TV REVIEW Medium 4.16 "Drowned World"

)riginal US air date: 12/05/2008

Written by: Moira Kirland

Directed by: Aaron Lipstadt

Rating:

In Dreams: A mad mother drowns her baby son.

The One Where: A woman living in a hunted house kills herself and the husband is blamed, until it becomes clear that she was really his sister. Joe dissolves his business partnership and Van Dyke steps down from being DA.

Verdict: Season four of Medium was so brilliant for so much of its run, it’s a shame that the quality has waned in the final straight. Too often over the last few episodes it’s been the homefront plots which have held together stories with increasingly dotty crimes-of-the-week. The same is true here, with some convoluted guff about a crazy incestuous sister that simply runs out of steam at the end and doesn’t bear up to close scrutiny. Hell, it doesn’t bear up to myopic scrutiny through a telescope turned round the wrong way.

As usual it’s Joe to the rescue. As Allison waits for her visions to fill her in on the plot – and Devalos and Scanlon wibble on about, “We need more evidence than that, Allison,” – Joe’s storyline is careering off in all sorts of unexpected directions. He dissolves the business! Meghan was a scheming bitch! She wanted to buy him out all along! But then Joe gets a dream job offer! It’s great stuff, and Jake Weber is in fine form as the befuddled innocent caught in the middle of this maelstrom.

But this does raise another problem with the episode. As an end of season finale, it’s unusually upbeat. All the various plot strands tie up happily. Devalos is DA again; Allison and Joe have their jobs back. Maybe it’s Medium trying not to playing by the rules again, but it all feels a little too neat and tidy (even if the producers were worried about cancellation), especially Van Dyke suddenly developing terminal cancer to leave the DA’s job open. It feels like we’ve bee robbed a showdown between the two old rivals.

Time Checks:
Devalos: “It’s seven in the morning.”

Trivia 1: Charles Winters knows Larry Watt, the defence lawyer who was Allison’s old sparring partner for the first two seasons with whom she finally forged an uneasy alliance in this season‘s “Girls Ain’t Nothing But Trouble”.

Trivia 2: The address on the cheque that Meghan gives to Joe is, “72801 Feather Star Road, Phoenix” – presumably where their office was based.

Speculation: For the second time in three weeks (we saw it happen before in “Car Trouble”) Allison and Joe end up on opposite sides of the bed to usual after sex.

Speculation 2: Maybe we should start a new category when we spoiler the next season to cover the show’s new cliché – gratuitous shots of news footage on TV during Allison’s dreams to show the viewer what year the vision is set in.

Best Line:
Allison: "You’re going to find this hard to believe, but I had a dream last night."

Dave Golder

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