“The Closer” 5.8 mini-cap: “Elysian Fields”


Here is the synopsis: The Major Crimes squad investigates the murder of a man who, 10 years ago, was the lead suspect in the murder of two girls. The state of the body indicates he was dragged behind a truck a full day before being shot twice in the head and dumped in Elysian Park. A detective comes out of retirement to help with the investigation, but his obsession with closing his decade-old case threatens Brenda’s own inquiry.

Now, I’m asking you, how do I snark this? It’s difficult to give it a poke with my sarcastic stick when there is no lesbian involved. Tritely conceivedprimetime (and daytime) lesbian storylines make it easy. Detective Mendoza is a no show once again as there is no episode requirement for kicked-in doors, punched perps, or the need for Det. Sanchez to get his rocks off.

Also, how do we know that Detective Mikki Mendoza is a lesbian? I mean other than the fact AfterEllen.com broke the story months ago. Is it that she is a policewoman? Nope, TV lesbians with guns are usually the killers, not the cops Is it the jeans and “beater” tank tops with well toned muscular arms? Oh, hell, I have those. OK, well, that might be a clue then.

Anyway, what I am asking is how will this play out, and will it be soon? Will there be more massaging of Det. Sanchez’s Latin libido only to dash the poor man’s tense titillation? I assume we will all find out as Detective Mendoza, in keeping with the theme we all love so much, will in all probability ask Sanchez to be the sperm donor for her and her partner’s baby. Why couldn’t Mary McDonnell’s character have been the lesbian?

The rest of the episode goes like this:

Brenda is dreaming about the one she couldn’t close. Last February, Brenda cornered a murderer/rapist, Philip Stroh, but was unable to prosecute him. She is awakened from her frantic nightmare of him by a body call.

The victim is identified as a suspect in the missing person (and assumed dead) cases of two women in the 90’s. The bodies were never found, so the cases went cold. The investigating officer of the original cases was called in. The retired detective, Joey Olin, is played by none other than TomSkerritt.

In the interest of an AfterEllen.com recap, the lesbian version of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is obvious. Recently professed lesbian KellyMcGillis in Top Gun with Tom Skerritt, to Detective Joey Olin in The Closer with Kyra Sedgwick, who is married to Kevin Bacon. Pehaps we should make our own board game.

I digress. Cadaver dogs hit on an area of Elysian Park near where the dragging victim was dumped. The bodies are confirmed to be the missing women from the cold cases. Elysian Fields is the special place in Hades reserved for the eternal rest of Greek heroes. But not tonight.

Giving the episode more “ick” factor than a body dragged to death, is Provenza proclaiming the prostate prowess of a teenager. He is bragging to Olin about his young girlfriend. Olin responds with he lost his prostate last year.

The families of the girls and the dragging victim’s abused girlfriend are rounded up for questioning. Olin is frustrated that Brenda wants to solve this murder instead of giving these girls’ families their closure. He asks her that perhaps she’s never had a case that stays with her. Only in her dreams.

The girlfriend recognizes one of the family members as someone who has been harassing her boyfriend. He’s the twin brother of one of the victims.

The victim’s truck was found with a tow cable in back and a human’s compliment of blood on the seats. Fingerprints come back to the twin brother. Arrest him for murder. The coroner calls with info about high levels of morphine in the victim’s body. Ah, I hate to say it, Brenda, but I had the “moment’ before you did.

Detective Olin doesn’t look well. He is drinking that pink stomach medicine like it’s water, and even for Tom Skerritt, he looks thin. It’s the prostate thing, Brenda, this guy is dying and he has to solve this case.

Brenda hears me yelling at the TV and has her own moment. The retired and terminal detective has three to six months to live. Brenda asks why: Because the Make A Wish Foundation wouldn’t do it for him. Probably the best line of the season. I’ll have to borrow that one.

He hands Brenda the video of his final bust — perhaps more aptly put, dragnet.

Brenda goes home and calls her mama. We all find our comfort in different ways.

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