CSI
What's Eating Gilbert Grissom?

Episode Report Card
Sobell: B+ | Grade It Now!
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This episode had nothing to do with food

The episode opens with a shot so clichéd, it should come with its own Word Macro already built in: a well-toned young adult, clad only in skivvies, ripping across a deserted landscape as ominous music plays. The ostensible twist here: the person's wearing a bra and panties because he's being hazed by their Omega Zeta Psi brothers and surely nothing is more demeaning that being a girl, and he's running because...well, probably because someone told him too. The fraternity brothers chase the pledge straight into a seminar on feminist theory, where enraged scholars beat them about the head and shoulders with copies of Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex until the fraternity brothers are forced to admit that they define women as aberrant from a so-called gender norm because how else can they cope with the twin burdens of tiny penises and premature ejaculation?

Kidding! The Second Sex is too small to do any real damage. The brothers chase the guy into something considerably less frightening: a big old pile of manure doubling as the number one spring break for maggots in the greater Las Vegas area. The pledge, who is blindfolded, registers this only with, "Dude! What's crawling on my face?"

Following the panoramic shot of maggots writhing as they practice their maggoty pickup lines and maggoty calls to arms ("I'm gonna be a pupa in May! I need to live a little before I grow old!"). And a woman explains in voice-over that she got called in to explain the giant pool of writhing maggots and she tells Gil, "You were the first person I thought of."

Gil deadpans, "Well, thank you, Eva. I'm honored." You know, you get the PhD in entomology, you have to take the Heteromorphic Oath, to swear to fulfill to the best of your judgment and ability to put up with people waving around half-squished things and saying, "I found this. What is it?" So sack up and fulfill the professional obligations there, Dr. Grissom.

He notes that Ava makes her own mulch, and she explains, "The university is self-sustained." It has to be, to survive in Biosphere II with the huge redwoods and the mists like that in the middle of the desert. Ava goes on, "State institutions are encouraged to practice xeriscaping." Gil fills in those of us who didn't take Latin: "'Xeri' meaning 'dry.'" Ava confirms this: "Using drought-tolerant plant life. Conserves water. There's no reason for these maggots to be here."

Some unnamed flunky brings Gil a cup of tea, hold the tea bag, so it's just hot water. Gil then selects some lucky maggots for a hot tub party, inquiring as the composition of the compost, and breaks the news that they're probably looking at a body with, "If the devil requires a pound of flesh, this many maggots would require over a hundred."

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CSI

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