Monday, November 05, 2007

"You're more like me. A sassy thing!": Brotherhood

First of all, thanks for the comments on the last episode of this. It's nice to know I'm not just shouting these things into a vacuum, y'know! We Brotherhood watchers are a small club, and we must stick together. Or something.

Anyway, this was probably the best episode of the season so far, and it actually had a nice pace to it. I didn't constantly hit the button to see how far along I was in my DVR playback, which was nice, and I liked most of the plots, if not all of them (I'm still a bit undecided on the mob stuff, which continues to feel so, so derivative). The best stuff probably focused on Rose, who is chasing her own obsession with youth to the point where she refused to even acknowledge that one of her best friends had had a stroke (and subsequently died). Her continual boasting about her youthful good looks and her hanging out with her granddaughter (and buying said granddaughter revealing dresses and bragging about her "sassiness") both seem like interesting storylines to pursue, especially as we enter a period of more and more baby boomers getting older and older.

I'm also enjoying the slow dissolution of the Caffee marriage, though this week's episode seemed to hint that Tommy and Eileen might keep it together for the sake of appearances and their kids. The scene where Eileen gabbed with her friends about how often their husbands wanted sex was a little on-the-nose (in that manner of predominantly male writers rooms trying to write about how women talk about sex), but I liked the way she looked to Judd and his wife's (whose name I'm blanking on) marriage and seemed to see that there was something there she could emulate. I also liked that Tommy seems to be looking to her and hoping to recapture what they had before he found out about her infidelities, though he seems increasingly aware that that may be impossible.

One thing I'm not so sure about is the Dana subplot. I think it's been interesting seeing Tommy outside of his marriage, pursuing someone else, but I'm also not wild about him trying to turn Dana into Wife #2 (Tommy seems too compartmentalized and bottled up for that). What's more, turning Dana into kind of a psychotic hellbeast seemed far too abrupt and convenient. We know that Tommy's not going to end up with this woman long-term, since she's a guest star, but making her a raving bitch makes it too easy for him to get out of the relationship. If our main character and good guy gets into an affair (even if his wife is hardly blameless), we don't want to see him get out of the relationship easily. It should take a little pain.

I am liking Michael and Kath's struggles with their baby and whether or not to keep it. Michael wanting to terminate the pregnancy was a nicely believable and in-character turn, I thought, and I'm interested to see how the relationship between the two progresses from this revelation onward.

I wasn't as wild about the plot where Tommy wandered into a Hispanic neighborhood and ended up seeing a brawl that the cops broke up using rather too enthusiastic tactics. It's interesting to put Tommy on the side of the cops (who seemed clearly a bit over-eager), but I was a bit irritated to see this immediately get tied into the election, which seems to dominate minute after minute of airtime every week. Couldn't this have been solely a character moment?

As I mention every week, Brotherhood isn't a show where a lot of plot happens all at once, but this episode seemed to be picking up the pace quite a bit, heading in to the bottom of the season. Things seem to be moving toward some sort of resolution, and it seems like the election will prominently feature. I'm finally interested to see where this is going.

No comments: