Jul 29, 2009

Wildfire: I cannot quit you, show.

Wildfire
4.1: The More Things Change (1)

Season four of Wildfire is not out on DVD yet, and considering season three only came out recently I'm betting this season isn't going to find its way into stores until next year. Because there are no season four DVDs, there is no season four cover art. At least, there isn't any in English. So I wandered my way to imdb.com and pulled the German cover art that seems to translate like this:

Staffel Vier: Loyalität, Vertrauen, Freundschaft
Season Four: Loyalty, Trust, Friendship

We've come a long way from strangers, seductions and secrets you guys. What is this trust and friendship concept? Is season four going to be boring? Of course, the American version will be something like "Assurance, Allegiance, Accord" because we here in America like alliteration! Either way, these synonyms lack the melodrama I've come to expect.

The Good:

+ This episode picks up "one hour earlier" and thus we really begin season four in season three, with everyone getting in cars and driving like maniacs. Brad and Mike are off to find Ashleigh before she wanders into hitchhiking trouble, and Dani has had it with Townsend Acres and gets the hell out of dodge. Last season ends with Ashleigh walking up to a car, leaning down, and saying into an open window, "What are you doing here?" I'm sure that pissed off fans everywhere. Turns out, the anonymous is Dani, who then freaks once Ashleigh's in the car and accidentally drives off the road. They take a moment to hug, because I guess near death experiences can always be trusted to wordlessly bury the hatchet in any poisoned relationship. (+1 for Dani accidentally finding Ashleigh, for Mike getting sidetracked by cows, and for Brad essentially saying "fuck it" and opting to help the blonde with the car trouble--aka LAVINIA--instead.)

+ Six months later! And it is still fall? COME ON, SHOW. Okay, never mind. I am over it. Mike and Brad finally have a good relationship again, because Ashleigh is finally gone and refusing to contact anyone. It occurs to me that Mike and Brad do have a pretty awesome friendship. It's too bad Ashleigh's going to have to eventually come back to screw everyone up again. Damn her. (+2)

+ Mike is wearing a cowboy hat. Because Whitebrook is a dude ranch now. I cannot wait to see how he screws this up. (+1)

+ Dani is opening an equine clinic in an attempt to get her racing license back sooner rather than later. Dani and Clay have a non-bonding moment that is really a bonding moment that is going to get some points from me because I like it when they have father/daughter interaction. (+3)

+ Brad is an awesome businessman. I get all giddy about this for some reason. (+1)

+ Townsend family bonding! Clay discusses Brad's upcoming marriage proposal to Lavinia, and Clay takes him to the family safe and pulls out the heirloom wedding ring he just happens to have. I can so see this actually happening in Thoroughbred. (+5)

+ Mike has to go be relentless in this episode. He is remarkably persistent. It irks me. Although I do like Ashleigh's steadfast refusal to stop punishing herself, refusal to come back with him, refusal to be even slightly affectionate toward him, and reaction when he tells her Brad is in love. Oh, show. You are such a crack!Thoroughbred fanfic. (+4)

+ Jean makes good points about retiring Wonder, who is predictably sucking without Ashleigh being around. The horse had a good career. Let's retire her and move on. Retirement is not synonymous with slaughter, you know. (+2)

+ Clay hires a videographer for the moment when Brad proposes to Lavinia at their giant formal party thing. Verbatim from my notes: "He is such a mom." Because he is. It's why I love him so much. (+10)

+ And of course the first thing Ashleigh does upon coming back to California is see Wonder, who is at Townsend Acres. And of course the first person to discover her is Brad, who is about to propose to Lavinia. Of course. I am tempted to give the show a point for this. (+1)

The Good: 30

The Bad

- Ashleigh is in Colorado participating in more illegal cross country races? What the hell? (-1)

- A harmonica is involved in this episode. (-1) What's more, it is used in the music during every dude ranch!Whitebrook scene. (-2)

- The interview process for Dani's vet is...awful. In a word. Seriously, I'm pretty sure she has no clue what she's doing, and I'm pretty sure badgering her is not going to make her like you, Noah. (-1)

- Speaking of Noah, he is sort of charismatic in a way that I like. And yet I seriously do not like him at all. I have a feeling it has something to do with his slick talker attitude that appears to have almost no substance behind it. I'm getting that brilliant, but crazy feel from him that makes me wary for Dani's sake. (-3)

The Bad: 8

30 - 8 = 22

The More Things Change (1): 22

Hey, look, I can start making season comparisons now! Slightly better beginning than last year, but I don't know if that's saying anything. I did like this episode, mainly because the show is hitting all my buttons concerning a less holier than thou Ashleigh who's going to have to do some work with everyone (okay, not with Mike because he is irrationally in love with her) to claw her way back to some steady ground. It is such crack!Thoroughbred fanfic at this point.

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