With this year's countdown of the Best Episodes of the Season winding down, today's entries include some of the Top 5 of the season! Before we get to them, here's a look at the rules for this year's winners. I ended up with 30 incredible episodes that demonstrate the diversity and quality of the current television state. All of the shows and their episodes are from NETWORK television only, meaning that I did not take any cable series into consideration (since I only watch a few and felt that it would be unfair). All episodes aired between September 2006 and June 2007. Each episode that made the final list moved me in some way; either by making me laugh out loud, cry my eyes out or just left me with that "wow" feeling that stays with you for a few days. So basically, it's completely subjective! Since this is a summer-long countdown to the number 1 episode, I will reveal a few each week all summer. So, be sure to tune in on Thursdays to find out which episodes are on the countdown! Today, we're going to take a look at numbers 6-4.
6: "Deep Water" - Without a Trace
A senator goes missing -- your typical political episode, right? Wrong! This outing was packed with twists and turns, drama, and intrigue. And it's all wrapped into a beautifully utilized change of format. Instead of spending the entire hour wondering whether Patricia Mills (powerfully portrayed by PTR fave Jacqueline McKenzie) is dead or alive, this one shows us her murder right off the top. We watch as she's brutally stabbed in the back (both literally and figuratively as it turns out) while she takes in the peaceful scenery outside her boat. Turns out there were a number of people who had a motive to kill her -- after all, politics is dirty, especially when you decide to vote against one of your biggest campaign supporters because you learn that their oil drilling is unsafe for the environment. If it isn't politics, then it must be love and this story blends a little bit of both. The only problem - Jack can't prove that Patty's husband killed her. In the episode's most moving scene, we watch as Jack whispers into Patty's father's ear at her funeral. It seems that Jack can't touch the husband, but that won't stop Patty's father. Written by series star Anthony LaPaglia and Directed by Paul McCrane. (Screencap courtesy Obsession: Jacqueline McKenzie)
5: "The Bitch is Back" - Veronica Mars
The final hour of this wonderful series was exactly what we've come to expect: well-written, Veronica back in her classic outcast position, Logan breaking my heart, Keith struggling to win the sheriff election, and nothing wrapped up into a nice, neat package. The series finale was designed to be a season finale, but it worked well both ways. It was extra special to see this series go out on a high note and leave our imaginations to fill in the blanks. Throw in a surprise appearance by Jake Kane, Veronica going all James Bond on us, and a poignant final scene where Veronica casts her vote for her father and you have another excellent hour of this deeply missed show. I only wish this hadn't been the end. Written by Diane Ruggiero and series creator Rob Thomas and directed by Michael Fields. (Screencap courtesy of vm-caps.com)
4: "Stalker" - Cold Case
OK, so we all knew that Lilly wasn't going to die, BUT it was intense watching the events unfold that led to her horrifying shooting. Throw in an excellent case that had me fully invested, an emotional scene between Lilly and Scotty as she deals with her mother's death, and a killer cliffhanger that kept fans talking all summer and you get one of this season's finest hours. After Lil got too close to the truth behind Kim's "Romeo," he showed up at police headquarters with Kim in toe. Things took a quick turn for the worse, and suddenly, Lil, Stillman, Vera, and Jeffries were trapped with a crazy gunman threatening to put a bullet through their skulls. After Stillman took a shot to the shoulder, Lil managed to think fast and separate the gunman from her injured boss, but she put herself in harms way. Enter a frantic Scotty, a hysterical gunman, and a blind shot through the mirror into the observation room and you end up with both Lil and the gunman lying on the floor bleeding. The disturbing ending montage had us watching as Lil was loaded on a stretcher and rushed to the hospital where doctors quickly got to work. This one made for a LONG summer. Written by Veena Sud and directed by Alex Zakrzewski.
So, there's a look at episodes 6-4 on the countdown. What do you think? Do you agree? Disagree? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Be sure to come back next week when the countdown finally reveals its #1 Best Episode of the Season!!