Showing posts from November, 2011

Psych: Shawn Interrupted

Billionaire hedge-fund manager Bernie Bethel is arrested for murdering his assistant. Lassiter, who single-handedly cracked the case, throws himself a victory party, complete with a crepe station and festive crime-scene photos hung above the punchbowl. His victory is short-lived, as Bernie is soon found not guilty by reason of insanity and is sent to a posh mental hospital instead of prison. Lassiter offers to go undercover as a mental patient (“I’ll grow a beard and wear nothing but tweed!”) to prove that Bernie is faking his condition. Henry decides to send Shawn in his stead, as Shawn could believably pass as someone in need of institutionalization (Shawn: “I’ll take that as a compliment.” Gus: “I wouldn’t”).

Shawn quickly makes himself at home in the luxurious hospital (“Dude, they have electronic bidets!”). Posing as an orderly, Gus goes undercover as well. He soon strikes up a highly inappropriate relationship with an attractive patient, Vivian (Julianna Guill), who is affl…

Psych: Dead Man’s Curveball

When the hitting coach of Santa Barbara’s minor-league baseball team, the Seabirds, drops dead of a heart attack brought on by an amphetamine overdose, Coach Mel Hornsby (Danny Glover) hires Shawn and Gus to investigate. To get close to the team and uncover the source of the drugs that killed the coach, the guys go undercover: Shawn poses as the new hitting coach, and Gus as the mascot. Intermittent hilarity ensues.

While searching through the former coach’s home for evidence, Shawn accidentally drinks amphetamine-laced water (and begins acting only slightly more hyper and spastic than usual) from a water bottle belonging to hitter Izzy Jackson (Ken Luckey). Shawn initially theorizes that Izzy was trying to enhance his athletic performance with amphetamines and swapped water bottles with the hitting coach by mistake. Shawn and Gus hit the Seabirds’ favorite watering hole to find evidence that wild-child Izzy is doping. After hearing that Izzy has a habit of pissing his pants whil…

Duranalysis: Girl Panic!

Duran Duran just released their dazzling, gorgeous, nine-and-a-half-minute Jonas Akerlund-directed video extravaganza for “Girl Panic!”, in which a flock of big-name supermodels of days past -- Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Eva Herzigova, Helena Christensen, and Yasmin Le Bon -- play John, Simon, Nick, Roger, and, uh, someone else. Meanwhile, the boys themselves portray an assortment of peripheral characters -- bellhops and drivers and journalists, etcetera. It’s cheerful, decadent, sleazy good fun.

Oh, sure, I originally intended to limit this Duranalysis series to the videos made between 1981 and 1985, but “Girl Panic!” is certainly worthy of an in-depth examination. Here we go:

Psych: The Amazing Psych Man and Tap-Man, Issue #2

Hey, I really, really liked last week’s awesome Halloween-themed Psych. I thought it was an instant classic, with one of the tightest, zippiest scripts we’ve had in a long time.

I mention this mostly because I was a little sour on this week’s episode, and I just wanted to remind myself that I really do love this show.

A masked vigilante known as the Mantis is in Santa Barbara, where he’s been befuddling the Santa Barbara Police Department by repeatedly beating them to crime scenes and apprehending members of the Camino drug syndicate. I don’t want to be too harsh on this episode, because it’s got some shining moments. Case in point: the snazzy revised opening credits, which are illustrated comic book-style.

Full stop, though: How is it possible this episode doesn’t contain a single overt reference to M.A.N.T.I.S., the mid-nineties Sam Raimi-produced FOX series, which starred Carl Lumbly as a vigilante superhero named, yep, Mantis? Under usual circumstances, M.A.N.T.I.S. is exactl…