Provenza sounds like he needs to retire.
Usually, Provenza's wisecracks provide comic relief. They also give the show a sense of structure. You can expect every case to open with some clever whining about why Major Crimes shouldn't be involved.
On Major Crimes Season 4 Episode 4 though, the humor fell flat, and Provenza just sounded like he needed a vacation.
Most of this hour revolved around the detectives being in a hurry to close the case so that they could go ahead with their Fourth of July plans. Provenza's inane hatred of Buzz reached fever pitch, because Buzz insisted on being thorough.
He blamed Buzz's insistence on reporting the crime of the week for ruining his plans.
You know, Buzz, at the end of this ride along, I rate your performance based almost entirely on my mood.Provenza
I felt bad for Buzz. But even more importantly, it seemed selfish to me for Provenza to continually want to dismiss this case as a suicide or otherwise just get rid of it. Someone died, and even though it was a major inconvenience, it would have been nice for Provenza to act as if that death was important.
Contrast this with the diligence that Rusty continued to put into finding out about Alice. Rusty talked with somebody online several times (does anyone have any idea who?), interviewed Tao about breaking into a dead person's cell phone and put off seeing the fireworks so that he could try one last time to access Alice's voicemail.
Rusty's storyline this season has been based on the idea that Alice, whoever she really was, mattered, even though to the world at large she didn't seem to. It's sad to me that Provenza has gotten so jaded that he doesn't feel victims matter at all.
Provenza did have a funny one-liner or two, and it was interesting to learn that he'd been married five times.
Provenza: Can you believe I was married five times and it never occurred to me to run away?
Sanchez: What about your wife, sir?
After the way he was behaving, it's not hard to understand why his marriages never lasted.
Despite Provenza's cynicism, the case of the week got solved. I'm becoming more and more of a Flynn fan. I especially loved how he handled the Sloan's first argument.
You can be just as hateful in a whisper.Flynn
For all their cynicism, Flynn and Provenza were right about how to deal with a couple that was fighting so loudly they were annoying everyone else in the building. I was surprised that couple had so much to do with the remainder of the story. For some reason, I expected that Buzz would find the body, and then the original reason for being in the hotel would be forgotten.
I liked the twist of the Sloans being involved in everything, though I did not like the Sloans or any of their relatives. They were all just obnoxious and/or weird for the sake of being weird. I know Major Crimes thrives on quirky characters, but this particular group of suspects went a bit overboard.
The bride and groom, who seemed to have strange ailments and a love of corporate mergers in common, were the worst of these.
Brad: Can't we be our old, regular selves for a minute?
All in all, I found this installment to be disappointing after the more dramatic ones earlier in the season. I would have liked to have seen more of Rusty's investigation. Something seemed missing between Major Crimes Season 4 Episode 3 and this one.
I know they want to build up the mystery of who Rusty is talking to, but it just felt like something else had happened after he finished dealing with Judge Grove and before the events in "Turn Down."
What'd you think? Did Provenza get on your nerves, too? Did Buzz deserve the grade he got on his first ride-along?
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Jack Ori is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.