Thursday, March 19, 2009

Life, "3 Women": The perfect non-partner

Quick spoilers for last night's "Life" just as soon as I finalize my 12-year plan...

"3 Women" was an improvement on the last few episodes. It gave us a little bit of forward movement on the Raybourn/conspiracy arc (and set up some tension between Crews and Reese, not that we may ever see them on camera at the same time again). It had some nice story beats, like the abrupt cut from Crews with Ted to Crews brawling with Hey, It's That Guy! Jason Beghe in the loft elevator, or the paroled killer trying to turn Crews' celebrity against him. And by giving Charlie a fill-in partner with a personality and some kind of character arc, the episode didn't feel like it was running in place as much as the two Stark episodes.

At the same time, Jane Seever seems more like a collection of tics than a character. Now, Crews seemed the same way in the series' early episodes -- He loves fruit! He says non-sequiturs! Did we mention the fruit? -- and maybe Gabrielle Union will get to deepen her over her remaining episodes, but mostly she was there to set up jokes. (As Crews says to the playwright, in a meta comment on this quirky show, "Are there jokes in it? You should put some jokes in it.")

In particular, I'm not sure why an ambitious young woman who thinks she could be mayor one day might want anything to do with Charlie freakin' Crews, who's as infamous as he is famous, who's been involved in a lot of questionable activity even after his conviction was overturned (which she'd know, since she does her research), and who could be a millstone around her neck one day if she wants to use her police record on the campaign trail. I don't know that I would want a repeat of the resentful relationship Reese had with Crews at the start of the series, but I didn't buy that this character, as written here, would be so enthusiastic about working with this guy.

What did everybody else think?

12 comments:

David said...

For the most part, I liked the episode. Damien Lewis is, as usual, doing a great job.

My only "issue" really was that the new parter was quite the loud eater. It seemed to being made as one of her many quirks, but I am not sure.

Bob Timmermann said...

Seever's path to become mayor of L.A. is not going to work. She needs more experience in government. The LAPD isn't an overly popular institution in the city.

She should be running for City Attorney or City Controller.

However, the office of L.A. City Controller isn't exactly a very interesting dramatic device.

Anonymous said...

I liked that Crews made it clear to Seever that she doesn't get to replace Reese. She's not his new partner, he already has a partner. The conspiracy was the most interesting aspect of the episode. Despite Charlie's attempts to keep Reese out of it, she's tangled in it. Really hope we get to see the conspiracy unravel.

Joolie said...

A couple weeks ago someone posted a comment expressing the desire to let Sarah Shahi continue to partner with Crews, and have us all participate in pretending she isn't pregnant. I want to second that opinion, mostly because I love the chemistry between the characters and want the partnership to continue to build. I think we're all capable of suspending disbelief. Hmm. Maybe I'm giving the average TV watcher too much credit. But if the show is getting cancelled, may as well try something new.

Petal said...

My husband and I noticed that the show seemed to be on overkill with the repetitive dialogue. It just doesn't have the quirky effectiveness that "Sports Night" had. However, last night seemed fresher with Union. I liked her character and if the show isn't going to be renewed, then it should be allowed to kick the can into the stratosphere.

JVB said...

Funny, how this is the second time Gabby Union is playing second seed to a white guy character who is, shall we say, a bit odd. Remember her opposite Stuart Townsend as Kolchak in the series remake of The Night Stalker. I have a serious jones for Gabby. Girlfriend is a babe.

radiomd said...

New non-partner is pleasant, competent, also ambitious. Not interested in Crews for Crews' sake, but for her own. A ticket to advancement in the City of Los Angeles, perhaps, punched by a member of the conspiracy? Stay tuned and find out. Maybe.

Anonymous said...

Alan, I see your plan is three years less ambitious than Det. Seever's.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Alan, I see your plan is three years less ambitious than Det. Seever's.

In fairness to me, I think Seever's supposed to be a few years younger than me, even though Gabrielle Union herself is a year older.

But, yeah, I'm a slacker next to her.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one who has lost all traces of the conspiracy thread? I know dude on the boat was in on it, and is now presumed dead (although he was dying anyways), but I have lost every other strand up until now.

Anonymous said...

Please review Hells Kitchen ... I need your input Allen :(

Bobo said...

I just looked it up, and holy crap, Gabrielle Union is 37? How is that possible?