Once and Again
Gardenia

Episode Report Card
Niki: A | 1 USERS: A+
YOU GRADE IT
Gardenia

"God Bless the Child" sweeps us over into the next scene, where Karen is strolling down a street in bright sunshine, hands in her pockets, smiling serenely. She has a faraway look.

Soliloquy Karen lets us know she's thinking about the doc's assignment. Dreamily, she says, "I look forward to...April...baseball...."

Jessie's still belting out the song in her room.

Karen smiles to herself on the sidewalk and voice-overs, "A new Woody Allen movie, even if it's bad...." Soliloquy Karen adds, "Soft-shelled crabs." She turns to look at us. "Hey, that's four!" she exclaims, delighted.

Jessie's still singing. And wearing barrettes much in the style of Grace in season two. She must have made someone in Hair and Makeup very angry.

Soliloquy Karen's on a roll now. "Eli's kids!" she bubbles. Her face melts with affection. "Jessie's kids...."

Jessie. Still singing.

Karen breaks into an open smile on the sidewalk, swinging her arms jauntily as she considers her future grandkids.

"Someone to hold me," Soliloquy Karen says, smiling confidently into the camera.

Karen steps off the curb. And into the front end of a Taurus that's driving entirely too fast on a city street. Brakes squeal as Karen's body bounces off the hood and bumps up over the windshield. She drops to the street with a thud and lies there in a crumpled heap. Bystanders rush forward, murmuring their dismay, as the frantic driver climbs out of her car, fretting, "I didn't see her!" Yeah, that'll happen when you shoot around corners at thirty miles an hour. The camera pans from Karen's splayed boots up her legs to a gloved, twitching hand, to -- oh my god -- her bloody face and vacantly staring eyes. Her mouth's open, as if in shock. In slow-mo, we watch boots running toward her, see the bystanders couch and crowd around, hear their muffled concern. This scene kills me. Darkness, like a shadow, passes over Karen's face.

The camera follows the blackness down, sinking, until it lands softly on Soliloquy Karen, lying on her side without a stitch of clothing. She's luminous there in black-and-white, and her bod practically smokes. "It's been so long since I've slept," she murmurs, looking peaceful. I think this may be the first truly non-gratuitous use of nudity I've seen.

Cut back to Karen on the street, still immobilized, still staring at everything in slow-mo. Her eyes roam and survey the contents of her purse, emptied in the fall. The camera pans over her brush, her pills, her wallet. Her eyes flutter.

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Once and Again

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