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  1. Poor Lola. I love how she's getting practical advice from Judge Benner. I don't usually see Judge Benner as a empathic person. Marg Helgenberger does play her with a rather harsh demeanor, but then we learn she's got some soft spots. Like her soothing guidance for Lola as a new mom, and possibly arranging that poker game so Sara could get some extra money without it being a handout, and keeping "The Squad" together. I thought the ending for the backpack girl was a little abrupt and not very compelling. At any time, Lola could have engaged investigative resources and found the same information. Hell, Robin could have done that at any time, especially since he knew how borderline unhealthily obsessed Lola was with the mystery. I think Lola has to be a little let down by finding the girl, and learning she is just like herself--activist with an activist mother. I think all this time she was building a mythos surrounding the backpack and the girl it reflected and in the end it is just a mirror. I know I kind of feel let down, I wanted there to be more to the story than "I can't believe you kept it!"
  2. The ending was inevitable--buying the house for the kids to live in--but the journey was fun. I about spit out my wine at Calvin's "organ" joke. I wonder how many takes they had to do to get that line? Not to mention Tina's reaction to criticism of her cooking...I'll bet there's plenty in the blooper reel from both those scenes that were funnier, but inappropriate!
  3. Not very much Chunk in this episode, which was too bad. But Benny was his usual amazing self. I don't see someone like him who loves the thrill of the fight and the machinations of the courtroom to be happy as an administrator that the DA has to be, and I would see him as impatient with the politics as well. He'd be good at the politics, but his heart is in the Thunderdome that is the courtroom. I like that they linked domestic violence with extremist domestic terrorism. A history of domestic violence is a common denominator in nationalist group membership. It seemed that should have been more of an angle that Benny should have explored, that she wasn't responsible for the car bomb, she was also a victim of the person responsible. It was implied, of course, but never explicitly stated. I thought that when she used mnemonics "Liar Doctor" and "Perfume Man" to remember their names, and Bull seemed to have one of his neuroscience "aha!" moments that would come into play during the course of the case investigation. That she would make reference to something like "Dark Water" and then some company or organization called "Black River" would be involved and provide the break in the investigation. It also broke my heart when she asked Bull and Benny to tell the foster parents to put a nightlight in her son's room so he could sleep, and that sometimes he needed to be held.
  4. I thought the scene with Bob and Abishola on the couch, dreaming together of how wonderful their wedding celebration would have been was a nice moment between the two of them. It was very bittersweet and soft. I want to see the revenge Abishola and/or Olu effect on the judgy pastor. You know there's more to it than "I've removed him from my prayer list."
  5. Whoa....that redemption arc for Nolan's mom was certainly short lived! The last episode sort of left the question open about her past: was she only manipulative in her love life (hawking the engagement ring) and family life (relationship with Nolan), or is she a manipulative scam artist in all aspects of her life, and how bad? We certainly got our answer last night. Either the part about her selling bad homeowner's insurance to Nolan's construction clients was new or I missed it in an earlier episode, but that is really nasty on her part. Doing that sort of stuff really messes with his actual business reputation, and his bottom line. So her budging in to Nolan's new life by not only selling the defective CBD oil to Nolan's co-workers using his "recommendation" but also selling the whole "business" to his boss's wife? Without a single thought to the effect on Nolan? So very, very beyond the pale. But sounds like par for the course with her. She had some really harsh things to say to him there at the end, which is also classic narcissist manipulator/abuser behavior. I don't think we're done with her. I hope they use her sparingly, a little goes a long ways. I further hope if this show runs long enough that they don't try an "Anthony Dinozzo, Sr." whitewashing like they did on NCIS. I like the actress just fine, but I don't think she has the star power or charm of Robert Wagner that would make it worth it for the producers to keep her around. I hated that they turned Senior from the abusive, narcissistic con-artist to the genial, bumbling lothario with slightly questionable business deals and bad investments. I completely think the whole drug deal in the alley was a total scam to trap West. I thought that from the moment Bradford, Chen, and the bad cop's first partner pointedly turned off their bodycams that bodycams would come up later in the program. So when the bad cop's bodycam went missing I was all 'J'accuse!!!!!" at the screen. It was a "hit 'em first, hit 'em hard" classic Cobra Kai move. I hope there's a way out of that for West. Can I just say Mrs. Sgt. Grey is badass? And not just as a businesswoman? I loved that slight moment of fear, then *BAM* pepper spray and the kick straight to the junk and the look of complete satisfaction as she completed the 911 call with "and an ambulance." I also have to say that I think Alyssa Diaz doesn't get enough credit as an actress. She had Lopez going from fearful devastation during her conversation with Wesley about the baby, to full-on confrontational assertiveness with her boss in a split second. It was amazing to see.
  6. Yup...booking an AirBnB for the messy purpose of giving birth seemed rude and weird. Maybe the doula/midwife rented the place? In my town the local midwife has a lovely bungalow she uses exclusively for not-hospital yet not-home births. But........am I misremembering? Did the "Karen" say she hustled over after she saw what was going on in the security cams? That is not OK.
  7. OMG. I just totally misread this as "made no sense if Hetty could just make Deeks pregnant" and all of a sudden I was thinking we were off in some bizarro fanfic cul-de-sac of questionable plotlines. Then I re-read it and all is well.
  8. Bull is becoming superfluous on his own show and in his own company. He even had a little hissy fit to that effect in this last episode, when he dressed Chunk down in the car--and Benny as well, to some extent. I'm glad Chunk is a very confident man, otherwise as a green attorney he might otherwise have been very chastised and diminished by how Bull treated him. Even Benny looked uncomfortable. I'm loving the Benny/Chunk camaraderie, their brethren of legal eagles, their bar-mance. I'm in for a spinoff show about a start-up law firm partnership between them if they drag Taylor and Danny along with them. Leave Bull with his baggage and Marissa with her baggage behind at TAC. As for the case, my first thought was "wow, that patient going to the OR with the first doctor must be really critical if these other two are second and third priority" but I have a wee bit of experience with triage, so that's what popped into my head. I liked how we could see Chunk trying on some Benny-lite strategies and plays. I loved Chunk's glee and exhilaration at winning his case, Christopher Jackson just totally sold it with his euphoria and beaming face. He radiated joy. I also liked that Benny recognized it, but elected not to pop his balloon but let him continue to soar. Time enough for more "bank shot" advice later on.
  9. While it reeked of "white savior", I really liked Officer Bradford stepping up there at the end. I think it was the look on his face when he saw Jackson in heated conversation with Sergeant Grey through the office windows. You got the impression that he was going in there to pull Jackson out and keep the thin blue line, but when he blurted--almost in spite of himself--that he supported whatever Jackson was saying it came as a surprise. To apparently everybody, including Bradford, but he pulled himself up and got behind the position. I was a little shocked that Grey was all in favor of continuing the status quo, until I think he started listening to himself and realized that as he was looking at retirement, nothing has changed in all those years and he was part of the problem. The weariness in his voice when his wife asked him what had come up and he said something like "you know" and the weary understanding in her eyes kind of killed me. I don't think the whole BLM and racist policing issue(s) can be resolved in a TV show, but I appreciate that they're trying to show a way. It might get hokey (see: white savior) and cliche, but they're trying. That's more than a lot of shows would do. Racism is a bit of a third rail on the small screen. The fact that Nolan's mom is a narcissistic whackaloon is hilarious. Nathan Fillion does weary exasperation really well, and this gives him an opportunity to exercise that. I love how he's very aware of who she is and what her motivations are and anticipates her next moves. I also thought it was terrific that Nyla kind of changed his perspective by showing him another view of how him mom came to be the manipulative narcissist that she is now, because being a single mom was difficult back in the day, and she had to fight--including lying and cheating--for everything she got. The theme of the episode seemed to be "strong mothers" what with getting whacked in the face with it at every turn. From the woman in labor getting dissed by the establishment, to Nyla stepping up for her and for Nolan's mom, to the black kid's mom and grandma passionately defending the kid in the face of drawn guns, to the whole legend of La Fiera herself, to Lopez bonding (sort of) with La Fiera.... I think this will be an interesting storyline going forward. The gift at the end was both a gift and a threat, there were interesting layers there, and I think Lopez clearly recognized that. I want to see where this goes. I really appreciate that the bizarre scuba-clad shooter at the range wasn't just a comedic throwaway, but integral to the whole story. That was a complete shock to me when he opened fire on Nolan. I like that this show can surprise me, and it did several times in this episode. I also like that the show is much more of an ensemble and not so concentrated on all Nolan, all the time. I like him--and I like Nathan Fillion--but I really like all the characters and how they all interact with each other.
  10. Oh man. CBS needs to invest in better CGI people. First there was that horrific Renesmee baby on Bull that lives in my nightmares, and now..........that. It isn't as if there is no source material for the SFX people to pull from to show Linda Hunt as a younger woman. You know, like from her speech when she won her Oscar for The Year of Living Dangerously. I just did a Google image search that provided better starting points than that abomination we just saw. Wait. Maybe what we just saw was someone in the production back room using the office printer to print out a life size photo of a young Linda Hunt, cutting it out, poking holes in it, then rubberbanding it to her face. That might account for the shiny, immovable unnaturalness of it. Young Callen was awesome though. Either that was incredible casting, or they blew the entire budget on that CGI. On the mothership, young Gibbs is played by Mark Harmon's son having the time of his life. Does Chris O'Donnell have a son old enough to play his old man in his youth? Never liked the Anna/Callen storyline. I never thought she was playing straight with him. Or anyone. Like I said in the thread for the last episode, I like the Fatima character. But now I'm thinking the writers need to slow her roll. She grew up rich! She's a computer genius! She used to be an actress on a popular teen show! She's a bad ass field agent! What's next? She's a princess in exile? Hetty's love child? The Next Food Network Star?
  11. Oh yes. Definitely yes. I meant to mention that.... He has good chemistry with the team. Or at least with Fatima, Sam, Callen, and Nell. I'm not sure I've seen a lot of scenes with him and Kensi and/or Deeks. What I especially like about his character is that he is not only bad ass, he is extremely good at being bad ass, but doesn't have to brag about it or show it. He's content with himself, and that's good enough. His ego doesn't get in the way. Like when Sam questioned why he didn't correct the FBI guy when he was kind of talking down to Roundtree like didn't know anything because he was just a Navy cop and not an FBI special agent and Roundtree said it wasn't necessary. Sam just shook his head, but looked at Roundtree with admiration. I really liked that whole scene between the two of them.
  12. Exactly. He's well intentioned, but he only sees the details he can "fix" and not the bigger picture. It makes sense that he looks for things he can fix, because as a builder that's his wheelhouse. Nolan can help Hugo find work on small jobs, that's doable and is definitely within his purview as a former contractor. Nolan has absolutely no clue about living in a neighborhood like the one he's trying to fix. I like how by the end of the episode, he's ready to listen. I'm also pretty fond of Lopez's storyline. Yeah, yeah, yeah, it is a trope when a newbie gets dumped on by the veterans and has to prove themselves, then they prove themselves spectacularly. But I liked it. I liked the parallels with Nolan eager to show his worth in his new environment and screwing up, and Lopez eager to show her worth in her new environment and seeming to screw up....but not really. I loved her "uuuuuuh....others?" moment of realization that this was bigger than she thought. At first she just thought she'd get some vindication for occupying all those police resources for something that will end up as an unsolved light felony or misdemeanor, but then with that one comment realized she was onto something big. I really liked that her supervisor owned up instantly and got on with it without resentment that the newbie showed him up. I liked the satisfaction in her eyes. I completely cracked up at the end when they allllll waited for Jackson to arrive before tackling the math homework.....
  13. Callen and Sam and Sabitino's hair was comedy gold. That was old school NCIS: LA and it showed. The Deeks humor fell flat, mostly for the reasons stated above. Deeks is annoying, but he is not dumb. He might be a nervous motormouth when he's out of his element, but he's not dumb. He's also not pathetic, he's a highly effective agent/officer in good shape. 20yo shape? No. But I'm sure FLETC has some accountants and computer geeks in his cadre going through the same federal agent training that would be struggling even more than Deeks is. Daniela Ruah's facial expressions during Kensi's phone call with Deeks were beautifully done. You could see how her character was feeling bad for her husband, yet verbally trying to be encouraging and bright to keep him motivated. Good thing that wasn't a Zoom call, or Kensi would be so busted! I have always liked how the show is normalizing American Muslims every time they show Fatima always wearing her hijab scarf. Maybe "normalizing" isn't the right word, but you know what I mean. Showing a different culture, a culture that many profess a certain fear of, as just another character on a TV show. A character who grew up in Bel Aire (or Beverly Hills?) who has decidedly plebian taste in TV shows and other things, and who just happens to be a devout enough Muslim to choose to wear a headscarf. I like how it shakes perceptions up.
  14. I've always loved the Tammy/Sebastian relationship. It is such an unlikely friendship, but it works. The actors have great caring chemistry together. Other than that, I also had a hard time tracking the plot in the episode.
  15. That was Anne Heche? I've got to watch again, because it was really bugging me who that actress was...but never in a million years would I have come up with Anne Heche. Thanks! She looks really different with long hair. Her voice was what was tapping at my brain, telling me I knew her if I could just think hard enough. That's why I love these forums, somebody always has the answer.
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