by Gabra Zackman

CatchWelcome to Episode 3 of the ReCatch! I’ve spent this Thursday doing a podcast roundtable with one of my heroes, Jonathan Fields of The Good Life Project, and performing in this awesome downtown NY production of Sense and Sensibility. I’m warring with a chest cough—anyone else have this? It’s kinda like the plague only without the boils. I honestly had moments in the last week when a sound came from my lungs I’ve only ever heard in horror movies. Ah, springtime in New York! We all are desperate for the end of winter. A perfect time for some good TV and ramen noodles. #ispentmygrocerymoneyoncoughdrops

PROLOGUE:

Back to the Princess and Christopher Hall, aka Michael Thorne. You’ll recall from last week that our villains Christopher, Margot and Reggie have been trying to dupe a Princess and her signatory, the dark and stormy Qasim, to fork over their foreign billions to invest in a faux venture they penned. Meanwhile our heroes have baited Christopher with a fake identity, which he eagerly snapped up. It’s a bit clichéd, but with just the right amount of wink for me to really appreciate it. Christopher has confided in the beautiful Princess about his “love life”—his true love for Alice—and the Princess is delighting in advising him. Alice is tracking him by his newly opened credit card. So, it seems, is the formidable Agent Dao. #hotasrocks

A NEW CASE:

Val’s soon to be ex, Gordon, brings in the next case. Gordon is a salt and pepper cutie, clearly trying to win Val back, clearly failing. Played by the actor Alan Ruck (of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off fame), he is clearly lovelorn and made the biggest mistake of his life by cheating on Val. We know this already—it’s been set up well by Alice’s reaction shots to Val’s “over it” attitude. So, Gordon’s sister has MS—big reveal, she apparently never told anyone—and did a clinical trial which went terribly awry. Gordon has brought her in seeking retribution. The team decides to take it on. To be honest, I was more interested in the FAB outfit Mireille was wearing while they were hashing out the details, but maybe that was the point. #wardrobedistraction

BACK TO OUR VILLAINS:

Reggie (the adorbs Alimi Ballard) is working on laying out the con. He’s taking photos of the LA landscape and checking out an investment property to be used as their fake investment property to get Qasim and The Princess to give them 5 million dollars as a holding fee. You still with me? Margot takes point. She is wildly BADASS. Apparently Qasim is a former Iraqi general who has beheaded 8 dissidents. You get the picture. Not someone to play around with.

WRITER’S NOTE:

A: I was watching the first part of this on the train home from my show. The notes, partly taken when walking through the tunnel connecting the 7 line and the BDFM at Bryant Park, are similar to what I imagine it looks like when hostages scrawl an SOS in the dirt. In the dark. While drugged.

B: I just lost a chunk of time I’ll never get back getting lost on #thecatch message boards on IMDB. Fascinating trove of info! I had no idea there was an initial first pilot with different leads. Color me #intrigued. I also just love the banter of fans, and the wide critique of Peter Krause’s facial expressions. It’s awesome.

FLASHBACK:

A day with Alice, Christopher, Val, Gordon and Gordon’s sister. Apparently Christopher managed to secure her a job, a good job, a long lasting job. How’d he do it if Christopher Hall doesn’t really exist? Hm. Gordon asks if she and Christopher can join him for dinner sometime. Close up on Mireille’s face, unable to answer. Frankly, just the close ups on Mireille are reason enough to watch. #rockstaractress

THE TEAM IS ON IT:

Our heroes are researching Celinex (the drug from the trial gone wrong) and Sophie and Danny are attending a talk by the head doc of the pharmaceutical company whose wife happens to have MS. Sophie hacks into his laptop during the speech (LOVE HER) and she and Danny seem to uncork a bit of hot chemistry. #whythehecknot

I am loving the design of this show. Who does this? The editor? Someone else? I want to be the person who does this retro Bond-like image hash with an overlay of cool tunes. RAD.

CAN I GET SOME FRIES WITH THAT SHEIK?

Terrible joke, sorry! #iheartbadpuns (really the worse the better). SO, back to Qasim and the Princess. She’s being guided by Christopher, viewing the investment property on her own (this is a well designed fake information session done by our fave villains). Qasim is pissed and follows her, our villains take note and figure out how to use it to their advantage. Qasim (the actor Navid Negahban of Homeland fame) has the best brows in the business and a fierce stink eye to boot.

THE EASTER EGG HUNT BEGINS…

They’re tracking Christopher by the fake CC he opened as Michael Thorne. Looks like Agent Dao #iheartagentdao is also doing the same. He approaches Alice at the office to say “I thought it was time I tell you the truth about Christopher Hall…and the woman he murdered.” Cue suspense music as we cut to a commercial.

So it turns out that Agent Dao had a personal relationship, hinted at only, with a woman he says Christopher killed. So he tells Alice to be careful—she’ll need backup. He’s a murderer, after all, not just a con artist. Or so we think.

INTERCUT STORYLINES:

We watch the two storylines play out at once. My fave part of this, really, is the screen/music design. On the villain side: Qasim is stealing from the royal family. Our villains seek to expose this for their further gain. Also, they are having “con artist competition.” On the hero side: Alice goes into the clinical trial as a patient to try to find some answers. The team is in a van, watching. I don’t know about you, but I am up for anything where there is a team of investigators in a van. This always takes me back to both early Bond and Scooby Doo, equally potent influences on my youth.

Qasim gets sent home to be dealt with by the Princess’s brothers.   Alice gets injected by “the bad nurse” they suspect of tinkering with the product. But Alice has removed the connecting tube, just in time. #ourhero

THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER:

Both Alice and #iheartagentdao are on the hunt for Christopher. Alice finds him first but- oh no!- the drug has actually gotten to her and she can barely stand. Meanwhile Christopher gets assaulted by Qasim in the men’s room (really the best place to pull out a gun, cue bawdy pun) where Qasim is summarily shot several times by Margot. #chickswithguns #gratuitousmurder

Drugged, Alice sees them drag the dead body into a car trunk. Just as she faints she is caught by…Agent Dao. When she comes to, she’s given water in a fine crystal glass and Agent Dao says, “Maybe it’s time we compare notes.”

PLOT UNFOILED:

It was the Doctor and The Juice in the library, Professor Plum! (do I date myself with a #clue reference?) Yes, turns out the head of the company poisoned the juice (given post-injection) in order to scratch this clinical trial and try another one that might work for his wife. A little convoluted, but ok. It’s a little like “plot soup” but gets the job done.

THE AFFAIR:

Alice and Gordon discuss why he had an affair. This is rarely dealt with well on TV, but props to Shonda for always pushing the envelope. I like the way this affair is discussed and dealt with and makes a lovely scene for Mireille and Alan Ruck. He basically says he was insecure and is not nearly good enough for Val and so he sabotaged himself. Clearly they’re still in love. Alice tries to get them back together. “I want to believe it’s possible,” she says, “especially after what Christopher did to me.”

CUT TO….

Late at night. Christopher actually calls Alice. Margot is in the shower, washing off Qasim’s blood and humming a sweet tune. It was worth a kind of soupy episode for this fun phone call.

“Who are you?”

“You know who I am.”

“Did you kill Natalie DuChamp?”

“You can’t trust Agent Dao.”

Oh please oh please oh please make Agent Dao the bad guy! That would be delightful indeed.

“Promise me you won’t come looking for me.”

“For my own safety?”

“So that you don’t wind up dead in the trunk of a car.”

 

Then Margot comes out of the shower and he covers by saying he was on the phone with the Princess.

I tell you what… if Margot and Agent Dao turn out to be the real villains, well… color me DELIGHTED. These two actors are my faves. But regardless, it all ends on a nice teaser… and a good trailer for next week.

And that’s the ReCatch. Join us next week for Episode 4: more bad puns, more cheesy hashtags, more gratuitous murder, and more leering at fashion, eyebrows and biceps. #notnecessarilyinthatorder

bonus Jackie Ido!
bonus Jackie Ido!