30 January, 2013

Review - WHITE COLLAR 4.12: 'Brass Tacks'

Just because an episode introduces a promising villain and points the show in a seemingly-good and entertaining direction, doesn't mean I'm about to sing the praises of "Brass Tacks".

The back-half of Season 4 needed both a good antagonist and a clear goal to wrap up this storyline in order to learn more about Neal's father and his past. With Titus Welliver's character of Senator Pratt, it seems as though this episode of 'White Collar' is the precursor to doing just that.

While all this makes me encouraged moving forward, I didn't exactly love how we got to this point.

ONCE AGAIN it appears as though Peter and Neal may be at odds, because Peter knows he was lied to and won't be able to trust him. (Stop me if you've seen this storyline before) I do love the idea of both of them working and competing against each other regarding the key-map without Neal's knowledge, but I'm just sick and tired of that tired charade.

Damn you, Elizabeth, for not telling Peter the truth. You could have prevented this from happening again. My anger at Mrs. Suit aside, nice work from Tiffani Thiessen as usual. Great scene with her and Matt Bomer -- she always sells the emotional moments well.

No one loves Neal Caffrey as a character more than me. You guys must know by now that I'm a sucker for all episodes that involve Neal going undercover, doing something shady and channeling his con-man abilities -- but this episode is the exception. I know Neal is the master at infiltrating anything, but his turn as a master architect might have been the most ridiculous and far-fetched one this show has ever done. And that's saying something.

And yes, I liked Senator Pratt, and he looks like a good villain, but what does having Hughes removed from the bureau-- and not Peter or Neal -- really accomplish here? Stupid. A real villain knows that maneuver will only fire up and motivate his enemies even more. Plus, Hughes was never a threat to Pratt, anyway. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

This installment leaves me excited for the upcoming ones, but also irks me in the meantime.


--ELIZABETH: "If you have to lie to his face to keep him safe, you damn well lie to his face."

--HUGHES: "And I bet you always wanted to be an architect, right Caffrey?

--HUGHES: "You're a real son of a bitch, Neal. But you're the best damn son of a bitch I've ever seen."


--Mozzie-related things that I enjoyed: He apparently doesn't play well with others and he calls Jones "Quantico", "Suit Jones" and "Wingtips."

--Gee, what a shock, Neal peddled his own agenda in the intial interview with Senator Pratt -- forcing Peter to kick him out of it.

--One thing about this show that should get more credit: the Burke's have one of the best marriages on TV.

--Enjoyed Mozzie improvising on the phone with Pratt, but I could have done without the ridiculous phone-swapping shenanigans.

--Damn you, Jones. I hate when the suits are competent when dealing with Mozzie.

--That car accident didn't even look that bad. I would have walked out of that crash without a scratch.

--Riddles are awesome, as are keys that are really maps.

--Neal/Mozzie vs. Peter/Suits ... who ya got?

--I miss Alex Hunter. Gloria Votsis, when are you returning, dammit!?



  1. I stupidly have just realised why Drama shows that are generally on USA, CBS, CW, NBC, ABC and Fox are pissing me off. They do not spend anytime fleshing out the bad guys in any way or form. All the villains are cartoon characters and the show just breezes past why they do the things they do, etc. So we know that this senator is the bad guy but we never get to see anything but a bunch of inuendo and veiled threats and bullshit like that.

    Also the way the characters just speed talk (expostion) over half a season worth of plot starts to grate after a while.

    Come on guys actually put some fucking investment in your stories and characters and stop keeping everything at a suface level.

  2. When the breaks go out why does the driver never actually turn off the engine or do a hand break turn or just colide into the parked cars until the resistance brings the car to a standstill.


  3. That actually happened to a family in real life.

    They were in a defaulty car and the car kept going 100 miles per hour and the brakes wouldn't work.

    The Dad of the family who was driving didn't think to turn off the engine and they all died.

    1. Firstly even if a country like Germany has not speed limits on their highways or as they say autobarns....driving at 100 miles per hour with your family (and without to be honest) is incredibly risky and unwise.

      I forgot you can also put the car in neutral and that will slow the car down a little.

  4. I've been to Germany. They have speed limits.

    1. Some roads (autobahns) have fixed speed limits, some have an advisable one that is only enforced if there is an accident and therefore you are to blame for being reckless and some parts of the system have no speed limits. Obviously junctions and road construction and other things have some limits but I have seen cars race by at more that 200 kmph....assholes.

  5. Just been rewatching some Quantum Leap on Netflix....man this show is a pile of fucking horseshit in comparison. This show has nothing to say but that it is a piece of fucking shit. FYI Bomer is not all that! Yeah I went there!

  6. Everything is a pile of fucking horeshit compared to Quantum leap.

    1. true! I mean Quantum Leap tackled racism, ageism, sexism, death, rape, murder, loss, war, peace, etc. They also did it in a way that was so fucking depressing which made it so awesome. I mean they always paid great homage to the music of the era and they also took great pleasure in showing just how awesome America was and still is to this day. But they never rested on their laurels and always went in and swung for the fences. Never afraid to put it there....this fucking piece of shit show cannot even have characters have proper conversations or anything like that.

      Maybe it is unfair to compare one of NBC's greatest shows with this shit. I mean QL is up with St Elsewhere, Hill Street Blues, West Wing, Seasons 1-3 of Chuck....so not really fair.

  7. White Collar is a different type of show to those shows.

    It's a lightweight police procedural and that's all it ever pretends to be.

    A lot of people like White Collar because of that.

    Eli likes it as he reviews it every week when it's new.

  8. This was not how I envisioned the comments section to look...only 1-2 of them even mentioned the show itself. Oh well.

  9. Actually all but two revolve around White Collar.

    I mentioned the story about the family that died in a real life car accident to point out that it isn't unrealistic for someone to not think to turn off the engine.

    That's to the writers of White Collar's credit.

    Then there was a brief discussion about White Collar being a pile of horeshit compared to Quatum leap which is hard to argue against.

    The general point in the comment section regarding White Collar is the show sucks.

    At least it is when i read comments from just about everyone on this site anytime you write a review about the show.

    I've never seen anyone on this site ever really praising the show as being really good or anyone ever defend it from the naysayers.

    Like Castle i only watch White Collar every now and then when something better isn't on.

    So i don't have a lot to say about the individual episodes.

  10. You know your article has made it when no one is talking about the episode.

  11. I finally watched this episode.

    At least it wasn't as maddeningly stupid as "Jim's a dick to Pam and so the sound guy starts making moves on her" story line on THE OFFICE.

  12. I have a question for anyone that knows.

    Is White Collar the highest rated show on the USA network or is it something else?

    1. I think it has similar numbers to Psych and Suits. I think Burn Notice or Royal Pains may be the highest rated shows.

  13. SUITS is their top 18-49 demo show.

    ROYAL PAINS is their top viewed show.

  14. Thanks to Shawn and Magnus.

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