Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Ringer "If You Ever Want a French Lesson..." Reaction
Important business first: we've got official word from the writers of "Ringer" as to what to call Bridget-as-Siobhan
The follow-up tweet added the moniker "Brivan", who I'm guess is a character aspect we haven't met yet, but we got to spend more time with Shivette and Siobhan in this episode, which I think was the strongest for the show yet.
After the second episode of "Ringer", I was worried that the show would rely on layering mystery on top of mystery to drive things forward, rather than just naturally building on the inherent conflict between these characters. "If You Ever Want a French Lesson..." scaled back the "everyone plotting against everyone" aspect, narrowing things down to the Shivette-Andrew relationship. Shivette becomes suspicious that Andrew is the one trying to kill Siobhan, leading her down the rabbit hole that is the cell phone of the hired killer, in addition to a meeting with a divorce lawyer where she discovers that Siobhan may have not been entirely honest with Bridget about the status of her marriage before disappearing.
As it turned out, the Andrew thing was a misdirect, both for the audience and for Shivette, but it wasn't without purpose. Because the characters were forced to deal with their mistrust of each other directly, their relationship has come out stronger than it was before -- though obviously its still built on the massive lie that drives the series.
It's that lie that's leading Agent Machado to start to figure things out. He's noticed some drastic changes in Shivette's life that don't fit Siobhan's routine, which has him more suspicious than he was before. He's also trying to get into Siobhan's phone records, which will eventually lead him to the calls she made to Malcolm, who's dealing with his own set of problems right now (mostly, getting the shit kicked out of him by the guy Bridget is supposed to testify against).
I wasn't a huge fan of the Gemma/Henry financial subplot, mostly because we've already established that they don't trust each other, and I'm not sure how that served any purpose other than to re-establish that. Maybe I'm missing something, or maybe it's laying the groundwork for something that's going to happen later, but it seemed like wasted time that could have been better spent with Shivette, Machado, the mystery man after Shivette and the cell phone or even Siobhan herself.
Speaking of Siobhan, she now knows she's pregnant -- and that might be the first time in recorded history that the expectant mother was the LAST to know -- which I'm sure is going to throw a monkey wrench in her plans. Plus, we can now safely say that the pregnancy phone call from the doctor was not a false positive, which should create problems for both sisters, in completely different ways.
Through two episodes, I thought "Ringer" might have been spinning too wide a web, but this episode started to unravel things a little quicker, which is probably good for both the creative direction of the show and the long-term survivability.