Last week I gave Army Wives the worst review I've ever doled out.
And the readers of this column are so astute. I was so busy being angry that it never even dawned on me how ridiculous it was to hold back Denise from the shooting, given that she was a trained nurse. It's always great to have you all here to back up the less than favorable opinions of a show just as much as you do the complimentary.
Needless to say, I was skeptical going into "The War at Home."
A Centennial celebration on a military base was infiltrated, a general was the target and another officer jumped into the line of fire - and the story was rushed into practically nothing. So my question is this: Why did they bother? If there wasn't going to be some bigger purpose to the whole thing, couldn't they have done the impossible and used the 100th episode to honor the service men and women?
When Claudia Joy called, Michael thought so little of the event that he told her she should just continue her trip with the first lady. The rest of the gang had a cookout. Everyone just hanging out like it's all good times. Really?
Any other time, I might have enjoyed the cutesy music video montage of Trevor learning to be a baby daddy filmed in hyper speed to Devo's "Working In A Coal Mine." However, in light of every other topic on the show and the heft of the issues (the shooting, divorce and suspected child abuse), it felt forced and out of place.
The other thing I've noticed is the continued digging into the wound of the Army in general. Joan mentioning that continued deployment makes every problem more difficult. The strange looks Michael was giving to Frank even though the cat had his tongue. A first marriage is more challenging when you're young and in the Army. It's so much more stressful to raise a child when your husband is in the Army, that wives take to breaking their kids bones. Overall, it was insulting.
Elsewhere, Gloria decided to leave Charleston in the wake of her divorce with Hector, which means we're losing the best character introduced this season. She was just leaving as Jackie found out Kevin was injured in a humvee accident in Afghanistan. These things took place with, as the commercials continue to say, we have only "three episodes left until it's all over."
My thoughts are that the show extended the sixth season to 22 episodes knowing fully well it wouldn't have a seventh, but would also hit the magical 100th episode mark for syndication purposes. At this point, the series can afford to let plot fall by the wayside because the prize has already been won. Guaranteed syndication.
But I long for the magic that once was Army Wives.
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.