Sonata de Oz

Episode Report Card
Aaron: B- | 1 USERS: A+
Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty, he is free at last!

So, has that shot of a big, giant ass always been in the opening credits? For God's sake people -- that's no moon, that's a space station!

We fade up on the long-deceased Eugene Dobbins, banging out a lovely little ditty on his cello in Hill's God Pod. Unfortunately, even my father -- a man who steadfastly refuses to listen to any music composed after the year 1811 -- was unable to identify the piece he's performing. So I'm just going to assume that it's the episode's titular sonata. Why? Because "titular" is fun to say. And also because it makes me wonder if maybe that shouldn't be "pudding pop-ular" instead. Anyway, as a super-special added double-mega-bonus this week, Hill doesn't even get to speak his own lines. Woo hoo! Instead, he just quotes various literary figures speaking (with the forged strength of a thousand metaphorical anvils) about the power of music. In response, and as a way of thanking the writers for this bountiful blessing they've bestowed upon us, I'll be peppering the recap with the famous last words of executed criminals, speaking (with the finely-honed wit of a tempered steel sword) about the events of this episode. First up?

Augustus Hill: "If music be the food of love, play on." -- William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night: Act I, Scene i
Aaron: "You are going to hurt me, please don't hurt me, just one more moment, I beg you!" -- Madame du Barry, mistress to Louis XV. Guillotined, December 8, 1793.

And speaking of the food of love, here's Beecher and Keller, munching on each other's tongues. Mmm, tasty! They're macking (execution-style) in Keller's death row cell when Lopresti comes over to hassle them about the differences between a "farewell conversation" and a farewell tonsillectomy. Keller disentangles himself just long enough to say that he still can't believe Toby finally got his parole. "Trust me, I won't fully comprehend it until I'm having my first martini," replies Beecher. Um, hello? You just did six years in prison for drunk driving and killing a little girl, you moron! Way to learn your lesson, there, buddy. Also, way to telegraph your future while we're at it. Hell, not even the automated schmaltz generator the writers used to create Patti LuPone's character is that obvious. Keller also worries that Tobias will forget about him, but Beecher swears he'll continue working on the appeal, and that they'll actually be seeing more of each other now than they did before. Lopresti returns to break them up once and for all, and the scene ends with him and Keller writhing about on the floor in a fistfight while Jaz Hoyt watches balefully from his own cell. And to be perfectly honest, I gotta say that I'm really not seeing the whole vaunted Beecher/Keller chemistry thing here that everyone is all a-twitter about. I mean, there was more passion between David and his parking-lot prostitute than these two seem to have. It must have just been a really bad day on the set or something. Either way, I'm kinda disappointed. ["I did not get my Spaghetti-O's, I got spaghetti. I want the press to know this." -- Thomas J. Grasso (lethal injection, March 20, 1995)]

Down in the hospital, Schillinger is pushing the mail cart this week; Cindy Brady apparently needed some extra time to scour eBay for more hair-care products and a VHS tape of that one Kids in the Hall episode where Bruce McCulloch and Shaun Cassidy fuck a piece of toast. After Henry Stanton scores the throwaway line of the night ("I love my Rosie!" Hee!), Vern pauses to allow the camera to linger lovingly on the greasy gray locks of a random prisoner I was planning to call Cletus The Slack-Jawed Inmate until the forums revealed that he once went by the even more suitably West Virginia-riffic name of "Billy Clyde Tuggle" when he was on All My Children. Billy Clyde'll be important in a minute, but in the meantime, Schillinger is finally getting an opportunity to visit with his long-lost hero, Mayor McKKKraggy. Unfortunately, the visit doesn't go quite as planned, with the mayor telling him (among other things) that he's "an embarrassment to the Brotherhood," and that he "always had these big plans with no balls behind them." Oy. Shut up, Trent Nott. "I…have balls," whispers a shattered Schillinger in reply. Heh. J.K. Simmons is terrific in this scene, by the way. As he sadly exits the hospital ward, Billy Clyde calls after him with a parting shot that to my eternal dismay does not include in the phrase, "You sure do got a purty mouth." Shut up, Billy Clyde.

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