Brothers & Sisters Recap: Resolved
After last week’s dark and focused episode, this week was a trifle in which not all that much happened but a lot of ground-work was laid for future episodes. Nora and all four of her children still regularly featured had stories, but I’m not sure that it wasn’t just a lot of sound and fury amounting to nothing. That isn’t to say I didn’t enjoy the hour; I actually thought it was one of the funnier episodes in a while. Unfortunately, while I enjoyed it, there were a lot of new plot-lines and the introduction of two possible recurring characters. While this is not an inherently bad thing, it gave the overall piece a choppy feel and nothing being introduced felt natural.
Justin, who is apparently the new Walker family member who won’t be interacting with his siblings now that Kitty’s back in Pasadena, spent the hour ferrying Holly to her doctor appointments because he wants to hit on the cute nurse (played, incidentally, by Dave Annable’s real-life wife Odette Yustman). First of all, creepy and weird alert: let’s use our former mother-in-law’s tragic brain injury as an excuse to get close to a girl, then proceed to lie to her about your relationship with the patient. Luckily, Justin’s adorable, so when he comes clean he gets a free pass and the two wind up getting a coffee. I don’t know what it is about the character, but I am forever uninterested in Justin’s romantic life. Maybe it’s because he doesn’t have a job and I feel like he should be at least peripherally working on that. Also shoe-horned in here is a quick subplot about David having a relapse, due to the stress of Holly’s memory loss. In perhaps the quickest and least dramatic return to the wagon in the history of television, David attends a meeting with Justin and is magically cured in time for Holly to remember that they’re engaged. This entire story had some severely sloppy writing in it, but I’m willing to forgive and forget if we can somehow get Holly back to wreaking havoc.
Kitty and Sarah, meanwhile, shoulder the comic portion of the hour. While I can’t claim that the writing here was much sharper than Justin’s arc, at least it gave the two an opportunity to snipe at each other which is always good for a few laughs. Anyway, the sisters have been spending a great deal of time doing absolutely nothing, as neither is employed. They decide that they want to go into a business together, and before you can say “Horrible idea!” they’re shouting at each other over imagined slights two decades in the past. This is pretty standard Brothers & Sisters fare, though I did think the characterization of Sarah as so neurotic and insecure in herself rang false. As expected, the two have a squabble and then make-up over a couple bottles of wine (also false: that two career drinkers like that would open a bottle of red and save the white. The white obviously would be drank first). We find out that Sarah will be moving forward and buying a media company to run (incidentally the one that owns Nora’s radio station, which is gleefully pointed out and could definitely create some comedy in the future) while Kitty will be trying her hand at teaching. Careful of those teaching assistants, Kit…they’re really just like interns.
Nora has made a new friend at the radio station, a certain Dr. Karl, who spends a great deal of his time amused at her ramblings. Dr. Karl is played by John Terry, who hasn’t quite shaken the shadow of Lost; I saw him and immediately got the creeps. While Nora goes on about how ridiculous her children are, Dr. Karl recommends she stop trying to fix all of her children, which Nora is delightfully dismissive of. However, by the end of the episode she has proclaimed that her kid’s problems are not hers and they will just have to figure it out for themselves; yeah, I give that two weeks. Dr. Karl is clearly being set up as a romantic interest for Nora, though he comments to her that she just needs a friend and volunteers to fill that role. I’m open to this; his character was introduced in a way that made much more sense than Justin’s nurse, and Nora hasn’t had an interesting relationship in quite a while. Remember when she dated Chevy Chase and Danny Glover? Yeah, that was weird…
Finally, Kevin and Scotty. These two have been doing a lot of the heavy lifting for the past two weeks, and they’ve been managing beautifully. The after-shocks of Waitergate are still rocking their relationship, and I’m glad the writers are taking their time with the healing. This week saw Paige doing her best to build a bridge between her arguing uncles; it was also a nice touch that all of the Walkers continue to talk to Scotty every chance they got, making it clear to an increasingly irritated Kevin that his whole family is a bunch of traitors. Sarah’s scheming little girl finally gets Kevin and Scotty to talk and both got more off of their chests, including Scotty finally informing his husband that he can “consume all the oxygen in the room.” I’d say that’s an understatement, Kevin can consume all the oxygen in a four-story townhouse. The Walkers together could asphyxiate a small country. In any case, after a long time of resisting Scotty’s attempts to talk, Kevin finally gives in and the two have a heart-to-heart where they talk about what led them to this place. Scotty promises to never cheat again, but Kevin is scared that he can’t promise to never act like a selfish ass in the future; points for honesty there. Scotty says that he could start showing how he’s maturing by forgiveness. The two end the episode on a hopeful note; I hope the writers continue to let this story play out slowly and don’t rush them back to wedded bliss.
All in all, an unmemorable episode though the comic stuff saved it for me. Next week…Luc’s mother comes to town! Hello, Sonia Braga! What’s that you say? Sonia Braga is Brazilian and Gilles Marini is French? Oh, don’t worry about it, an accent’s an accent.
And some nice port wine for you:
- Last week’s preview was the most misleading selection of scenes since Arrested Development. It painted that Dr. Karl was going to be another poor romantic choice for Nora, and implied that he was going to be a villain…the voice-over actually asked “Who is he really?” Near as I can tell he’s a radio personality. Or perhaps he’s the ghost of Jack Shepherd’s father, who’s waiting in limbo to usher the castaways into heaven with their loved ones. One of those two.
- Dave Annable is married to Odette Yustman. Patricia Wettig is married to Ken Olin. C’mon, Calista, where’s Harrison?
- “Isn’t it amazing how Grandma always manages to find time for everything?”
- “Deny you said it, there’s no paper tra-!”
- “But there are bleeding children, why would I put down the bandage!?”
- There has been a dearth of dinner parties in this season thus far…I don’t think we’ve seen a large gathering since the premiere. I’m all for shaking up the settings for the gigantic arguments every once in a while, but I need a good sloshed family get-together every once in a while.
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