Shouldn't an episode that involved a prison kidnapping have had more of an edge to it?
Deputy Season 1 Episode 6 was nothing more than fluff.
It didn't entirely work as an exciting row for the sheriff's department nor did it work as a side-door Valentine's Day installment.
One of the biggest problems I'm expriencing so far on Deputy is that too much of what happens is directly related to Bill, his deputies, or his family.
Isn't there a day when they go to work and the cases revolve only around criminals without the Sheriff's department getting into the middle of every situation?
The precedent they're setting here is such that Deputy will run out of things to explore relatively quick.
Let's look at what's happened so far.
Joseph graduated from the academy, the godson of Bill and son of Bill's partner only to immediately get felled by criminals at the local jail.
Bill knew a CI in the midst of another investigation who turned out to be his former lover.
And now, Paula goes to volunteer at the hospital to get taken hostage by a patient she's treated fairly and with kindess.
It's just too much. At this point, I'd have to question Bill's ability to be the sheriff not because he lacks the skills necessary but because he's got a knack for surrounding himself with people who are trouble magnets.
Did anybody believe Paula was in jeopardy? Not "I have a gun to my head" jeopardy, but "I just got shot in the head" jeopardy?
She's not going anywhere on the sixth episode of a new season that has already featured the bad luck suffered by Bill on the job.
And we didn't really need an episode further espousing the beauty of Bill and Paula's relationship. In every scene they share and many that they don't their sentiments for each other are on display.
They've quickly become a #relationshipgoals couple without the hokey kidnapping.
And let's examine the plot of this episode for a minute. Prisoner David had a very familiar face to viewers, so it was amost a certainty that he was going to be a problem.
But that aside, he didn't seem like a stupid or gullibile inmate. It would seem that he had a symbiotic relationship with his doctor and other than her inability to move along the surgery quickly enough for his liking, she treated him very well.
It's true that oncology for prison inmates isn't ideal. Maybe the story would have had more weight if the man seemed to be suffering even a little bit. Instead, he seemed relatively healthy and eager to fight.
He was a little bit too spritely to be condemned to death so soon. Optics count, I'm sad to say.
But my biggest complaint with the situation realted to his state of mind. If he couldn't even secure surgery for his cancer, how was I to believe he thought he'd secure a free ride out of prison after getting cured with the impromptu operation?
It's too daft. He's worrying about life but puts it on the line to live. Then again, maybe he answered my curiousity about whether living in prison is worth the effort.
He couldn't have imagined he was going to get away with holding the sheriff's wife at gunpoint and forcing her to operate was going to get him a get out of jail card.
The ending was so carved in stone that the story felt pointless.
The best that we got from it was learning about Paula and Bill's first date which emulated the opening scene of their game of Love Me/Love Me Not. They were a match in heaven from their very first date.
But we didn't need to go through all of that on Valentine's Day to know that or be reminded of it.
It's an odd storytelling device to have every case revolve around one of the series regulars, but it's not unique. Tommy beings on CBS tonight, and while I decided against giving it a full review, my beef was similar.
Through the first three episodes available for critics, someone within the city government was directly involved with each case. I guess it's the new thing.
Before the hullabaloo in the prison, Jerry had the audacity to ask Bill for his support running for sheriff.
Now, even if they had a GOOD relationship, it would have still been a pretty serious ask. But they are on separate ice caps for goodness sakes not agreeing on a single point.
Even if Bill had already said he wasn't running for the office he currently holds, it would have still been awkward for Jerry to ask. But to top it off, Jerry didn't know how Bill felt about the job.
Instead, Jerry inserted his feelings for Bill into the equation to determine that Bill's displeasure for the political process Jerry loves to much must mean Bill was looking forward to walking away from his seat at the top.
Jerry was wrong, of course, but I don't think even Bill realized how important the badge was to him until Jerry asked for his support. If Bill feels like he's doing any good at all in light of the years he had no say in how the department was run, then he's running.
And since the show is called Deputy and appears to be a tongue-in-cheek reference to the small d deputy aka the attitude Bill had before ascending the ranks to sheriff, then he's going to run.
Because it's a drama, Bill could lose the vote. That's a fun angle in entertainment. The guy we want to win doesn't but ultimately gets the job again by hook or by crook.
After teases regarding Jerry's marriage ending, meeting his wife was a letdown, too. Jerry is Jerry whether married or not. He wasn't any more affected by the divorce before his wife walked into the office than he was after she left.
Other than an attempt to draw him as a full human being, it didn't have an effect at all.
Then we have Cade and Teresa. Bill and Paula are the center of this world. That's fine. But not when Cade and Teresa are fostering the children of the man Cade killed, getting ready to adopt them, and hoping to have children of their own.
I guess the EPT test was negative? Or was it so irrelevant to the story that it will never get mentioned again until she takes another test?
The two of them are going through some significant life changes, and I could do with a lot more than a 15-second whiff of it in very episode.
If you watch Deputy online, you know that another hanging thread is with Brianna and Genevieve. All of the characters are developed just to the point that introducing new arcs for them are of interest, so that makes dropping them all the more agitating.
But if I'm going to complain, I'd rather insinuate that there's not enough going on for well-drawn characters than get annoyed that they're so under-developed that I could do without them entirely.
There is something here. Deputy could be a great show. But it's struggling, and whether that's by way of poor time management, questionable pacing, or bad editing, it needs to get addressed to be its best.
What did you think of the hostage situation with Paula?
Did it surprise you at all that Bill would have given his life for hers?
Do you wish we'd get a hint of the plot threads that have been started but dropped too soon?
Hit the comments and share your thoughts.
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.