‘Big Love’ – ‘Certain Poor Shepherds’: The holy Hokey Pokey

Senior Television Writer
01.30.11 29 Comments


A quick review of tonight’s “Big Love” coming up just as soon as I replace the ice cream bar with a strip club…

Tonight’s episode was the last one HBO sent out in advance of the season (which also means the quasi-review schedule is about to get erratic), and one that seems a bit divisive. Poniewozik thought it was by far the best of the first three, whereas I found the storyline about Margene’s age emblematic of everything about the show that bothers me in its “when in doubt, add another plot complication for the Henricksons” approach.

I thought there were some strong performances from Ginnifer Goodwin and Jeanne Tripplehorn, and I liked the Alby/Lura subplot, but mostly I feel about the show the way some people started to feel about “Lost” in its final seasons, which is that I’m fed up of the writers continually adding new problems to solve without having dealt with any of the pre-existing ones. Particularly since the never-ending plot engine keeps getting in the way of the character moments. (As I mentioned in my pre-season review, the scene at the skating rink could have been really powerful if they’d had time to just show the wives’ faces for a minute or two, instead of having to cut away to one of the 17 other storylines.)

What did everybody else think?

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