by Benjamin Wood
Psych is back! Season 6 of USA’s buddy comedy/police procedural premiered last night with an episode that brought murder and mayhem and found Shawn Spencer taking a lie detector test.
Last season left off with a cliff-hanger of sorts. After finally apprehending the elusive and deadly Mr. Yin, the gang went back to the station where Carlton saw secret lovers (and secret-lovers?) Shawn and Juliet sharing a kiss. The final shot was Carlton, wide-eyed in shock, turning and walking away.
Obviously “Lassie” wasn’t going to leave that stone unturned — he is a good cop after all — so after a quick intro where Shawn gets to “James Bond it up” and inadvertently discover a murder victim, we find Carlton looking over a “broken” polygraph machine, which he uses in an attempt to coerce Juliet into confessing her relationship. “Since partners don’t lie or keep secrets from each other, because we put our lives in each other’s hands, I’m asking a question I believe I know the answer to. Are you currently or have you ever been in a relationship with anyone at the station?”
Juliet deflects and because she’s a police officer, she merely unhooks herself from the machine and walks away. Shawn, however, does not have that luxury, especially after he becomes a suspect in the murder case — we’ll get there, I promise.
Shawn manages to bend the truth adequately enough to avoid technically lying, “I was out with Gus, playing some video games” and then figures it’s best to just clear the room of the Shawn/Juliet elephant. Only, in the process he accidentally drops the L-word. “This is about me and Juliet. Yes, we’re together; you hate it, I get it. I can’t help it, man, I’ve been fighting this thing for years. It’s not just going to go away; you’re just going to have to deal with the fact that I love her, okay?”
That stopped everyone, including Shawn, and made for a nice moment as everyone leaned in to see if he was telling the truth. He was. At first I thought it was a little soon to be going down the “love” road. Even though James Roday and Maggie Lawson have been real-life dating for years, their onscreen personae have only been together for a few months. Then I thought, who cares? These kids are made for each other.
After that revelation, Shawn thought he was off the hook, but Lassie had one more question: “Are you, Shawn Spencer, psychic?” For six years, Carlton has been trying to expose Shawn as a fraud and it looked like he finally had him. I loved everything about this sequence. Gus swaps his police station ID for his pharmaceutical credentials in preparation of the coming fallout. But after taking a breath, Shawn calmly answers… yes, he is a psychic. He has psychic powers and he is legless — that last one in Spanish. Everyone satisfied, it’s off to catch a killer.
Oh yeah, and someone died. A low-level employee of a visiting British ambassador is killed. Shawn discovers the body while he’s attempting to recover a young boy’s pristine 1978 Darth Vader toy with a double-telescoping light saber. Obviously he can’t tell the British, or the Americans, that he was snooping around the house, so after impressing the aforementioned dignitary — guest star Malcolm McDowell — with his psychic abilities, Shawn and Gus are brought on board to solve the case, which they do, of course.
Let’s face it, the murder in this episode was a throwaway plot. All we wanted to know was how Lassie would take the news that his partner(s) is/are dating. The best things to come from the murder plot was Shawn receiving temporary and disappointingly arbitrary powers of diplomatic immunity and the always entertaining McDowell — except seeing him just made me sad that Franklin & Bash is still in hiatus.
So, cat’s out of the bag. Shawn and Juliet are the cutest real life/fake life couple of all time, and Shawn and Gus are the coolest real life/fake life bros of all time — what? You know they hang out. There’s still bad guys to catch, puzzles to solve, and fingers to place on temples while making wild, revelatory monologues.
The episode was a promising start to what I’m assuming will be a great season and I can’t wait to see what’s next. Roday teased a few spoilers recently to EW, including upcoming superhero- and clue-themed episodes as well as the return of Cary Elwes as dapper master-thief (kind of) Despereaux. Plus, with things getting serious with the two lovebirds, are we nearing the day when Shawn will finally confess his lack of psychic powers to Juliet? I’d like to think yes, and I’d like to think it wouldn’t be that big of a deal.
Sure, she’ll be upset that he’s been lying to her for so long but at the end of the day, abilities or not, he’s still managed to solve a lot of cases for the police department — albeit through often less-than-legal means. Then again, in arguably the best moment of the episode, Lassie was very clear that he would put a bullet in Shawn if he did not treat Juliet with the respect she deserves. Lying about your extra-sensory perceptive powers for the entirety of your relationship could potentially fall under that heading. Should we be worried?
What did you think Popwatchers? Did you have a favorite part of last night’s episode? Are you excited for the new season. Also, did anyone see a pineapple?
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