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October 4, 2015

Army Wives: Great Expectations

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 8th 2008 9:41AM
Army duo(S02E12) There were too many story lines in this episode, too many threads pulled from the fabric. It felt like they were setting up the show for the end of the season and building suspense. For that reason, it felt very disjointed to me.

Claudia Joy's parents, Randall and Charlotte -- nicely played by Len Cariou and Marsha Mason -- have settled in the Holden's house as they deal with their marital/financial issues. The kind of money problems most families are facing in this country right now are not like this, so it's hard to relate. It's also hard to buy that his gambling has never impacted on Claudia's life before. Her hero worship has blinded her to his flaws, but how can you keep money troubles that secret?

To me, the lack of communication was just irritating and dumb. In weeks past, Charlotte's been complaining about her credit cards being denied, so when Randall showed up to say everything is fine now, why didn't Charlotte ask how? That's what I wanted to know. The way Claudia dealt with this problem -- telling her parents to work it out -- was like an ace bandage on a broken leg. If this problem is resolved that quickly, what was the point?

Compared to Roxy and Trevor and Frank and Denise, the Holdens are doing all right. Trevor's like a ticking clock. He's had a rough time recovering from his injuries, physical and emotional, and learning that Dalton's died, a fellow soldier from his squad in Iraq, pushed him over the edge. Roxy's been worried about Trevor and the pain meds, and now she really has something to be concerned about. Trevor has never been so out of control.

Frank and Denise met with a marriage counselor because, like Claudia's parents, they don't really talk. They also don't have the same idea about marriage. Denise calls marriage a relationship subject to change. "It's an organic thing," she explains. To Frank, the terms of their marriage should remain the same forever and she has destroyed their foundation. Whoa -- what if Denise had actually had an affair with Getti?

A separation, her idea, is delaying the tough decisions to come. And Jeremy's deploying to Iraq -- and their deciding not to mention their marital troubles to him -- just tabled the break up to come. They still love each other, but they've grown apart. He wants a stay at home housewife. She wants to contribute something.

The lone comic relief was Joan's baby shower. She would micro manage the party and baby proof the house before the baby's even out of the womb, wouldn't she? I thought they missed a chance for her to really talk to the wives about her fears about having a baby. That's something Roland cannot relate to.

My least favorite story development was Pamela's stalker. Based on one phone call and a gift of flowers, she completely overreacted and decided he was a stalker? Why? Can't Tim simply be a fan? Yes, Pam has cop instincts, but following that theme, I expected the MPs to be more sympatico with her. Instead, since they were no help, I can see Pamela getting a gun and defending herself. Of course with Chase sneaking in and out thanks to his Delta Force status, she might wind up shooting him. This plot seemed very contrived to me.

Other points of interest

-- The old nightmare at the opening bit. I didn't buy Trevor's overdose for a minute, did you? Still, it was prefiguration of problems for the LeBlancs.

-- Speaking of Roxie, her flashbacks about her parents fighting didn't flow with the scene. Instead of happening while she and Trevor were fighting, it might have been more poignant if she remembered that scene while the kids and Trevor were eating.

-- Randall didn't even mention Amanda to Claudia and Michael. That wasn't realistic; she's only been dead a few months and she was his first grandchild. He should have bonded with Claudia over losing.

-- Did Randall really think Emmalin wouldn't tell her mother about the college fund?

-- If Tim is a danger to Pamela, maybe they should have referred back to the Hump Bar explosion and that being a key to her fear. Marilyn's husband stalked her before going after her with a suicide bomb.

-- Is the stalker on the post? Does that mean he's a soldier or married to a soldier? How else did he get on the post to leave the flowers?

-- Barbara Hall wrote this episode. Her credits include Judging Amy, Northern Exposure and Joan of Arcadia.
Do you think we've seen the last of Claudia's parents?
Yes5 (7.2%)
No44 (63.8%)
We'll see them next year20 (29.0%)

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Are we watching the same show? I see your point on certain things, but why would Claudia Joy's mother ask her father how things are now ok...she didn't believe him in the first place! The fact that she didn't ask him, made that pretty clear to me. She also told her father to get help, and that her mother would NOT be coming home with him until he did. You cant' force an addict to recover, but you can stop enabling them....

Roxie's flashback made sense as well....she remembered her paren'ts fighting, and what were she and Trevor doing...fighting. She didn't want the boys to see it, seems pretty simple.

You don't need to be a soldier to get on post...you could be a spouse, a family member, a vendor, etc....

September 10 2008 at 10:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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