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October 9, 2015

'Rescue Me' - 'Blackout' Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted Jul 28th 2010 2:15PM
'Rescue Me'(S06E05) All season long, we've been waiting for Tommy to hit rock bottom with his drinking so we can finally start to see him begin a redemptive journey toward sobriety, and perhaps get his life back together. I say that with the anticipation that we're actually going to have a "happy" ending for 'Rescue Me.' Given the tone of the show throughout the years, it just wouldn't feel right to end on a tragic note.

I'm not sure if the events of this week constitute Tommy's personal all-time low, but they are certainly in the running. When your family gets pulled into your debauchery, it's got to make you finally stop for a moment and think about what you've been doing with your life. Especially now that it's starting to negatively affect others.

Perhaps because of the strong nature of the content, the episode was framed and presented a little differently than we're used to. Gone for the most part were moments of levity, though you can always count on Sean and Mike lighten the mood. Gone was a lot of the animosity within Tommy's sphere of influence, but that's probably going to change really quickly now.

I was glad to see Colleen alive at the end. We've already gone down the road of Tommy losing a child, and that wasn't enough to make a big difference -- the episode opened with Tommy punching his son's ghost in the face, blaming him for his own death. In Colleen's case, though, Tommy's drinking was directly responsible for her disappearance. I guess the plan to have her drink herself to sobriety maybe wasn't the best approach.

Scattered throughout the episode, we got some glimpses of their drunken night together. That framing sequence did set up one of the most obvious -- and yet still delightfully entertaining -- segments of the entire episode: when Tommy finally went to Jean's house. In his hazy recollections, she was a definite cougar and her son was a strapping young man. When the gang finally made it to her house, it couldn't have been more different. Tommy did a better deed than he realized at the time when he dragged Colleen out of there before she could consummate things with dear Jean's boy.

Having Tommy's blurry memories sprinkled throughout the events of the episode, which took place in a single day, was a subtle and brilliant way to show us how he was fighting desperately to remember what happened. For an entire day, he knew the truth was just at the tip of his mind -- if he could just pull the right memories together. Colleen's fate was in the hands of his blackout flashes, which must have been an incredible, all-consuming guilt.

In the end, through a mix of luck and attention to details, it came together, but there was plenty of emotional tension throughout. We got Janet's expected outburst, as well as a passionate one from Black Shawn. I'm impressed with how the writers have managed to show us the growing depths of their relationship through small dialogue exchanges, considering it's mostly happening off-screen. I'm actually rooting for them to make it now.

Sheila was surprisingly supportive and together when she came to help with the search. Maybe surprising isn't the right word, as Sheila has proven she has a heart and decency buried underneath all that crazy. Plus, she was probably consumed by guilt over Tommy finding her post-shower with Mickey at her place. Thankfully, Tommy's memory of that is hazy at best, so she's being supportive to try and keep him distracted about it until he doubts it altogether.

Then there's the element of family crisis bringing people together. With Colleen missing, Teddy and Mickey were there supportive o Tommy, after revealing they'd laced the bottle of Irish Whiskey they gave Tommy a few episodes back with poison ... poison that no doubt has lead to Colleen's current status. It's when a crisis is over, good or bad, that people revert back to how they really feel about one another.

So while most everyone was supportive this episode, Tommy's most likely going to get ten kinds of crap for the events that unfolded. Colleen spent an entire day lying at the beach, so everyone's pretty damned lucky she seems okay. Considering she went undiscovered for so long, the beach must not be highly trafficked. That means that if they hadn't found her, things could have gone much worse.

While Teddy and Mickey can take some of the blame for the poison they put on the bottle, the onus of responsibility falls on Tommy. That's why this has the potential to be a rock bottom moment for him. As Colleen came out of it alright, though, it could go either way. For the sake of the show, I hope it does serve as his turning point because he's got a long road to recovery, and it would be nice to see him on his way by the end of the series.

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The best part was Tommy dressed in bra and panties with make up and a wig. Great pics. I love how Sheila was upset cause she has been trying to get Tommy to wear her panties for years.

Sean and Mike are priceless.

July 28 2010 at 2:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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