Ohmygawd y’all! With only a few episodes left, Ringer begins to wrap up some of its storylines, including ones that are stale and boring (Machado! Bodaway!) and tasty fresh (Tyler’s murder! Catherine!).
Let’s bitch it out…
With an opening teaser that shows Henry (Kristoffer Polaha) being questioned by police and one of the twins caught in the crosshairs of a sniper and then shot, you know that this is either a) a ruse or b) a dream. And although we do get a dream sequence in the episode (more on that later), it’s clear as soon as Bridget (SMG) decides to testify and meets with Machado (Nestor Carbonnell) that they’ll concoct a terrible plan to fake her own murder (because why wouldn’t they? It’s Ringer!). My favourite part of Machado’s plan is how they’ll videotape it and then assume that no one will look for the body. Riiiight…at least until the twin is spotted and people get the least bit suspicious. I realize that Wyoming is a long way from NY, but each week we’re reminded that “if Bodaway wants [Bridget] dead, she’s dead” and he’s supposed to be some all-powerful criminal (with greasy hair – maybe that’s why he’s all powerful?)
Since we know from the teaser that Bridget will end up in the cross-hairs (the lack of a baby bump is a dead giveaway), the majority of the episode involves waiting for the sniper guy to show up. (Side Note: Can we just agree that JJ Abrams has ruined the “jump back X days/hours” narrative technique because it’s just too obvious now. It just got used on Alcatraz last night!) It was nice that the shootout didn’t go exactly as we imagined – since he can’t get a good shot, the shooter ends up having to come after Bridget at close range. Alas, that’s the only remotely surprising part of this failed murder attempt. It was pretty clear that she’s activated her blood packet and didn’t actually die. I did like that Bridget is so dumb that she can’t even fake playing dead well: she blinks which alerts the guy that she’s still alive and Machado shoots him just in time.
This time the killer turns out to be the guy that originally chased Bridget demanding Siobhan’s cell phone (I believe it was in 1×03 ‘If You Ever Want a French Lesson…’). Or what we always thought was Siobhan’s phone since the last number dialed was Siobhan’s Paris hotel room. Well this episode makes it clear that the hitman is working for Catherine (Andrea Roth). Is it possible that the two are in cahoots, or are we supposed to forget that this man has ties to Siobhan?
Speaking of Catherine, she’s front and center in the B storyline. In an nearly exact duplicate of the scheme Catherine used on Mr. Carpenter in ‘PS. You’re An Idiot’, Andrew (Ioan Gruffudd) tricks Catherine into buying his worthless Palm Springs land for the money she’s collected from Juliet (Zoey Deutch), Tessa and Mr. C with the fake rape story. This storyline embodies the worst of the show’s storytelling philosophy, which appears to be “revert to ‘stupid audience’ mode each time something happens”. Admittedly sometimes the flashbacks are useful, but when the show uses them to reveal superfluous details in order to ensure that we don’t get lost, then it’s a crutch (as a writer) and a disservice (to your audience). Did we need to see multiple flashbacks of Juliet coming clean about the scam in order to understand that Andrew knew about Catherine’s role in the fake rape? No, but since everyone at Ringer is worried that we won’t figure out that Andrew and friend, Tobias (Christopher Cousins), are playing Catherine, in go the flashbacks.
So what else is happening? Henry corners Siobhan and tries to impress upon her that she needs to give up her REVENGE scheme and let his father-in-law, Tim Arbogast (Gregory Harrison) expose the Martin/Charles Ponzi scheme using the flash drivezzzzzzzzz…whaa? Oh sorry, must have fallen asleep there. Clearly the old man does not feel the same way, though, since in no time at all the police are knocking at his door looking for answers about small-head, big-body’s murder. Turns out that perhaps Arbogast is not interested in revealing the fraudulent reports and losing tons-o-dollars after all. Could he be the mysterious man that Olivia called before she skeedaddled out of town a few weeks ago? Or does Siobhan simply have him under her control, as well?
- Throw the Siobhan/Bridget meeting scene into the wood chipper with the other near-miss last week. In what turns out to be a decent interaction, Siobhan confesses that she’s uncertain how Bridget – who messed up everything in her own life – manages to do so well in hers [Siobhan's]. At then she pulls a gun and it’s clear that this is all just a daydream delusion that Siobhan has cooked up watching her sister. Question: so is she just following Bridget around, or did she bug her clothes? Because how else does she know where she’s meeting Machado?
- Anyone else notice the fancy little transition shots of cabs and other NY locales in between scenes? Am I crazy or are these new? They add a nice little artistic flare in an otherwise traditionally shot episode
- As amusing as it is to see Bridget in full-stripper wear, as well as see Nikki DeLoach as Machado’s doomed love, Shaylene Briggs, what do these scenes really contribute? I’ve never been a big Bodaway fan, but since we already know that Machado had an affair with Shaylene in ‘You’re Way Too Pretty To Go To Jail’, are these scenes simply included to reveal the truth to Bridget? Because that’s an overly elaborate (and expensive) way to do it.
- No Malcolm and no Olivia this week. I’ll admit that when we moved to the Bronx (the faux-murder site), I thought they were going to reveal Malcolm tied up with Olivia feeding him baloney sandwiches or something. Alas, this was not to be.
And so now we know that Catherine is trying to kill Siobhan. So it’s possible that two groups of people – Catherine’s hit squad and Machado’s gang – are trying to kill the twins at the same time. Anyone want to take me up on my belief that Siobhan will be mistaken for Bridget and be shot before the season/series ends? Where do you think Malcolm and Olivia are (or do you care)? And are you surprised that Catherine is the big villain behind so much duplicitous activity?
Ringer airs on Tuesdays at 9pm EST on The CW