Let’s just say that out of the three TGIT shows, Bones closely resembled the fake-turkey Brennan wanted to serve for Thanksgiving, Grey’s Anatomy was the staple heaping pile of stuffing everyone loves, and HTGAWM… well, it’s like that godawful yam/marshmallow casserole that I still can’t wrap my brain around why is has a place on the dinner table and isn’t served as dessert: some people seem to love it; I just have no appetite for the stuff.
Bones: High Treason in the Holiday Season
[Ok, really? That’s the episode title you’re going with, Bones? Sigh. Alright.]
I honestly don’t get why they went for a National Security case on their Thanksgiving episode. Was the case particularly interesting? Well, not quite. This week’s case is something out of the Snowden playbook (he is even name-dropped in the beginning of the episode): a whistleblower leaks top secret documents to a journalist, who is murdered after releasing details to the press. The NSA gets involved, much to the dismay of Aubrey; Hodgins and Brennan take the journalist’s side while Booth resents her for putting his fellow Americans in peril, and the ‘keeping secrets’ theme running through the episode is tied into the protagonists by way of Brennan making secret arrangements to surprise Booth at the Thanksgiving dinner.
The first obvious choice of suspect is the journalist’s younger, hotter colleague who’s trying to get a headline story. The case then gets complicated when they suspect the husband of killing the victim because of her ‘affair’, which is later revealed not to have been an affair at all, but rather a secret rendezvous with her source, who is none other than the very NSA agent conveniently assigned to the case. She made up the affair to protect her source, but she was reckless with the documents, so he accidentally killed her. The encrypted disk with all the stolen information is still missing, but Hodgins finally figures out where it’s hiding and gets his hands on it. In a neat resolution, he and Booth decide to destroy it before it destroys any more lives.
Yes, the issue tackled is important, especially since everyone is up in arms about Big Brother surveillance and government secrets and all that hoopla. But did it have to be the holiday episode? It’s only in the last couple of minutes that we get what we were hoping for all along: everyone together enjoying a questionable thanksgiving dinner (thanks to Brennan’s fake turkey ideas) and having fun. The surprise Brennan had been working on is a spectacularly grown-up Parker, whom we’d honestly forgotten about in recent seasons. Brennan’s dad is still absent, which is a shame – I was hoping Ryan O’ Neal would make a guest appearance soon; it’s also been a while since we last saw Angela’s dad.
All in all, not a very satisfying Thanksgiving episode.
Grey’s Anatomy: Things We Lost in the Fire
This is the Grey’s Anatomy we all know and love: a disaster hits, the hospital is flooded with emergency patients, the doctors scramble to accommodate them all, and a lot of personal drama seeps in. This was the last Grey’s episode until February, so it really turned up the heat this week, although it didn’t really feel like a mid-season finale.
This week, it’s all about a fire. The introduction scene works very well: flakes are dancing around Seattle and everyone’s wondering why it’s snowing when it’s 60 degrees outside. Turns out it’s just ash floating from the huge forest fire that broke out, and the ER will soon be receiving dozens of firefighters injured on the job.
It’s Bailey’s first big crisis, and she’s not exactly handling it with panache. I’m tired of seeing Bailey fumble with her new duties. She started out as the confident ‘Nazi’ who knew exactly what she was doing, and instead of becoming more secure in herself and her position, she keeps reverting back to the intern version of herself who, in the middle of the crisis, needs to consult binders containing hospital protocol instructions. I get that the show needs the comic relief, but I just wish it was someone else who provided it. Bailey’s just not funny, and neither was the entire scene with her talking to the surgeons while climbing the stairs backwards at Richard’s not-too-subtle direction.
I also just need to question her decision to not divert some of the patients to other hospitals even though Grey-Sloane had reached capacity, because they just couldn’t turn away firefighters. In the end, the head firefighter (was he the chief?) is dying and all they can do is make him comfortable until his wife gets there, because there’s no OR available to even try and save the guy’s life. Maybe he could have had a shot if they hadn’t accepted so many patients that they had to create a makeshift pit extension in the cafeteria?
Despite this one death, Bailey’s handling of the situation is deemed a success. Richard had a hand in this, of course, but do we really have to see him reduced to the role of Agony Aunt every week? Does Arizona seriously have no one else to talk to or invite along as a wingman when she goes trolling for girls to re-enter the dating scene? And seriously, what kind of doctor makes a pass at a patient lying face down on a gurney with her butt exposed?
Alex doesn’t seem to be handling his romantic life that well, either. He spends the entire episode avoiding Jo and conspiring with Meredith; Jo isn’t happy. None of the attendings seem to be paying any attention to her skill as a surgeon, her best friend isn’t talking to her, and now Alex is ignoring her as well. Poor Jo. By the end of the episode, however, she’s made up with Stephanie, and confronts Alex. This isn’t working out, because he keeps prioritizing his friend (Meredith) over her. In a somewhat predictable twist, Alex produces a ring in what’s probably the most awkward proposal ever. His timing sucks, and the whole Mer conspiracy is very over the top – are we really meant to believe that a tiny jewelry box is so hard to hide that he needed Meredith’s help for an entire month before he could pop the question? Either way, at least this story seems to have a happy ending (for now), although, to be honest, it kind of bores me. Normal relationships don’t make good tv, and both Alex and Jo have been kept in the background all season long.
As for Meredith, well, she’s the epitome of a loyal friend. Not only does she have Karev’s back, she also has Owen’s. She made a promise to Christina and is sticking to it no matter what, even when it means keeping her sister-in-law out of the loop. Everyone in the entire hospital is wondering what the hell is going on between Hunt and Briggs, and Mer is the only one with the inside scoop. For some reason Owen doesn’t seem to have progressed at all over the seasons – he’s still plagued by panic attacks and/or sleepwalking, and he’s still as secretive as ever. Amelia is desperate to find out what’s going on, but Mer makes it clear that it’s none of her business, which naturally pisses her off.
Things escalate quickly: Amelia accuses Meredith of being loyal to everyone but her, and believes she has an obligation to share the truth with her because she is her sister. Meredith’s reply is pretty harsh – Christina is her sister, Amelia is not – which prompts Amelia to be downright cruel and tell her Derek would be disgusted with her. Mer has had it and kicks Amelia out of the house.
I can’t say either of them handled the situation very well, but I’m definitely siding with Meredith on this one. I was never really a fan of Amelia – even back during her Private Practice days – and the two don’t seem to be getting along anyway; Mer deserves a break, and she definitely deserves some peace in her own home. Rather than yelling at Meredith, Amelia should just go to an AA meeting and cool down.
But nope, she ends up letting Briggs buy her a vodka tonic instead. After the day they’ve both had, I can’t say I blame him, but she should freaking know better. I don’t have patience nor sympathy for addicts, so this pretty much seals the deal for me as far as Amelia is concerned: just go away.
I don’t feel any sympathy for Briggs, either. If it had just been a case of Hunt being a bully these last couple of episodes, I’d be rooting for the underdog; as it is, he’s reckless and insubordinate and doesn’t seem to know his place, so whatever sh*t he gets is well deserved in my book. We still don’t know exactly what happened there, but it seems to involve Owen’s secret-up-till-now sister, and Briggs seems to think he, Owen and his mom are family, so I assume he was involved with Owen’s sister and royally it screwed up…? It must be something huge for Hunt to react so badly, so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Where is Hunt’s sister? Is she dead? So many questions.
We mercifully see very little of Penny this episode, and any scene Callie is in seems to be just awkward monologues about sex, which was not entertaining in the least. Meanwhile, Jackson’s specialty might be the one needed the most in this episode and he’s as busy as ever, but that doesn’t stop him from hunting down April whenever he can to try and force her to talk to him. When he does catch up to her, we get one of the trademark Grey’s scenes, with each of them shouting at the other – and, sadly, no resolution until Grey’s returns next February.
How To Get Away with Murder: What Did We Do?
It almost feels like the title of the episode is the show writers asking us that very question. And the answer is, you’ve completely lost us.
The show has been going downhill all season long; for me, last Thursday’s episode was the tombstone. This entire story arc has been ridiculous, but usually when a show jumps the shark, it happens over the span of several weeks. Not in Shondaland: we get one particularly insane episode to tie us over the hiatus, and despite fans gushing over how ‘unreal’ this mid-season finale was, I absolutely hated it from start to finish.
For one thing, that entire recurring scene with the camera spinning around a freaked-out Annalise, complete with random pieces of dialogue as a voice-over, was annoying as hell. We get it, she’s unraveling. It’s painfully obvious all season long, culminating in the crazy events of last Thursday’s episode.
I can’t even begin to describe what went on in this clusterf*ck of an episode in some sort of logical order. Caleb has found a gun in the house and it’s not his, so obviously it’s Catherine’s. Michaela wants to get rid of it to protect her new boyfriend. It’s been clear for a while that no one actually cares who is responsible for the murders; this entire show is an endless series of cover-ups. Meanwhile, tiny Catherine somehow runs away, escaping Caleb, Michaela and Connor, which still boggles the mind.
Annalise sees an opportunity to ditch Catherine as a client (because apparently conflict of interest is only an issue when she wants it to be); Wes wants to involve Nate, but he’s knee-deep in his own sh*t with Sinclair, who just won’t let up. Asher is trying to get a hold of his dad, but we soon learn that he killed himself over the big reveal of his role in the cover-up all those years ago, leaked by Sinclair to the press. Asher’s mother turns against him, but Bonnie is there for him. Literally. Even when Sinclair provokes him in a parking lot and, blinded by rage, he runs her over. In reverse. Bonnie decides to put the body in the trunk and take it back to the Hapstall home, because Annalise has a plan. Of course.
Annalise’s plan is ridonkulous: make Sinclair’s “accident” look like an even bigger accident by dropping her body from the balcony. Nice. I’ve watched enough CSI to know that a coroner would see right through this, but whatever. The interns finally seem to have had enough of this bullsh*t, but Annalise plays her ace and throws the interns under the bus: she tells Asher that the four of them killed Sam and she’s been covering up for them all along. They’re to blame for everything that’s happened. Really? Not only that, but she sends Frank after Catherine with the bottle of pills that had been intended for Nia, but tells him to get her enough not to kill her (because that’s our considerate, magnanimous Annalise). Someone needs to lock that woman up and throw away the key.
Annalise’s stupid plan is to pin Sinclair’s murder on Catherine, but in order to make it look more believable, she needs to be out of commission too. She calls 911 and tells them Catherine shot her. Hence, one of you dumb interns needs to shoot me. If it were me, I’d gladly put a bullet right between her eyes, but these idiots are hesitant. She needs to expedite the situation, so she plays her last ace: she tells Wes Rebecca is dead, and boom, down she goes. As she’s lying on the floor she whispers “Christophe”, and in a flashback we see her and Eve watching as the police is talking to young Wes/Christophe, whose mom apparently killed herself. At this point it’s fair to assume that she offed herself because of something Annalise and Eve did, or that they killed her and made it look like a suicide, or that somehow tiny Wes/Christophe killed her and they covered up for him, which is the most unrealistic scenario so it’s probably what the writers will be going for here.
Ugh. I don’t even care anymore. Annalise is a psychopath and whatever sympathy I felt for all the interns is gone because they could have just quit long ago. Shonda needs to stick to the medical dramas and just lay off murder mysteries, because this is one hot mess I won’t be coming back to again.