Friday, July 27, 2007

"I'm like, so money on the basketball court": Rescue Me

OK. So, I didn't blog Rescue Me last week because, I didn't think it had aired? I know that's an incredibly lame excuse, but there had been like, no press on it at all! Blame me for not taking Sepinwall's threat of completely giving up on it seriously. (I didn't blog last fortnight cause I was graduatin').

Anyway, it's not that Sepinwall's threat didn't have a little merit. While none of these episodes have been like, gratingly bad, they feel REALLY disconnected, the worst the show has ever gotten. After the initial buzz of the first three episodes, which sort of set up where all the characters were at after season three's cliffhanger, things really seem at a standstill. Worst of all is Tommy and Janet's situation together. I mean, seriously. What the HELL is going on here? Andrea Roth must be going out of her mind having to don a horrible bathrobe and yucky makeup and just lie around on the couch while Tommy ignores her every episode. The whole thing is basically one of the worst drags on plot that I have ever seen. Of all of Tommy's setups, his ones with Janet have always been the worst, but this really, really takes the cake. I hope they do something about the baby soon, but the one idea that's been floated so far is Sheila's demand that Tommy give the baby to her after one meeting. Which is stupid. And ridiculous. And if they do it I'm gonna pitch a fit. I mean, does this show just think children are commodities you can trade? I hated the "Susan Sarandon steals Franco's kid" storyline from last season because it was A: absurd and B: ushered in the boring girlfriend (now fiancee, and even more boring) and her Tourette's-afflicted brother, a one-joke character that just would not go away. UGH! Anyway, back to Tommy and Janet: fix it. Worst thing about the show right now.

The best thing about the show always has been the firehouse scenes, but even they've been kinda off lately. I'm don't mind the Black Sean (aka Bart) character cause the firehouse could use some new blood (Jerry Adler is decent casting as a replacement Chief, too). All the other firehouse sketches have been a little too out of nowhere, though. Sometimes funny, but often you're just thinking, where is this going, and do I want it go there? A lot of people have complained about the Chief's suicide being basically ignored, and honestly, Peter Tolan claimed they offed the Chief to raise significant issues among the men but we haven't seen any of that so far. Instead Lou's nun girlfriend slept with his cousin, Franco proposed to his boring girlfriend in between vomiting spells, Sean has split from Maggie and also burned down Mike's house. What does it all mean? I think the writers are just heavily stalling for whatever denouements they have planned, and these eps really bear the brunt of it. Here's hoping they introduce some new plots soon, cause right now it really seems like the show is spiralling out of control.

I will give praise to the one scene others have highlighted of these three episodes, that being the fire in the office. This show so rarely does fire scenes anymore, in fact so sporadically it's bordering on unrealistic (the only two I can think of are the equally cool fire scene in the first episode, that was very creepy and dreamlike, and this one). The whole thing was very effectively shot, again quite creepy, a nice subversion of the firefighter heroics we often see on this show. It also nicely commented on what Rescue Me seems to be doing right now: that is, wandering around through the smoke, looking for something it's lost. Ooh, how clever of me. Still. This is a show that I have always enjoyed far more than maybe I should. It's gonna take a LOT to make me give up on it, and I'm not even close yet. So, I will see you not next week (not even sure an episode is airing, but also I'm going to Turkey tomorrow!) but the week after. Keep it real. I'll be picking up Damages from the Tuesday after next as well.

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