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Carolyn Kay

For the writing. Uh huh. I can't stand the angel. It's such a stupid idea, though I like Holly Hunter a lot.

But The Closer, I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU HAVEN'T BEEN WATCHING THE CLOSER! It's one of the best shows on television. But you need to start at the beginning, with the first season, to see how she handles the disrespect of her team.

nothstine

I think The Closer is forgiving if you dip in and out without regard to sequence, but Carolyn's right--one of the fascinating things about the show is watching the team come together to work with their new boss during Season 1. And Bailey's character Provenza is in the thick of that.

But apart from that, he's often partnered for plot lines with another "bad boy" character [Flynn], and the two of them often trigger some of the black comedy that's a welcome change in police procedurals:

Like the time, following Flynn's unwittingly dreadful eulogy for a former police buddy, the pall bearers drop the casket, which rolls down a flight of steps and pops open to reveal the corpse of an unknown woman tucked in with their buddy. . . .

Or the time some dummies steal Provenza's car full of evidence of a contract killing from the parking lot while he's having pancakes with the wife who put out the contract. . . .

Or the time Provenza and Flynn have fabulous tickets to a Dodgers game, and discover a dead body in Provenza's garage, decide to leave it till after the game [she's already dead, after all, and these were great tickets], but when they come back the body's gone. . . .

And so on. [And those don't count as spoilers, really, since I believe every one of those incidents happens in the teaser. Then the stories get going from there. Flynn and Provenza--in some stories it almost becomes one word, like "Woodstein"--and their misadventures and such are the McGuffins.] The Closer is by no means about Flynn and Provenza's picaresque adventures, but their occasional moments do add spice. And, regardless, Baily gets a little moment to shine every week.

Plus, based on my channel-surfing glimpses, Holly Hunter's nudidity scenes [as Radar might have called them] seem to be lit and shot by someone with strange notions about what makes people attractive: She always seems to look pale as a cave fish, as if you could look at her skin and see the blood moving through her veins. That's usually when I surf on.

So it might be worth juggling viewing schedules around a little while things are in reruns, just to see.

bn

Chris The Cop

Stick with Saving Grace - don't bother with The Closer.

Saving Grace is pretty gritty for TV and I like Holly Hunter's character a lot. (And the Angel, too) I love Kyra Sedgewick but her character's a goof and the whole premise of a deputy chief doing basic police work i.e., interviewing people, solving crimes, etc. is not realistic. That's not just an Inside Baseball comment, it's that ridiculous a scenario simply because it's not what a chief is supposed to do. It's something you'd see on T.J. Hooker.
(that's the ultimate insult to any cop shoe)

kateNC

I agree with Carolyn: one of the best shows. House is the other; although I can't figure out why it's so addictive with this past season tied up in middle-school games. I can't afford HBO.

The Closer isn't just a cop show, I don't watch that genre. It's an ensemble show like M*A*S*H. Privenza and Flynn are great, predictable, sneaky, loveable. And the Kyra Segewick is INTERESTING. And this show isn't sick like so many cop shows and profile shows.

nothstine is also right on target.

The Closer is one of my all-time favorites.

Mike Schilling

Zale was played by (looks ...) Johnny Haymer. You might remember him as the awful comedian that the Woody Allen character writes jokes for in Annie Hall. And he was awful in MASH too; Rizzo wasn't a favorite, but Baily actually created and acted a character, something Haymer never bothered with.

And I had *exactly* the same experience with Bailey on St. Elsewhere: "That's the guy from MASH? Really?"

Batocchio

I've always loved good character actors, or anyone good who doesn't get top billing.

Claire

Lance - I'm glad you liked the interview - and I concur with everyone else - get thee to the Closer!

Geoduck

Another amusing Bailey performance can be seen in the western spoof Rustler's Rhapsody; he's even the narrator! The whole flick is a hoot, and sadly overlooked.

actor212

"Rizzo" did have a star turn in one episode on M*A*S*H where he is forced to give remedial driving instruction to Col. Potter. It was a rather memorable episode.

minstrel hussain boy

i've been a guilty pleasure fan of "the closer" for a while. hell, i even stuck through the first season when you could figure the culprit just by watching the clock. (the guilty one in season one was always on camera at :22 minutes it was as sure fire a thing as the last witness to take the stand for perry mason)

what kept me was the characters. they do have some over-the-top stuff. but hey, it's TV not a greek festival.

the week before last, which revolved around a killing that affected the squad personally was some of the best TV i've seen in a long time. no simple answers, no simple questions. good stuff.

it was directed by kevin bacon.

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