Sunday, April 09, 2006

Just in case you missed it


Here's why I love Television Without Pity: it picks out the jewels amidst the dreck of popular television, scrutinizes them through a loupe to point out every facet or flaw with clinical wittiness and an expansive reference. It's clear which shows they like recapping and which are to be endured. The expense of annotation of this degree means that only a few shows are undergo such treatment. Thankfully, they have evolved a good sense of relevancy, with a few missteps. However, even after reading the forums and watching the shows yourself several times, you can be stunned by the novel remarks included in the recaps:

So remember back at the beginning of the series, when Madame Vice President was known as the Martha Stewart of the West because she was constantly chopping things? It turns out all those vegetables she was chopping were for the smoothies she's making for Steadman. He's got no teeth, what with them having been pulled to make for a more convincing fake body. Madame Vice President tells Steadman, "It's almost over. Burrows will be dead soon, and things will start getting back to normal. I know that you've been through a lot, but I promise you, the worst is behind us." Steadman deigns to put in his teeth so he can say, "My dear sister, you have no idea what I've been through."

Now we see Michael prepping for his big day of knocking over banks and getting caught. He almost breaks down as he fastens his tie; it's struck him that this is the last time he'll put on a tie as a member of upstanding society, and the scope of what he's about to lose is hitting him full-on. Then Michael steels himself. We see Linc looking at an origami swan. Michael picks up his guns, his hand shaking over one before he wills it to work, and he walks out.

So! The parallels between Madame Evil's actions and Michael's are uncanny, yes? Subverting "the system" for family obligations and bailing out your brother at your own expense...gosh, it's not so much a battle of good versus evil as it is gray versus grayer. Well played, Prison Break writers; well played.

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