- "Okay, enough. The
painfully cute mugging is starting to get on my nerves"
- "What are you, Entertainment Weekly?"
By the end of the second season of Psych
it had seemed like
the show had run its course. While the
show was still entertaining, the jokes were getting a little stale and
mysteries started sounding a little too similar to one another. Luckily, the creators also noticed that they
were in a slump. With the third season
the show seems new and fresh. They've
added a bit more continuity, flashed out the characters backgrounds a
and upped the humor quotient some.
Shawn Spencer (James Roday) is a psychic who works for the
police force. At least, that's what the
cops think. He really doesn't have any
supernatural abilities, he's just very observant. Trained
from a young age by his police
officer father, Shawn notices things that the rest of us don't and is
piece together seemingly disparate clues in ways that make it seem like
Together with his best friend Gus (Dulé Hill, West
Wing) Shawn has started a psychic
detective agency, Psych. Yes, it's a pun
on the now dated slang word that meant "fooled you" something that
amusing and Gus finds surprising that no one has called them on it yet.
This season find Shawn and Gus mainly working for the Santa
Barbara Police Department along side officers Carlton Lassiter (Timothy
Omundson) aka "Lassie" and his partner Juliet O'Hara (Maggie Lawson)
taking some private cases.
The season starts out slow with a rather silly episode,
"Ghosts." (As in previous seasons the
name of the episodes are puns on famous movie titles and catch phrases.) This episode has Shawn and Gus trying to
exorcize the ghosts from the manager of the office where Gus has his
job. The show did explain how Gus can
spend all that time away from the office, which was nice, but the
itself was one of the weaker ones.
Things pick up in "Daredevils!" where the pair are trying to
find out who is attempting to murder a Evel Knievel-like daredevil. The stuntman, Dutch "The Clutch"
Jenkins (Jeff Fahey) steals the show with his outrageous behavior and
"Hell, one time I bungee jumped off a building twice the
size of that tower. And even though the
cord snapped on the way down, I still made it to the George Thorogood
that night! True Story!
There's a bit more continuity in this season too. Viewers
get to meet Shawn's mother at last
(played nicely by Cybill Shepherd, who used to star in a
herself) and the separation between Lassiter and his wife moves forward
The same rapid-fire humor is present, with Gus having some
funny lines too in this season. Like
Mystery Science Theater, the show takes joy in coming up with obscure
references to 80's movies and pop culture for the banter of the main
Gus: They call this a
motorcycle show? There's like four
Shawn: They don't
even have the bike from Blue Thunder.
Gus: That was a
Shawn: Your right, I
was thinking of Blue Lagoon.
Gus: There was no
bike in Blue Lagoon!
Shawn: Then how did
they get off the island?
One of the more subtle themes for this season, and one that
I truly loved, is that they included a lot of jokes dealing with the
Pack. The 80's actors are mentioned in
several episodes and it is fun to try to spot all the references to
their films. Shawn goes to his high
school reunion as "Judd Nelson", he goes undercover at a pro-football
camp as Emilio Estevez Estevez, and Ally Sheedy even has a guest
the final episode. There's many more...
that's just to get you started.
The season also carries some traditions over from earlier
seasons. They have a Christmas show with
an alternate Christmas-themed opening, and Shawn and his father
game of trying to guess their presents.
This season's game was especially funny.
While the shows are mainly played for laughs, especially
their take off of teen slasher movies, Tuesday the 17th, the
episode was a good piece of crime drama, with Shawn having to pit his
against a serial killer who taunts him with puzzling clues. While it was darker than usual, it was a very
good episode and ends the season on a very high note.
The 16 episodes that comprise season three come on 4
DVD. The case matches the cases for
seasons one and two, which is nice. (I
hate when they change styles half way through.)
The program comes with a DD 5.1 surround audio track that
fits the show well. There are a couple
of loud and impressive audio scenes through the show, but mainly it's
based and that comes through loud and clear.
The anamorphic 1.78:1 image looks pretty good overall.
The colors are bright and the lines are
tight. The level of detail is fine. There is a bit of mosquito noise through the
show, especially in areas where one color is predominate like the
field in "Any Given Friday Night at 10pm, 9pm Central."
While it was evident, it never became
Like the previous seasons, this set has a good amount of
bonus material. There are deleted scenes
to just about every episode and audio, video, and podcast commentary
many as well. In addition there's a gag
reel that's amusing and some funny montages.
In one they string together the main characters saying "What?"
over. It's nearly impossible to watch
Going into this season, I was ready for the show to jump the
shark. Surprisingly though, the program
built on the previous seasons and managed to make a comeback. The added continuity and delving into the
main character's backgrounds helped a lot.
That, and there's still a pineapple in every episodes. The show just wouldn't be the same
the pineapple. If you'd just about given
up on the show after the last season, give this one a try.