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S3x01: Nearer My God to Thee

March 31, 2010

AIR DATE: 10/14/1994
WRITTEN BY: Tom Fontana & Jorge Zamacona
ANYAWATCH: Anya Epstein is credited as “Tom Fontana’s assistant”.
GUEST STARS: Tony “Candyman” Todd

Season 3 ushers in the golden age of H:LOTS. Don’t get me wrong, it’s all good, but this is where the plane really touches off. Cast changes and guest stars a go go pepper this season, starting with the first episode! Naturally, all of this occurs smack dab in the middle of a RED BALL. We are also introduced to Lt. Megan Russert and Roger Gaffney – a pain in everyone’s ass – and the off screen departure of Jon Polito’s Crosetti. He is sent to Atlantic City on vacation, thus cementing my association of Atlantic City with punishment and damnation. Or to sum up Miranda Hobbes’s (SATC) response to Samantha’s announcement she was going to Atlantic City: “What did you do wrong?” Indeed. The writing is fantastic. The introduction and exposition of Russet is natural and Hoffman has great chemistry with her cohort Gee. And the JUMP CUT/SHUTTER CUT are in effect.

Felton arrives for the season opener fresh from Lt. Russert’s bed and is back up to three packs a day. His tedious wife, Beth, gave him what the French term, Le Boot,changing the locks and cutting up all his clothes. Meanwhile Howard is battling department sexism and manufacturing alibis for Felton. If that weren’t enough, they’re contribution to the GOODRICH case involves tracking a runaway who had a crush on the RED BALL victim. Howard also has her first run in with Russert. So much for female solidarity.

With Crosetti’s vacation, Lewis teams up with Munch both personally and professionally. Lewis and Munch seek a third partner for their new business venture: The Waterfront – a bar they’re hoping to purchase and are therefore on the prowl – like college frat boys – looking for that totally righteous person to complete the trinity. Bolander is non starter and they spend the bulk of the episode trying to hustle one of their fellow officers into making an investment.

Gaffney catches the GOODRICH case and does everything in his limited to power to screw it up, much to the irritation of Pembleton. Moreover, he and Pembleton share a desk (during different desks) and each has their own way of maintaining it. Pembleton likes his seat lowered and Gaffney prefers his cranked up to “11”. Bayliss is there to referee, but things get out of hand when the ham faced racist calls Pembleton “boy” in that way. Bayliss gets dragged into the bar drama by Lewis and winds up a silent partner. Bayliss also gets bad news from Pembleton when he confesses to taking communion, Pembleton scoffs, “You took communion w/o being Catholic? If my God wins, you’re screwed!”

Gee enjoyed having his section all to himself and now he gets to share with Lt. Russert – former Naval Intel and all around babe – who while sharing her office with Gee, is sharing her bed with Felton (her real life partner at the time). Gee poses the musical question: “Isn’t Misty Pearl the woman on HEEHAW who wore the hats with the tags on them?”

2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 3, 2010 8:42 am

    I’m starting to understand why this season is where you suggest newcomers to H:LOTS start. I’m really enjoying the way they get into the characters. And enjoying your reviews of course.

  2. April 3, 2010 1:40 pm

    I think most people would do well to start here and revisit the first 13 episodes if they find they need more backstory. Otherwise, I would possibly even wait until I’d cycled through the series before giving 1&2 a go.

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