Psych: Not Even Close… Encounters

An outstanding Psych last night. Let’s dive right in:

A lawyer named Roy Kessler (Charles Martin Smith) works late in the study of his stately manor. Suddenly, the house starts shaking, the lights start blinking, and the television goes on the fritz. Accompanied by Toby (Adam Greydon Reid), a young attorney with his firm who was helping him with his work, Roy rushes outside and sees a blinding light in the sky. The light descends to the ground, and a spooky, alienesque apparition appears. Toby stumbles into the light… which disappears, taking Toby with it.

In the morning, Lassiter, Juliet and Henry all arrive at the crime scene, trailed by UFO enthusiasts Shawn and Gus, who are naturally gung-ho about Roy’s story of Toby’s extra-terrestrial abduction. (Roy: “Are you UFO chasers?” Shawn: “Nothing as ridiculous as that. We’re psychic detectives.”) The police refuse to investigate this nonsense any further, but Shawn and Gus happily take the case.

Toby’s car, which won’t start, is still parked in Roy’s driveway, and Toby isn’t answering his cell phone. Shawn finds signs that back up Roy’s account of what happened -- the outside lights are shattered, and there’s a huge circle burned in the lawn.

Shawn and Gus decide to consult with their childhood friend and fellow UFO freak Dennis (Freddie Prinze, Jr.). Dennis, however, claims to have reformed his geeky ways. He’s happily married to his gorgeous wife Molly (Becky O’Donohue), who is blissfully unaware of his geek past.

After Molly leaves the room, Dennis ushers Shawn and Gus into his secret geek lair, which is filled with sci-fi memorabilia and homemade Renaissance Faire costumes. He gripes bitterly about having to hide his geek side and maintain a façade of being a macho jock for Molly’s sake:

Dennis: “Yeah, I’d hit that.” What, exactly, am I hitting?
Gus: Most likely an attractive lady.
Dennis: Okay, that’s horrible.

Meanwhile, Roy cheerfully alerts the press about Toby’s alien abduction, which leads to a mocking newspaper item, complete with an unflattering photo of Shawn and Gus (Shawn: “Oh my God, I look like k.d. lang!"). Toby has turned up, safe and sound -- he claims his car simply didn’t start at Roy’s house, so he caught a taxi home. It seems Roy has a long history of believing in crazy conspiracies and is prone to psychotic episodes. Shawn and Gus find themselves the laughing stock of the police department. (Lassiter does a happy little dance at their humiliation.)

Roy is suspended from his law firm, and his cases are reassigned to Toby. Suspecting that Toby might’ve rigged the whole UFO scenario to discredit Roy for his own personal gain, Shawn and Gus follow Toby around. To avoid detection, they don ingenious disguises, borrowed from Dennis’s memorabilia stash: Shawn wears Adama’s helmet from the original Battlestar Galactica, while Gus wears Geordi’s visor from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Toby contacts them, claiming Roy was telling the truth, and asks to meet with them in secret at a hotel. As soon as they arrive, however, Toby falls to his death from the hotel window.

The coroner finds a strange object in Toby’s stomach (Gus’s logical guess: It’s an alien embryo), which turns out to be a flash drive containing documents relating to a class-action suit Roy was bringing against a chemical plant called Budding Textiles over a dangerous chemical spill. As a result of the spill, an entire small town was evacuated, and Budding Textiles bought up all the land. From a lab analysis of the soil, Shawn deduces that the chemical spill was intentional -- there’s a vast supply of oil beneath the ground in the town, and Budding Textile wanted to get their hands on the property.

Shawn and Gus investigate the abandoned town. A blinding light appears in the sky… which turns out to be a helicopter containing Budding, the CEO of the chemical company, and his armed henchmen. They whisk Shawn and Gus away to a warehouse. Shawn reveals Budding’s nefarious scheme: He paid Toby to rig the whole fake UFO abduction to discredit Roy and get the lawsuit dropped. Before Budding can kill Gus and Shawn, Lassiter, Juliet, and a nunchaku-wielding Dennis all arrive at the warehouse and make the appropriate arrests.

The newspaper runs a story vindicating Shawn and Gus, complete with another unflattering photo (Henry: “My God, Shawn, you look like Billie Jean King!”). And Molly discovers Dennis’s secret lair, but turns out to be a closet geek herself. So all turns out well.

Cute episode. Clever script. Lots of quotable lines. Good stuff.

Awesome Eighties references:
Shawn: (after Henry claims he and Gus only took Roy’s case because they were blinded by their love of UFOs): The only thing we were blinded by is SCIENCE!

Gus: (after Shawn vows to no longer investigate anything related to a childhood obsession) What if there’s a Pop Rocks murder?
Shawn: That is the exception.

Lassiter-based awesomeness:
Lassiter shows Henry his very extensive crap list: “I like to keep track of people who have wronged me. Shawn. My mother. Olympia freaking Dukakis.”


Morgan Dodge said…
Marvelous recap! Thank you!

1) I got that Dennis found them at the end via cell phone signal. But how did Lassie and Juliet know where to show up?

2) What DID Olympia freaking Dukakis do to wrong Lassiter? I must know!
Rosey said…
My favorite ep. out of the 3! I couldn't pick just one quote for my review so I did multiple lol :)
Dan said…
Aha. And, at last, Boy-Morgan's mysterious Olympia Dukakis tweet makes sense.

I need to start watching this show. I've recently acquired Season One. It's in my queue of things to watch. My ever-growing queue.
Anonymous said…
to morgan:

he had texted his dad but his dad didn't take it seriously. i forget exactly but the dad mentioned it to juliet when he got the text, who knew to follow up
Morgan Richter said…
Thanks, Anonymous! Boy-Morgan, Anonymous is right -- Henry ignored Shawn's text, but mentioned it to Juliet.

One of the strongest episodes in a long time, I thought. Sheer fun. Dan, I think you'll enjoy the show whenever you get around to watching it -- the overall sense of humor (i.e. totally bonkers) reminds me a lot of yours.
Morgan Dodge said…
Thank you Anonymous! I guess the baby was screeching or something at that point. I'm glad Lassiter and Juliet showed up, sure. But I couldn't figure out why they showed up. It makes far more sense now.

@Dan: Too bad the rest of my tweets still don't make any sense.
I think the show is good stuff. A lark. Fun. You might even like it.

@Girl-Morgan: Dan's sense of humor = bonkers? You may be on to something here.

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