Let the fun begin! While creator Steve Franks has reassured Psych fans that there’s nothing to worry about in the long run for the show’s lead couple, ‘Juliet Wears the Pantsuit’ sees the first real consequences of their fallout. We see Shawn (James Roday) moving out while Juliet (Maggie Lawson) attempts to move forward.
The second episode of the season cemented the fact that the last place Shawn could go after being kicked out was back home, so his choices after that are limited. Gus (Dule Hill) did offer his place for a night, but he’s in a serious relationship, too, so Shawn must seek shelter elsewhere.
Enter Woody (Kurt Fuller), who gladly opens the doors of his classic Airstream – sans working toilet – and welcomes Shawn in. This means an up-close-and-personal look at Woody’s personal life; for better or worse. The drunk “cougars” he invites over do point Shawn in the right direction for the case, but they also drug Woody and take his Airstream with them when they go, so it’s not exactly a win-win.
Meanwhile, in an attempt to prove she can sally forth without the love of her life, Juliet immediately puts out an APB for a new roommate in the house that she and Shawn once shared. Her first applicant seems normal enough in her estimation and she dismisses Shawn’s mockery, throwing back her own jibes at him for good measure.
What neither one of them could have predicted was that the new roomie would prove to be a woman on the run whose psycho husband leaves a string of dead people in his pursuit of her.
Introduced to Juliet as Laura (Rachel Blanchard), at first, there aren’t any red flags, but when a woman is found dead and Shawn finds Laura’s nose ring at the crime scene, the red flags start popping up. Before you can say, “Our house, in the middle of our street,” Laura has bleached her hair, cut it to look like Juliet’s, robbed her of all of her clothes save one gaudy t-shirt, and gone on the lam.
Aside from having a few good twists and turns along the way, the case also gives us two nice action sequences. The three-car chase scene is a decent one and throws even more weight onto the idea that Laura/Laynie is the killer. And the black SUV’s role is ambiguous enough to suggest a few scenarios without being too obvious. Laura’s husband, Patrick (Tate Ellington), picked the wrong chick to mess with, however, and watching him get his butt kicked by Juliet while Shawn cheers at a safe distance is just plain fun.
As far as the vibe between Shawn and Juliet, the writers seem to have set a good pace. They are as chilly as the air in the coroner’s room at the beginning, but slowly thaw as the story progresses. Juliet is understandably hurt and not willing to give Shawn a second chance for the time being and Shawn is predictably relentless in trying to win her back while being genuinely concerned for her safety.
Setting their breakup next to the one in the case also makes it feel tame by comparison. In the closing scene, they each exchange honest, yet awkward compliments as Shawn attempts to fix her window, giving viewers a ray of hope before sending them their separate ways. It’ll be interesting to see what finally brings them back together.
Psych airs Wednesdays @10 on USA.
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