the wonderful world of veena.

17 June 2014

tv binge-a-thon: psych.

For years my brother has been working to convince me to watch the show Psych. I caught a few episodes every now-and-then in India, and I liked it, but I never got a chance to properly watch it. It's always been on my list of things to do, and finally when I was in Little Rock last month, I started watching.

I started slow, but pretty soon I couldn't stop. It's quite an addicting show, and with the slow-down in my work, I found myself watching 4-7 episodes in a given day. I would finish a run and watch. I would watch while I ate lunch. I would watch while working, and I would watch while responding to emails or working on blog posts. In short, it kind of took over my life.

And now, 6 weeks and 8 seasons* later, I finally finished it.

To give you a brief background on the show itself: Shawn and Gus are the two main characters, and they have been best friends their entire lives. Gus is the serious one, the functioning adult with a job as a pharmaceutical sales rep. Shawn is the free spirit, the rebellious son of a police detective who roams the world and has never held a proper job for longer than three days. But Shawn has a gift for being hyper-observational, having called in a number of tips to the police to help them close cases. After one such tip, the police begin to question him as a suspect, insisting that only someone responsible for the crime could know the details he knows. In an effort to save his own skin, Shawn professes himself to be a psychic. When he ends up helping solve the case, he decides that he's found his calling. He and Gus launch a psychic detective agency, contracting out to the police as well as to private clients who come across their doorstep and solving cases ranging from murder and kidnapping to art heists and werewolves and beyond. The show tells the story of their detective antics as well as the oddball characters who pass through their door.

I loved watching this show for a number of reasons. Number 1 on the list was definitely the relationship between Shawn and Gus. They're such great foils for each other, and no matter how much they might bicker or argue or disagree, there is no doubt in anyone's mind that they always have each other's back. In many ways, they are each other's "person", and you learn a lot about being a good friend - and also being not a good friend - from watching them.

Another is watching the relationship between James Roday and Maggie Lawson blossom. Roday, who plays Shawn, and Lawson, who portrays Detective Juliet O'Hara, are dating in real life, and it's great to see that relationship develop and deepen on the screen. I found myself, multiple times, blurring the line between virtual and reality, but I think that's because of how great their on-screen chemistry is.

The recurring gags tie the show together so well. The pineapple in every episode. Gus using the same pickup line - "You heard about Pluto? That's messed up" - on every pretty girl he meets. Shawn's constant "I've heard it both ways". Making fun of Gus' car, the Blueberry. The ridiculous dancing. The guys' obsession with Billy Zane and Val Kilmer. The changes in the theme song depending on the episode [in Hindi for the Bollywood episode, in Spanish for the Mexico episode, the a cappella version when Gus' college a cappella group guest stars, etc]. They all add to the show in intangible ways.

And then there are the guest stars. Guest stars can make or break a show, and Psych chose theirs beautifully. From Cary Elwes as a dashing international art thief to Ally Sheedy as a not-quite-right-in-the-head serial killer, from Kurt Fuller as the hilariously weird coroner to Kristy Swanson as Lassiter's convict love interest to Curt Smith from Tears for Fears as himself, the show has a rotating cast of hilarity in every episode.

In some ways I can't believe it took me so long to finally watch the show, and in others I'm glad I waited until it was over so I could watch it all at once, because I'm not sure I would have been able to wait for new episodes. And it was great to be able to message my brother with my every reaction and have him know exactly what I was talking about [his knowledge of the show is downright scary].

For those of you interested in watching, the first 7 seasons are available to stream on Netflix, and all 8 seasons are available for purchase on Amazon.

I'm so glad I finally watched Psych, and I can't wait to enjoy the reruns for years to come.

You know that's right.

*Since the show was on USA, each season ran 16 episodes rather than the normal 24 from the major networks.

No comments:

Post a Comment