. I guess we’re supposed to feel sorry for the guard, after all, they showed a romantic little scene just before, but it really meant nothing. I’m wondering how a “security station” can be that secure if people can walk in off the street with guns and face zero opposition? Anyhow, John and Dorian arrive and get inside the building, just as the bad guys set off an explosion inside. The building is evacuated but John and Dorian head up the stairs, slowly making their way to the 25th floor. Captain Maldonado orders them to leave the building but John ignores her and they’re cut off after the police block all radio and telephone technology. Dorian can receive all of the emergency calls inside the building though and they end up talking to a woman named Paige who is hiding in a closet on the 25th floor. She gives them intel on the situation, but her sister is being held by the gunmen and she’s very worried about her. John talks about his middle name, which is Reginald after Elton John’s middle name and everyone gets a chuckle. Apparently, the bad guys have sentries in the stairwell and they start shooting at John and Dorian. They manage to kill the gunmen but Dorian is hit in the head and his battery pack starts going dead. In five minutes, he won’t be able to walk. John, borrowing some nail clippers, a used cotton swab and some chewing gum, manages to patch him back together. Using Dorian’s super brain, they find that the gunmen are pretending to be members of the Holy Reclamation Army, but they’re wearing “face makers” that make them look like someone else. In fact, these are no more than petty criminals. Outside, Maldonado is trying to negotiate with the terrorists. They demand that they be given a fission igniter, but that’s heavy duty military technology and Maldonado can’t get one. Rudy offers to build a fake one that will pass scans but won’t actually blow anything up and he races against time to get it completed in time. However, John and Dorian realize that they’re not really after the igniter, this is just a cover for another crime, they have a team in the office building across the street and they’re poised to steal a huge quantity of paladium. The bad guys have a bomb of their own and they’re planning on killing all of the hostages to cover their escape. With their way upward supposedly blocked, Dorian climbs up an elevator shaft, leaving John behind. Dorian knows this is almost certainly a one-way trip but he has to try to save the hostages. John crawls up the ventilation system, grabbing the gunman’s “face maker” so that he can impersonate him on the 25th floor. Dorian does his best but he gets shot repeatedly and the leader of the criminals is about to put a bullet through his head when John reveals himself and kills all of the terrorists. They tell Maldonado to turn off the jammer and as soon as she does, all of the alarms from across the street start going off and the other criminals are captured. Dorian manages to deactivate the bomb with mere seconds remaining and all of the hostages are safe. Paige and her sister thank John for saving their lives. With Dorian mostly fixed, John takes him out for noodles, even though Dorian doesn’t eat and Dorian turns on an Elton John song on the radio. There are some nice touches in this episode, we get a recall to the first episode where Dorian suggests that John use olive oil to lubricate his noisy fake leg and when John tries it, it works! The Elton John thing was cute, but honestly, do we think they’ll still be playing Elton John on the radio in 2048? It’s funny to see some of the pop culture references they throw into the series as well. When John hangs up on Maldonado, he says “Boring conversation anyway”, a line from Star Wars. Now as cool and geeky as this stuff might be, it really does strike me as being out of place in a show set in 2048. How many people are going to be using them that far in the future? Most of the vehicles look very 2013-vintage, they just throw in a couple of CGI effects here and there, like their drone they used to communicate with the terrorists to spice things up but it really makes the world seem bizarrely anachronistic. It’s probably something I’ll just have to get used to but it’s still jarring.
Arrow #2×07 – “State v. Queen” – We get a rare non-island flashback to the date of Moira’s press conference, where she tells the people of the Glades to evacuate, the guards at Iron Heights prison, where she’ll soon be, decide to take off and leave the prisoners behind. Hopefully none of those guards have jobs anymore. The earthquake hits and the prison is damaged and among those who escaped was Count Vertigo. Funny, nobody seems to have noticed that before. Back to the future, um, the present. It’s finally Moira’s trial date, which is utterly unbelievable because you couldn’t get a major case into a courtroom in less than 3-4 years in most major cities, plus there’s no way in hell that Moira’s lawyers would allow the case to go on in Starling City, there’s no way they could get a fair trial there. All of the legal shenanigans aside though, today is the day and Thea and Oliver are being supportive of their mother, but Diggle doesn’t look like he’s doing well. He thinks he’s got the flu, which makes him mad because he had the flu vaccine. Oliver tells him to go home, he’s not going to do any good feeling as bad as he clearly does. Meanwhile, Laurel talks with her boss Adam Donner and he says he has a special weapon against Moira but he won’t tell Laurel what it is. Diggle goes back to Queen Consolidated to set up some other security for the Queens and talks to Felicity, who says she never gets shots because she hates needles, which is ironic considering who she works with. Suddenly, Diggle keeps over and Felicity calls for help. Somehow, Felicity drags Diggle across town to the Arrow lair and by the time Oliver arrives, she’s already gotten results back on Diggle’s blood work. It comes back positive for Vertigo. Diggle says he’s never used Vertigo in his life. They they discover that Count Vertigo is out and the police have been covering all of the escapes up. Thanks guys. Oliver says he should have killed Count Vertigo when he had the chance and I agree. Back to the trial, Thea goes on the stand and Donner corners her and makes her admit she doesn’t trust her mother, that’s why she didn’t see her in prison for months. This is bad, Thea was supposed to “humanize” her mother for the jury. Now, Moira has to go on the stand in her own defense if she wants to have any shot at all of getting acquitted. What, the prosecution wasn’t going to call her to the stand? I’d be surprised if that wasn’t the plan, but Donner has also been affected by the Vertigo drug and passes out in court. Back at the lair, Diggle still isn’t doing well and they realize that the Count must have cooked up a different version of Vertigo, one that doesn’t respond to the antidote they made before. Just then, the Count appears on TV and explains to the people of Starling City that he’s infected a bunch of them with Vertigo and the only way they can keep from having horrible withdrawal symptoms is to find their local drug dealer and buy some Vertigo. The Count shows that he’s taken Adam Donner hostage and has him beg for the drug. Is this supposed to make people run out and buy more drugs? Is Vertigo supposed to be the antidote or just push off the withdrawal effects? What’s the point of taking the drug if you just have to keep taking it and are now permanently addicted? That’s great for the Count, not so great for the people. Seems like a poorly thought out strategy. So we shoot across town to the District Attorney’s office where we see Sebastian Blood talking to Kate Spencer, who informs him that, in Donner’s absence, Laurel is now lead on Moira’s case. That’s not complete conflict of interest or anything, right? Thea is depressed after having essentially destroyed her mother’s case so Roy decides to teach her that, when you’re down, beat the crap out of your boyfriend. Good advice. Felicity finds a reflection of the city government logo in Adam’s eye on the tape and they discover that Count Vertigo is hiding out at the old Starling Municipal Records Department, which has been abandoned since the city went digital so Oliver heads there to rescue Donner. However, there are lots of technicians there and apparently, Oliver can’t make the shot, even though he’s made much more difficult ones in the past. Vertigo isn’t worried, he’s heard that Arrow has developed an aversion to killing. Damn, he’s right! So Oliver shoots some flammable barrels instead, which might fry some people! Laurel discovers Adam’s secret plan and goes to see Moira, even though, you know, she might be disbarred for doing so. It’s not like the prison keeps any records of who sees the prisoners or anything. She tells Moira that if she goes on the stand, the news will destroy her family and Laurel has to do her best. Why? It’s a cheap shot, it isn’t like anyone knew about the data and since Adam hadn’t chosen to share it with Laurel, she could just say she didn’t know. Anyhow, Moira decides to go on the stand anyhow, even with this devastating information that will come out to the world. Moira calls a family pow-wow and tells everyone that she once cheated with Malcolm Merlyn. Yeah… so? Thea is pissed, she asked if her mother had any connection to Merlyn and she said no. Well, at the time Thea asked, there was no connection, this was something that happened 20 years ago. Anyhow, Moira gets on the stand and it all comes out and Laurel thinks nobody ought to ever forgive her. For what? Doing her job? Felicity learns that all of the people who have been affected got flu vaccinations from the same truck. Wait a minute, how does she know this? She was supposedly looking up where they all worked! Anyhow, we know Count Vertigo is infecting people off of this truck so Felicity goes to check it out and is captured by the Count. He calls Oliver and tells him he knows his secret and we know that means the Count is a dead man. Oliver shows up and the Count goes all expositiony on him and threatens to shoot Felicity up with Vertigo and Felicity, fearing that Oliver might return to his old murderous ways, tells him “not for me”. Oh yes, for you. Three arrows in his chest, then a 10 story fall onto a cab. Who is crying for this idiot? Oliver goes back to the courthouse just as the jury reaches a verdict. Moira is found not guilty on all counts. Queen Consolidated scientists find a cure for the Vertigo addiction with no side effects. Felicity and Oliver share a moment where they ought to kiss but don’t. We get a flashback to the island where Ivo is dragging Oliver around, trying to find the hosen. His guys shoot up the plane without actually finding out if Shado and Slade are inside, then they look inside, find they aren’t there, so they throw a bomb into it, but they really are there and disarm the bomb and nobody notices that the bomb doesn’t actually go off. Then they drag Oliver to the grave and are shocked that the hosen isn’t in there. Did they stop to think it might have been in the plane? You know, the one they supposedly blew up? Anyhow, Shado and a very injured Slade show up and grab Oliver, who grabs Sara and they all get away. Ivo is unhappy. Shado has the hosen and it has coordinates for a sunken Japanese sub that has something that will save the human race. Back to the present, Sebastian dresses up in his Brother Blood outfit and tells how he set up Vertigo to kill Oliver. Why? It isn’t like he managed to do it the last time around. One of Blood’s gang has now survived whatever drug process they’ve been put through, this is probably not good. Moira is kidnapped by her driver and taken out into the middle of a parking lot where she meets the amazingly alive Malcolm Merlyn who has apparently not been as dead as we thought. He says he checked and he’s Thea’s father. Um, sure. Okay, is there anyone in the city… ANYONE who is crying that Arrow killed Count Vertigo? This is a guy who is holding the entire city hostage and he turns up dead and people are broken up? Yeah, not so much, I’m sure. How did Merlyn get Moira out of prison, did he threaten the jury? Isn’t that going to come out? And won’t people find out that he’s still around? Is Moira going to keep telling lies to Thea now that Malcolm is her father? Isn’t that what keeps getting her into trouble?
Castle #6×10 – “The Good, the Bad and the Baby” – A man stumbles into a church and hands a baby to the priest before collapsing onto the ground, dead, with multiple gunshot wounds. Castle and Beckett are talking about Thanksgiving and Castle says it’s a family tradition that everyone dresses up as Pilgrim characters. Beckett wants to know what else she doesn’t know about Castle’s family. When Castle and Beckett arrive at the church, nobody knows what to do with the baby. There seems to be no connection between the dead man and the baby and nobody has reported a baby missing so they take him back to the precinct and Castle goes out to buy all the “essentials” which ends up being a whole ton of stuff. Ryan, who has a child on the way, asks to hold the baby and he cries. Ryan worries that he’s not ready and might never be ready for fatherhood. Who ever is? Castle and Beckett go to talk to the dead man, Cameron’s wife and she says she has no idea whose baby it is. She said she’s been worried because her husband had installed all new locks and a security system, supposedly to protect her. They go talk to his employer, a limousine service, and his boss says he’s been nervous and not coming back to the shop for lunch. He says that he had a loud altercation with another man and gives a description. That man turns out to be Jimmy the Wolf who just got out of prison for bank robbery. Looking over the old case files, they realize that Cameron was Jimmy’s driver on the day of the robbery, but supposedly he drove away, abandoning Jimmy in the bank. Is Jimmy out for revenge? And who is this baby? Laine comes by to play with the baby, whom Castle has dubbed “Cosmo” and to tell them that she’s contacted CPS. Ryan keeps buying lottery tickets because there’s a massive $247 million draw coming up. Remember that, it just might be important. CPS comes by but there is no room for Cosmo so Castle volunteers to take care of him until the case is solved. Beckett isn’t happy about this, she’s never been a baby person and really doesn’t know how to handle them. Ryan and Esposito find out that Cameron has returned to a life of crime. They track the GPS on his limo and catch him on camera planning a caper but it’s unclear who they stole from or why. They find out where Cameron was shot and then find the bad guy’s hideout, complete with blood spatter where someone else was hit and some diapers proving “Cosmo” had been there. Forensics proved that the blood belonged to a relative of “Cosmo” but they have no idea what happened afterwards. Are “Cosmo’s” parents dead? Rick and Kate take “Cosmo” home and we get some comical scenes of them trying to deal with the baby. It doesn’t take long until Kate gets comfortable with “Cosmo”. They find that the hideout was scrubbed clean and their garbage has to have gone somewhere so they dig through dumpsters and find a bunch of diapers, some ping-pong balls and a wine bottling kit. While trying to figure out what all of this means, Ryan turns on the TV at the station to watch the lottery and Castle realizes how it all fits together. The TV station that broadcasts the lottery was in the building that they were planning to break into and when he grabs the lottery ticket that was found at the scene, it has exactly the numbers read off on the TV broadcast! They found a way to rig the lottery! But how? There are nine briefcases of numbers and it’s chosen randomly by on-air hostess. How could they guarantee that their set of tampered balls would be chosen? They talk to the hostess, Miranda Vail, and her son and husband were abducted and she was being blackmailed into picking a specific briefcase. With this discovered, they realize that the head of security in the building must be in on the scam and through tracing phone calls, find out that Cameron’s boss at the limo service was running the show. They break in and rescue Miranda’s husband Paul and solve the mystery. Cameron had changed his mind when he found out that they planned to kill the Vails and even though he was shot several times, he got the baby to the church and safety. Alexis arrives with “Cosmo”, or more properly Eddie and returns him to his parents who are very thankful. Beckett arrives for Thanksgiving dinner in her Pocohontas outfit and Martha wonders what she’s doing. Castle says it was all a joke, but she brought a Pilgrim outfit for him to wear anyhow. This was a clever mystery that all fit together in the end, as soon as all of the clues were on the table. It was nice seeing the horror on Castle’s face when he realized Alexis might be having kids at the same time he and Beckett are having kids, it was a classic look.
Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special – “The Day of the Doctor” – We start with Clara, now a school teacher, at a school that is a reference to the first Doctor, being given a note from “her doctor”. She races out of the school on her bicycle to find the TARDIS parked on the side of a dirt road. She rides straight into the TARDIS, finding the Doctor reading a book and he reminds her to close the door. All of a sudden, the TARDIS is picked up by a helicopter and carried across London, while the Doctor hangs outside and generally screws around, to UNIT headquarters where they meet with Kate Stewart, the head of UNIT, who has a pressing problem for the Doctor. They’ve found a letter from Queen Elizabeth I, who was involved with David Tennant’s Doctor, and a Gallifreyan painting of the Doctor’s worst day, the day that he ended the Time War by destroying both the Gallifreyans and the Daleks. However, that painting shouldn’t be there and the Doctor is confused. We then go into the painting where we find that an unknown Doctor, played by William Hurt, is fighting against the Daleks. Unfortunately, the Daleks are winning against the Galifreyans. The Doctor grabs a soldier’s gun and writes “NO MORE” on a wall before vanishing again. The generals wonder what it means when they are informed that a terrible weapon, called The Moment, has been stolen from their most secure vault. The Moment is a weapon so powerful that it’s operating system gained sentience and judges the people who would use the weapon as harshly as the ones they’d use it against. The Doctor takes it back to his lair where he plans to set it off, then he meets with the weapon’s alter-ego, played by Billie Piper. She’s not really Rose Tyler, she’s Bad Wolf. Good because I hate Rose Tyler with a passion, I’m so happy that they never had her run into David Tennant’s Doctor! Bad Wolf plays with the Doctor, who is wondering if this is the right thing to do, wiping out billions of Galifreyans in order to end the Dalek menace forever. Sensing that the Doctor needs more encouragement, Bad Wolf opens a time portal and a red fez comes flying through. I don’t care what anyone says, fezzes are not cool. Back in London, the Doctor reads the letter from Queen Elizabeth I and it’s revealed that they were married and she’s calling on him to save England. They take him down to show him a painting of Elizabeth and Tennant’s Doctor in Tudor clothing. They also show him some paintings that once had people in them and now do not, which he finds curious. Even curiouser are the piles of dust throughout the museum. We then shift to Elizabethan England where Queen Elizabeth and Tennant’s Doctor are having a picnic. He proposes to her and she accepts, proving that she is, in fact, a Zygon and he even has a funny device that dings to prove it. The problem is, it isn’t Elizabeth that’s the Zygon, it’s her horse and as it transforms, they run away. He manages to lose Elizabeth in the woods, but when he finds her again, there are two of her, one real, one Zygon. A bunch of Elizabeth’s soldiers arrive, but a time portal appears, frightening them. First, the fez comes through, then the Doctor! Confusion ensues, with voices from the other side convincing the soldiers that witchcraft is afoot, but then the Eleventh Doctor tosses the fez back through the rift and when Clara reports that it did not arrive in the modern day, they wonder where it went. It ended up at the feet of the unknown Doctor, who takes it and jumps through the hole. Now there are three Doctors. The soldiers take them to the Tower of London for imprisonment. The tech, Osgood, finds out what all that dust was, the critters that came out of the paintings were Zygons and they had to have a place to hide, replacing the various stone statues with themselves. One of the Zygons duplicates Osgood and it’s off to the races. Clara and Kate go to the Black Archive, which is where UNIT stores all it’s most dangerous artifacts, including Captain Jack’s vortex manipulator. This place is so top secret that they wipe everyone’s memory after leaving it, including Clara’s as she’s apparently been here before. They want to get to the Doctor but they don’t know the code for the vortex manipulator. Only the Doctor does and he’s a little busy in the past, but he spends some time carving the code into one of the walls at the Tower of London so Kate can use it. Unfortunately, it’s not really Kate, it’s another Zygon and she wants to kill Clara but she sees the code on Kate’s phone and zaps off to Elizabethan England to rescue the Doctors, who didn’t know they were being imprisoned in a room with an unlocked door. The Zygon Elizabeth comes in and explains that the Zygons arrived on Earth in ancient times and hid in Gallifreyan paintings, which are really slivers of time, until the planet had advanced enough. Now, they jumped out of the paintings in modern times so they could rule the world. Except it’s not really the Zygon Elizabeth, it’s the real deal, she killed her doppelganger in the woods and nobody noticed. And of course, since the Doctor promised to marry her, this is the perfect time for a wedding! While one Doctor is getting hitched, another runs off to the TARDIS, where the other two criticize his decorating skills. The three Doctors head for the Dark Archive, only to find that it’s been TARDIS-proofed and they can’t get in. Osgood locates the real Kate and frees her and together they go into the Archive. There is a nuclear failsafe 20 feet under the Archive and the real Kate activates it. In five minutes, all of London will be vaporized. The Doctors use the Zygon trick, take the TARDIS to Gallifrey and then hop out of the picture into the modern day Dark Archive. They trigger the memory wiping device and now that nobody knows if they are Zygon or human, they’re forced to negotiate a peace and agree to deactivate the nuclear device. The unknown Doctor returns to Gallifrey and is about to push the newly installed big red button on The Moment when the other two Doctors arrive in their TARDISes and volunteer to stand beside the unknown Doctor while they all push the button together. Then they realize this is not what they want to do and change history. They all jump into their TARDISes and fly around the planet. They contact the generals and tell them that they’re going to suspend Gallifrey in a sliver of time so that the Daleks all kill each other and the war ends. They’ll have hope, which is better than destruction. The generals agree but say the calculations will take hundreds of years. The Doctors say they’ve been working on it for hundreds of years as ten more TARDISes pop out and surround the planet, every one of the Doctor’s regenerations is there to help. The war ends and the original three Doctors are alone in the National Museum, looking at the painting of Gallifrey. Because of the way the space-time continuum works, both older Doctors will not remember saving Gallifrey but they are happy that they did. Both of them leave and the eleventh Doctor says he might want to retire and become curator of the museum. The real curator, Tom Baker (the fourth Doctor) comes in and they talk and he tells him that the name of the painting is “Gallifrey Falls No More”. Maybe it’s time that the Doctor found his way back home to Gallifrey. I’ll be honest, I was relatively disappointed in the whole thing, it came off as a regular TV episode, albeit an extended one, instead of a tribute to 50 years of Doctor Who. Where were more of the Doctors? I know Christopher Eccleston didn’t want anything to do with it, but at least two other Doctors did, where were they? The dead ones, they can CGI in and keep the tenth Doctor in the shadows. This story didn’t feel epic. It’s firmly rooted in the post-2005 Whovian world and really feels like they’re only celebrating the last 8 years, it really needed a much larger story, involving a lot more of the timeline than it did. I know it’s hard to include people who are quite a bit older now than when they appeared on the show but without it, this is clearly only a tribute to the Russell T. Davies/Stephen Moffat era of the show, not the entire series since 1963. Yeah, it was great seeing Tom Baker as a walk-on at the end, but that’s not enough, I’m sorry. Where this should have been “The 12 Doctors”, what we got was a couple of guys we see every week on TV, a clever cameo and everyone scrambling to renumber their modern Doctors, since Peter Capaldi’s Doctor has been officially numbered 13 since Hurt has been retroactively added between Paul McGann and Christopher Eccleston. Was it a fun show? Yes. Was it what the Doctor Who community deserved as a celebration of all things Who? No. That’s what I have to view this as, not just a single episode, but as a special, dedicated to the longest running science fiction series of all time. Great show. Bad spectacle. It should have been better.
Elementary #2×09 – “On the Line” – After a woman shoots herself in the head on a bridge, Captain Gregson thinks he has the case solved, the victim called 911 and told them that she was being killed by the same man that she claimed killed her sister 6 years ago. Sherlock and Watson show up and demonstrate that she killed herself to set up the supposed murderer. The supposed murderer, Lucas, says he wants a polygraph to prove his innocence. Sherlock notices that he’s adept at beating the system and when he asks if he killed the girl’s sister, Ali and notes that he uses the same techniques. Sherlock is convinced that Lucas is a serial killer. He feels bad because he thinks that he should have let Samantha’s suicide frame Lucas and now he has to prove Lucas is a murderer. They call in the detective who worked Ali’s murder 6 years before and he says they could never find any evidence that Lucas was involved, they only looked at him because Samantha insisted. Sherlock insults the detective for being sloppy and Gregson tells them they can work the case, but only if they leave the detective alone. Gregson is told that some people in his department are critical of the leeway he gives to Sherlock and Watson. They find that there is a video of Ali making a call to Samantha on a public phone but Sherlock thinks she might have had a fake bomb strapped to her ankle and made the call under duress. He looks at a list of things found at Lucas’ house and sees the makings of such a fake bomb. Just then, Lucas shows up at the door, the detective gave him the address so they could clear the air. That’s not kosher. Lucas comes in and they lay out their case against him and he says that Samantha’s obsession with him ruined her life, he hopes they don’t make the same mistake. The next day, Sherlock presents Gregson with a list of other similar murders that he thinks Lucas is responsible for and criticize the detective because he’s now told their suspect that he’s under suspicion. Gregson and the detective go to a bar where he tells the detective that he’s a good cop but not a great cop. Sherlock and Watson go out and talk to some of the families of the dead girls, trying to find a connection but come up empty. Eventually, Sherlock finds that there’s an online support network that the victims all belonged to and one of them calls Sherlock to come see some evidence but it turns out to be fake, it was all a game by Lucas. He’s been creating imaginary murder victims and links to other victims so that he can get off in the chatroom. Sherlock goes to Lucas’ sound studio and when Lucas arrives, he sees a broken window. He accuses Sherlock of breaking it but Sherlock says he’ll even take a polygraph to prove he’s innocent. Sherlock claims that, beyond being a serial killer, Lucas is a “catfish”, someone who usually makes fake online profiles for sex, but in this case, it’s to torment the families of his victims. Sherlock asks which fake persona drove Samantha to suicide and Lucas says it was for the best, she could never imagine the reality of what happened to her sister and Sherlock punches him, breaking a finger in the process. Lucas gets a restraining order and Gregson throws them off the case because all the evidence they’ve gathered so far is now tainted. While talking about the case with Joan, Sherlock gets a text from Lucas, telling them to go to an address and when they arrive, the police are already there. A girl has been kidnapped and since Holmes isn’t supposed to be there, he steals a brush from the girl’s purse with the intention of framing Lucas for her murder. Watson says that even if he does, the kidnapped girl will starve to death because they don’t know where he’s keeping her. He realizes where Lucas must be stashing his victims and goes to Gregson. They both return with a warrant at Lucas’ studio and Sherlock shows them that when he remodeled his studio, there is a discrepancy in the measurements, he’s put in a secret room and when they open it, they find the missing woman who is reunited with her husband. Gregson goes into the precinct and announces that anyone who doesn’t like his arrangement with Holmes and Watson can leave. Watson tells Sherlock that he needs to be nicer to people and he says that this is just the way that he is. She says he’s changed around her but he says she’s an exceptional person and so he makes an exceptional effort to be nice. This is the way that these shows should handle serial killers. They’re smart but not infallible, they’re clever but not perfect and they don’t have the kind of absurd resources and followers that we see in so many other shows (including this one). This is a virtually case-perfect example of the kind of serial killer episode I like, I wish they’d do more like this and less… alright, none like I typically complain about. Great episode, very typically “Sherlock” behavior and in the end, it all pays off.
Haven #4×11 – “Shot in the Dark” – This “Ghost Chasers” trope has been used in a lot of shows in the past and I almost always like the results, it’s a good way to poke fun at the whole “ghostchasing” genre, as well as provide an outsider view of the story, point out it’s strange foibles and still have a good time doing it. The “Darkside Seekers” are doing a video investigation in Haven, filming at night in front of a graveyard and talking about a murder where the victim’s heart is ripped out. They claim it’s the result of a Rougarou but just then they hear a disturbance at a house across the street and the brave Seekers rush into the house and encounter a beast in the house (and yes, I hate shaky cam with a passion). The next morning, the police arrive and find that the victim, Ivy Banks, has had her heart chewed out of her chest. As Dwight and Gloria talk about the case, they notice that the Seekers, Seth and Anderson, are recording them from across the street. Dwight goes over to talk to them and they’re openly hostile to him, calling him “Officer Bigfoot” and asking what the troubles are and what he’s covering up. Back at the hospital, where Audrey and William are being treated after the events of the last episode, Nathan watches over her and Duke and Jennifer try to help out. Duke wants Jennifer to go back to the Haven Herald and see if she can get any info out of Vince and Dave. Vince comes rushing into the room to check on Audrey and to tell Nathan that there are two outsiders poking around and asking about the troubles. Nathan tells Vince to chase them off like they always do, but Vince says they’ve hacked into the archives at the Haven Herald and are learning a lot of things they shouldn’t know. Audrey tells Nathan and Duke to go solve the problem while she’s in surgery and then she tells Vince she’s worried that she and William might actually be responsible for the troubles. Nathan and Duke go talk to friend of the victim, Gemma Green and find her being interviewed by the Seekers. Just as things are about to get nasty, the lights go out and something big starts prowling around. The Seekers try to film it but it’s dark and after Nathan gets the lights back on and they find Green is dead with her heart ripped out, they claim they were too scared to film a thing. They lied though, they got the whole thing on tape but after they look at it later, it’s very grainy and unusable. Back at the morgue, Gloria says that the creature created by the trouble, which she calls an Arugula, is after the hearts. Gloria calls Duke an “honorary deputy” and he corrects her, he’s a “consulting detective”. Great Sherlock Holmes reference there. The Darkside Seekers show up and demand to see the body but are threatened by Dwight who wants to destroy their camera. Seth says it doesn’t matter, all of their footage has been uploaded automatically to cloud storage and Dwight says that’s all he wanted to know. He tells Nathan that Jennifer can start looking for their footage and Nathan asks if she can really do that. Dwight says that, as far as he can tell, everyone except him and Nathan can do that. They find that all of the victims were born on the same day and suddenly, Duke realizes that Jennifer was born on that day too. Coincidence? I think not. They both rush to the Haven Herald which is ripped up but there’s no blood. Duke finds Jennifer’s phone and says they can’t track her. They have to consider making a deal with the Darkside Seekers so they can see whatever evidence they’ve gathered. They find the van and are told that the video they have is corrupted, the critter is very grainy and Duke realizes it’s not grainy, it’s just made up of William’s little black orbs. He’s been killing people with a fake trouble for some nefarious purpose. They head back to the hospital to beat an answer out of William, but when they arrive, Audrey is all better, her injuries just vanished, it’s like she’d never been shot. They rush into William’s room and he’s gone, the deputy that was guarding him knocked unconscious on the floor. Jennifer calls and says she got away and is in a warehouse owned by the Teagues. Duke tells her to write down everything she’s seen and she digs in her purse, putting a book on a nearby table. Dwight is still with the Seekers and Glora calls to tell him that the Rougarou is not human. He asks if they have any equipment that can help them track the substance they found in the bite wounds. While they work on the problem, Dwight asks why they haven’t run away from the town and Seth says he’s been in Haven before and encountered a strange event that he could never explain and that’s what drove him to chase the unexplainable. They produce an “electrical polarity guide” and it can sense the goo, thus telling them when the Rougarou is close. They all arrive at the warehouse at the same time and learn that Jennifer’s birthday is the day that the troubles last started in Haven. The machine starts making noise and it points to Jennifer, but it’s not really her, it’s her and the book that she’s holding, a book she found at the former house of her birth parents, a cheesy romance novel. She declares to novel to be worse than Twilight. I knew I liked her. They think that Agent Howard must have left the book for Jennifer. Then, the monster arrives and the lights go off and chaos ensues. Dwight gets knocked out and Jennifer drops the book and races to get it, just as the Rougarou attacks. She grabs the book and it causes the monster to explode into dust and get sucked into the book. Jennifer is fine and the problem is solved. She sees the cover of the book change to a glowing Guard symbol that nobody else can see. The Darkside Seekers get ready to leave and tell Nathan that their footage will never be seen by anyone, it’s not fair to subject innocent people to scrutiny because they have “troubles”. They talk about the book and Jennifer opens it to find a new passage that reads: “In times of great evil the child of ruin must find the heart of Haven and summon the door.” That’s why William fears Jennifer, she has the ability to open the door and shove William back through it. Now we have to wait 2 weeks until the start of the 2-part season finale. I will say, I started off not liking this season but it’s turned around and I’m as excited about what’s happening as I was last season at this time. For a show that I wasn’t all that interested in during the first two seasons, it’s become a show that’s really ramped up it’s game. I’m just hoping they get renewed for a fifth season!
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. #1×09 – “Repairs” – A woman tries to buy some groceries from a convenience store and is confronted by the clerk who blames her for the deaths of four local men in an industrial accident at a plant that she was a manager for. She denies fault and eventually says she’s going somewhere else, but the man blocks her path. Items fly off the shelves, hitting the man and eventually the shelf falls over on him. He escapes, running out of the building and sees the gas pumps are all on the ground, spilling gasoline all over the pavement, toward a news rack that is on fire. You can imagine what happens next. We move to May and Ward in a hotel room together. Ward is quite concerned that they take steps to keep anyone else from finding out about them, he’s got it all worked out but by the time he finishes explaining it, May has already left. Coulson explains to Skye that she’s supposed to learn how first contact protocols work, he thinks she could be very good at them and she’s supposed to observe the team this time around. They need to determine whether the woman seen earlier is a telekinetic, something that they’ve never been able to verify actually exists. Fitz and Simmons look over the data, the explosion that killed the four workers happened at a particle accelerator and while they can’t actually enter the accelerator to examine the scene, they think they can simulate the scenario close enough to get some data. The team pulls up to the woman’s house and Coulson tells Skye to stay in the truck. The town has turned out in an attempt to run the woman out of town and when the mob turns violent, a police car skids across the yard, almost hitting a number of bystanders. The situation continues to escalate and the woman, whose name is Hutchins, starts to panic and Coulson fears that if she is a telekinetic, she might injure people. May shoots her with the Night-Night gun and out she goes. Fitz and Simmons take readings outside of the particle accelerator and wax nostalgic about the academy. It’s unfortunate that they were such geniuses that they graduated three years early, they never really got to prank any of the freshmen at the academy. They realize that since Skye has never been through the S.H.I.E.L.D. academy, she’s really just a freshman and they decide she deserves to be hazed. Hutchins wakes up in the Interrogation Room and Coulson and May go in to interrogate her. Coulson picked May because he wants Hutchins to trust them, but mostly because if the situation goes sideways, he wants someone who can take her out. Coulson apologizes for knocking her out, saying it was something that had to be done for the safety of all. She freaks out, saying she’s responsible for all of the bad things that have happened. Coulson tells her that she might have been affected by the explosion and gained some form of telekinetic powers. Fitz, Simmons and Skye watch from outside and Skye sympathizes with her, she knows what it’s like to be scared. Fitz and Simmons prank her when she wants to know why May has the nickname “The Calvary”, telling her a ridiculous story about May riding to the rescue on horseback, guns blazing, through a hundred enemy agents. The data from the particle accelerator comes in and they pull it up on their handy dandy Stark issue holographic table and get upset when Skye wants to play with it too. She sulks off to play on her own computer. Coulson and May are surprised when Hutchins denies having any powers, she thinks God is punishing her. Crazy religious zealot. Coulson thinks that, until they are sure about Hutchins’ potential powers, she poses a danger to them all. Skye is convinced that Hutchins is harmless, all of her history proves she’s a caring person who wouldn’t hurt a fly but Coulson won’t let her go in and talk to her. Skye grabs something to eat with Ward and they talk about May. Ward says Fitz and Simmons are crazy, May never rode a horse and she only took out 20 enemy soldiers. Skye thinks May needs to get laid. Little does she know. All of a sudden, Ward’s knife is missing, but it turns up, banging on the Interrogation Room door, with Hutchins screaming for the demons to go away and leave her alone. Fitz is looking for some components for Simmons in a storage closet when a shadowy figure appears and locks him inside. A few moments later, the same figure appears behind Simmons and smashes the hologram table, then pulls some cables which sends The Bus into a nosedive. May and Ward barely manage to land the plane safely, but the power is out, except for emergency power keeping the doors of the Interrogation Room sealed shut. Skye calls out to Hutchins from outside of the Interrogation Room and tells her she needs to stay in the room to be safe, but they were wrong and she has no powers. May arrives to guard the door, sending Skye to help fix the plane. Fitz and Simmons realize that what Fitz saw was an interdimensional door, like the ones seen in Thor 2 and that the particle accelerator lab was trying to replicate these doorways. As the crew tries to fix the ship, the shadowy figure attacks again and they find that it’s really Tobias Ford, one of the men presumed killed in the explosion. He’s really been torn between dimensions and every time he switches between them, his body destabilizes a little more. They hope that if they allow Ford to keep jumping, he’ll simply fade away. Coulson explains the real story behind May, they were a welcoming party for a person with newly developed powers and things went very, very badly. May had gone in to save the agents, alone, without guns and without authorization and she had returned a changed person, very cold and anti-social. May takes Hutchins off The Bus to protect her but Tobias finds them hiding in a barn and tells Hutchins that he had loosened the bolts on a piece of equipment so that she would come down and see him, Ford had a crush on Hutchins and trying to get her attention had killed the workers. Hutchins feels bad, but she tells Ford that he’s forgiven and he fades away forever. Back on The Bus, Skye loans Hutchins her room so she can sleep, then goes to talk to May in the cockpit as the now restored Bus takes off. The after-credits sequence has the gang playing Scrabble, with a well-played word “aglet” by Simmons, and Fitz comes in, his face smeared with shaving cream, complaining that someone pranked him. He doesn’t know who it is, but May, in the cockpit, smiles. This episode was filled with several Marvel references and I haven’t been as good as I should have been in earlier episodes identifying them so here goes. When Coulson uses the emergency communicator, he identifies the Bus as “S.H.I.E.L.D. 616” Of course, the mainstream Marvel universe is the 616 universe. In the opening sequence at the convenience store, there is a sign for Roxxon Oil. Of course, there are lots of places that they refer to Thor 2 but I think I’ve pointed out a lot of those already. I’ll try to be better in the future though, I love these references. Overall, the episode was so-so but it’s good to keep seeing more background information about the various main characters, this time out it was May’s turn and she’s really the most mysterious of them all at the moment so it was nice to get a glimpse into her history. At least they’re not doing massive info dumps on characters, it’s just a few pieces here and there and that’s the way it ought to be done.
Mentalist #6×08 – “Red John” – So this is where we finally find out who Red John is, and if the spoilers are correct, fundamentally change the show forever. The CBI has been closed and cleared out, Lisbon meets with Cho and the Rigsbys with Agent Abbott and all he wants to know is, where is Patrick Jane. That seems to be the only question left after Jane vanished at the end of the last episode. Presumably, they thought that Jane was going after Bertram, which certainly he was, but Abbott seemed more interested in catching Jane than in catching a serial killer and I thought that was a little problematic. Still, the former CBI agents said they had no clue and for the most part they were right. Granted, they were under threat that anything they could have done wrong during their tenure with the CBI would be found and they would be prosecuted to the furthest extent of the law, that’s not a good way to get them to work with their new FBI overlords. Bertram and Cordero were on the run but they weren’t running very far. They were still in the San Francisco area and Bertram was wearing a really stupid disguise, such that a cop in a convenience store immediately recognized him and gets blown away by Cordero. Why was Bertram at a convenience store? He was calling Jane, of course, but their first attempt at contact was interrupted by the pesky little cop killing so they had to try again. Of course, Jane’s phone is bugged and while he’s waiting for Bertram to call back, he meets with Lisbon. When Bertram does call back, Patrick buys a cell phone off a random bicyclist and calls him back so they can’t be traced, but the FBI is on the trail and after Jane and Bertram decide where to meet, at a church in the cemetery where Jane’s wife is buried, the FBI are on a merry chase through the streets of Sacramento until they box Patrick in and take him into custody. Lisbon and the other ex-CBIers show up and play a game of “everybody, point your guns at everyone else” until Lisbon manages to let Jane go in her car and everyone else gets arrested. Now wait a minute, Jane used to live in Malibu, which is over 400 miles from Sacramento, it takes about 6 hours to drive between the two places, why is his wife and daughter buried in a cemetery in Sacramento? It’s never explained. Personally though, I thought Jane was kind of a whiny little child while Abbott had him on his knees, I understand he thinks this is his last chance to get Red John, but he was almost crying in the middle of the road, very much out of character for Patrick Jane. Anyhow, he gets away, at least for the moment, but the FBI had bugged Lisbon’s car and they’re in hot pursuit. Jane ditches the car, almost handing it to a couple of young carjackers as he tries to bum a ride from random cars on the street. It’s not like he didn’t have Lisbon’s gun, he could have stolen a car easily but he finally gets a ride to the cemetery for his meeting while Abbott insists to have a paper map of the area so he can play old-school agent on the hood of his car, looking over a map. He decides that Jane is going exactly where Jane went and so they’re off again. Jane meets up with Bertram and his guards, who confiscate Lisbon’s gun, and they talk. Bertram is not Red John, he has no idea who Red John is, but he’s been sent here to kill Jane and end this. Jane gets whiny again. The guard kills Bertram instead and Jane gets to meet the real Red John, the once-thought-dead Sheriff Thomas McAllister. For someone who is supposed to be so smart, McAllister is really an idiot and makes every possible mistake a person could make in the next few minutes, spilling his guts to Jane, playing with Jane and finally getting shot by Jane with a second gun he had taped to his back. Oh, and the pigeon he had stuffed in his pocket. I guess those guards are pretty useless, huh? And what happened to them? They seem to have just vanished. When the gunplay started, shouldn’t they have come back in, if for no other reason than to clean up the mess? Nope, Jane shoots McAllister, non-fatally, and after an ridiculously obvious moment with a woman who is clearly one of Red John’s followers, we get this really absurd foot chase across the cemetery grounds, through city streets and into a park. Jane chases after him, never quite fast enough to catch the profusely bleeding McAllister until he gets to the side of a lake in the park where McAllister falls over and tries to call 911. Jane takes his phone away and then slowly strangles Red John, who by this time isn’t a genius serial killer but a limp rag in the grass. Jane asks McAllister if he’s sorry for killing Jane’s family and he blinks twice for yes. Of course he’s going to say that, he has Jane’s hand wrapped around his throat, there’s never been any honest sign of remorse from Red John over any of the people he’s killed, why should he start now? So Red John is dead, Jane calls Lisbon to tell her that it’s over and he’s going to miss her, but her phone is in FBI hands and she never gets the call. Then we see Jane running out of the park. Now from what spoilers I’ve seen slip, next week we take a 2-year jump into the future, the CBI is gone, Jane is hiding from the authorities in South America, Wayne and Grace have their own detective business and Lisbon is working in some small town in Washington State. Cho is with the FBI. Is this going to be The Fugitive Patrick Jane Show? I don’t know, but there are so many issues with the resolution to the Red John story, I don’t know where to begin. First off, it was cheap, the “dead guy not really dead” bit. I didn’t buy it, sorry. Secondly, the fact that McAllister really never had the position or charisma to be Red John. I think the whole super-secret criminal organization inside the government thing was just absurd, how could McAllister set such a thing up? Or did he just take advantage of an organization that already existed? Either way, how did he get all of those police and government officials to do what he wanted? And why did he lose it completely at the end? Simon Baker says it was delusions of grandeur, yet this guy legitimately was better than everyone else for 5 seasons of the TV show! To suddenly slip at the end is really out of character for Red John. My biggest problem is that it’s clear Bruno Heller had no clue when he started the show who Red John was. He just threw out all kinds of random clues, then had a bunch of different characters do things that matched those clues and by the end, he just had to pick someone to be the serial killer and it wasn’t a very good choice. Add to the fact that there are so many things about him that just don’t fit and to have Red John only work because he’s got this magical network of cops working for him is just silly. I find the whole thing terribly disappointing, but Bruno Heller said people might feel that way. I think it’s an issue that’s rampant in Hollywood and I’ll tell you how I’d do things if I was running a show like this. Since it’s built around Red John, I’d know exactly who Red John is before I ever start to develop the show. I’d have the entire story plotted out, I’d know what all of the clues were going to be, where all the red herrings were going to fall and exactly how the series was going to play out before I ever started filming the first episode. It is incredibly important to know how these things work so that in the end, you don’t just pick someone to be your big bad, there are actual clues along the way and it’s completely planned out. Hollywood doesn’t work that way and that’s why we have so many shows that go a season or two and then fall apart because nobody thought to think ahead. Still, this is an ending point and things change so radically next episode, I guess we’ll have to see if the show keeps being any good.
Murdoch Mysteries #7×08 – “Republic of Murdoch” – This episode is actually somewhat of a crossover with the series Republic of Doyle. Jacob Doyle, presumably an ancestor of Jake Doyle, appears in this episode and Murdoch is going to be on an episode of that show that airs on January 29, 2014. Not that I watch Republic of Doyle or anything. Anyhow, this episode largely revolves around George and his past. It was filmed while most of the cast was on hiatus and for most of it, only Murdoch and George appear, although there is a b-story with Julia and Brackenreid, concerning his worries that one of his sons, John, is a bit of a poof. It was an understated exploration of being less than manly (and presumably gay, although it’s never really said) and in the end, Brackenreid acknowledges that he wants his son to be exactly how his son is and he’ll be proud of him no matter what he does. We start off in the main storyline with a murder (of course) and George chases the presumed murderer through the streets of Toronto but loses him after he gets whacked over the head. The dead man was clutching a bit of paper with some incomplete letters on it and Murdoch turns this mystery over to Henry to decipher. Murdoch created some letters that Henry could put in various orders to help him work out the sequence and George helps him to use it as a game… a game he might call something like Scramble. Nah, change the “m” for another “b” and you might have something. However, they discover that the letters spell out the name of an infamous pirate, Black Bart, who supposedly buried a treasure somewhere in Newfoundland. The rest of the map is missing and maybe that’s what this murder is all about? The suspect, Ezekiel Farrelly, has left town and headed east and they have to give chase. Besides, they found Newfoundland rum in the criminal’s room, he spoke with a Newfoundland accent and George is from Newfoundland so that’s an excellent reason for a road trip, right? Murdoch and George travel across country and meet with the Newfoundland chief of police who relieves them of their badges, but gives them powers to arrest. While they think the man in their sketch is Farrelly, the chief identifies the man in the picture, Jacob Doyle, as a local troublemaker and gives them his most recent address. When they arrive, they completely miss catching him as he rides off on his motorized bicycle that he calls “GTO”, the same as the future Jake Doyle. George seems to remember a story from his youth about a pirate map and three sons named Farrelly so they go to his old home to meet all of his various aunts. It comes as a surprise to Murdoch that they seem to be engaged in a somewhat morally questionable enterprise in an old rectory. George and his Aunt Azelia find the book and George tells the story about the brothers who each had one part of the map but two conspired to kill the third and steal his part of the map but he hid it first, thus no one has ever found the treasure. Leaving George to reunite with his family, Murdoch goes to try and find Ezekiel but runs into trouble and is rescued by Doyle. They talk and it turns out that Doyle is chasing after Ezekiel Farrelly as well. Farrelly tried to steal the part of the map that Doyle had and that caused Doyle to chase him down to see if he could get the other parts of the map. George doesn’t take too kindly to this, after all, Doyle hit him over the head, but they decide to make the best of it. George, using his Newfoundland accent, lays a trap for Farrelly and then he, Murdoch and Doyle lie in wait to see if Farrelly will show up. There, they run into Guglielmo Marconi who is trying to set up a relay station to send radio waves across the Atlantic. They tell him there’s a much better place up on Signal Hill and send him on his way. Farrelly shows up but slips and almost goes over a cliff. Rather than hand over the map to Doyle, he throws it into the ocean, making Doyle quite unhappy. Murdoch takes Farrelly into custody and gives George some time to say goodbye to his aunts. Murdoch asks how they came to practice their arts in a rectory and he says that the reverend, the one who raised him, gave it to them with his blessing because it was better than hanging around the docks. Murdoch thinks the reverend must have been a very wise man. I love episodes where they invent things, like Scrabble, or interact with historical people, like Marconi. It’s just random stuff but seeing the writers take notice of history like that, even for fun, just makes the whole episode for me. It was also great seeing more of George’s background and history, he’s one of the few characters we haven’t seen a lot about. We’ve seen him talk about his aunts but we’ve never had the opportunity to meet them and now that’s been taken care of. Over the past few seasons, George has moved from a secondary character to the forefront and it’s all due to Jonny Harris, he’s a great actor and he makes Crabtree live every week. This episode was clearly a filler but it was still a lot of fun, especially for anyone who has any interest in history. Good job!
Person of Interest #3×10 – “The Devil’s Share” – Reese is in the hospital, recovering from the injuries he suffered at the end of the last episode, even though it doesn’t make sense for Reese not to have been wearing a bulletproof vest, but I won’t go there. His injuries were serious, so serious that he can’t get out of bed to attend Carter’s funeral. Finch is very depressed by recent developments and decides to go into therapy but he can’t tell the truth to his therapist. He says he’s thinking of doing something radical in the memory of his lost friend and the therapist tells him not to. He asks how he should feel if his friend’s death really is his fault. Root continues to ask if she can help Finch but he can’t bring himself to trust her. Reese leaves the hospital, still in very bad condition, to find Simmons. Shaw realizes that Reese will never stop looking for Simmons and the only way they can keep Reese from succumbing to his injuries is to find Simmons first. Unfortunately, the only person who knows what Simmons’ exit strategy was is Quinn and he’s safely hidden away behind teams of FBI agents. Even Fusco can’t find out where he is because, as far as the FBI is concerned, the whole of the NYPD are potential security threats. The only possible lead they have is Quinn’s two-bit lawyer, but when they get to his office, he’s already dead. They fear that Reese killed him, but they review the security footage and find that after Reese left, the Russians arrived and tortured the lawyer to death. Now that Reese and the Russians know where Quinn is, their only option is to turn to Root, who can communicate with The Machine. Reluctantly, they let her out and she immediately locates Quinn. They arrive just before Reese does and they have a bird’s eye view of the master at work. He gets into the building, works his way upstairs, taking out a dozen of the FBI’s best agents, until he comes face-to-face with Quinn. He orders Quinn to tell him where Simmons is but Quinn says he’s a lot of things but he’s not a liar. He refuses to say until Reese tells him that he’s going to kill him regardless, it just depends on how long Quinn wants to be tortured before he finally dies. Quinn relents and writes down the address, but Reese has lost a lot of blood and collapses on the floor. Finch and Shaw take him back to the hospital, leaving Fusco to ensure that Quinn finds his way back into FBI custody. Fusco finds the address on the floor and goes to the airport where Simmons is planning to board a plane and escape the country. Fusco says he told the pilot Simmons wasn’t going to make it and they fight. It looks like Simmons has the upper hand but eventually Fusco wins and Simmons tells Fusco to kill him. Fusco says that he had a partner that taught him to be a better cop and he arrests Simmons and takes him into jail. Reese made it back to the hospital in time and will make a full recovery. Everyone assumes that Root escaped, but she went right back to her cage, saying that there’s a larger fight coming and they ought to fight it together. Simmons is in the hospital security wing with police guarding his door. Inside, Elias shows up and tells Simmons that they are both outside of decent society and can do the things that decent people can’t do. Carter didn’t really like him, but he liked her and she was a decent person who turned down his offers to take out HR time and time again, but he owes her this. Simmons says to go ahead and kill him but Elias says he won’t kill him, he’ll have his man do it and he’ll just watch. Good riddance. There were a lot of really great sequences in this episode and I’ve been waiting for Root to get loose and do some good. Clearly, she’s a replacement of sorts for Carter and with her unrestricted access to The Machine and her amazing combat abilities (give this woman more guns!), she could make an interesting, albeit unstable, addition to the team. Two vaguely psychotic women on the team, everybody run!
Sleepy Hollow #1×09 – “Sanctuary” – Sleepy Hollow hasn’t done a monster-of-the-week episode in a while and those are always fun, but this is much more of a horror-themed Halloween-style tale and it’s done extremely well. Billionaire heiress Lena Gilbert and her protector pull up in front of a creepy old house that’s clearly not been occupied in a long time. Her guardian asks if she’s serious but she’s purchased the place because she wants to renovate it back to it’s original condition. However, it’s worse than she thinks as she gets inside and finds that there are roots and branches growing inside as well and then those branches grab her and drag her into a closet while she screams for help. Captain Irving assigns the case to Ichabod and Abby to the missing persons case of Gilbert, nobody has seen or heard from her in days. When they find the name “Katrina C.” circled on a paper that’s found among Gilbert’s things, they are suddenly intrigued. They start to look into her past, wondering what she’d be doing in a place like Sleepy Hollow and Ichabod wants to know if that “Internet thing” can give them any clues about her family. They look it up and find that Gilbert’s distant relative was Mr. Fredericks, someone Katrina and Ichabod knew back in the day. In fact, they went to visit his mansion, a place where all of the former slaves were freed and paid a decent wage and it was a sanctuary for anyone who came because it was protected by very powerful spells and hexes. There’s a darker side though as Fredericks was a member of Katrina’s coven, a powerful warlock. Ichabod and Abby head out to the mansion, which has had no long-term tenants since the late 1700s. There, they find Lena’s car and when they go inside, they find her guardian with half of his face ripped off. Ouch. Surely Lena is here somewhere, they run around the house yelling her name and finally, Ichabod finds her in a closet, tied up with branches and roots. He starts cutting the roots and find that they bleed. This is usually not a good thing. They’re just about to leave when all of the doors and windows slam shut and they’re trapped. There’s an evil spirit that lives in the house and it’s apparently after Lena. They run around the house, trying to find a way out while getting attacked by this demon, summoned by Molloch. It turns out that Lena is related to Ichabod, that’s why the demon is so strongly attracted to her. They all get split up while crawling around in the creepy old house and Abby has a vision of Katrina coming back to the mansion after Ichabod is dead. She’s pregnant and needs protection while she gives birth. Just as she gives birth, Molloch finds a way to circumvent the spells, spawning an evil inside of a scarecrow and sending it to kill Fredericks. Helpful hint, if there’s an evil demon outside your house, don’t open the front door and wait to get impaled. We’re left wondering how Katrina and her son escape. Abby tells this story to Ichabod and he’s amazed that he had a son. They get attacked by the scarecrow demon and Ichabod tells Abby to shoot at it’s roots, which hurt it. They’re still trapped in the house though, until Abby has another vision, she sees the maid, Grace Dixon, leading Katrina and the baby out through a secret passage. They follow the path and get outside, then Ichabod grabs an axe and decides it’s time to finish this demon off. They get back to the precinct and Lena has sent all of her records that she had in New York. They page through them and find that Abby is a distant relative of Grace Dixon, so the relative of the person who delivered Ichabod’s son is now Ichabod’s son. Creepy, huh? Abby invites Ichabod to Thanksgiving dinner and he says he won’t be good company. Earlier in the episode, Jenny had showed up at Captain Irving’s office, 4 days after he called her, and invited him to Thanksgiving dinner. Suddenly, his estranged wife and disabled daughter show up at the door. How convenient! The daughter thinks that Jenny is dating her father but she says she doesn’t even like him that much. However, they sit down and talk and Jenny tells her to give her father a chance, he isn’t a bad guy. Meanwhile, Irving and his wife talk and she’s mad that he hasn’t seen his daughter much. He says he’s busy but she doesn’t understand how such a small town can keep him that busy. She says if he doesn’t clean up his act and quick, she’s filing for divorce. We really have to wonder what all of this means. I don’t really think Jenny is hitting on Irving or anything, but will this magically appearing family change how Irving operates as a part of the team? And what of Ichabod? Now he has to find out what happened to his son. How will he do that? Did his son survive? What will happen? And how will Abby and Ichabod relate now that they know that their roots together go much deeper than they thought? This show gets better all the time.
Tomorrow People #1×07 – “Limbo” – I guess all Tomorrow People aren’t nice, we start off with a whistling serial rapist who teleports around his victims before attacking them, taking them captive and having his way with them. Stephen and Cara have spent the night in an upscale hotel room. He wakes up while she’s already in the shower. Wondering why she couldn’t hear him telepathically call her, she says that running water is a natural block for telepathy. Since when? Anyhow, she’s pretty upset at what they did the night before and she tells him that people are heading up from the lobby before she teleports out. He gets caught in the room when the new tenants open the door and presumably he makes an exit without getting caught or arrested. John returns from his trip to Oregon and reveals that Russell is a music virtuoso. Cara asks if he plays the violin and Russell takes offense, saying it’s racist to assume that Asians all play the violin. Sorry, is there some sort of stereotype I’m not aware of where most Asians play the violin? Anyhow, TIM and Ingrid have found a new breakout, although it’s not a new breakout, it’s an old breakout they’re just discovering, our friend the teleporting rapist. John wants Cara to talk to Stephen but she feels uncomfortable so he does it instead. At Ultra, they’re cleaning out Darcy’s desk and most of them feel very bad about it, but not Jed. Another Ultra agent gets in Stephen’s face, telling him that he’s toxic and they don’t need him at Ultra. Jed gives Stephen a couple of days off to gather his wits and warns him not to go rogue. Of course, with Stephen laid off for a bit, he can’t get into Ultra’s database to get the information that John needs. Astrid tries to cheer Stephen up, saying that he has these amazing powers, he ought to have fun with them and Stephen goes to play basketball with a bunch of losers and proves that his powers can be fun. They’re so much fun, in fact, that his high school basketball coach drafts him for the next big game, whether he wants to play or not. Astrid is thrilled and slaps Stephen’s backside. John is upset that Cara hasn’t forgiven him for lying to her. He says he knows he has to earn her trust again and says he loves her and they can get through anything. Stephen and Astrid are out playing, he teleports the the Empire State Building and when they get back, Cara is waiting in his bedroom. Stephen awkwardly introduces Cara and Astrid leaves. Cara says that it was a mistake between them and it will never happen again before she leaves. Stephen’s new jock friends are upset because their traditional pre-game party gets cancelled but Stephen offers to have it at his house since his mother is going to be working. A lot of people show up and he spends most of his time on damage control before some girl decides she wants in his pants and he goes upstairs with her. They are discovered by Astrid who says that the’s coming to warn that the police are on their way to break up the party. Astrid says that he was supposed to have fun with his powers, not become a jerk. He accidentally hears Astrid’s thoughts that she’s in love with him and she leaves upset. Cara talks to John and confesses that she slept with Stephen. John asks if they’re even now. Clearly he’s upset. They learn of the breakout’s new target and John heads off to stop the rape. They fight and Cara and Russell arrive to provide backup. The guy takes off but they save his potential victim. Meanwhile, Jed and the Ultra goons show up at the scene of the party and tell Stephen that his behavior is unacceptable. Jed puts on a suppression cuff that Stephen’s father invented and it takes away his powers. Stephen goes to the TPs and asks for their help but they say they can’t take the cuff off and they’re busy anyhow. Cara tells Stephen that he’s useless and John offers to teleport him out. Uncharacteristically, John also offers to help him at the basketball game, but when he arrives, all he does is make Stephen stumble and fumble the ball. They have it out in the hall, with John clearly having the upper hand until Cara arrives and tells them to knock it off. Stephen realizes that the rapist is hiding in the sewers and interrupts one of his attacks. The girl gets away but Stephen manages to communicate with Cara even though he has the suppression cuff on. Stephen is getting his ass kicked when the TPs show up. Stephen is knocked into a pool of water and while he is busy drowning, he sees his father who tells him to save everyone with the word “Thanatos”. The rapist is defeated and John brings Stephen back with mouth-to-mouth. Stephen takes the rapist to Ultra and Jed takes his bracelet off. He asks Stephen who the dark-haired girl that the rapist claims fought with him is and Stephen says he doesn’t know. John says that he and Cara are even, they’ve both made out with Stephen now and Cara says she loves John, even though there’s something clearly going on between her and Stephen. Stephen and Astrid make up but he tells her that he’s in love with someone else, even though she doesn’t return his feelings. Stephen goes to Cara and John and says he knows his father is alive and wants to search for him. Honestly, how many times is Stephen going to piss off Astrid? She was mad that he didn’t tell her about his powers (even though he did), she’s mad that he used his powers to read her mind accidentally, what is she going to be mad at next? I don’t think Stephen and Cara have any chemistry whatsoever, the whole thing seems forced, if they have to have two characters together, Astrid seems to be the most logical choice, at least it would tie him more to the normal world and that’s something he needs. The forced three-way relationship needs to go. And how stupid is Uncle Jed? Does he know that Stephen is lying to him and just giving him rope to hang himself or is this blatant stupidity ordered from above? Once again, we see the absurd “you can’t kill” trope come into play, how the hell can she not kill? It makes no sense at all. Still, at least the storyline is progressing and that’s something.
Best of the Week: I’m struggling to decide between Arrow and Elementary for top spot. Both were excellent episodes but both had significant problems as well. I am not a fan of the return of Malcolm Merlyn and I’m not a fan of Sherlock going out to frame someone for a crime. It may be in character, in Sherlock’s case, but I still don’t like it, and I’ll be honest, I hope they do something interesting and quick with Malcolm and then get rid of him for good. I know nobody ever really dies in the comics but I hate to see that on TV. That leaves me wondering which of these elements piss me off the most and I suppose it has to be Merlyn so Elementary gets the nod, but only barely.
Worst of the Week: I was really leaning toward giving the bottom slot to the Doctor Who Special until I realized that, as a stand-alone story, it wasn’t really that bad, it just failed in what I thought it ought to have done as a 50th anniversary spectacle. Therefore, I have to give it to The Mentalist, which built up this finale to the Red John case for more than 6 years and in the end, it was not only a disappointment to see who they picked to be Red John, but it was a complete disappointment to see so many characters act entirely out of character. This massively intelligent serial killer that evaded capture for more than 10 years, reduced to running around a Sacramento graveyard, crying like a little girl? It was pathetic. So was the episode. It killed the whole Red John saga for me. Bruno Heller and Simon Baker deserve to be slapped.
Other Stuff I Watched: Senryuu Tantei Tokage 5-10, Galileo Movie, Tanked #5×01