I finally had 45 free minutes today to sit down and watch the newest episode of of CSI, which first aired on Thursday night. After two decent eps to open the eighth season, I thought 8×03 was a step back towards the mediocrity that marred most of S7. The two cases highlighted in this episode were boring, the investigations were uninteresting, and the character interactions seemed tired and worn. Here’s a quick recap of what happened in the episode called “Go to Hell.”
The “A” Plot: Most of the CSIs were involved in investigating the “A” plot this week. It started when Warrick, Catherine, and Grissom get called down to a seedy motel where two bodies (a man and a woman) are found amidst a lot of blood. From what they can piece together on the spot, it looks like the woman was bound, gagged, tortured, and possibly sexually assaulted, while the man was perhaps forced to watch before being executed with a single bullet to the head.
After collecting evidence, the team heads back to the lab to hand off their findings to the lab rats for analysis. There were a bunch of fingerprints in the motel room, and a lot of them turned up on an APHIS search: drug dealers, prostitutes, rapists, and pedophiles were among the matches. In addition, the CSIs learn that fluid found on the motel bed contained semen and a female contribution from someone whose DNA partially matches that of the victims. They speculate that the victims must have had a daughter, and that she has probably been kidnapped. This leads the CSIs to focus on the pedophile, so Brass goes to have a word with the guy.
It turns out that his name is Alistair Rhodes (hey, it’s Michael from Lost! I guess he and Walt made it off the island after all!) and now he’s a preacher. Brass questions Rhodes about the motel incident and shows him pictures of the DBs. Rhodes admits to being in the hotel, but swears he didn’t kill anybody. From his reaction to the photos, however, it’s clear that he knew the vics, so Brass brings him in.
The investigation continues in this vein and takes a couple of twists and turns before we finally get to the heart of the matter. The victims’ 12-year-old daughter Amy (she of the female fluid contribution) was the one behind everything. She had met an older man on the Internet, but of course her parents objected to her being with him. Apparently she decided to off them so she could continue having sex with the guy. Still, she gets hers in the end when Rhodes, who believed the girl was possessed by demon spirits, goes psycho and throws her off a balcony from a couple stories up.
The “B” Plot: This storyline consisted of Sara, who’s now working on days, investigating the death of a homeless man with her new partner, a young CSI named Ronnie Lake. I think this plot was more about introducing the Ronnie character than about the investigation because the writers mostly focused on how Ronnie likes to ask a bunch of questions.
Anyway, it turns out that the homeless guy died of dehydration, and probably would have survived if a couple of patrol cops had taken him into the station like they were supposed to. The cops found this homeless guy fighting with another one, and when they tried to break up the fight, they were punched in the face. The cops just let the incident go because they knew it was a just a ploy the homeless guys were using to get arrested so they could have some food, water, and shelter for the day.
My Reaction: Like I said above, this episode was pretty boring for the most part. I wasn’t interested in the A Plot at all because the whole thing was rather convoluted and a bit hard to follow (that’s what I get for trying to multi-task during CSI, I guess). I mean, what was the deal with the bees at the beginning and end of the ep? Did those bees even play a role in the investigation at all or in any of the deaths? If not, why the focus? Just so we could see Grissom getting excited about new insects to examine? Big freakin’ deal.
I read through some CSI message boards after watching this ep and was a little surprised to see that fan reaction towards the new character, Ronnie Lake, was overwhelmingly negative. I actually liked that character despite her 20 questions attitude because it was nice to see new blood out in the field for a change. The core cast has understandably become quite jaded over the last 7+ years, so I enjoyed seeing the enthusiasm and wonder that a rookie CSI would naturally bring. Obviously, there’s not a lot of extra room for a new character on this already overcrowded show, but perhaps if Ronnie replaced one of the veteran CSIs, she would inject some new life into the show.
I don’t really have anything else to say about this ep. I was indifferent to it from the get-go, and neither plot did anything to draw me in while I was watching. I hope next week’s ep will be better!