Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Damages Season 2 Episodes 7 and 8

In case you forgot, Damages Season 2 is available on DVD as of today. I keep pushing the Amazon link only because, as I write this, the entire season is $25, which is a pretty great price:

Damages Season 2 on Amazon

A few thoughts before we go on.

One of my favorite TV shows of the last decade was Veronica Mars, a show that used its second-season finale to tell you that everything you knew about the first season was wrong.

I’m exaggerating a bit to make a point about plot threads. If all you ever saw was the first season of “Damages,” you’d make a lot of assumptions about the characters that are no longer true.

Phil, who seems like a nice enough guy, cheats on his wife.

Arthur, who seemed like he was probably going to be dead soon, lived.

And Patty seems to get away with everything.

On truly great TV shows, the writers are always thinking ahead – sometimes a few episodes, and sometimes a couple of seasons. And in the case of “Damages,” it looks like they thought way, way ahead.

With season three starting next week, I’ll be curious to follow along on a week-to-week basis, if only to see what loose ends can still be tied up from season one – and what effect they’ll have on season 3.

But of course, right now, this is still mid-season two. Dead center, to be exact.

Episode Seven

Damages S 2, Episode 7 at Television Without Pity

Then! Ellen is in the office late at night. She sees Uncle Pete there. Ellen remembers Tom saying that “Uncle Pete is really the one who runs everything around here.”

Ellen goes into her office, and sees that her computer is running. And her monitor is warm.

The FBI checks out Uncle Pete – his criminal history goes back something like 50 years. He’s been with Patty ever since she served as his lawyer. He probably knows where the bodies are buried.

Patty meets with Arthur. They’re setting up a press conference. Arthur wrote down some things he wants Patty to say. Arthur wants to fix his reputation. Patty warns Arthur that they’re going to have to vet his financials. Arthur says he has nothing to hide.

Ellen walks into Patty’s office, and Patty informs Ellen that Arthur is going to be their lead plaintiff.

Walter takes his grandkids to the zoo. In New York. His granddaughter says she hates New York. She’s, like, eight.

Dave and Walter meet. One of their guys got caught with cocaine and a lady of the evening. They need a lawyer.

Arthur meets with his spiritual advisor. Arthur says he’s struggling with the press conference – is he getting involved with “these people” for the right reasons?

Ellen talks to Patty. She’s not pleased about Arthur being brought in. Patty doesn’t seem to care. Probably because she doesn’t.

Uncle Pete takes care of his wife, who appears to be on oxygen.

Pete meets with a couple of younger guys. The FBI men observe Pete doing so – they know the guys with Pete. They both have rap sheets.

Ellen and Wes meet for more shooting lessons. Ellen is improving. Slowly. Wes tries to invite Ellen to dinner, but she’s reluctant. They decide to meet again the next week for more shooting practice.

Ellen and Katie talk over a newspaper, which says that Katie’s “follower,” the Bad Cop, is missing. Katie realizes it was a mistake to report him, as they’ve now lost that lead.

Rick meets with Arthur and tells Arthur that Arthur needs to pull out of the lawsuit. He tells Arthur that Katie is “back in the picture.” Rick reminds Arthur that once Arthur chose to go down this road, there was no turning back.

Claire defends the lady of the evening in court. The lady pleads guilty, and gets off with a suspended sentence. Tom sees Claire do this in court.

Claire asks Walter why she was defending the lady of the evening in court. She tells Walter that they need to talk about Arthur’s lawsuit. She suggests they get the stock prices up. Walter says they’ve already lined up some money people.

Walter meets up with The Messenger again, and says that they need to “try again.” He gives The Messenger a slip of paper with coordinates on it.

Tom meets with Patty, and tells her who Claire was defending. They know there was another person on the police report whose named was redacted. Patty says to find her and run down the other name.

And now we start to see how the coordinates thing works. The Messenger gets into the new car, and puts in a Latitude. Then the other guy (who got busted, but released) gets into the same car at another time and writes down the Latitude. Then he leaves. There’s probably more to it, but we don’t get to see it. Yet.

At the press conference, Patty talks Arthur up, since that’s what he asked for. Arthur is as smooth as ever.

Tom orders a lady of the evening. Oddly, he orders the wrong one. Ah, wait, no – he tells the girl he did get that he was hoping to talk to Susie. He pays her, and tells her he just wants the name of Susie’s other client.

His name is Finn. The lady asks if Tom wants to stay, since he already paid.

Patty and Ellen talk strategy, and Uncle Pete brings in Polish pastry. His wife makes it. Turns out they’ve been married almost 60 years.

This seems to make Ellen a little sad.

Ellen asks how long Patty has known Uncle Pete. Since she was a kid. Pete is Patty’s mother’s brother, and, “The Most Loyal Man I’ll Ever Know.”

A couple of dudes meet with Pete’s boys, from the start of the episode. The guys bust Pete’s boys for selling stolen goods.

The FBI guys go after Pete. They bust him with a $3,000 payoff. Racketeering.

They offer him some options. 10 years in prison $250,000 in charges. Second option, he goes home to his wife. The catch is, Pete has to give up Patty. At first, Pete says he’s not going to do it. Then he says he’ll think about it, but he can’t see Patty again. He can’t look her in the eye.

Pete says he has evidence in a storage locker in his house. The FBI guys get ready to take him there. He wants to pick up some strawberries, because he wife will wonder where he was.

Patty talks to Tom, and asks Tom if Tom had a good time with his lady of easy virtue. Tom says he got a name.

Finn. Finn’s a trader in the energy market.

Finn does some trading. With a lady-friend in the room.

Dave calls Walter, and tells him that the trade went through. Walter is happy.

Patty gives Ellen some information about Arthur. They have a lead on the dead Bad Cop.

Wes meets with Rick, and gives Rick the lowdown on the FBI guys. Rick is mad that Wes can’t get Ellen to talk about the missing Bad Cop. Wes says he needs to play it his way. Rick says he’ll have to try someone else: Katie.

Ellen and Katie talk in a bar, and there’s Wes. Ellen calls him over. They drink. Katie tells Wes that she just broke up with her boyfriend. Ellen’s phone rings, she walks away from the table. It’s the FBI. They let Ellen know they’ve got Pete.

Pete goes to the kitchen of his house and tells his wife to “keep these guys company.” He gets a key. And he tells the FBI guys that he has to use to the bathroom, and give his wife her medication. He does so. As far as we know at this point. You really can’t trust this show.

Pete takes the FBI guys to his storage location.

At home, his wife’s inhaler has run out. She takes off her oxygen and goes to get another inhaler.

Pete tells the guy that the information they need is on the third shelf. The trunk.

Pete’s wife finds a note from Pete.

Pete gives the FBI guys a combination to the trunk. It’s empty.

Pete falls over. He’s dying.

Pete’s wife looks through all the medication. It’s all gone. His note says, “I’m sorry. Pete.”

Episode Eight

Damages S 2, Episode 8 at Television Without Pity

Ellen lays in bed. It’s 3 in the morning. She takes some pills, drinks some water. She hears a voice: “Can’t sleep?”

It’s David. He tells her that she’s having a hallucination. She tells David that he was right about everything. He asks her why she hasn’t opened her wedding present. He tells her that she’ll know what it means, and that it will make Ellen laugh.

The phone rings. He asks if it’s Patty. She says it’s the FBI. She says it will be one minute… and then David is gone.

The FBI tells Ellen that Pete tried to kill himself, and they don’t know if he’s going to live.

Patty goes to Pete’s bedside, and talks to Pete’s wife, who is already there. She gives Patty Pete’s note.

Patty has a flashback. Patty is a little girl, and someone is yelling that they want to see their wife.

Ellen talks to the FBI. They fill her in on Phil.

Dave talks to Phil. He wants Phil to invest in UNR. Phil says there’s a conflict of interest. Dave thinks the case will vanish. Phil tells Dave that Patty never loses.

Arthur goes out to his land with his spiritual advisor. He shows the advisor where he was when he was shot by Larry. Arthur talks about how the patch of land they’re standing on changed his life.

He wants his spiritual advisor to build a healing center in his field. He buries the bullet he was shot with in the dirt he was shot on. He thinks this could be his new beginning.

Pete’s wife sees Patrick, the guy Pete told to get out of town. He offers to give her a ride to the store.

Ellen goes to visit Patty in her office. She asks about Pete. Pete is still unconscious. Patty tells Ellen about her father, who was an angry, angry man. Patty’s dad left. Then Pete stepped in to help raise Patty.

Patty reminds Ellen that Ellen warned Patty that this would happen. Ellen asks if Pete has anything incriminating on Patty. She asks what they’ll do if Pete wakes up.

Rick and Wes go to visit Arthur. Wes tells Arthur about Ellen going to visit him in the hospital. And Rick tells Arthur, again, to drop the lawsuit.

Ellen and Wes go back to the group counseling. She tells everyone about the wedding gift from David, and how she can’t open it. Wes says that if Ellen never opens the gift, she always has one more moment with David to look forward to.

Patty talks to Phil, and tells Phil that Pete might never wake up. Phil tells Patty that UNR is expecting an influx of capital that will turn the stock around.

Patty takes that information, and mentally ties it to Finn. She thinks Finn might be manipulating energy futures.

Tom finds Susie the escort. And asks her about Finn. And Claire. He tells her that she can talk to him, or she can go down with the rest of the people Tom is going to take down.

Phil invests in UNR stock.

Patrick talks to one of Pete’s boys. Pete’s boy fingers the guy who set up Pete.

Pete wakes up for a moment, and touches his wife’s hand. She calls for a nurse.

One of the FBI fellows goes to talk to Pete. Once again, he tries to make Pete choose between his wife or Patty.

Once again, Finn makes a deal online. While Susie looks on. Susie tells Finn about Tom. Finn tells Susie to never talk to him again. He also says some other things, which freak her out a bit.

Rick goes to visit Arthur’s spiritual advisor. Who is petting a rabbit.

Rick has been reading the guy’s books. First he tells the guy a freaky story, and then he asks to hold the bunny. Rick wants the advisor to tell Arthur that Arthur is still Rick’s pupil.

Then Rick gives the bunny back.

Patty asks Pete what Pete was arrested for. Pete tells her that he got caught doing bad. Patty also asks what the FBI wants to know. Pete says they want Patty, and they have enough to either put Pete or Patty away.

Arthur’s spiritual advisor tells Arthur that no matter what Rick does to Arthur’s body, Rick can’t touch Arthur’s soul.

He also says Arthur’s options are to run from Rick for the rest of his life, or to turn himself in.

Arthur makes a call, and says, “I need to see you.”

Ah. Arthur called his own lady of the evening. When he’s done, he says, “Yeah, I’ll do it.”

Patty, sitting with Pete, flashes back to the days when things were bad in her house.

Turns out, there’s a wire in Pete’s room.

Patty asks why Pete stuck around when her dad took off. Pete says he doesn’t know. Patty tells Pete to give the FBI whatever he needs to.

Arthur talks to Rick, and says he’ll drop the suit. And give Rick the funds Rick needs.

Susie meets with Tom in the middle of a park. He asks if she’s ready to talk. Susie tells Tom she’s scared of Finn. She tells Tom she’ll need protection.

Tom asks if Finn knows Walter.

Arthur drops the lawsuit. But the class-action suit is already on its way to a solid start.

Pete talks to Patrick. The FBI is listening. They don’t know the guy’s voice. The FBI sends Ellen in to ID Patrick. Patrick, of course, being the guy who almost killed Ellen.

Patty walks by a playground, and sees all the happy kids playing.

Pete tells Patrick that Patrick really needs to get out of town for good. Patrick injects something into Pete’s IV.

Ellen juuust misses seeing Patrick. Pete starts dying. Quickly.

Ellen calls Patty to tell her Pete’s dead.

Patrick calls Pete’s boy, Mikey, and they get into Mikey’s car and drive away.

In flashback, Uncle Pete takes Patty to go get some licorice.

Three Months Later: Pete’s wife opens up a box in the closet and finds a bunch of files. Including pictures of Katie’s dog. And a red folder with Ellen’s name on it.

She gives the folder to Ellen.

And there it is: Ellen is talking to someone. It’s Patty. And there’s Ellen with her gun. She tells Patty it isn’t loaded. Then she shows Patty the Ellen folder. Two gunshots. BAM. BAM.

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