Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What I’m Watching: Royal Pains

Royal Pains: Season 2, Episode 16 “Astraphobia” (B+)

This show doesn’t tend to do event episodes, necessarily, and therefore it was very interesting to have something like a massive storm as the driving force behind an episode. It’s also refreshing that it works pretty well and doesn’t feel forced at all. Having a storm chaser in town with a mysterious ailment is a great setup, and pairing her story with that of a park ranger is a smart plan. This was certainly a better part for Jamie Ray Newman than as a series regular on ABC’s horrible and mercifully short-lived “Eastwick,” and it’s also fun to see Jim Gaffigan. I like the fact that the two of them were somewhat into each other, mostly due to their affinity for weather conditions and lightning strike statistics. Evan was pretty hilarious as he fretted and panicked about the impending storm, and I enjoyed seeing the unenthusiastic reactions his frenzied behavior elicited from the likes of Hank and Divya, starting at the very beginning of the episode when he gave them their disaster packages. Having Hank and Jill end up literally stuck in the mud in the middle of the storm could have seemed like a plot crutch, but the tone of this show makes it somewhat more permissible. I liked how Hank’s main concern in the midst of everything was that Evan could never know about them having had to use one of the disaster packages. And it was just as perfect for Evan to have placed a tracking device on the Hank Med vehicle they were driving.

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