Entertainment Magazine

Review #3130: Ringer 1.8: “Maybe We Can Get a Dog Instead”

Posted on the 15 November 2011 by Entil2001 @criticalmyth

Contributor: Henry T.

Written by Jay Faerber
Directed by Nathan Hope

After I watch an episode of “Ringer” and sit down to write a review, I often have to resist the urge to write a recap of the episode’s events instead of my thoughts on those same events. It’s becoming increasingly difficult due to a narrative that initially feels like it’s going nowhere. This episode had some significant events occur, but they’re surrounded by a mess. The writers are trying to wriggle their way out of that mess and that takes more time and demands of patience from the audience. If something like Siobhan being caught here in a lie occurred more often, I might pay more attention to this show.

Review #3130: Ringer 1.8: “Maybe We Can Get a Dog Instead”

I’ll start with that subplot involving Siobhan because I thought it was the strongest point of the episode. She is still engaged in a fling with Tyler in Paris. There is no discernible advancement of Siobhan’s scheme or what she’s been doing in that time with Tyler, but he’s called to New York by Andrew in order to discuss a promotion within Andrew’s company. It’s compelling because Siobhan doesn’t see this coming and when Tyler meets Bridget-posing-as-Siobhan, it throws him for a loop.

He’s being played by “Cora” and has had enough. It’s an ugly situation, one that the show hasn’t explored since the disappearance of Gemma, and I’m curious as to what the fallout will be. It’s certainly not going to put Bridget in Siobhan’s good graces. Siobhan could clarify the situation by telling Tyler that she has a twin sister, but that would out the fact to everyone that she’s engaged in this long-term manipulation of those close to her. The writers, I think, need to provide a better reason for what Siobhan is doing beyond empty, contemplative looks in the distance. Siobhan needs to take action, instead of sitting about in a hotel bedroom, although she won’t be staying at that hotel for too much longer.

Back in New York, Bridget finally meets up with Malcolm as he somehow makes his way there during his escape from mobsters (I refuse to remember or type the mob boss’ name because it’s quite ridiculous). He sees that Bridget has somehow been maintaining this charade as her twin sister and wondering why she doesn’t just let go and run. It’s a valid question because running away and cutting all ties is the easiest solution to Bridget’s increasing amount of complicated problems. For the moment, she has escaped trying to explain to everyone why she doesn’t appear pregnant. Next time, she may not be so lucky.

Of course, the ectopic pregnancy explanation robs the show of that possible scene where Andrew finds out that Bridget has been lying to him and Juliet all this time. They’ve been getting close as a family and the lie could unravel all of that. The complex relationship between Bridget-as-Siobhan and Andrew remains one of the few highlights of this show. It’s going to hurt whenever the truth actually comes out. But what is the real reason for Bridget’s actions? Is this a complicated way for her to make amends with her sister and continue her rehab situation? I’m not convinced, in part because Sarah Michelle Gellar is just too attractive to convincingly play a recovering drug addict. That perception isn’t helped by constantly showing her dressed in designer gowns and giant jewelry.

This show is still trying to find a way to click and work. The characters need to start building more depth and emotion about them. The show needs to give a reason for its audience to care about the characters and what happens to them. They need to move beyond just explaining what’s happening in the plot and re-hashing what their motivations are to this point (Agent Machado, that’s you especially). I worry that may not happen because of the network “Ringer” is currently on (even as some of its brethren seem to move quickly through its plots) and a seemingly lacking narrative thrust. It’s a disturbing trend the writers would be wise to buck as soon as possible.

Grade: 6/10

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