Thursday, December 6, 2007

"Nip/Tuck" Recap & Review - "Daniel Sands"

Nip/Tuck
"Daniel Sands"


Original Air Dates: December 4, 2007

Tom R - TwoCents Staff Writer

Personally, I’m not a big fan of the “concept episode”. But sooner or later, every show on the air seems to get bored with the formula that gave it success, and they try something different for the sake of being different. I think the act shows a momentary disrespect for the viewing audience. Last season, the concept show took us into the future and put Connor McNamara front and center. Without a doubt, it was the absolute low point of the season. But I think someone did learn the lesson.

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  1. Tom R - TwoCents Staff WriterDecember 6, 2007 at 10:20 AM

    Nip/Tuck
    "Daniel Sands"


    Original Air Dates: December 4, 2007

    Tom R - TwoCents Staff Writer

    Personally, I’m not a big fan of the “concept episode”. But sooner or later, every show on the air seems to get bored with the formula that gave it success, and they try something different for the sake of being different. I think the act shows a momentary disrespect for the viewing audience. Last season, the concept show took us into the future and put Connor McNamara front and center. Without a doubt, it was the absolute low point of the season. But I think someone did learn the lesson.

    This week, the writers are smart enough not to let the concept take over the entire episode, Instead, it’s sandwiched in the middle and takes up about half the hour, if that. So while it throws off the show’s style and energy in a big way, what’s ahead of and behind it leave lasting impressions.

    Chief among these impressions is actress AnnaLynne McCord. Just as Eden is approaching becoming a one note vixen, she shows up at the office, burned with cigarettes during her stay in rehab. Bursting in with her usual flair, she throws out dirt on Sean and Christian almost immediately. But when the dust settles, and Sean offers to do skin grafts to take care of the scarring, McCord shows us a more vulnerable, frightened side of Eden, who manages to make a real, honest connection with Sean. Or is it just another ploy? Either way, she brings the character to a new level and gets us wondering what’s going on in her head.

    The concept of the episode is the shooting of a reality show that Christian has pitched to the networks. Cameras have been hidden throughout the facility, and the concept portion is shot in a style that mimics the typical reality show feel. Problem is, the feel is far below the usual Nip/Tuck style that it breaks the rhythm and deflates everything the writing tries to do. The tensions and explosions fare so much better when the camera isn’t trying to get fancy with zooming or peering around corners.

    Cameo appearance by Tiffany “New York” Pollard, who is brought in to urge Christian to get more controversial and be the center of attention. This leads to him instigating rifts between Liz, Olivia and Julia. Normally, it would play well, but some of his barbs are directly into the camera, which makes the whole thing backfire. Even the argument about the origin of the famous words, “Tell me what you don’t like about yourself” falls short, since each time the energy gets rolling, the camera work shoots it down.

    In the end, the show (Plastic Fantastic) is trounced by focus groups as unappealing. Maybe that’s what they were shooting for, but why waste half an episode making us watch it too?

    Daniel Sands, by the way, is a gigolo who wants a facelift. The twist? As a recovering addict, he wants no anesthesia. He wants to use acupuncture, which Olivia (a little too conveniently) has been trained in. With the cameras rolling, he threatens to expose Christian as a fellow escort, which leads Christian to decide that the acupuncture is not working, and they use the gas. All this turns into a slightly contrived way to put Olivia and Liz in close proximity as feelings develop between them.

    Even the musical component is noticeably absent. Only one song is used. It might be a Tony Bennett song, but it’s too low in the Plastic Fantastic mix to really register.

    I usually close with a quote or two. Since there’s nothing here to pull from, let me resort to The Lion King. Ryan Murphy can play the part of Simba:

    “Remember who you are!”

    Nip/Tuck is created for mature audiences.
    The show airs Tuesday nights at 10 PM on the F/X Network.
    Repeats air immediately, Friday at 11 PM and Sunday at 10 PM.

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