How do I love “Damages,” which returns for a third season Monday (Jan. 25) at 10 p.m. on FX? Let me count the ways:
1.I love the format. Once again, the show flashes six months into the future, shows us something shocking, and flashes back to begin to tell us how the characters got from not-so-bad point A to the oh-so-terrible point B. This is a show you can’t watch lightly. You have to pay close attention and that’s just the way I like it.
2. I love the story line. This season, I feel like the end the show is working towards is more shocking and gut wrenching than it’s ever been because we as viewers are already so invested in the characters. About a year has passed since we last hung out with Hewes and Associates, Ellen (Rose Byrne) is now working for the District Attorney’s office while Patty (Glenn Close) has taken up the civil action against Louis Tobin (Len Cariou),a Wall Street guru who has taken his investors for millions in an elaborate Ponzi scheme (think Bernie Madoff). And that’s about all I can tell you without giving anything away. I want you to be as shocked as I was by what unfolds.
3. I love the guest stars. Martin Short is the cutthroat attorney for the Tobin family. It’s fascinating to see the man who is also Ed Grimley is such a dramatic role. Campbell Scott (who we saw on over the summer in “Royal Pains”) is Louis’s son Joe. Joe desperately wants the public to know that he is not responsible for his father’s sins. Louis’s wife Marilyn (Lily Tomlin) is trying to adjust to live without any funds. Watching Tomlin and Close spar is a lot of fun. There’s also Rieko Aylesworth (Michelle on “24”) as Joe’s wife. And before the second hour is over, Madchen Amick pops up in a pivotal role.
4. I love the regular stars. Glenn Close is a wonderful contradiction as Patty Hewes. She’s ruthless but I feel compassion towards her. And you never quite know what she’s up to. Byrne is less gloomy this season and it’s fascinating to get to know the new work life she set up for herself. And I just adore Tate Donovan as Tom Shayes and his complex, often dysfunctional relationship with Patty.
5. I love that the show is so good that I’m able to give it five out of five stars.
Are you looking forward to the third season of “Damages?” Talk about it below.
Ask TV Gal
Do you know what is up with “Rules of Engagement’s” mid-season return? It had strong ratings last year and is supposed to be back now, but I don’t see it in the listings yet? Aaron
“Rules of Engagement” returns Monday, March 1 at 8:30 p.m. on CBS.
Where Have I Seen Them Before?
All this week’s bonus points go to Melissa who recognized Eddie Shin as Johnny Vong on “Castle.” Shin was Lane’s boyfriend Henry Cho on “Gilmore Girls.” Kim recognized Jay Ferguson as bad guy Dick Coonan on “Castle.” Kim remembers him from playing Taylor Newton on “Evening Shade.” He was also Sheriff Rudy Dunlop on “Evening Shade” and Agent Warren Russell on “Sleeper Cell.”
Jenna Leigh Green was Molly, the girlfriend of the dead man on “Castle.” She was Libby on “Sabrina the Teenage Witch.” Robert Picardo was the forensic specialist Dr. Clark Murray. He was The Doctor on “Star Trek: Voyager” and Richard Woolsey on “Stargate SG-1.”
Debbie recognized Domenick Lombardozzi, Detective Thomas ‘Herc’ Hauk on “The Wire,” as the policeman abusing Jack on “24.” Jennifer Westfeldt was the news reporter having an affair with Omar Hassan. Westfeldt was Lauren on “Notes from the Underbelly” and Jen, the pregnant woman who was had the brain aneurysm Derek operated on last season on “Grey’s Anatomy.” She also starred in the movie “Kissing Jessica Stein” and (fun fact) is the real life girlfriend of Jon Hamm. Benito Martinez was Victor Aruz, the man who pulled Jack right back into another international conspiracy. Martinez was David Aceveda on “The Shield.” Doug Hutchison was Davros. He was Horace Goodspeed last season on “Lost.” Becky Wahlstrom was Dana’s sister. I’ll always remember her as Grace on “Joan of Arcadia.” David Anders was almost unrecognizable as Josef Bazhaev. Anders was Julian Sark on “Alias” and Adam Monroe on “Heroes.”
Jay Karnes is playing Sarah’s new boyfriend Roy on “Brothers & Sisters.” He was Dutch on “The Shield,” Agent Scott Kohn on “Sons of Anarchy” and we saw him last season on “House” as the patient who said everything that came to his mind.
David recognized Jane Leeves, Daphne on “Frasier,” is Tom and Lynette’s therapist on “Desperate Housewives.” Richard Gilliland was Katherine’s therapist. He was J.D. on “Designing Women,” where he met his wife Jean Smart (remember he made a cameo as a pilot during the fifth season of “24.” )
Richard T. Jones was Mr. White the man from the federal government who shut down the lab on “Bones.” He was James Ellison on “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” and Bruce on “Judging Amy.”
Andy Comeau was the man whose wife had just died on “Private Practice.” He was Teddy on “Huff” and Dr. Travis Brennan, one of the doctors competing to be on House’s team, on “House.”
Quotes of the Week
“Tomorrow is our last show here.” Conan O’Brien on “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien.” Honestly I still can’t believe what has happened over these past two weeks with late night TV. It’s really unbelievable. I’m looking forward to watching Conan wherever he lands. And, not that I ever did before, but I won’t be watching “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
“I hate this place.” Jack about CTU on “24.” Thanks to Barry for the quote.
“His phone battery may have died or more likely he’s in an area with bad cell reception.” CTU director Brian Hastings to Chloe about why Jack isn’t answering his phone on “24.” Oh Brian, Brian, Brian. Don’t you know that’s so not how this works. Jack’s phone never dies and he always has good reception. Rookie mistake Brian. Rookie mistake.
“I’ve gotten used to you pulling my pigtails.” Beckett to Castle on “Castle.”
“I’m a little depressed, probably cause I started the Apocalypse.” Sam to a mental hospital doctor on “Supernatural.” Thanks to Sandy for the quote.
“McDreamy is being a McAss.” Meredith to Derek on “Grey’s Anatomy.” Thanks to Ritchie for the quote.
“For example, what keeps people polite on an airplane? A shared hatred of the CBS sitcoms they are forced to watch.” Jack to Liz on “30 Rock.”
“I love you so much that I almost hate you.” Alex to Izzy on “Grey’s Anatomy.”
“Why don’t we send her to the police? I mean, I don’t use them, but that’s what they’re for, right?” Parker to Nate about a woman who’s being pressure by a loan shark on “Leverage.” Thanks to Sandy for the quote.
Exchanges of the Week
“Is this your first Walker dinner party?” Robert to Sarah’s date Roy on “Brothers & Sisters.”
“It is.” Roy’s response.
“Good luck.” Robert’s response.
That’s all for today. I’m back on Monday with a look at the return of “Greek,” check in on how “Chuck” and “Ugly Betty” are doing and more. Have a question? Seen a familiar face? Want to nominate a quote of the week or a topic for discussion? Write me at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Twitter. Have a great weekend. Talk to you on Monday.
Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal