Four Square

Episode Report Card
Like A Bad Dream

An opening shot of cold, vacuous space (or -- IS IT?), soon filled by an inordinately tight profile shot of Isabel "Take My Agent, Please" Evans, somberly speaking the line, "I'm finally ready to let someone in, and I want him to be you," as if she has been assigned the task of doling out candy to trick-or-treating Halloween revelers at her wildly popular front door and she's just taking her job really, really seriously. Into the one remaining decimeter of screen space left unused by Isabel's giant noggin enters the equally sizable head of Alex "This May Be a Contrived Dream Sequence and All, but At Least I Get to Make Out with Katherine Heigl" Whitman, who responds, "I've been waiting to hear that, Isabel," followed by some other incoherent attempt at pillow talk I think might be borrowed from that mystifying "she told me I was her forever lover, y'know, don't you remember" section from the end of "The Girl is Mine." They kiss in intense close-up, signifying the culmination of the many hook-ups which masquerade as plot development on this show and have led to the unlikely nookie pairings-off of pretty much every speciously complementary couple on this show except for the salt and pepper shakers at the Crashdown. ("But boy, that sure would SPICE things up a bit," I volley at the screen with not nearly as much irony as I wish I could muster for such a heinously "Dear Kidsday" quip.) As they kiss, the blue screen, formerly sporting the planetarium stars, actually turns blue, becoming the blazing desert sky over Sandy Land. A tech guy finally leans over and flips FaceCam into the desired "off" position, and we pan down to discover that Isabel is decked out in a blue strapless dress of inarguably prom-like proportions. I'm going to go out on a corporate-venture-tie-in limb here and guess that the dress is made by Levi's. And then there's Michael, appearing behind her on the fjords of Sandy Land, showing up predictably sans the tuxedo and the corsage. Isabel stands among a bunch of symbols, constructed on the sand out of red Play-Doh by a small child who grew up in that faraway land where the indigenous language is Zapf Dingbats. Faux artsy camera mayhem ensues: Bizarre angle! Bizarre angle redux! Bizarre angle the third! Son of Bizarre Angle! Bride of Bizarre Angle! I was a Teenage Bizarre Angle! When I return from downing a Price Club carton of Dramamine and receiving treatment for a suddenly-acquired inner-ear imbalance, Alex is waking Isabel from a dream. Which is kind of a bummer, not due to the sudden lack of artistically pretentious everything in our new surroundings, but more considering the fact that it's been raining in New York for six straight weeks and all I really do is stare into my computer all day anyway, so it was a tiny bit comforting that somewhere on an LA soundstage, someone is still choosing blue as the default sky shade.

Alex and Isabel, meanwhile, are still on stakeout (much like the comedically mismatched Richard Dreyfuss and Emilio Estevez were in the zany 1987 comedy caper of the same name) in the abandoned warehouse that contains the audio-visual equipment monitoring Tesla's house. Always insuring that she undertake any important action directly in the line of the camera's three-square-foot range, Tesla is placing books in her bag in an innocuous fashion that in no way should encourage or inspire me to make another pointless eighties pop culture reference just to prove that I can (see: Stakeout, 1987). Cut back to the warehouse, where -- oh, shit, Isabel's head is on fire! Oh, no, wait, it's just the scourge of red backlighting again. Besides, Isabel on fire would only occur in the version where something ever actually happens on this show. And then it would be Liz's head that's on fire. Oh, wait, that would happen on the version where something ever actually happens on this show and I singlehandedly get to decide what it is. Isabel grabs a cell phone and dials, which wakes up Maria "Forget Me Not" DeLuca and Michael "I've Already Forgotten You" Guerin, asleep in the Jetta outside of Tesla's house. The couple has apparently slept in the car, which bodes well for this episode's DeLuca Hair Check, considering her overnight Jetta doze assumedly didn't allow for a prolonged and ill-advised visit to Hair and Makeup.

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