Can someone be psychologically kidnapped? That was the question at the core of Bull Season 1 Episode 20.
Well, that and when the heck Benny was finally going to confide in Bull about being investigated for prosecutorial misconduct.
Both questions involved the mysteries of the human mind.
Troy Dickerson bashed his father’s skull in with a golf club for no apparent reason. The two weren’t arguing and appeared to have a close relationship.
So how did that happen?
Cable: I saw a hypnotist at a magic show once and he told me that no one will ever do anything that they don't want to do.
Bull: And that is why we don't base our defense on magic shows, Cable. The human mind is pliable and what we want can be manipulated depending on the vulnerability of the subject and the skills of the hypnotist.
This was taking “pliable” to the extreme, but I suppose Rachel had months to work on bending Troy’s actions to her will.
Troy wasn’t the murderer, he was simply the weapon the killer used to accomplish her goal.
The most unfortunate part was that Troy will have to live the rest of his life knowing he was malleable enough to be used to kill his own father.
I see a lot of therapy in his future.
There were plenty of fun little nuggets of information in this case; my favorite being how Reed and Bull manipulated the entire jury to wear the color red the next day.
Who wants to try that experiment with their coworkers and friends just for their own amusement?
Lumansic was what I assume most cults to be, a combination of fortune cookie wisdom, basic psychological concepts, and the ability to make each individual feel listened to and special. As though the cult leader can see into their soul and bring out their best selves.
So why did their techniques resonate with Chunk?
I think because Chunk has an open mind and is willing to try new things. It’s not everyone who can pull off a career change from football to fashion.
Chunk: I'm talking about a group of people with a fanatical commitment to a charismatic leader. A belief that his way is the only way, and a complete lack of life outside of the organization.
Danny: To the cult of Bull.
Bull’s followers are there because they believe in him and his methods, but if that’s the case, why was Benny so reluctant to confide in Jason?
Benny: Bull, you crossed the line.
Bull: What was I supposed to do? You're spiraling and you're certainly not opening up to me.
One of the best things about this installment was Dr. Amy Levin. I really enjoyed her for her intelligence, her quiet humor, and perhaps because she and Bull were strictly colleagues and friends.
And even if Bull gave her a heads up that something was troubling Benny, it certainly wouldn’t have taken much for her to figure that out for herself.
Benny: How do you live with knowing the choice you made had unintended consequences on someone's life?
Amy: I suppose you have to step back and think about why you were in that position in the first place. Most likely it's because you've earned the right to make certain judgment calls, and the right to make mistakes. Honest mistakes.
Benny: Life changing mistakes, nonetheless.
Amy: Is everything alright, Benny?
Benny was partly responsible for an innocent man losing nine years of his life and it’s eating away at him. That’s understandable.
By why not confide in Bull?
Perhaps because they are family. Sometimes family members are the most difficult to show your faults and vulnerabilities, but there was no doubt in my mind that Bull would have Benny’s back.
Benny: I'm not a client.
Bull: You're more than that. You're family and you're not alone. If they come after you they have to go through me first.
As much as I loved that moment between Bull and Benny, it was this one that ranked as my favorite Bull quote of the night…
Bull: What's this?
Benny: What's it look like?
Bull: A midlife crisis.
Benny: I didn't question you when you got a Bentley.
Bull: Well, that's because my midlife crisis came with airbags.
Yeah, Benny’s new motorcycle screamed, I have issues that I can’t seem to deal with in a more constructive way. Sleeping with clients and buying a motorcycle seemed so cliche that it was almost eye-roll worthy.
Check back next week to see how Bull tries to help Benny out of this mess on Bull Season 1 Episode 21.
And if you want to check out Chunk’s awesome butterfly shirt in this episode, you can watch Bull online here at TV Fanatic.
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.