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TV Review: Psych Out (Until November)

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This past Wednesday, USA’s Psych ended its summer run. Like most USA shows, Psych does half of their season in the summer, and the other half sometime during the regular television season. For Psych, a crime procedural about a very observant man who pretends to be a spy, that usually means January. But this year, as they have twice before, there will be a Christmas episode, presumably in November. Yes, November. Don’t ask my why. This year’s will be It’s a Wonderful Life-themed.

In the season finale, Shawn (James Roday) and Gus (Dulé Hill) helped a spy (Franka Potente, the Bourne movies) clear her name. It was a little like the Bourne Identity series. It wasn’t quite the standard case of the week episode, but it also wasn’t one of the special episodes that rate a different directing style or a theme song remix. Instead, it was a slightly bigger case than they usually solve, it being a season finale, and the case also had to be wrapped up a little quicker so that the writers could spend the obligatory few minutes not quite getting Shawn and Detective Juliet O’Hara (Maggie Lawson) together.

That’s right. Not getting them together. For four and a half seasons now, Shawn has been in love with the female cop, but never actually made a real move on her. While the two get slightly closer to something real every season, for some reason, like most shows, the writers just won’t pull the trigger. Last year, Shawn had a steady girlfriend. This year, Juliet overheard Shawn basically say that he loved her, and she finally kissed him. But it was in Declan Rand’s (Lost‘s Nestor Carbonell) house, the man she has been dating. And she didn’t leave when Shawn left, though I doubt she kept her vacation plans with Declan. Of course, we won’t know that for sure until at least November, if not later.

What is the obsession with shows like Psych for putting two characters so obviously right for each other, close, but not allowing them to forge a relationship? Perhaps it’s the Moonlighting curse, as that show allowed its two main characters to consummate the relationship, and then watched the series blow up in their faces. Other shows (Bones springs to mind) have waited like Psych has. But Grey’s Anatomy hasn’t suffered from Derek and Meredith being together, and House is about to take the plunge between the title character and Dr. Cuddy this year. If they can do it, so can Psych.

Two more criticisms about this season of Psych: the theme song and the recasting of Young Shawn in the flashbacks. Although four actors have played Young Shawn during the series’ run, Liam James has done it by far the most, and the new boy that has played him the last few episodes does not measure up at all. Get Liam back! Also, the longer version of Psych‘s theme song is amazing, while the short version is lame. I know it’s the same song, but it’s true. Most of last winter, the long version aired. It aired very little this summer. Please install the long version permanently, save, of course, for any special episodes with remixed versions, which are nearly always cool.

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About JeromeWetzelTV

Jerome writes TV reviews for BlogCritics.org and Seat42F.com, as well as fiction. He is a frequent guest on two podcasts, Let's Talk TV with Barbara Barnett and The Good, the Bad, & the Geeky. All of his work can be found on his website, jeromewetzel.com
  • http://notesfromnancy.blogspot.com NancyGail

    November to not get lost in the myriad of December holiday shows. This episode should not be considered part of the regular season. Juliet kissed Shawn in a movie theatre once, but he was in a relationship with Rachel Evan Wood. By January, Declan may be out of the picture. Pretty sure Carbonell did not sign a long term contract.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/jeromewetzeltv/ Jerome Wetzel

    Yeah, I guess November does avoid the others, but it’s early enough that if you don’t have a DVR, you can miss it. And that first kiss was great, but I did like Shawn with Abigail. Not that she’s gone, and I’m sure Declan will be gone soon, too, it’s time, don’t you think?

  • AJ

    Ummm no not november more like December 15th. It took like 2 mins.to find that out

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/jeromewetzeltv/ Jerome Wetzel

    I see that Wikipedia now lists December 15th. However, when the last episode of Psych aired, the USA spot said it would return in November. I do not know if the date has been changed, or if Wikipedia is wrong. It could be either.