Sunday, November 15, 2009

What I’m Watching: Ugly Betty

Ugly Betty: Season 4, Episode 6 “Backseat Betty” (B-)

This show is certainly entertaining, there’s no doubt about that, but it feels more unfocused now than ever. At the heart of the story is Betty’s search to define herself in terms that aren’t so limiting or expected, and that’s probably the strongest element of the show because it’s something that has recurred throughout the entire series, and constantly remained fresh and interesting. Betty’s hallucinated moments where she put herself out there and says the kind of things she’d never actually say were great, and it’s a fitting tribute to the character that she doesn’t really say them but still manages to break out of her shell by the end of the episode and become satisfied with the person she is. Justin’s ability to get past people making fun of him with the help of Marc is a nice triumph for the character, and his acceptance speech ended up being quite heartfelt when it came to his shout-out to Hilda. Daniel’s soul-searching continues to be frustrating because Natalie is clearly plotting something, and it’s about time her plan was revealed. Seeing her get angry at a clueless Amanda was an interesting moment though, and having Dylan Baker around is never a bad thing. Wilhelmina’s decision to quit Mode and start a new life with her daughter was never actually going to happen, and the revelation that Connor is dead really messes things up. This season feels like it’s waiting for all the characters and storylines to settle down, and it would be much more productive and satisfying if that started happening sooner than later.

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