Everything I feared about this show in its first episode was sadly more evident in the second hour.
Standalone weekly cases are part of many shows that don’t have a strong mythology and are especially part of shows with Shonda Rhimes’ name on them. But unlike Grey’s Anatomy (the boss of juggling procedural cases alongside a strong serialized story), shows like How To Get Away With Murder and now The Catch (based on just one episode) seem unsure how to handle these filler stories. The result is a bit of an overstuffed and slightly boring hour.
The Real Killer juggled three separate subplots all at once, and not one of them seemed coherent or fully realized by hour’s end. The case was a bit derivative where the guy Alice thought to be a killer at first did end up being the killer, and none of the stuff leading up to that moment (the iPad, the pictures, the shoes) was compelling or interesting enough. The other storyline involving Christopher (I refuse to call him Ben for now) and the princess was quite dull too. I’m not sure if that’s a story arc that will be dragged out to several other episodes, and that confusion is part of why I didn’t like where any of this was going.
In fact, only Alice investigating the painting in her house was good enough to hold my attention. The fact that she found the exact same painting back at the museum where it was supposedly stolen from was an unexpected nifty twist, and Mireille Enos’ great performance continues to add layers to Alice’s exciting character. While I do have some problems with how they keep portraying Christopher as a bit TOO sympathetic, I’m still quite captivated by this tangled love affair that’s conflicted with this cat-and-mouse chase, and can’t wait to see where the show takes it next.
Bits & Scams
– Love the Alice/Christopher flashbacks and I hope they only get more interesting as the show moves forward.
– Shocking moment to see Christopher steal several items at the jewelry store, but I did think this team of mischievous crooks sharing a moment was very amusing.
– Why do I feel that Val’s husband (soon to be ex) will play a part in the Christopher arc?
– It’s weird to see Alice not wanting to share with Val what she’s doing with the painting investigation. I thought they were closer than that.
– Ah yes, women are not allowed to drive: the most absurd Arab cliché the West love to use.
– Cheerworthy scene: Christopher taking the bait in the end and using the obituary that Alice planted in the newspaper. Hey at least no one said “are you ready to play?” this time!
– Not sure what to make of Agent Dao bugging Alice’s apartment, but he really is turning into one of those creepy stalkers. It’s a shame because I actually liked him in the pilot.
– Ratings haven’t been great for this show so far, so only time will tell if ABC will keep it around or not.
Alice: He lied to me for a year. And I’m supposed to be good at this. I need to know that I’m still good at this.
Alice: Danny, you stole it!
Danny: Liberated it from 2010. It’s all Vampire Weekend and Avatar on there, enjoy.
Reggie: You think she’s gonna forgive you? Ben, she’s gonna stab you in the chest with a car key!
Reggie: So, you’re just gonna trust that I won’t tell her about you and Nancy Drew?
Not a great follow-up, but the serialized element still holds up a lot of potential.