Wednesday, July 22, 2009

'Grace' Goes MIA - For a Moment

Season 3 of 'Saving Grace' Airs on TNTBy LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

Here's the difference between this season's Saving Grace and the previous seasons:

Our opening jump-the-bones sequence would've been a whole lot more graphic, drawn out, dwelled upon, over-exaggerated and focused on additional HHWM: Holly Hunter Wardrobe Malfunctions in the first two seasons.

But last night, we got a 10-second footnote version and moved on to the more important things.

Thank yewwwwwwwwwwww! (as Brenda Leigh Johnson might say)

Now, that's not to say I'm thrilled with Grace and Ham back to their old tricks, but with a reduced focus all the way around it almost - emphasizing almost - makes it something I can live with. (Plus, I knew it was too good to be true to have Grace Ham-free for so long).

What I can't live with, however, is Ham having flipped way too far out when Grace goes MIA while investigating the case of a woman who was kidnapped, held hostage and brutally raped for multiple days on end. (Turns out Grace was just caught up in one of her friend from high school's off-my-meds moment that got her in a bit of trouble, yet we learned she kind of put herself at risk by STILL associating with this guy in the first place. In other words, she was NOT abducted by the same guy who abducted the rape victim).

I also can't live with the fact that Captain Perry allowed Ham to continue to be part of the investigation. Completely unbelievable and what would seem to be a totally inaccurate portrayal of a Captain's behavior, though perhaps not Perry's first indiscretion.

Still, no right-minded senior level officer would allow someone THAT overly-emotional and unstable to continue to be on the team. Not to mention we have seen countless other Captains, Lieutenants and Chiefs REMOVE people from investigations if said person is too close to the missing officer and/or the family so they don't make irrational, stupid decisions because they can't think straight, and thus, jeopardize and/or compromise the investigation.

Did any technical advisor sign off on this conduct? And if so, do they let crazed detectives run loose in OCPD?

I guess they must considering there IS Grace.

Still, Kenny Johnson acted like a paranoid spaz in the most unbelievable of ways that he completely took away from every other actor's very poignant performance - especially Laura San Giacomo's beautifully understated Rhetta. Everybody else was worried, concerned, focused, temporarily flustered but not spastic and out of control.

I just wanted Ham - and Johnson - to shut up and go sit in the corner.

Seriously, I don't know what has happened to Johnson, but he's just annoying to watch, now. Ham has turned into this horny toad of a buffoon that seems more intent on getting into Grace's pants than doing anything relevant to any investigation. Who knew having the character be divorced would create such a one-sided dimension to this portrayal.

Now Earl ... have to say I was surprised by his inability to find Grace. I thought he would ... I don't know, like, just know where she was. He seems to have been able to find her at the drop of a hat prior, so this seemed somewhat off YET it worked. Almost like he wasn't being allowed to tap into what would normally have allowed him to find her, and thus, he had to call in a team to help him out.

And do his own soul-searching.

I liked that.

The weird looking "dog" with the extraordinarily long tongue being the Almighty "God" ... dunno. Never got that one on Touched By An Angel. And yet, it would be just like Saving Grace to put their own dog is God/God is dog spin on things.

After all, it spells itself.

Good ep. Minus the Ham nonsense.

New episodes of Saving Grace air Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on TNT. You can watch full episodes of the show anytime over on the show’s official Web site. You can also visit to share your stories of how you embrace your inner-Grace.


RichE said...

To be fair to "procedurals" they nearly all have "personal" episodes on a regular basis. In reality if there was a personal connection to any squad member the case would be passed to another squad, possibly from another town/city/state to make sure it is impartial. A defence attorney would have field-day with such a connection and get a court case thrown out.

Of course they allow this artistic license in the shows to make them more involving.

Kathryn Morris UK

John said...

Ham is becoming a real distraction. He can be annoying at the best of times, but wit anything involving Grace he is too much. And last night he was over the top.

I don’t think Major Crimes or the OCPD would have to step aside just because the case involved Grace. She wasn’t a suspect, she was a victim and the members of the team, especially Rhetta, know her best. Now Ham is a separate matter. Ham should have been set in a corner – and his finding her, with divine guidance (?) doesn’t change that. Everyone else, while concerned, did their jobs well. And this includes Rhetta who is closer to Grace as Ham.

However, my big problem with the episodes was not Ham; my problem is what was the episode about? If Earl hadn’t been involved or if he could have easily found Grace, but due to the people have to solve their own problems not be able to directly help, it would have been clear. The point of the episode would have been to show more about Grace’s character. She is an adrenaline junky who likes to live on the edge. Charlie is a dangerous person when he goes off his meds and he does that regularly. I actually think Grace prefers the off-meds Charlie (except when he kidnaps her). His psychotic behavior gives her license to act crazy also. We already know Grace is a bit off, that is why she needs a last chance angel. She is improving, but backslides, such as her Hamisodes and treating a dangerously mentally ill person so casually.

While that may be part of what we are supposed to get, it can’t be the main point. God/dog blocked Earl’s ability to find Grace. Therefore He had some reason for wanting what happened to Grace to happen. But why? Grace’s new wings don’t make her an angel. Grace is certainly no angel, either literally or figuratively. The show better show a reason for all this soon, because it makes no sense so far.

Also, have the producers thought through the mundane aspects of Grace’s new skin art? Every time we see Grace’s bare back, which we do frequently, she will have to spend the significant extra time in make-up having the tattoo reapplied. That can be expensive for the show, and annoying for the actor.