Archives for category: bad science

The episode title is something of a misnomer – it’s actually more like Organ Blender (I know I know and obviously, I, too will sacrifice much in the service of a pun) (hence why my nail art blog is called Lacque to the Future). I only mention it because of the amazing ‘Will it Blend’ moment Nick gets to enjoy.

Blended liver

Will it Blend: Exhumed, Partially Decomposed Nine Year Old Liver?

Yes it Blends

Yes! It blends!

I’m sure it isn’t just me wondering why this regular kitchen blender has a place in the CSI laboratory, and harbouring dark suspicions about where the gang might have got it from… (waste not, want not!)

Anyway this is getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s whizz on back to the start of the episode, where a couple making out in a casino lift encounter a rather unwelcome third wheel.

Dead in a lift

GROUND FLOOR PLEASE

Seems a little odd how he badly dressed himself before neatly arranging himself across the lift floor, huh?

Grissom: This is as phoney as a Chappaquiddick neck brace.

It’s bad that I had to Google that, right? Luckily I’m not the only one feeling baffled by Grissom’s esoteric vocabulary, as Nick and Sara are both baffled by his description of the corpse, Bob Fairmont’s, room as ‘murder central’.

Sara Sidle smug

Haha Nick you doofus gosh don't you even know what murder central means

Nick Stokes smug

Gee I guess I know now, after Grissom ostentatiously explained it TO YOU

Remember this moment! It will be of import next week (?). That is why I am harping on about it. (Oh, and murder central? It’s the room by the lift – easy access, easy escape, only one neighbour to hear you scream. Bear that in mind next time you visit your wayside inn of choice.)

Anyway turns out that Bob Fairmont’s wife is Bree from Desperate Housewives!

Killer Bree

Yes it's me the face of Albert Bartlet Rooster potatoes

As the episode unfolds a murky plot emerges involving Bree, Fairmont’s dandruff-riddled secretary Claudia,

Dowdy secretary

Needs to get some Head and Shoulders

a bottle of shampoo and a previous DOUBLE LIFE with a secret wealthy husband whose parents were apparently called The John Gideon Sr.

His parents the John

Seriously the props person on CSI needs to get some proofreading skillz

CSI suspects

The Red-(/Flaky) Headed League

Unfortunately it also proves to be one of those cases where the CSIs just can’t convict their guy (or girl) (or girls), leaving Sara extremely frustrated.

Grissom: Sometimes science isn’t enough.
Sara: What are we doing? Digging up graves, chasing prints – if it’s no good in court? If the killers win?
Grissom: It isn’t a competition. We don’t win. Courts are like dice. They have no memory. What works one week doesn’t work the next.

SOMETIMES SCIENCE ISN’T ENOUGH??! This is crazy talk.

Sara Sidle breakthrough

On the other hand, Sara spends a lot of this episode confused because she's been scanning in a fingerprint 'the wrong way up' so probably science (or at least technology) isn't enough, if it can't even cope with that (also! note the 'solved crimes' board from episode 1.1 in the background!) (someone's crime is 'floater' hahahaha)

Luckily Grissom has a cheery thought to finish off.

Grissom: The good news? There’s no statute of limitation on murder.

And it doesn’t say RSVP on the Statue of Liberty! Yeahhhh America. (I don’t know. Something about the phrasing brought Cher Horowitz to mind.)

Grissom amazeballs

Wait! I love Josh!

It’s not just Grissom on bodacious form this episode – all the lovely CSI boys are in fine fettle. Of course, I’m mostly talking about Nick, who displays his usual all-round greatness not only in owning up to what he doesn’t know (*cough cough* Miss Sidle) but in charming the pants off (or rather, kidney out of) this round, sweaty little man.

Sad Kidney Man

Sad about my failing kidney but oddly consoled by Nick's chiselled beauty

Kidney Dude: You don’t look like a doctor.
Nick: No, sir, I’m Nick Stokes.

Nick Stokes

YEAH YOU ARE

Always the tiny hope, isn’t there, when you wake up in the morning that that beauteous face could be gazing over you? Isn’t there? Isn’t there?

Nick hugs Bree

Seems like Bree agrees with me - a little poison is a small price to pay for the MANLY WARMTH OF NICK'S EMBRACE. I'd totally selenium myself for that

Aaaaanyway. Where were we? Kidney man does offer to give up his organ (ex-Bob Fairmont) for testing – but never fear, that’s not his kidney Nick was blending at the start of this post. That was The John Gideon’s descendant’s kidney, in fact. Taking the kidney of a living man would be an insufficiently noble act for Nicky to engage in.

Nick: I don’t think any investigation for the dead is worth hurting the living.

Nick Stokes noble

Noble

Grissom Nick Stokes

... you're so hot right now

Of course he is. He’s so hot right always.

Meanwhile in other CSI news, Greg is (weirdly, unexpectedly) lusting after Sara, his affection for whom causes him to regress to adolescence as he keeps trying to plan a lunch break together. Of course, it’s only when he produces some killer evidence (obtained through the mystical medium of an Internet Search Engine) that he actually gets her attention.

Sara Greg moment

"I could really, really just kiss you right now"

Greg Sanders lonely

... I said OKAAAAY...

Seems like Catherine was right.

Greg: Hey, Catherine: do you think Sara would ever go out with me?
Catherine: Sure! As long as you don’t tell her it’s a date.

Greg and Catherine will forever be my ultimate CSI ‘ship; but, as ever, Warrick and his rippling pecs are getting in the way.

Warrick Brown chest

This picture does not capture the full, inappropriate extent to which Warrick's chest is displayed by this shirt

Apart from exhibiting his body for all to enjoy, W-Brow also has an entertaining story to recount about one of his very first cases, a groinally-targeted shooting in which the very same Bob Fairmont was the victim.

CompositOr! Check your spelling!

Don't be confused by the lifelike graphics. This is not, in fact, how it happened.

Warrick: I think I fell for it because I was new, and I wasn’t too eager to talk to another guy about him almost shooting off his manhood.

The only thing better than a pun? A DOUBLE ENTENDRE! And speaking of puns I thought of an even better one for this episode title. ATTACK OF THE KILLER BREES!

Jim Brass eyebrow

You know you love it

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HURRAY it’s a fetish episode! The first of many such and they are always reliably good value. This one is particularly notable as it marks the introduction of one of CSI’s more entertaining recurring characters (and love interests for Grissom), Goth dominatrix Lady Heather.

Lady Heather

Too sexy for... most of her clothing

Before I go into Lady Heather in detail: yes, I know what you’re thinking, it is Julie Cooper (Marisa’s mum) from the OC! And in fact she’s only one of three famous faces who appear in this episode, another of whom is – weirdly enough – Julie’s next-door-neighbour Kirsten Cohen. SPOOKAY!

Kirsten OC

Don't mind me I am just innocently sipping from an inappropriately large teacup

What’re the odds? Do you think somebody watched this episode and thought ‘those two ladies, though they never appear on screen together, exude a parallel bad-ass chemistry that would make them excellent candidates for the lead adult women in the exciting drama of California’s rich and privileged that I am just now conceiving?’ IT COULD BE TRUE.

Unfortunately, the CSI casting directors missed a trick in that the third guest celebrity is not Adam Brody/Seth Cohen, beautiful and all-round-adorable though he is

Seth Cohen and Captain Oats

Nice one, CSI writers - YOU MADE CAPTAIN OATS CRY

but someone from a film of equal significance to my teenage years – noted ageless wonder, Dionne from Clueless!

Dionne from Clueless in CSI

"Warrick! I have asked you repeatedly not to call me woman!"

Ironically (given the iconic freeway scene which I am sure we all remember), Dionne turns up here as CSI’s tyre track expert, helping Warrick and Sara out with their case – a hold-up in which a guy running a cheque-cashing store has been mugged of around $20,000. This is definitely the dud case of the episode (I’m a little surprised it was included at all) but it does throw up a couple of comedy moments, mostly through the use of egregious stereotyping/comedy Latinos.

Sara: Mrs Delgado, I know you’re upset –
Mrs Delgado: Upset? Upset is for white people, lady. I’m PISSED OFF.

Pissed off

This is what 'pissed off' looks like

Mr Delgado (in hospital): You have my pants? I wake up, I look around… I can’t find my damn pants! [I think he needs some advice from Pantsman]

Pantless man

This is what 'wanting pants' looks like

Additional laughs are provided by Sara’s hideous sunglasses

Awful sunglasses

They kind of make her look like an evil blind shrew

Catherine Willows sunglasses

(this, on the other hand, is how sunglasses SHOULD be worn. Catherine looks like both Thelma AND Louise.)

and there’s also an enjoyable chase scene in which Warrick issues some advice that the guilty of Las Vegas (as, indeed, Grissom) would be wise to heed.

Don't Run

Warrick: "You know it don't look good when you run, man."

So, that’s Warrick and Sara, over and out. Meanwhile, Nick, Catherine, Grissom and Brass are working on a much more interesting case, brought to their attention after an unfortunate young couple making out in a playground find a body in the sandbox.

Body in a sandpit

Nothing to kill a romantic moment like a dead body staring creepily up at you

A little bit of detective work via her expensive breast implants

Catherine: That is not a Tijuana boob job. Those puppies are top of the line.

and the CSIs have tracked the body down to Lady Heather’s Dominion: not quite a brothel, but an S&M dungeon in which kinky clients come to punish or be punished.

Dominatrix

'Dirty little stink boy'? OK then...

Side-stepping Lady Heather’s offer of a joint session,

Catherine, Brass and Grissom

Neither Brass nor Grissom is even halfway to being man enough for Catherine

Catherine and Brass leave Grissom to deal with the dominant dominatrix. He and she get on, of course, like a flaming mansion,

Heather (looking significantly at Grissom): She wants the dominant male to choose her so she can stop being dominant.

Lady Heather

Eyelids batting like a flippin' albatross

although I’d suggest that Lady Heather’s insight into Grissom’s character is someone less penetrating than *modest cough* my own. Case in point: she thinks he likes afternoon tea because it allows him to pretend for a moment that society is truly civilized. We all know the real reason he likes it so much.

Afternoon tea

Obviously, it's the cake

Grissom hungry

Mmmmm.... cake

Catherine and Lady Heather also discover a natural affinity

Heather: Sex pays a lot better than death.
Catherine: Plus the outfits are cooler.

Heather: Don’t take this the wrong way, but I think you’ve got everything it takes to make a great dominatrix.

Catherine Willows

Well of COURSE that is true

although Nick (surprise surprise) (I love him but he’s such a square) (not just in the literal, facial sense) is not so sure about the fetish scene.

Nick: Catherine. Do you really think that those freaks out there, running around getting spanked with their little dog collars on, are the same as you and me?
Catherine: Just because you never did it doesn’t mean you never could.
Nick: No way. Never gonna happen.

Nick Stokes uncomfortable

You can take the boy out of the Bible belt... (does Texas count as Bible belt?!)

WHERE’S YOUR SENSE OF ADVENTURE, STOKES?

Anyway, reactions to Lady Heather’s occupation aside, the CSIs are soon on the case of an oh-so-predictable culprit.

Dylan

Not this guy! He is a baby!

Speccy White Guy

THIS guy, on the other hand...

Earning multitudes of Speccy White Guy points for his status as henpecked house husband,

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez: "I despise you for your essential failure as a man"

Cameron Nelson is the kind of case that the resident dodgy CSI psychologist would have a field day with (I really don’t know why he’s not in this episode). Naturally, frustrated at his powerful corporate lawyer wife’s continual belittling (and the affair she’s having with her boss), he’s sought the obvious conduit for his feelings: violently beating a hired escort.

Catherine: Psychologically, she was a surrogate. [It’s never good when someone in CSI starts a sentence ‘Psychologically…’]

Lady Heather's dominion

"Corporate bitch!"

Kirsten Cohen

I literally can't imagine why anybody would call me that

So far, so good – but one tiny asphyxiation-related accident and suddenly he’s off to jail. Still, every cloud has a silver lining.

Eileen: Where are you going?
Cameron: Away from you. Other than that, I really don’t care.

CSI threesome

Grissom (thinking): Would this be an inappropriate time to bring up the threesome idea again?

Indeed the implication, from the episode’s credits line, is that this has been in Cameron’s mind all along.

Brass: A thousand square miles of desert in Vegas – and the killer dumps the body in a sandbox?
Grissom: He didn’t put it there to hide it. He put it there to be found.

Is that a bit far-fetched? NO! That’s what happens if your wife is a CORPORATE BITCH!

Aside from all this jollity, several points of order arising from this episode’s events:

1. The sequence where Grissom inspects Mona’s body for evidence is somewhat weirdly done. Viz:

Corpse butt

Peachy

This poor girl (who appears to have worked mainly as a stunt double) (is that like when Joey was a butt double?) has to lie prone on the table for A LONG LONG TIME while William Petersen slowly shines a light up and down her naked body. AND THEN SHOWERS HER. All to the sound of Sigur Ros (at least that’s what Shazam tells me).

Shower

You have to admit it's a little bit weird

2. Even if he is a chemist, not a physicist, Greg’s evaluation of basically the most famous scientist of all time still seems a little bit skewed:

Nick: What up, Einstein?
Greg: Do you think Einstein had people hovering over his shoulder all the time? If he did, do you think we’d be walking around with e=mc2 t-shirts?

E=MC2 tshirt

Yes. This. This is Einstein's greatest legacy.

3. Unlikely as it sounds, ‘Gustav Stickley’, the designer of the furniture on which Grissom compliments Corporate Bitch Eileen, is a real guy! I have never heard such a made-up-sounding name in my life! (Except maybe Sid Goggle, I guess.)

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez: "Jess you ignorant gitto. Gustav Stickley is totes fames."

4. Catherine’s standard ‘oh Greg’ face:

Catherine Willows

It's somewhere between 'amused tolerance' and 'struggling to maintain a straight face'

5. Lady Heather seems to be under some false impressions about the nineteenth century:

Heather: What happens here isn’t about violence. It’s about challenging preconceived notions of Victorian normalcy – bringing people’s fantasies to life.

Heather you innocent! Victorians loved a bit of S&M!

Mysteries of London series 2

TRUE FACTS (this is an illustration from my PhD topic text, published 1846-48)

6. Finally: there is an excellent thread of Greg-the-S&M-lover running throughout this episode. Evidence as follows:

Greg: … liquid latex.
Nick: Never heard of it.
Greg: Really? It’s all the craze right now, man! Girls paint it on guys, guys paint it on girls… you can paint it on yourself, if you want. If that’s what you’re into. If you can’t get a date. Not like I would know.

Greg Sanders Nick Stokes

Looking for a date, huh, Greg? Looking with your eyes??

Greg (to Grissom): You know what a switch is?!

Greg Sanders smile

Errr... right back atcha, Sanders

And best of all…

Catherine: I just realised that we have a very healthy relationship.
Grissom: We do?
Catherine: Well, when we have a problem I don’t paint Greg Sanders in latex and stick a straw up his nose.

Greg Sanders pens in nose

Only cos YOU KNOW HE'D LOVE IT. (Sure you don't want to reconsider that 'never', Mr Stokes?!)

Whilst the main storyline in this episode is fairly standard in several ways, the B-storyline (the NICK storyline) is almost up there with the cannibal nutritionist episode in the batshit crazy stakes. It also features a truly cringeworthy moment, quite a rarity in CSI and almost a neverity (?!!) for me where Nicko McStokes is involved. SAD (BUT, AWESOME) TIMES INDEED.

Before I get into the plot of the episode, however, let me reassure you all that the deeply unsettling wardrobe shenanigans that Greg put us through in the previous episode (viz, wearing a T-shirt) are a thing of the past. PHEW.

Greg Sanders

Every inch the ladies' man

Greg Sanders bad shirt

The shirt exposed in its full, lab coat-less glory

Once you have finished appreciating Greggo’s unique sartorial choices, you may notice in that second picture that Sara’s hair is doing what I like to call ‘a Hermione’.

Hermione Granger

Ms Granger?

Sara Sidle bad hair day

Ms Granger!

In fact, Sara and Hermione have lots in common: i.e. their concern for less powerful creatures (gorillas/house elves), their total swottiness and occasional (related) annoyingness, and best of all their fundamental badassity.

Patented Petersen Pout

Grissom, sadly, bears absolutely no resemblance to Ron

Pinkface Sheriff

The Sheriff is ginger, at least, but that's all he got

As per usual, the sheriff’s appearance bodes ill for Grissom (he just doesn’t deal well with authority, does he? maybe not totally dissimilar to Ron after all). There’s been a murder on a building site

Grissom hard hat

Hard hats all round!

but not only is the project a new ‘jailhouse’ (in Brass’s terminology, though it just makes me think of Elvis), which the sheriff is itching to get finished; the guy in charge of operations (and Grissom’s initial suspect) is one of the sheriff’s closest friends. In fact, he was best man at his wedding.

Grissom and Brass

Gee thanks Brass for your timely warning/WORDS OF UNHELPFUL DOOM

Grissom and Warwick contemplate space travel as a means of dealing with the situation

Weird space chapel of rest

I'm joking of course this is just an insanely futuristic looking funeral home

but luckily, just as it’s looking like Grissom will get fired (which hasn’t happened for, ooh, at least 2 episodes), this handy Muppet-face man interposes himself

Muppet Guy

Just me that thinks he's muppety? I suspect not

and turns out to be GUILTY LIKE A MASSIVE GREAT LADLE so Grissom doesn’t have to arrest the boss’s friend after all.

Grissom does his nails

Lucky for some!

In fact, he not only has time to do his nails during the interrogation session (above) but also to indulge his baser urges:

Grissom (to Doc Robbins): Tell me about his testicles.

Grissom (to Sara): Can I have your pickle?…

Grissom pickle

... Ahhh, that's a nice one"

The pickle thing is not only part of a bonanza of CSI-eating moments (you know I love them so forgive this quick tour:)

Sara Sidle sandwich

Egg salad sandwich for Sara...

Nick Stokes hot dog

... hot dogs for Catherine and Nick...

Doc Robbins pie

... and what looks like some kind of reheated crumble for Doc Robbins (it's the remains of his anniversary dinner, dontcha know).

Grissom looking in the fridge

NOTHING FOR GRISSOM, THOUGH! (flashbacks to his binge-eating childhood, again?!)

… it’s also the sequel to a weird and (frankly) unconvincing experiment, whereby Grissom demonstrates that a guy’s blood is electrically conductive because of its unusually high levels of iron.

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez... "Love a haemoglobin based power source"

Wot. EVEN I who am far from being a scientist and haven’t studied biology for almost 10 years know that blood is always electrically conductive! it is basically made of water AND WE ALL KNOW YOU SHOULDN’T DROP A TOASTER IN YOUR BATH! Bad science, Grissom… verrrry bad indeed.

Nick also has a bad science/Southern doofus moment during the identification of an angora blanket:

Greg: Cheese, milk, sweaters. What do these things have in common?
Catherine: Goat cheese… goat milk…
Nick: Goat… sweaters?

Goat in a sweater

Cut to what's happening inside Nick's brain

Nick Stokes thinking

All this confusion would be avoided if Americans would just use a possessive construction like everybody else

However, the far and away the worst science this episode (if you can even call it science) is practised by this lady, not an evil nutritionist but an evil THERAPIST (and also, Mary Alice from Desperate Housewives! which is weird because the guy who played her husband on DH was in a previous episode).

Creepy Doctor

In CSI, nothing is more evil than alternative medicine

Sinister therapist

Notwithstanding her existing advantage, this lady likes to up her sinister quotient by dressing all in white

Essentially, some weird business with an ‘angora birth canal’

Nick Stokes 'bitch please'perpetrated by therapist lady and this (subsequently regretful) mother

Dead boy's mum

That's either guilt, grief, or SHEER UNBRIDLED LUST in her eyes. And given that it's Nicky Stokes who she's looking at, I think we all know where to place our bets.

lead to the rather unfortunate death of a 14 year old boy. Catherine is empathetic…

Catherine Willows empathetic tears

I weep for you! and for all womankind!

… Nick isn’t.

Nick Stokes angry

YOU BASTARD

In fact he goes a bit psycho with rage (especially when he thinks that the therapist is in fact a rapist) and it’s when Catherine gives him a talking-to about this that the moment I find so uncomfortable occurs. Nick randomly reveals that a babysitter subjected him to an unspecified sexual assault when he was nine.

Catherine Willows guilty

NOW you feel pretty awful, huh Catherine?

HORRENDOUS. I have been trying to work out why this bothers me so much, when I’m fine with Nick getting stalked, kidnapped, held up at gunpoint etc, and even with Sara’s much more lurid story about her own background. It’s not the acting: Marg Helgenberger and George Eads do it really beautifully (so well that it made me reconsider the way in which I sometimes dismiss the level of acting ability necessary for CSI)

Nick Stokes crying

Of course, George Eads does everything beautifully

… but the quality of the acting actually makes it worse, as you find yourself moved by what I think is actually a fairly cheap and ill-thought-through inclusion in the service of introducing some random emotion. It feels SO gratuitous. Unlike Sara’s horrible history, which you do feel influencing her in a lot of her actions and decisions, I don’t feel like this incident has much to do with Nick’s behaviour. OK so he gets super involved in cases involving child abuse, but most of the CSIs do; most people would. And this babysitter thing is Never Mentioned Again. It’s just a kind of plot device hauled in to add additional drama to an already decent episode; which feels to me like a bit of an insult to those people who did have to deal with this kind of thing in their childhood and who are genuinely dealing with the consequences every day. BAD WORK CSI WRITERS (and that’s not something I am often called upon to say!).

Hello fans, after a summer break (if it works for CSI, it works for me) I am back on board and planning more regular updates: every Tuesday, to be precise. Let’s see how it goes.

In other news, let’s run through the First Seasonal C.S.I. Love You AWARDORAMA.

Best Episode
Episode 7: Blood Drops. Nick’s hunky torso almost swung it for Boom, but I restrained myself like the noble and impartial judge I am.

Dakota Fanning (tiny)

Well done tiny Dakota Fanning... your emotive acting and elfin face have triumphed again

Craziest Episode (with the smallest basis in scientific fact)
Obviously, Justice is Served.

Gillian McKeith

Did someone say 'smallest basis in scientific fact'?

Best Line
Props to the ‘warm a damn barn’ lady all the way from the pilot! Her moment in the sun was brief, but beautiful.

Fingerprint lady

I love this line SO HARD

Best ‘Nick in Danger’ moment
The tears make this ALL TOO EASY.

Nick cries

Thanks, gun-brandishing psycho lady!

Best Scientist
Has to be Terri (Grissom would never turn away a scientist of her talent).

Terri

She knows it

Worst Scientist
I wanted to give it to Grissom for the ‘cows don’t drink milk’ thing… but in fact the resident psychologist dude is about 5 billion times worse. Congratulations!

Psychiatrist

Truly sir, but you know nothing

Best Outfit
Sara’s alien princess extravaganza from Justice is Served.

Sara Sidle Sci Fi Princess

GETTING SO REGAL ON YO ASS

Worst Outfit (Greg)
This is a toughie, for obvious reasons, but I’ve gone for the mottled orange shirt. It’s unforgivable.

Greg Sanders bad shirt

U.G.L.Y... shirt ain't got no alibi

Worst Outfit (anybody else)
Nick’s Chandler look is pretty bad but Catherine’s hideous brown shirt is worserer.

Catherine Willows bad shirt

Never let me see you like this again, Catherine

Most egregious case of stereotyping
It’s a toss-up (er) between these two

Bad ear piercings

Horrendous ear piercings?

Hunter S Baumgartner

or horrendous T-shirt?

All-round most bodacious feminist icon
Sara has her moments but I don’t think I need to tell you that it’s Catherine ‘never knowingly second banana’ Willows.

Catherine Willows badass

Catherine, I actually love you

… and finally…

Total Petersen Pouts recorded
38

PPP compilation

A moving treat for my loyal readers

Well that’s a wrap for season 1! See you next Tuesday (oh dear) for Season 2, Episode 1: Burked. BETCHA CAN’T WAIT.

The cases this week are marked by Dismembered Body Parts, as these two young ladies

Underwear girls

Good thing somebody listened to their mum's advice about wearing matching underwear JUST IN CASE

are pulled over for speeding… but turn out to have a severed head in the back of their car

Severed head

Why is it the head of a giant boxer??

– and Sara and Nick find themselves investigating a distended, skinless handless footless headless body found in the middle of the desert (standard).

Freaky body

Looks suspiciously like a dish Heston Blumenthal might serve a gaggle of C-list celebrities at one of his Feasts

Doc Robbins doesn’t know WOT THE HELL IT IS

Doc Robbins air guitar

Or maybe he just can't be arsed to think about it given his new interest in playing air guitar

Grissom and Catherine music response faces

(of the music) Catherine: "It sucks." Grissom: "I like it."

but luckily there is A SCIENTIST OF TERRI’S CALIBRE (clue: it’s Terri) around to provide some answers.

Terri the forensic anthropologist

Never fear! the brains is here!

Grissom lustful

BURNING WITH A FIERY LUST

It’s a gorilla!

Crappy Gorilla book

Methinks someone has been swotting from this high-quality publication

Nick is promptly whipped off the case

Grissom: You’re working it alone; Catherine needed Nick. [- WHAT ABOUT MY NEEDS?]

and Sara left to deal with this decidedly low priority issue. Animal trafficking just isn’t as interesting as MURDER AND DISMEMBERMENT.

Sara Sidle outraged

Face of outraged vegetarianism

Gil Grissom loves it

Face of carnivorous contempt

You just know that if it were anyone but Sara, Grissom wouldn’t have let them follow up on it at all. (Hence her evaluation: overall, outstanding; ability to prioritise, needs improvement.) Even with his blessing, though, there’s not much she can do but give her (not-so) furry friend a decent burial.

Sara Sidle gorilla burial

Communing with THE GREAT SPIRIT OF THE BEAST

Back in humantown (??!), Catherine is feelin’ feisty

Griss: (re: hacked off head) Do you think a female could do this?
Cath: I could’ve.
Griss: Scared of you…

Grissom scared

PPP sez: "I can't handle the truth"

and Nick has something to prove, after Grissom tells him STRAIGHT OUT in his evaluation that he’s not ready to work cases alone.

Nick Stokes angry

SO ANGRY. SO SEXY.

Much is made of a DUMBASS RIDDLE involving cows which supposedly indicates Nick’s Southern Doofus status as he falls for it:

Grissom: Repeat after me, silk, silk, silk.
Nick: Silk, silk, silk.
Grissom: What do cows drink?
Nick: Milk.

Apparently this is WRONG and cows drink water, but produce milk.

Cows

Errrr NATURE BEGS TO DIFFER

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez: "Nature? I DEFY THEE"

WHATEVS, Grissom.

Nick Stokes confused

Yeah, WHATEVS!

Anyway Nick is spurred on by this harsh assessment of his abilities (about which he doesn’t tell Sara – like the geeky kid in school, she’s desperate to hear how his evaluation went) to discover the KEY PIECE OF EVIDENCE in the severed head case.

Nick Stokes Catherine Willows body in storage

Yay! it's the first instance of the 'body in a storage unit' trope! (N.B. key evidence not in fact found here)

It takes them to this unfortunately-earringed chappie

Bad ear piercings

SORRY LOVE but it's true

and gives Brass a line which I find inexplicably hilarious.

Jim Brass eating a peanut

"Pretty good gimmick they got here: peanuts, toss your shells on the floor, nobody gives a rat's ass."

“Nobody gives a rat’s ass”? Does that really count as a gimmick?!!

Anyway most important about the whole thing is that NICK GIVES CREDIT FOR THE WONDROUS CLUE TO GREG!

Nick Stokes satisfied

SO NOBLE AND SO BEAUTIFUL

This is probably the first step towards Greg becoming a CSI. And he owes it all to Nick.

For those wondering what Warrick is up to (I know I know it’s hard to distract oneself from Stokes and his beauteous jawline, but do spare a thought for Pleo), well, it’s not so much of a change from last week.

Warrick Brown hand down a toilet

Hand down a toilet: the glamorous life of a CSI

Hans Moleman’s grandson is in trouble as there’s been a stabbing at the junior detention unit and he’s the only witness; so Warrick has to sort things out without getting him in trouble for snitching. Two points of interest:

James's bed

Surely it's weird that he should have Warrick's number chalked up in plain view? Isn't that an invite to get harrassed about it?

and this guy, the big bad boy on the unit

Badass kid

Oh so tough

who has the episode’s other most excellent line:

Juvie kid: They answer to me because I’m the macaroni.

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez: "Oh yeah? Well I'm the fettucini mate so WATCH IT, aaaight?"

At least Warrick is rewarded for his toilet tribulations with THE GREATEST PLEASURE OF WHICH ANY MAN MIGHT DREAM.

Nick Stokes topless

BOOM! oh sorry, my mistake - what I actually mean is (of course)

Grissom and Warrick on a rollercoaster

It's rollercoaster time!!!!!!

This is the first of what I like familiarly to call the BATSHIT CRAZY episodes, which the CSI writers occasionally like to spring on their unsuspecting audience. (I’m thinking ‘King Baby’ here, people… but more of that in the appropriate time and place.)

In this instance the craziness centres around an evil nutritionist

Gillian McKeith

Ha! I wish!

Creepy Nutritionist

Actually this much more nubile (AND SINISTER) sista, who appears to have stepped out of an 80s music video

who (MASSIVE SPOILER ALERT) is Eating People’s Insides.

Grossed out Grissom

So. Grossed. Out.

Nick Stokes sick

THEY DON'T CALL IT A BATSHIT CRAZY EPISODE FOR NOTHING

Instance #2 of the vomiting cops trope (Nick: ‘Guess he won’t be eating dinner tonight’), the episode prompts a lot of enjoyable double entendre; as when the evil doctor comments on Grissom’s choice of career:

Creepy Nutritionist Lady: Guess one man’s corpse is another man’s candy…

It is all good sensational (and completely unscientific) fun, much of which is generated by the excellent camaraderie always emanating from a case where Nick and Warrick are both involved

Nick and Warrick

EXTREME FACE TWINS

and particularly one where they spend much of their time analysing dog poo. Yup. It’s a glamorous life.

Nick Stokes scat analysis

Ming...

Nick wipe eye

SO MUCH MINGINGER! Nick! Did your mother never tell you that the germs from dog muck can make you go blind??! That's why you wear gloves - SO YOU CAN TAKE THEM OFF

This delightful development also prompts a suggestive allusion to the CSI training regime:

Nick: Don’t even waste your time, that’s cougar.
Warrick: How’d you figure that?
Nick: See the rabbit hair in the faeces? Don’t you remember the seminar?
Warrick: Seminar?

Gillian McKeith

I KNEW she had something to do with it

Meanwhile, Catherine’s much-exercised maternal empathy is called on once more, as a little girl dies on a fairground ride.

Catherine Willows maternal empathy

I weep for you! And for all womankind!

Catherine is quick to lay blame on the dodgy-looking carnie folk

Scary carnie man

Graaaaaaaaargh!

Cheeky carnie

Yeehaaaaaargh!

Catherine Willows angry

Don't mess with a mamaaaaa!

– the fatter of whom has what I think is a contender for best line of the series:

Redneck (arrested): You pullin’ my pud?

All the graaarrring and powerful ladyness seems to get Catherine in the mood – as by the end of the episode she is paying a visit to Mr City Engineer man, primed by their previous flirtation for some Hot Willows Lovin’.

Booty Call

This is what we at CSI denominate a 'booty call'

Catherine Willows kiss

... consider it called.

Finally, in CSI fashion news, O’Reilly has apparently been visiting the Greg Sanders Shirt Emporium

Greg Sanders

This, we know

O'Brian

This, A WHOLE NEW HORROR

and Sara is modelling what I would call her Sci Fi Alien Princess look. I LOVE IT.

Sara Sidle Sci Fi Princess

Natalie Portman eat your heart out (err... perhaps a bad choice of phrase in view of earlier developments)

This episode opens with a robbery on the Crappest Shop Ever. It’s called ‘The Cracked Kiln’. Even the name is crappy.

Crappy shop interior

Mostly it sells artificial flowers, ceramics, and geese

Crap shop interior 2

... also, gnomes. Lots of gnomes

Anyway for some reason people love to break in and empty the safe (seriously – the dialogue at the beginning establishes that MORE THAN ONCE, a burglar has decided that this warehouse of junk is probably harbouring a nice meaty stash of cash). This time, however, is different; not only has one of the robbers been killed, but fingerprinting around the crime scene turns up traces of a girl who was kidnapped as a toddler, 21 years before.

Her parents are thrilled to know that she’s alive

Eager parents

Thrilled

but unfortunately things turn sour pretty quickly, as it turns out that Melissa (their daughter) is also Tammy (the dead guy’s daughter)

Tammy Felton

Dad's dead! ...at least, one of them is

… and (worse still) it looks like she murdered her kidnapper. With a radioactive gnome.

Radioactive gnome

GUILTY! Guilty like a spoon

(spoon joke)

Nick Stokes radioactive

Nicky, a little bit worried about his radioactive hands. Bless

A quick visit to the psychiatrist confirms that, because she was kidnapped at age 4, Tammy is now definitely a sociopath

Psychiatrist

That is SCIENTIFIC. FACT.

and LO, before long she is skipping out on the bail for which her parents have remortgaged their house (wonder if they used Eddie’s broker?) to run off with her dad’s old partner in crime, whose only real attraction seems to be his luxuriant seventies moustache.

Darren Hansen

And THAT'S how you please the ladies (take note, Nick of Season Six)

The psychiatrist’s verdict isn’t the only bit of bad science going down in this episode. Sara and Warrick are investigating a woman who burned to death in her armchair

Sara and Warrick

She took a bit of the ceiling with her

and Sara is CONVINCED that it’s a case of spontaneous combustion.

Warrick Brown sceptical

Warrick isn't

Of course, they end up burning a pig to find out what went down.

Torched pig

POW!

Sara Sidley shame

Bummer. Not gonna go down in scientific history after all

At least David the coroner loves her.

Warrick: You’re just siding with Sara because you’ve got a crush on her.
David: No; that’s why I wore a clean coat.

David loves it

So fresh and so clean, clean

He is not the only one getting his flirt on this episode: Greggo has some lovely lady on the end of the line

Greg on the phone

Me? I'm wearing a hideous shirt. That's what I'm always wearing.

and Grissom’s turgid love life sees a flicker of movement as Terri arrives to draw pictures of missing Melissa.

Grissom and Terri

Look at him, quivering with excitement

Unfortunately, she is soon smacking him down as only she knows how.

Grissom: Since I screwed up our last date, will we ever have dinner again?
Terri: Oh, we’ll have dinner. Just not together.

Patented Petersen Pout

PPP sez... "BURN"

What else. The Patented Petersen Pout appears to be catching

Sara Sidle pout

PFP?

… at sometimes inappropriate moments.

Catherine: He’s covered in spores!
Nick:

Nick Stokes pout

*pouts*

Don’t worry, Nicky – Catherine might not be impressed

Catherine Willows

... err...

… but I certainly am!

Nick Stokes hot

You knows it