Oh, Graceland, Graceland. What do I even do with you? Season 2 has been such a mess and a downward spiral thus far. Well, at least this last episode was somewhat better. It was painful to watch but watchful nonetheless.
So in my last review for Graceland, I talked about the changes in the group dynamic in Graceland. Well, that has continued. The "house drama" is like a soap opera--or what I imagine soap operas to be. I really can't stand it because I used to love the character interactions on the show, and now, it's like everyone's attacking one another and nobody cares about each other. I'm not liking the whole Mike/Paige storyline because it doesn't feel real. It has nothing to do with the fact that I am/was a Charlie/Mike shipper (okay, maybe it's a little bit that), but it's really just that it feels forced. And just everyone else is bugging me. I don't like where Charlie's storyline is going, but I do hope it will lead to her (and the rest of the team) finding out the truth about Briggs. I continue to enjoy Jakes' character arc, though my heart breaks for him in so many different ways. I wish Johnny would get bigger roles and cases, but I like how they're incorporating that struggle into his character.
What made this episode far above and beyond the first two episodes of this season, however, was the fact that there was some really good action going on. First, Johnny got to "shine" (sorta) with his plot line. I enjoyed seeing how Johnny works, though I wish he could've shown them how much of a badass he is. I did enjoy seeing how much he cared about the injured man, and I think it shows a lot about his character.
The other really well done aspect of the episode was Paige's portion of the case, which is where the episode title, "Tinker Bell," comes from. Oh my gosh. Paige just shined, and I could even see Serinda Swan's passion about the topic show through. I am always glad when a show handle tough topics and situations well, and I really like where Graceland is going with this plot arc thus far (please don't mess this up, Graceland!). Human trafficking is such an important topic for the international community to discuss, and the reality of it isn't talked about nearly as much as it should be, both in the media and beyond. The thing is, a lot of people don't know enough about the problem because it isn't in the media, and it needs to be. The episode handled the issue so well, letting viewers see the side of the story from a victim's point of view. Just so important, so pertinent, and SO well done. Thank you, Graceland, for this plot arc, which is the reality for so many girls around the world.
Johnny's case and Paige's case (that's just what I'm going to call them) are what stood out about this episode. It shows the action but also characterization of the show, and that's why I love the show. These two portions of the episode were the true highlights because it was the "YES" moment for me--the moment they went back to what makes the show so great. There's heart and soul in those scenes, in different senses of the phrase. There's action, but it's balanced. It doesn't involve all that dumb house soap opera drama. If the show can get back to the heart of the show--to scenes and cases such as these two (not the overarching bus case, but the Johnny and Paige aspects of it)--then I will be glad to put my faith back into the show.