Category Archives: Recaps

The Killing Episode 9 Recap

“Undertow” seemed to conclude the middle arc of the series in which Bennett Ahmed (Brandon Jay McLaren) was the prime suspect in Rosie Larsen’s murder. It was a well executed hour directed by prolific Polish filmmaker Agnieszka Holland (who’s directed episodes of Treme and The Wire over here) that essentially cleaned the slate of the murder investigation for the final four episodes while it complicated things for the Larsens incredibly. Let’s take a look at the various plots from the tense “Undertow.”

The Larsens For the first time since the beginning of the series the Larsen’s plot focused more on Mitch (a very Emmy worthy Michelle Forbes) than Stan (an equally worthy Brent Sexton). Mitch called Larsen to apologize, and Larsen thinking she was getting a warrant any second told Mitch that Bennett was being arrested and the catharsis came over her like a wave – but when she when to the school the next day to return some of Rosie’s textbooks and saw Bennett at work as usual, Mitch lost it. Sje lost it on Linden and later she lost it on Stanley, questioning his masculinity, drawing a correlation to between Bennett being free and alive and him not being a man. She said she shouldn’t have let him go when he had him and with that the leash that Mitch once had on Stan was gone and he had her permission to exact revenge on Bennett. So Stan and Belko take Bennett (who by now we knew had nothing to do with Rosie’s murder, but more on that later) to a secluded area and began to beat him senseless, ignoring his cries of innocence. Back at the Larsen’s house Mitch takes some clothes out of the laundry and found the same pink t-shirt from the mosque that she identified to Linden as Rosie’s, and in that second she knew that she had made a terrible mistake and tried to call Stanley, who I guess doesn’t keep his phone on when he’s beating his daughter’s suspected killer to death. Does anyone doubt that Stanley didn’t kill Bennett? I guess we’ll have to really wait to next week to know for sure, but this is pretty much going exactly how I predicted without the cheesy Lady-Macbeth twist that Mystic River had. I’m really looking forward to seeing how this will play out for the next few episodes, regardless of if he lives or dies. 

The Richmond Mayoral Campaign This plot seems to be going through the motions of a campaign but without the depth and bravado of Carcetti’s in the Wire (but it’s not really fair to compare any series to the greatest series ever forged), all of Richmond’s struggles seem like a plot placeholder until it’s the characters in his plot that become the central suspect, which I have a feeling might be the third/end suspect arc of the season (the first being Kris/Jasper, and Bennett being the second). Last night Richmond uneventfully sunk a basket in exchange for 5 million more campaign dollars (from that Billionaire guy who wants a stadium where the incumbent Mayor Adams precious waterfront project is) which he needed because he lost the support of yet another group, due to backlash from association with Bennett. At least the Ruth Yitainas plot had Lee Garlington. I just hope next week that this plot begins to tie into the murder more. 

The Murder Investigation Linden and Holder were set to arrest Bennett, like Linden promised Mitch earlier, but a warrant hold up from a judge Holder said would be in for sure stopped them in their tracks, it turns out shadily talking about a “girl” and “passports” on a wire isn’t enough to get a warrant. It wasn’t until Mrs. Ahmed came into the station and gave them Mohammed’s number did they catch a break. They were able to track him to a market and a tense and well edited chase ensued. With Mohammed in the tank we discovered that yes he’s involved in hiding a girl, but it’s Ayiesha, the missing Muslim girl we heard about two episodes ago. Her parents were planning female circumcision in anticipation of her arranged marriage and Bennett and Mohammed were hiding her. When they brought up Rosie, Mohammed said that yes she stopped by to drop off the book, but then she left, leaving it wide open…

Who killed Rosie Larsen? At this point it’s hard to think it’s not some one associated with the family or the Campaign and seeing as how she was found in a campaign car (albeit a stolen one), I’m leaning towards the latter and my prediction of Jamie, who was barely seen this episode, still works for me. I have a feeling that the files that Linden requested from Richmond are going to steer the investigation towards the Campaign and more showdowns like the one Linden and Richmond had last night. AMC’s blurb for next week says that someone unsuspecting comesforward… I wonder what that could mean? Till next time…

Who do you think killed Rosie Larsen?


The Killing Episode 8 Recap

“Stonewalled” seemed to propel the plot in a forward direction giving us (and the Detectives) a few more clues and despite the circumstances I’m pleased with how incredulous Linden was at the concept of Rosie’s murder having to do with a terrorist plot (I have some thoughts as to the reason for the direction (or rather misdirection) the investigation headed). Richmond’s story continued to inch forward with the speed of a fat tortoise, and the Larsen’s continued to be a portrait of misery – but an exceptionally compelling and uneasy one.

The Larsens This week’s Larsen storyline was more straightforward in terms of arc. The episode started with Stan taking care of his boys while Mitch sat in Rosie’s bedroom, now a mausoelum. She’s trapped in her depression, which is natural, but life still has to go on, she still ahs two kids. Offering to take them to school, she loads them in the car, turns it on, but forgets something upstairs leaving her two young sons in a car, with the engine running, in a closed garage while upstairs the news of the leaking of the crime scene photos puts Mitch into a trance. Thank god sober Aunt Terry showed up and opened the garage.

I think because the series airs weekly we forget that only one day actually passes in each episode and to the Larsens, Rosie’s only been dead a week, in fact it was only when Stan told Mitch she needed to move on and she responded by saying it’s only been a week that it even struck me how little time had actually passed for the Larsens. As a punishment, or rather consequence I guess, Stan cleared out Rosie’s room, attempting to remove Mitch’s distraction. Stan might noty have been right to clear out Rosie’s room like he did, but there needed to be some reaction or consequence for Mitch’s neglegence. It didn’t matter in the end, Mitch recovered the boxes and set to return Rosie’s room to it’s original form.

Richmond’s Mayoral Campaign With Richmiond’s Campaign being relegated to 5 words (Dead girl in a car) and his precious All-Stars program dead, he decided it was finally time to take the offensive rather than bend over with a smile, which has been his mode d’emploi since the beginning. Armed with an injunction he tried to use the system to revive his program, but he was thwarted by Adams again as the judge is an old frat buddy of the incumbant. Despite the fact that Jamie had a smoking gun set to destroy Adams, still Richmond didn’t want to win by playing dirty.

Jamie took some time to meet with that rogue billionaire and mutual Adams enemy at what seemed like a Hobofight. He assured the investor that Richmond has what it takes to win, all he needed was a private detective, everyone has dirt. But he was playing the billionaire, telling him what he wanted to hear. Jamie was right when he told Gwen that if she really knew Darren she knew he was too weak to win the election, to do what needed to be done. Luckily for his campaign this co-incided with the parole hearing for the woman who drunk drove and killed Richmond’s wife. The hearing sent him over the edge and he called Jamie to release the scandal, which was that Adams is paying for an apartment for his young secret lover.

If tonight did anything it just reinforced my belief that Jamie is the killer, his do or die attitude and his slimy and sneaky ways.

The Murder Mystery Oddly enough this plot was fairly linear and episodic last night too. The hour began where the previous one ended with Holder and Linden investigating the tip they anonymously got at the mosque only to fine themselves in the middle of a federal terror investigation. But when they were on the ground subdues, Linden saw a pink T-shirt she thought was Rosie’s and tried all manners of bureaucratic measures before resorting to conning her way into the evidence van and snapping a picture of the shirt.

But there were more snags in her case, for one she couldn’t trust Holder who’d been having clandestine meeting with an unknown man and second someone in the investigation seems to be continually leaking evidence. There was a particularly tense and forboding scene between Linden and Mitch where she was lambasted for letting the evidence get out. Mitch’s trust in the police keeps diminishing week after week, I have a feeling this is going to lead to a Laura Linney in Mystic River-ish twist. It was nice to see some resolution as both of these mini-mysteries got solved. For a while I thought that it was Holder leaking info, that had something to do with Mayor Adams but it was revealed last night that Linden’s son, frustrated at the inconsistency of his life shared the case pictures with his friends online and is the source of the leak. Meanwhile the man Holder turned out to be meeting was his AA sponsor. After learning that he’s in recovery and that he’s not the source of the leak, Linden was finally able to look at holder as an equal.

Holder used a friendly Judge to get a wire tap on Ahmed’s phone meanwhile Linden brought the picture of the shirt to Mitch who confirmed that it was Rosie’s.

Also Ahmed was called by the principal and told not to come back to work, so he stewed at home and at the end of the episode was seen speaking in Arabic to who we can only assume is Mohammed, letting him know that the passports would be ready tomorrow. Is Bennett a child killer or a Terrorist? And which one would be better for Richmond’s campaign?

Who Killed Rosie Larsen? The likelyhood of Bennet being anything more than a red herring or at the most an unknowing accomplice is decreasing everyweek he remains in the investigation’s spotlight. I still believe that had Rosie and Bennet never had a creepy mentor/mentee relationship she’d still be alive, but Bennet’s involvement seems about as likely as Stan’s now. My money is still on Jamie as the killer, I don’t know exactly why yet but it seems like Rosie may have been in posession of something or someknowledge that would have destroyed the campaign.

Still not meeting the promise that it showed in its first three or four hours but getting back on that path. With only 5 episodes left, the storyline’s endgame better start revving it’s engines and setting things in motion for a great tail end, it can’t really afford more tension and clue free hours.

Who do you think killed Rosie Larsen?

The Killing: Catching Up Before Tonight’s Episode!

There was no Killing Recaps the last two weeks, things were really insane for a while but they’ve calmed down. I though I’d take this opportunity to catch up on the recaps we’ve missed in anticipation of tonight’s episode “Stonewalled”, which will be recapped tomorrow.

I actually found The Killing to be hitting a sort of mid season slump, the last two episodes, while still of the highest quality, lacked the bravado and tension of the first few. Let’s break down the plots:

The Larsens I am becoming increasingly uneasy with Stanley Larsen’s retransformation into a crook, not uneasy in terms of not liking the plot, but Brent Sexton’s performance is at the same time so quiet and seething but incredibly strong. Belko (Brent Sexton III) his friend and employee asked him whether he wanted to know who at the school the police were looking into. I found Belko’s insistence and continuing offers to be suspect. If I were Stan I would have wondered why Belko was so persistent. Belko came through and let Stan know they were looking at Bennett, who arrived at the wake. Stan then offered to drive Bennett home and the 6th episode ended with Bennett in Stan’s car.

I predicted that if The Killing were granted a second season – and it strayed from the Dutch original which only followed Sarah Linden in the second season – that it would end with Stanley taking the life of who he thought to be Rosie’s killer, and an ongoing plot of the second season would be a cat and mouse game between him and the cops. I had a feeling Bennett was going to be fine, it’s too early in the series for him to die and with Mitch’s main arc seeming to be just how miserable and neglectful she can be, the other kids need Stan.

Stan didn’t kill Bennett in the end, just scared the shit out of him. I really enjoyed watching him squirm while Stan stood in the rain outside the car deciding what action to take. Killer or not he’s still a pervy predator.

Meanwhile Linden and Holder were all over trying to find Stan and Bennett – more on their discoveries in their own section – with Holder stationed at the Larsen’s. Mitch’s best scene from the last two weeks was confronting Belko on his part in Stan’s revenge plan – her role has been so scant and reserved to isolated bouts of misery, I’m wondering if there’s an arc in sight or if it’s merely “misery porn.” We learned that Mitch wouldn’t marry Stan and have kids with him while he was still a crook, he up and quit and became a hard working family man.

Eventually grief gets easier, but this series chronicles a day in an episode, so it won’t any time soon. 

Darren Richmond’s Campaign The Richmond campaign continues to be the plotline that’s dragging the most. When it was leaked that Bennett was a suspect, it was obvious that his involvement with Richmond’s All-Stars program was going to infect the campaign and it took almost no effort on Mayor Adam’s part to goad Richmond into talking about Bennett during the debate and for the campaign to be as Jamie put it “5 Words; Dead girl in a car.”

The next episode really didn’t feature much Richmond except that he found out Mayor Adams, in light of Bennett’s association to All-Stars, and Richmond’s refusal to fire him whether he’s guilty or not, was moving to have the city remove funding from the All-Stars program. Richmond found out just in time to appear before the city council and make a heartfelt plea, but it fell upon deaf ears and his precious program bit the dust.

I really hope that Rosie’s murder ties into the Waterfront and Richmond further, either that or scale back the plot’s screentime, especially since it’s looking like unless Adams’ killed her himself, he can’t win. 

The Murder Mystery The investigation is beginning to stall, and as much as I understand that any murder investigation would have it’s slower days, I just wish it was more engaging. I actually miss the episodes that took place at the school and investigated Rosie’s friends. Like I mentioned earlier, Holder and Linden were trying to find Bennett, Holder was stationed at the Larsens and Linden went to the Ahmeds’ house to wait for Bennett and took the opportunity to question his wife (Ashley Johnson) some more. We discovered that Rosie came over the Ahmeds to return the Qu’ran that she borrowed, but it wasn’t Mrs. Ahmed that let her in, it was Bennett’s friend Mohammed. 

Linden’s still not in California, duh. She’s not gonna go until this case is wrapped up, especially since she seems to have some sort of ‘thing’ for dead young girls. I wonder how much screentime will be dedicated to this snoozer of a sub-plot. 

The 7th episode ended with Linden and Holder using the Mohammed information and investigating a warehouse, when the FBI busted in and arrested them. If Rosie’s death has something to do with a terrorist plot, I’m gonna be pissed, it’s more convenient and mass accommodating and doesn’t really seem right. 

The Killing hasn’t really been living up to the promise it showed in the first three episodes, there’s something more unsettling about setting the investigation in a high school than where it’s been heading. I hope that the endgame of the season builds up more tensions and introduces more clues. 

Who Killed Rosie Larsen? Belko’s suspect stock has been rising, he’s been evasive and misleading. Who is his man at the school? Maybe he’s connected to the campaigns through his connection to organized crime, maybe he was Rosie’s secret older boyfriend (I actually believe that Bennett wasn’t sleeping with her). Also rising in suspicions is Aunt Terry (Jamie Anne Allman, wife of Prison Break and True Blood star Marshall Allman), she’s been boozing a little too hard to be completely guiltless. I’m still sold on Jamie as the killer, but at this point it’s mainly due to the fact we haven’t been lead there yet and how creepy and wily performance. 

Check back tomorrow for a recap of episode 8!

Who do you think killed Rosie Larsen?

The Killing Episode 5 Recap

The most recent episode of the Killing might have been the slowest and clue free yet, but it was still none the less compelling to watch. The deeper the rabbit hole goes and the more invested I become, I’m will with such an unease – anyone could have been capable of killing Rosie it seems, and with the connection between Rosie and the campaign firmly established, it seems that the motive for murder may be incredibly complex and the fact that we don’t know if were hunting for a murderer or murderers. Let’s take a look at where “Super 8” left us.

The Larsens While it’s probably the most grim plotline, there are little joys in watching the Larsens and their stunning performances. The episode began with the two surviving children taking breakfast matters into their own hands. The younger Larsen took some money, went to the store (in his ‘jammies no less) and bought milk so he could have cereal. The older one awoke to a wet bed and threw out his sheets and pants, he was sneaking back in when he caught lil eating Rosie’s cereal and what mom’ll do, the little one casually says without looking up “Mom doesn’t care about us anymore.” The matter of factness of his delivery shook me – it just compounds the tragedy, and it’s really gratifying to have the children’s perspective. Mitch went shopping this week, an event she wasn’t prepared for for a few reasons; 1, seeing something Rosie liked triggered her sobs and 2, the fact that people avoided her. Maybe they didn’t know what to say, but for whatever the reason Mitch had become isolated (she also had a chance? encounter with Richmond, more on that below). I fear for her, almost half way through the series and she’s barely come up for air. Stanley on the other hand is doing his best at being the parent and husband he needs to be, that means stopping at a gas station to cry like a madman in the bathroom so that his wife doesn’t have to see it. Brent Sexton is impressing me more and more week after week as the devastated but fiercely strong Stanley. Belko (after finding Tommy’s? urine soaked pants, washed and changed his sheets, it was really sweet) offered up a to find out who the police were looking at to Stanley who at first said no but later changed his mind and decided he wanted Belko to tell him. I hope for the Larsen’s sake Stanley doesn’t do something too terrible to the wrong person (like Mystic River, which this definetly emulates).

Richmonds Mayoral Campaign Jamie continued to worm his way into Leslie Adams’ party trying to suss out who the mole it, only to find that it was Yitanis herself. Yitanis had planted someone in Richmond’s campaign and leaked the information that mole gathered to Adams. In order to get that information Jamie had to go through Adams’ vetting process which includes getting drunk and talking about why he chose Adams over Richmond now. Adams waxed future-stalgic (new word!) about his waterfront legacy (which I have a feeling is somehow tied in to the motive for murder) and once lightweight Jamie vomited, he was in. When Richmond confronted Yitanis, rather than cower away, she revealed to Gwen that Richmond had been investigating her as the leak, planting the seeds of mistrust. If Darren continues not trusting Gwen that path will likely lead to his losing the election as Gwen, the ice-queen lady McBethian campaign manager doesn’t seem to lose well, or really at all for that matter.

There was a great scene with Richmond and Mitch Larsen at the grocery store where Richmond related to Mitch that he knows what she’s going through. We weren’t able to suss out too many details from their brief conversation but it seemed that Richmond lost his wife to crime some time ago. I’m sure we’ll learn more as the series progresses. Though Richmond was trying to handle Mitch, it was still a nice scene and these two vets should have a few more together.

The Murder Mystery The investigation focused on Bennett Ahmed, who we’d discovered had sent messages with Rosie, not necessarily sexual ones, but they were undoubtably predatory. Telling her to “follow her dreams” and “be free”, they were definetly creepy and line crossing. Infact they’d inspired her to start filmmaking, and Ahmed gave Linden a Super 8 film that Rosie had shot. Bennett’s story was good – he emerged from the episode still a suspect, there was just a lack of proof or evidence of any kind just the convenience of his situation and his lies. Mrs. Ahmed (Ashley Johnson, the youngest on Growing Pains) was away for the weekend while the floors were being done, Ahmed said the flooring company cancelled last minute so he did it himself. He was home alone all night. All it took was a phone call to the flooring company (did he think they wouldn’t check?) to find out HE was the one that cancelled, and the principal informed them that Mrs. Ahmed is a former student, Linden and Holder decided to talk to her, seems Bennett wooed her with the same inspirational letter he’d wooed Rosie with add that Rosie had on her body the substance that Linden found in his house, Bennett was looking like a solid suspect.The episode ended with Richmond and Bennett, their arms around eachother posing for pictures.

Who Killed Rosie Larsen? While I don’t peg Bennett for the murderer anymore, and for that matter as Rosie’s secret older boyfriend, I still say he had some hand, even possibly inadvertantly in her death. And the titular Super 8 Film? I think it’s just a red herring. As the story gets deeper it’s looking like the connection between Ahmed and the Campaign may have introduced Rosie to some more than duplicitous characters, politicians. My number one suspect right now is Jamie (Eric Ladin). He’d met Rosie at one of Richmond’s All Star events, picking her out from the crowd as not really belonging there, he was her older boyfriend. Somehow along the way she learned something that she should not have – possibly having to do with the waterfront – trusted the wrong person and died for it.

Who do you think killed Rosie Larsen?

The Event Recap: “I’m talking about making you President”

The Event was super lame last night, even though Dempsey shot himself in the head and Sophia tricked the VP into becoming an assassin the episode wasn’t really that interesting. But even though we got one of the Event’s duller hours there was still much to laugh at, which brings us to…

The WHAT?!? List
Chronicling the events in the EVENT that drive us crazy.

There’s just a few big ones today and not the usual 10, a lame episode begets a lame recap.

Manipulative Sophia Sophia played VP Jarvis like a fiddle enlisting him to assassinate the President by poison. It took very little convincing on Sophia’s part but that’s becuase everyone is treating him like a ‘red-headed step child’ and keeping him for appearances. Once again Elias let his anger cloud his judgment and he kept the VP maligned. From then on it was simple for Sophia. Had she known how poorly he was being treated she may have enlisted him earlier. We left off with the President about to be killed (with poisoned  sweetener) by an anxious Jarvis. Sophia’s plan is to use ice cores(?) to kill the population. Hopefully they contain a creature indigenous to NGC253, like Godzilla or a Cloverfield and not some lame killer virus.

Sean the Sentinal Dempsey lit a house on fire as a test for Sean. Seems a little elaborate but okay. Sean of course passed (cause what can’t he do) and Dempsey let Sean in on the conspiracy. The Sentinals have been here for more than three millenia, they can forsee events because of the tapestry? Honestly this bit was confusing. Basically there is a prophecy (for lack of a better word) that a non-sentinal (Sean) will be the one to stop Sophia. Then he gave Sean a bag and shot himself in the head. Wait what? Yeah. He tells Sean that he’s gonna save the world, gives him a bag and then shoots himself in the head. Utterly ridiculous. I didn’t buy any of this for a second. Why shoot himself? Does Hal Holbrook have a movie to film or something? It was shock for the sake of shock, regardless of plot,  which is something I cannot appreciate. PS did you notice how many times Holbrook said the word ‘event’ before he shot himself. It was like a lot. PPS did you notice Vicky’s sadface when Leila called Sean. Someone’s got a crush…

Christina Martinez, putting the Alien in illegal alien. Since last week when Sen. Lewis (Virginia Madsen) was mole hunting in the White House, Christina, the president’s barely seen wife (despite being a regular) was suspected of being a sleeper Alien. Her backstory didn’t match up and Lewis noted how she doesn’t seem to age. Martinez questioned his wife who told him an incredibly believable story about how her parents lied about being Cuban to seek asylum in the US and that her parents are illegal aliens from the Dominican. Once she confessed she started bawling and had Elias comfort her, and once he hugged her, she looked away ominously indicating her extra-terrestrial nature. It’s a smart storytelling move to have someone be a regular, hide in the background only to have their betrayal be the game changer (Hiding O’Malley in the background of Grey’s season 5 made his finale twist more awesome). PS did you notice how latino Elias and Christina get when they say eachother’s names?

Very much a set-up episode but probably not the worst we’ve seen on this show. Tune in next week to find out if Martinez drinks the coffee, and hopefully get some closure on Christina’s immigrant status.

Gossip Girl Recap: So Wait…No Dair or Chair!?!?

Sometimes I picuture the GG writers room as a group of giddy brace-faced 13 year old girls. And why not, the show certainly seems like it was written by a 13 year old, the endless shifting romances, the unnecessitated cattiness and crazy cousin Charlie.

Side Note: As a lover of TV I feel you can never have enough crazy cousins, but two cousins, both nutty as the day is long, on both CW monday series in the same season is ridiculous.

We last left the upper-east side with Lily turning herself in for sending Ben to jail. And tonight the Rhodes/Van Der Woodsen/Humphreys were gathering to a photo shoot called ‘Modern Royalty’, which frankly I’m surprised everyone wanted to be in cause it sounded so gauche.

Lily’s boho sister Carol (LA Law’s Sheila Kelley) came for the shoot and to support her sister and her daughter Charlie stowed away. Carol had tried to keep Charlie away from the toxic life that caused Serena and Eric to both be institutionalized, her father to fake her mother’s cancer and her mother to send a man to jail so Serena could go back to private school. No offence to the Van Der clan but it’s kinda sound logic.

Caroline Lagerfelt is always welcome as Cece Rhodes, Lily’s total bitch mother, and last night needed her – she was the best thing in a totally terrible episode.

How terrible? Oh let me count the ways!

Blair reeling from her kiss with Lonely Boy had stayed in bed for a week to suss out her feelings. Dan or Chuck, would she be Dair or Chair. She decided she loved Chuck, but after Chuck found out she kissed Dan he enlisted the obnoxious Epperly (seriously why bring her back?) to embaress Dan by inviting him to the shoot. Well this didn’t sit well with Blair who all of the sudden, as if out of the blue decided she didn’t like games anymore.

First off, screw you Gossip Girl. How dare you build a fresh and interesting romance like Blair and Dan only to have it die out as if it were nothing. Were they freeing up Blair to be with Chuck (who lets face it, she’s meant for)? No, god forbid the viewers should have a semblance of any sort of romantic stability on the show. Were they freeing up Dan to be the object of cousing Charlie’s affection? Probably, which is so unfortunate and lame becuase courting Blair made me like Dan for the first time ever. EVER.

Series creator and showrunner Josh Schwartz is getting very close to the same mistakes he was making on The OC. Chuck and Blair could be Ryan and Marissa or Summer and Seth for the amount of breaking up and getting back together they do.

Chace Crawford must have done something really awful to the writers becuase Nate is still doing absolutely nothing. In fact his plots are so scant that it seems he’s gonna spend the rest of the season helping the painfully atrocious Raina Thorpe (guest star Tika Sumpter) find her birth mother. What a yawn, just a terrible waste.

The most ridiculous aspect of the whole episode was Vanessa. In a show with plenty of terrible and useless characters (Rufus, Jenny, Nate) Vanessa is hands down the worst. Her two scenes last night were overhearing that Blair and Dan kissed, and calling Serena to tell her. Really? This is Vanessa now? No one wants less Vanessa than me, but if you’re going to have her at least have her do something in character. Vanessa is supposed to be above all this shit, and I get that she’s trying to hurt Serena and Blair, but the way she did it was so petty and uneventful it was almost irrelevant. The direction Vanessa’s heading isn’t necessarily a bad one – if they want to make her an antagonist I’m behind it, but they should make her really bad. Blair would have never left juicy gossip on a voice mail like that, she would have hatched a scheme, caused a big scene and been awesome.

I liked the tease about Charlie being crazy and it seemed (based on some curious glances from Carol) that Charlie gets especially boy-crazy. It just would have been nice to throw Nate this bone and give him something to do.

At the end a limo pulled up and a dude with a shoe got out of the car. It took me a good 5 minutes and rewinding to remember that it was the bland Prince that Blair met in Paris.

Gossip Girl is getting stale, but then it usually does as the season winds down, but the temporary dullness usually sets the stage for a killer endgame, and (SPOILER ALERT) with Georgina Sparks coming back in May it’s gonna get better for sure.

A bright spot? The promo for next week hints that Blair and Dan may not necessarily be over for good!

House Recap: Martha Masters’ Masterful Exit

Last night’s episode of House focused on the plucky and moral Martha M. Masters played wonderfully by Amber Tamblyn. In what was her final episode although in recent interviews Tamblyn said that the door was left open for her return. We learned a lot about Masters, she makes paper airplanes and hangs them, she quizzes herself from the moment she wakes and even people who seem to be her friends don’t really like her (what was the deal with the LP guy? What an asshole).

The case was about a girl who was getting ready to set a sailing record and passed out on her boat, her sponsors wanted House to check her out for insurance purposes.

House, knowing Masters was leaving opened up an internship in his department, offering the job to Masters only if she lied to the administration regarding how many Lumbar Puncture’s she’s performed. She did lie, but to House, performing the 10th one on Thirteen. House caught her, he likes liars but not when they lie to him, and he removed the internship.

Side note: I liked the scene with thirteen I just wish that in her last episode she could have interacted a little more with the rest team, Taub in particular, they have good chemistry.  

Masters discovered it was cancer in sailor girl’s arm and refused to have it amputated to save her life so Martha asked Wilson for advice (I’m not even getting into that ridiculous chicken bet) and Wilson recounted for Masters what Stacy had done to/for House all those years ago that left him in considerable pain and a limp (waited till he was in a medically induced coma, switched surgeries on him). Then Martha M. Masters broke bad. She faked cardiac arrest in order to scare her patient’s parents into authorizing her amputation.

House had won. He’d corrupted the uncorruptable, he’d taken Master’s morality and morphed it into a morality he can use to make his team better at the cost of making her a worse person. Saving the girl’s life didn’t make her feel better, she’d cheated – House broke her by making her break her number one rule.

In the end Masters decided that not only did she have to quit House’s team, she had to leave Princeton Plainsboro all together. I liked having Masters on the series, she was the right kind of character to fill the void left by Thirteen. And while her morality may have been insufferable at times it sure was realistic; I know plenty of people just like her and they barely get more likable over time.

People haven’t been crazy about the gradual shift from mystery procedural to workplace soap opera but after seven years something needed to be done to keep it fresh, season six was bad from episode 3 on. Also Robert Sean Leonard is being totally wasted this year, it would suck for us fans, but if homeboy needs to quit to find a job with real plot lines then so be it.  

House is back in two weeks with guest star Donal Logue, of the sublime but ratings anorexic Terriers and the return of Candice Bergen as Cuddy’s mom. Here’s the promo for episode 7×20, “Changes