Psych: Cloudy...Chance of Murder
Right off the top, I have to say this was a fantastic episode. Possibly my favorite of the series so far. The courtroom venue worked great, and really set the stage for some fun bits. As Gus said, "Man, this is fun."
Donnelly Rhodes (Battlestar Galactica) was perfectly cast as Judge Leland. His 'psychic mumbo jumbo' scene with Shawn was particularly good. The asparagus on his bench at the end of the episode was a nice touch. There has been so much serious courtroom drama on television, that it's nice to see a comedic take on things from time to time
The case, and the mystery of it, was well done. I suspected Priscilla (Keegan Connor Tracy, Beggars and Choosers) early on. There was just something not right about her. And all the time spent with the green screen machine, despite providing another great Gus moment, sure felt like a big, red flag waving, clue. I was still pleasantly surprised by the shadow in the video tape reveal. The courtroom antics were outlandish, but this is an outlandish show, I'm along for that ride.
I'm going to guess that I had a different reaction to meeting Sandra Panitch (Jolie Jenkins) than most viewers. If your eyes went big and you yelled at your TV, "It's Diana, from Shasta McNasty!" then you are my kind of TV nut. If you thought of something else, well, I get that too. It's tough to find a Shasta fan out there. I thought she was good here, though she didn't really get a lot to do.
Sandra's case was much more about Adam (Michael Weston), from our perspective anyway. I liked how that story played out. They make a lot of noise about Shawn's observation skills, but his social skills are just as important. He's a smooth cat that can adapt to any situation and seems almost immune to being flustered. Unless Henry is involved, then all bets are off. The way he helped Adam regain his confidence, while also saving Sandra, was a nice story. It speaks to the fact that when you get right down to it, Shawn is just a nice guy. I liked how they illustrated the transformation with the awkward fist shaking that became the fist bump in the end. My favorite part of their work together though, was the big dramatic finish with Priscilla on the stand. When Adam tagged himself in with a pat on Shawn's back, he was a changed man. Good stuff.
While there was a lot to like here, my favorite part of the episode was the interaction between Shawn and Gus. James Roday and Dulé Hill work so well together. It's the little things, like Shawn pausing to walk his fingers across the desk for a fist bump after Gus came through with the 6th grade, accelerated law, goodness. Gus picking up on the kidney stones, and the way Shawn was impressed by it, was also very good. "Dude, nice." I don't think they could have done any better than getting those two actors for these roles.
Something I haven't figured out yet is just what they are doing with the Shawn/Lassiter relationship. Things kind of went topsy-turvy starting with "From the Earth to Starbucks." They have definitely turned some sort of corner, and I'm eager to see where they are headed. From the beginning of the show, I fully expected that what we saw of the two was what we were going to get for some time. The constant butting of heads, and Lassiter's refusal to give Shawn his due credit.
With Shawn going so far out of his way to help Lassiter, and now Lassiter returning the favor, it really isn't what one would normally expect. The addition of the memo, and Lassiter's "Don't screw this one up." line put a nice twist on the case. And getting Shawn's bike out of impound was a nice gesture.
Similar to that relationship, Psych has become much more than what I thought it would be when it premiered. They've now found their groove and the show is a legitimate contender for inclusion on top 5 lists and whatnot. It's too bad that it's tucked away Friday nights at 10PM on basic cable. Given the exposure of a better time slot and a shot on one of the big networks, I think it could be a legit network hit.
Finally, two thumbs up for Maggie Lawson's rendition of "Cool It Now." Those spots are silly, but I hang around every week waiting for them. That's all I have for you. Rich will be back next week. Enjoy your weekend.