by Dizzy Miss Lizzy
Shawn and Gus kick off the new season of Psych with a celebratory ski trip to British Columbia. Since the show is actually filmed in Vancouver, the destination seems an appropriate shout out. On the slopes, Shawn spots an international art thief. Never caught, never enough evidence to accuse, Pierre Despereaux has a special place on Lassiter’s wall of suspects.
Shawn cons his way onto the Canadian investigation. His fake psychic dramatics are a bit rusty. The police in Santa Barbara no longer need convincing (they just want results), so Shawn’s forced theatrics don’t resonate with as much magical potency as his somewhat more earnest ones once did. Lassiter immediately hops on a plane to oversee and Juliet tags along, generously providing enough frequent flyer miles for them both.
Despereaux makes off with a $3 million antique necklace (never touched by human hands) straight out of the owner’s high-rise apartment. As Lassiter contemplates the scene, Shawn catches a glimpse of a foot heading out of the window and to the roof. Gus and Shawn confront the thief, who commends their performance and promptly leaps off the building.
The bros-only ski trip with Gus becomes more and more obviously a last-minute cover-up for a romantic getaway gone array. During the off-season, Shawn wandered into newfangled romantic territory and now has an actual, committed relationship with former high-school flame Abigail (Rachel Leigh Cook). Unfortunately, she had to cancel due to work, so Shawn brought the unwitting Gus as his proxy date. Juliet’s presence on the investigation, in her finest Julie-Christie-in-Doctor-Zhivago, snow bunny ensemble, also threatens to wreak havoc on Shawn’s commitment resolve. The two agree that they can talk and work together, as just friends, but as Shawn wonders to himself “How?!”
After several more thefts and some fun cat-and-mouse-like interplay between the French Thomas Crown and the real Mentalist, the Psych guys realize that the reason Despereaux is such a good thief is that he never actually steals anything. He has the full cooperation of each financially struggling owner in carrying out the real crime, insurance fraud.
There are only subtle — and stereotypical — jabs at Canadian competence. I mean, bumbling Canadian mountie Mackintosh is ultimately no more bumbling than McNabb. But, why don’t we call this episode what it really is: the Holy Crap, Everyone Got FAT episode! Someone needs to let James Roday know that gyms are open year-round, even during hiatus. And Cary Elwes?! My mind’s eye pictured Westley from The Princess Bride. My real eyes saw a Dunkin’ Donuts episode of Intervention.
During the times when I could finally focus my attention away from Elwes’ second chin, I was thoroughly amused by the romantic vacation subplot. The love triangle between Shawn, Abigail and Juliet is set up (somewhat) now, but hopefully it won’t take over the season. This isn’t a Ross & Rachel kind of series. If it were, I probably wouldn’t be watching it.
Spot the Pineapple: At the end of the episode, as Shawn and Juliet pass the mime, there is a pineapple made of balloons.
Quotes & References:
Shawn: You’ve seen The Mentalist, right?
Shawn: It’s like that.
Gus: Except that guy’s a fake.
Shawn: Right, if I was a fake psychic it would be eerily similar.
Gus: Exactly the same.
Shawn: A virtual carbon copy.