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Monday, December 21, 2009

The Closer closes fifth season

     I am not a fan of Kyra Sedgwick, and as such, have never given The Closer a chance.  This, despite the fact that it is the highest watched cable series ever, and the number of viewers has grown every season.  So when I received the screener DVD for tonight's season five finale, I decided to give it a shot.  After all, I can't stand Sarah Jessica Parker, but I liked Sex and the City.  I thought that maybe this would be the same.  I soon confirmed my suspicion, though, that this was a procedural show, not serial, and so while I may like an episode, it is not something I would probably watch regularly.  The following review does contain some slight spoilers, but does not ruin any big twists or the ending of the episode, which airs tonight on TNT.

     This was a great episode.  Sedgwick's Brenda Leigh Johnson is a tad annoying, but she is surrounded by a strong supporting cast, especially J.K. Simmons (Spiderman trilogy) as Chief Pope.  He is grumbling, but lovable, and this week, he has a major beef with Johnson that goes beyond the current case.  If only she knew what it was, she might also discover why her live-in boyfriend Fritz (Jon Tenney, who recently did an arc on Brothers & Sisters) seems irritated with her as well.  The answer to that question may throw quite a wrench into her relationships with both men.  Or maybe not.  You'll find out if you watch the episode.

     The rest of the police team really gelled.  I don't know if they've been fleshed out as individuals, as they all sort of blurred together this week, aside from Taylor (Robert Gossett), who's tough demeanor with the warm center, played apart from the stereotypical, would make a welcome addition to any show, crime related or not.

     This week's main case revolved around the suspected abuse of an officer under the command of Captain Raydor (Mary McDonnell, Battlestar Galactica), returning as a nemesis to Johnson.  Raydor wants Johnson to investigate if one of her women is being beat by her husband, but wants Johnson to tread lightly, though the officer refuses to cooperate.  Of course, things do get ratcheted up a notch, and while the conclusion was predictable, (I knew what really happened as soon as Johnson arrived at the crime scene) watching Sedgwick and McDonnell spar was massively entertaining.  It was a great dynamic, and were McDonnell to return to the show, I'd certainly be interested in watching again.

     Even if you have never watched The Closer, I do recommend turning it on.  You might be pleasantly surprised by what you see.  No prior knowledge needed.

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