While watching Tuesday's episode of "No Ordinary Family", I had the hardest time getting past the fact that the villain in the episode -- a super-powerered fire-starter who'd apparently been "given" his powers by the same evil force (Stephanie's boss) that gave some of the past villains their powers -- was played by the guy who played Mickey Parke on MTV's boy-band spoof "2gether".
Once I was able to put that bit of randomness aside, I found that "No Ordinary Anniversary" was much like most of the episode this season. There was plenty to like, both in dramatic story and moments of humor, but it's still missing that "something" to bring it all together. Personally, I feel like the show needs to make the motivations of the primary villain more clear. Each week we see a little more of his machinations, but we don't know what it's adding up to. I'm not saying "No Ordinary Family" needs to lay out the whole road map for us, but a street sign or two might be nice to go along with the twists and turns (as I strain my own metaphor to the limits of credulity).
While I started watching the show for "Buffy" alum Julie Benz, the two younger women on the show have really started to capture my attention, and not just because they're both hot -- which they are. Autumn Reeser's Katie gets more adorable every week. On other shows, her random nerd moment of the week (this week was a "BSG" reference) would feel forced, but somehow she makes it feel natural. As for Kay Panabaker, she's really molded Daphne into a character who you can relate to, and even though she's 20, she plays a believable 16.
As for Benz and Michael Chiklis, I thought this was one of their better episodes in relation to how they acted as a couple, even if Chiklis wasn't as much of a driving factor for the second consecutive week. And the reactions of their characters to the consequences of their fight with the fire-starter just felt, well, right. Oh, and speaking of right, once again the show gave JJ a realistic "sport" on which to use his power. A few weeks back it was billiards, and Tuesday it was poker. Both are a much better fit for his genius abilities than the ill-thought-out football plots from earlier in the season.
Like I said, the show isn't quite there yet, but it's getting all the pieces into place, and now it's just a matter of putting the puzzle together.
For more coverage of the 2010-11 television season, visit the AdamReisinger.com TV Reviews home page.