Wednesday, August 8, 2007

"Damages" Recap & Review - "And My Paralyzing Fear of Death"

“And My Paralyzing Fear of Death”
Originally Aired: August 7, 2007

[Submitted by: Tom R]

“Interesting choice”.

That phrase is almost a catchphrase for Patty Hewes, and I might be running it into the ground myself with my postings here. From this week’s opening shot of Ellen’s hallway to the presence of the murder weapon in the flashback scenes, to the décor of Patty’s office and the wide, isolating shots of her behind the desk, it is amazing to see the thought process that shows on screen.

On to the recap.

The episode picks up where last week’s quick-flash ending left us: With Ellen’s fiancé murdered and her holding the murder weapon. At the police station, she still refuses to talk, but does meet with Hollis, who finally asks the question the teasers have left in the air:

“If you need a lawyer, why didn’t you call Patty?”

We are now flashing back five months, as opposed to six in past episodes. The judge for the Frobisher case has given Patty one week to present an opposition brief to keep the case alive. As she returns to the office and assembles the team for the task, she receives a strange package in the mail. Opening the box, she sees a grenade. The building is evacuated and the team regroups at Patty’s apartment. When several lawyers call in sick with mental anguish, they are fired. Ellen bears down on the project, since the deadline coincides with her engagement party.

Last week, we learned that Katie had a fling with a man named Greg Molina during the Frobisher weekend in Miami. That fling resulted in an abortion. Although she claimed to Patty that she never saw him again, she contacted him and they were reunited. Tom checked his background, but could not find any connection to Frobisher. However, since Greg is married, the situation is far from closed.

This week also introduced Patty’s troubled teenage son Michael, who has been an unseen character for the past couple of weeks. Definitely his mother’s son, Michael is a manipulative evil genius in training. He is thrown out of school for hacking into the computer system and stealing not only tests, but the email records of the faculty. This week’s shining moment was his boasting to Patty how easy it is to manipulate her. Patty got the upper hand by the end of the episode, but we’ll see if things resurface.

As for the “interesting choices” reference, Patty asks Ellen to deliver the opposition brief to the judge on the afternoon of her engagement party. The judge, of course, is known for running late, so the delivery becomes an exercise in Ellen’s decision making between career and family. Patty, of course, keeps tabs on every move.

Another quick-flash ending reveals that Ellen did not kill her fiancé, but was trying to defend herself. Teasers end with Patty’s advice…”Trust no one.” If you’ve seen four minutes of this show, you should already know that.

Damages airs Tuesdays at 10 PM on FX and repeats immediately after and during the week.

[image courtesy: Craig Blankenhorn / FX.]

1 comment:

  1. I've been looking for discussions about this show....I was completely sucked into the world of Damages the first 2 episodes, but this last one didn't gel for me. It repeated too much of what we already knew (trust no one) and the flash forward scenes offered nothing new other than that Ellen was defending herself. Hopefully they'll improve the integration between the past and present. It's a great show with great characters, but it needs to remain focused on "character" and not plot or it'll lose my interest.


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