Thursday, 3 March 2011

No Ordinary Family - S1 E17 - No Ordinary Love

A mysterious woman uses her power to seduce George and Jim. Chris asks Daphne a tough question.

Spoilers after the jump.

If this show were a type of food, it would be a ham and cheese wrap. I'm not even sure how much it's worth talking about. Considering how last week it was the absolute worst thing in the world that Joshua was going around wiping Katie and Daphne's minds, it's interesting how easy Daphne finds it to go redirecting Chris's thoughts. She would claim it's to protect him and her family, but then that's what Joshua said too. She eventually gives up and admits to him that everyone in the family has powers and that's nice that they can trust each other and true love blah blah she's still gonna be a super villain.

It makes a little more sense if he was under some powerful love spell, but the guy trying to drive his car straight through Jim at the beginning of the episode seemed like yet another example of ridiculously over the top petty thugs on this show. There's no subtlety allowed here. I didn't really get what was going on. So "Sophie" (Tricia Helfer) influenced that guy and George to steal cough medicine for her meth ring but actually she was building a bomb? Or was she running a meth ring on the side and the bomb was a happy coincidence? Either way seems like a stretch. She had Jim go raid an army installation and he beat the crap out of the soldiers present... Wouldn't they make him and go after him? Wouldn't it be easier for her to just go there and seduce the soldiers with her power to get them to give her whatever she needed? I suppose she needed someone to carry everything around for her as well, but still, the plot holes are way too numerous on this show.

I didn't really catch what was going on with Sophie's boss (Lucy Lawless, back in black) either. Was she Dr. King's superior? It seemed like she was displeased that his experiments have been putting supers out all over the city. Is the best way to deal with that really to exploderize him? I thought this way supposed to be some grand super secret conspiracy, that seems again, very unsubtle. That's the same method she used to dispose of Sophie of course. Surely there's a more imaginative way, c'mon writers! The scene at the end where she recruits Jesse from Buffy (Eric Balfour) to join her felt oddly constructed too. He'd just left Dr. King's place having been promised work and he picks up a ride with this strange woman with nothing in particular to offer. At times it feels like a five-year-old is coming up with these scenarios and writing the dialogue. 

Speaking of Eric Balfour, or Claw Boy as he is henceforth known on account of his uberlame ability, turns out he was on death row. I guess a lot of these people Dr. King hauls out and experiments on carry this kind of criminal background, which can't lead to anything good. Stephanie is supposedly shocked by this, but she knew what Joshua and Charlotte from Lost had been up to so why should she be? I thought the whole reason she got closer to King was so that she could find out what the reason for the experiments was, not to actually help him experiment!

Now getting back to the "Love" part of the title, it's amazing how genre-savvy Stephanie isn't. She and Jim had just been talking the previous day about how quickly George had fallen for Sophie, then all of a sudden Jim falls for Sophie and acts in the same strange manner? With all the weirdos they've encountered I wonder why it didn't at least cross her mind that something supernatural was at work. Instead she reacted very emotionally. Perhaps it's a by product of her power. The ability to move at super speed superheats her and makes her mind race to conclusions. The scene where she snaps Jim out of the infatuation with her impassioned declaration of love and a kiss was beyond awful. How jejune and cliched can No Ordinary Family get?

The ratings are declining every week and to me it seems almost certain to be canceled. A few weeks ago, I would have quite happily stuck around just to see how the story unfolded but I'm not so sure anymore. Am I really supposed to get excited about a fight between Jim and Claw Boy? Xena Fang? Mrs X as I discovered her name to be never left her vicinity of her car and seemed to only speak through opened window or door. How ridiculous. There's mysterious and then there's just terrible conception and writing. We are 17 episodes in and I have no faith they can pull it back from the edge of oblivion.

"No Ordinary Family" airs Tuesdays on ABC at 9:00 pm EST.

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