Entertainment Magazine

Review #3075: Ringer 1.6: “The Poor Kids Do It Every Day”

Posted on the 20 October 2011 by Entil2001 @criticalmyth

Contributor: Henry T.

Written by Robert Doherty
Directed by Jerry Levine

I don’t know about everybody else, but I was really confused through much of this episode. The previous episode had ended on a cliffhanger that the show could have run with through the rest of the season. For some odd reason, both Bridget and Henry made things much more convoluted than it should have been. I’m not even sure the disappearance of Gemma was adequately resolved by the end of the episode.

Review #3075: Ringer 1.6: “The Poor Kids Do It Every Day”

Apparently, this is another part of Siobhan’s big manipulation, though yet again, the show chooses not to spend any time developing the subplot beyond some vague-sounding phone calls (though the guy does sound like Bridget’s new sponsor from NA, which might be a promising new development). It’s very troubling to see that even though the season is a third of the way done, there’s been very little movement in the narrative. Also a bad sign is the fact that the show is sticking with some bad habits that are becoming their signature style. To wit, there is a big reliance on music montage sequences and a really obvious play on the mirror or reflection motif.

Gemma was presumed to have been murdered by Henry if we are to read the end of the last episode correctly. This episode confirmed that she was just missing, possibly kidnapped in a bloody struggle during the night. Henry, for some unknown reason, decides to pin the crime squarely on Bridget with no real confirmed proof. The explanation he has is preposterous because Bridget has an easy alibi that can be corroborated. If anything, cleaning up the crime scene made Henry look guiltier than Bridget. The explanation for his blame is really flimsy as well: Siobhan told him on a whim months ago that they could get rid of their respective spouses and run away together.

Why he decided that this was the moment she would act makes him sound really dumb. The whole plot doesn’t have legs because in the very next scene the two of them have together, he apologizes to her for flying off the handle. The show has now taught us not to take anything the characters say at face value because it can be taken in the wrong context, it seems. It buys none of the characters any shred of credibility. I do hope Gemma returns quickly. She was a highlight of the past couple of episodes and I’d hate for the show to spoil what little spark she provides to the story.

That isn’t helped by yet another odd decision later in the episode, as Bridget makes an anonymous call to the police about suspicious activity involved in Gemma’s disappearance. The police leads to Agent Machado’s insertion back into the plot since Bridget’s fingerprints were found in the evidence of Gemma’s disappearance. Yet again, Machado doesn’t have much to do in this episode besides busting into a crime lord’s joint and almost finding a tortured Malcolm.

How does it help Bridget to have the guy who’s looking for her, then stopped looking for her, re-enter the case? The call to the police then just makes no sense. A lot of things about the subplot are a mess right now, one of them being that Machado constantly only questions Bridget-as-Siobhan about Bridget and not actually doing much investigative work. There has to be something else to this, otherwise it’s just so one-note.

There’s also an interesting subplot about Juliet and her first day in public school, probably the most likeable subplot of the entire episode to me. I do wonder how much time the show will devote to it since it never seems to want to leave the main plot of the Bridget masquerade behind. I wouldn’t be surprised if the writers decided to drop it for a few episodes and check in every once in a while.

That seems to be just how the show operates, thus killing any buzz it had going for it when the season started. There is no consistency or depth here, and the show suffers because the soap opera-like main plot has been dull and plodding a majority of the time. The creative staff should also take note that the mirror/reflection motif isn’t working either. It sounds like a minor complaint, but the audience takes notice because it seems that the show wants us to notice and it becomes a nuisance by then.

Grade: 6/10

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