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Notorious

Notorious – The Perp Walk (1×02)

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The second episode of Notorious set a precedent for what we’re likely going to see all season long – Julia and Jake using each other in a silent understand that it needs to be done to get what they want. In the words of Sarah Keaton’s brother “how do you sleep at night.”

The thing is, Julia doesn’t. She’s too preoccupied with getting the next story and sometimes putting on her Olivia Pope shoes to fix something. I mean really, she practically forgot about her boyfriend and in TV world it’s been less than 24 hours.

Sarah’s death is still the overreaching plot this week as the episode begins with Louise addressing the public after the news of her death. She may be on the number 1 rated show, but once again we see she really doesn’t take any of it as seriously as Julia. All she really cares about is men, sex and Puff Daddy…. if that’s even his name anymore. Who can keep up? All I will say is, what kind of a weak cameo was that?

If their “arrangement” is going to work, Julia knows they have to be 100% honest with each other and at this point, she knows Jake hasn’t been honest with her. In fact, Jake isn’t being honest with anyone, even himself, as he sits in his office watching old videos from when he was still dating Sarah. He’s interrupted by real life – a new client whose son has been kidnapped. Of course Jake’s only solution is “let’s get your story out on the Louise Herrick show.” Win for him, win for Julia.

Abby’s story is heartbreaking, compelling and every mother’s worst fear. Except that Julia gets a call from a man claiming to be Abby’s ex-boyfriend and he claims, Abby isn’t a mother. In fact, he says she never had a kid at all. Well, that got weird real quick.

Julia sits Jake down and hits him with the words no man wants to hear… “we need to talk.” She brings up the lighter topic first – his client might be a lying sociopath. Then she moves onto the hard stuff – someone anonymously sent her pictures of Sarah’s dead body, Oscar Keaton screwing his mistress and…. Jake sleeping with Sarah. Jake finally admits that he dated Sarah years before she met Oscar and that they accidentally slept together the day before she died. However he doesn’t address the most important picture, which will probably come up later as Oscar is blamed for Sarah’s death. Did he really beat her? Is she that why she planned to run away and was on her way to pick up a fake passport the night she killed someone with his car? So many mysterious surrounding this girl.

And speaking of the pictures, Julia insists that Megan, her assistant, find out who sent the pictures. Turns out the culprit sent them right from inside LHL and they’re able to pinpoint Ryan. This was pretty obvious to me considering we saw his sleuthing skills in action last week when he prayed on Ella only to follow her and take that money shot of them cleaning out heroine from the car. When Julia confronts him, he says he was there looking for a story when he saw it happen. Obviously if anyone found out, it would definitely put him on the list of suspects but Ryan talks her up by saying she’s his “role mode” so Julia caves and lets him stay on when in reality, she should have been running for the door. I’m not saying Ryan did it but I’m not saying he didn’t. He might just be really good at playing the nice guy and I bet he’s got some demons he’s covering up. After all, he’s willingly sleeping on a news producers couch! And he also claimed to have only sent the picture of Sarah’s dead body, but they were all in one envelope. Explain that to me!

Abby’s case begins to unfold as Jake and Julia butt heads on how to handle her situation. Abby explains that she never had her son around her ex because she didn’t want to introduce him to a man unless it was serious. Her reasoning makes complete sense and I’m wondering why Julia didn’t think of it herself. That whole “this child doesn’t exist” angle actually ruined the episode for me a bit but whatever. Jake eventually finds out that Abby’s baby daddy is on parole and was threatening to steal her son from her. When he plays the recordings to Abby she admits that she gave her kid away to a lady from the church to protect him and stage the whole kidnapping. At this point, they can’t tell the cops the truth because she actually committed a crime so they stage a “someone left the baby at the church” scenario and of course, Julia is there to capture it all for her segment that night. Once again, Julia and Jake for the win.

But the funs not over yet. We’ve still got a funeral to attend. A funeral with a very drunk Oscar Keaton giving the eulogy for his dead wife, who he may or may not have been cheating on/beating. Considering Oscar played kind of a son-of-a-bitch on Gossip Girl, every inch of my body tells me that he’s definitely guilty of something. During his eulogy, the cops bust in and take him in as a suspect. He freaks out but Jake, calm and collected, assures him that he needs to tell the public “he’s not guilty” to get a strong soundbite for the news that night. Everyone will feel guilty for a mourning man being wrongfully arrested for his wife’s murder at her funeral right?

That last sentence – dead giveaway that it was all Jake’s brilliant plan. You see Oscar wouldn’t put the bottle down so Jake called in the Sheriff to let him know that he actually did NOT arrive with Oscar at the house when Sarah died. Therefore, the cops can count Oscar as a suspect and he’d rather have that happen sooner than later so he can direct the narrative. And not to mention he got to say EVERYTHING he wanted to support his client without any reporter interruption. Third time, say it with me. Jake and Julia for the win.

After the funeral, Sarah’s brother, who initially turned down Julia’s offer to speak on the show, was so disgusted with everything that he agreed to come on and “tell the world about the real Oscar.” Something tells me, this is about to get juicy. None of that happened “by chance” either. Julia was sweet talking Jake, knowing that it would upset Sarah’s brother. Fourth win for the dream team here.

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Notorious

Notorious – Taken (1×10)

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Notorious Taken

While watching the Notorious winter finale, I couldn’t help but think that this was the last one they were ever going to get. Why? Well, there’s a few reasons actually.

The show is mediocre, at its best. There’s really no drive for me to watch it every Thursday other than it fills a void where Scandal used to be. In fact, Notorious may have failed because it tried WAY too hard to be the next Scandal. Take this kidnapping storyline for example. Shonda Rhimes tried it last season in a more intricate and believable way… and it still flopped.

Not only was the Mexico storyline a stretch, even for Notorious, it was also a lesser version of something we’d already seen. I know Julie George will do anything for a story but I just don’t think she’s an idiot. And if she is as dumb as to accept an offer from the most notorious drug lord in Mexico, then she’d never make it out alive.

The episode continued where we left off last week – Julie was kidnapped from her hotel room by El Toro’s people. When he realized that they grabbed Julie instead of Louise, someone paid the price with a bullet to his head. However, it was kind of a blessing in disguise because Louise would NEVER survive trying to outsmart El Toro. Julie however stood a chance and even talked herself out of lock up with another reporter who they thought was dead by tricking the drug lord into thinking she had information he wanted.

Meanwhile, Louise realized that the Mexican government wasn’t doing much to help get Julia back because they didn’t want to get involved, she called up the station. They’ve been told NOT to report on Julia’s disappearance because they have to do it by the books, which just means, payout.

Megan, who has taken on the coveted role of executive producer decides that she’s going to get the story out there by simply “remembering” who Julia was. That way, every other news outlet will pick up the story and they’ll have to run with it. It was a brilliant idea, you can definitely tell she’s Julia’s apprentice, but it did get Darin fired. There’s a brief father-son bonding moment but really, did you care about it?

That’s the other problem with this show – I can watch it passively. I’m not invested in what happens with the characters because I don’t really care about them. I don’t care about them any more than I did in the first episode and that ultimately plays a huge factor in why people didn’t get hooked on the show and why it won’t get a second season…. trust me, it won’t.

While all of this is happening, Louise decides to do a live broadcast from that Mexican bar/hotel with the help of a local affiliate. Right as they’re about to go on air, El Toro’s people roll up for a shooting spree. Miraculously, no one was injured.

When Jake Gregorian gets wind of what’s happening and realizes that Julia’s “boyfriend” and state’s attorney Max knew about her trip to Mexico, he flips out. It doesn’t help that he tipped off the cops who weren’t so “undercover” and is really the reason why she’s in this mess. Seriously, the cops can never actually handle anything.

That’s why Jake takes it upon himself to head out to Mexico with a huge bag of cash and negotiate. Smart right? His team Bradley and Ella try to find him some leverage and learn that El Toro has a nephew he tried to pull out of a Mexican jail earlier in the month. Max decides to be of some use and grants them visitation rights and they find out, the nephew isn’t the bad guy. In fact, he’s also on the run from his uncle, who wants to have him killed. Oy family drama.

Jake arrives in Mexico and somehow, knows exactly where to find Louise. It’s like he’s done this before. Bradley calls Jake to tell him to halt the exchange with El Toro’s mistress and gives him the correct coordinates to kingpin’s hideout. On their way in, they are ambushed by the kingpin’s people and bring him and Louise right to the compound where Julia is. In fact, she’s been holding on by a thread – she just conducted an interview with El Toro and only asked the “approved” questions so he could spew his revolutionist propaganda. It made her sick, you could tell, but anything to survive right?

Long story short, Louise gets caught within seconds trying to set up El Toro, Julia convinces his brother to turn on him and promises to free his nephew in exchange for their freedom. El Toro’s brother was never his biggest fan and didn’t like how he treated his son and when push came to shove, he shot a bullet in his head.

So everyone escaped, Julia got a great story out of it, Louise returned to work and replaced that god-awful Avery, who almost got Julia killed with her “we’re going to crush you El Toro” commentary, might I add.

There was also a brief “moment” between Julia and Jake. These two definitely have chemistry but the show tried really hard to keep them as “just friends” and I appreciate that. Anything more would ruin it and I guess it’s nice to know a guy and a girl can be strictly platonic and still care for each other the way these two do. That’s not saying any of my guy, or girl for that matter, friends would book a trip to Mexico to save me but hey, a gentleman is a gentleman right? And a lawyer has money… and private jets… and such.

Still, that’s not enough to save the show and I’m sorry about that Notorious fans. There’s just so many missing and moving pieces. I can’t even remeber where we left off on the Oscar Keaton story. Do we still care about him? And Maya Hartman, remember her? She meant a great deal to Julia and try as I might, I can’t even remember much about her story except that her mother slept with her boyfriend and she was framed for his murder. Anyways, Julia promised her they’d “get through this” but then she got kidnapped and in the end, Maya jumped off a bridge and left behind an “i’m sorry” note for Julia asking her to “take care of her mother.”

If there was a second half of the season, what do you think would happen?

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Notorious

Notorious – Missing (1×05)

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Notorious Missing

Now that was a good episode of Notorious. Up until now, I felt like the storyline was moving at a glacial pace and there was nothing that really allowed me to connect with the characters. Jake was just a dude covering up for criminals and Julia was the person manipulating the news just to get good TV. All of that changed this week.

After witnessing Levi Young blow his brains out, Julia wasn’t her usual self although she really pretended to be. She went to the DA and gave her statement, scoring him for that night’s show. The both of them seemed to hit it off really well but it came to a screeching halt when Julia blindsided him with the footage that Levi sent her the night of the murder. In her defense, blindsiding people is what she does best to get “honest” reactions but this was cold, especially because she didn’t want to do it. She didn’t want to throw a man who just killed himself under the bus fully knowing that he was innocent because his big secret was the he was in love with Oscar Keaton. But she did it anyways and the DA was not pleased. “You’re just Gregorian’s mouthpiece” he told her.

Sure, that tape definitely did help Jake, who used Levi’s death as an asset to freeing Oscar. Unfortunately, it didn’t work because there was no sufficient evidence that Levi had motive to kill Sarah. But the DA does know someone who had motive – Jake. Someone sent him that picture that Levi took of Sarah sleeping with Jake the night of her murder. He threatens him with it and when he’s ambushed on LHL, he plants the photo in Oscar’s cell to see if he was aware of the affair.

When Oscar sees the picture, he demands Jake comes down to the prison. “You were sleeping with my wife,” he yells before punching him in the face and firing. While it may not be the best move for Oscar, it’s definitely even worse for Jake because ALL of his secrets are about to be exposed and honestly, he does look kind of guilty at this point, although I’m sure he’s not.

Julia finally had a mental breakdown as she washed Levi’s shoes off the bottom of her probably really expensive shoes and the next day, she walked into the DA’s office and apologized to him. This moment was really important because up until now, we hadn’t really seen who Julia is as a person, when she’s not motivated and driven by producing a hit news show. While she’s making amends, she also apologizes to her assistant Megan and Louise for being the raging B at work this week and as a reward, they invited the DA so Julia can properly apologize with some alcohol. We all need some good friends don’t we?

While I’m smitten with Julia’s forming relationship with the DA, it will definitely complicate things between her and Jake. The DA isn’t really a fan of Jake and now he’s trying to prove that he killed Sara… not a good way to start a friendship with your new girls partner in crime.

The side story this week was also very intriguing. Jake accepted a case from a young surrogate mother who couldn’t find the baby’s biological parents. The manager of the facility refused to disclose the parent’s information because of a doctor-patient confidentially, which would mean that when Penny had the baby, she didn’t have parental rights to give it up for adoption. She either had to keep it or give it up to foster care. Jake got very emotionally invested in the case because we find out he too was in foster care for several years.

The case takes an even crazier twist revealing how messed up the laws governing surrogacy really are. Penny goes on LHL looking for the parents and her water breaks. A couple shows up at Jake’s office saying that they are the people that were supposed to adopt Penny’s baby. They paid out $200K, although Penny only received $50K of it. But still, without the biological parents, Penny could not legally give this couple the baby and it was taken away by Child Protective Services.

Jake didn’t rest until he hunted down the clinic owner, who admitted to really, human trafficking in exchange for dough. He finds out the baby didn’t have biological parents because it was conceived from a donated egg and sperm in Prague. She then told the parents waiting to adopt that Penny miscarried so that she could RE-SELL the baby and make even more money. Seriously, what kind of disgusting person do you have to be?

But since the donors surrendered parental rights, Penny was legally the babies mother and in the end, she was able to give the couple the baby they’ve always wanted. And that lady, yeah she’s going to rot in jail.

Now that you have a deeper grasp on the characters and where the storyline is going, did you enjoy this weeks episode of Notorious?

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Notorious

Notorious – Tell Me A Secret (1×04)

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Notorious Tell Me A Secret

To me, Notorious is trying really hard to be the next Scandal and failing pretty impressively. I can’t say I’m really invested in the Oscar/Sarah drama because well, I just don’t care that much. We don’t know much about Oscar and we met Sarah so briefly, I forgot she even existed.

Jake seems to be the only one that cared about Sarah but he’s not even motivated to find her killer. His only goal is to make his client, Oscar, not guilty. So of course, he sets his prison-sent client on Julia’s hit show LHL where he fends of cheating rumors and spins the story on Levi, his business partner turned stalker turn SweetVicki.

Levi, as we found out last week, was the one that sent Julia all those photos of Oscar cheating on Sarah, hitting her and Sarah’s affair with Jake. We also found out that he posed as SweetVicki and cat fished Oscar into thinking he was opening up and chatting to some nice blonde. Creepy right?

 

Julia should have seen Levi’s off-the-rocker moment coming but well, she didn’t cause she was too preoccupied sulking in the fact that it was her would have been 1-year anniversary with scumbag Eric. To celebrate, Louise joined her in their dinner reservations and helped her burn any last remaining evidence of him.

What should have been a good night turned horrible when Julia got back to work and found a video email of an unstable and drunk Levi saying she “got everything wrong.” If she wanted to learn the truth about Sarah/Oscar, she’d have to meet him at his house. Learning her decision making skills from horror movies and needing to get the next scoop, Julia rushed over to his house, only to find him sitting in front of his Oscar shrine. The man was in LOVE with Oscar but knew he’d never be able to actually be with him cause Oscar didn’t feel the same way. He posed as SweetVicki to form that bond he’s always wanted with him and sent those pictures hoping that Sarah would learn the truth and never take him back.

And right before he blows his brains out, splattering Julia’s most likely very expensive clothes, he promises he didn’t kill Sarah. Not that we believe him after all of this. Let’s just hope that his mansion had security cameras installed because THAT’S an exclusive for LHL right there. Hey, we’re always putting the show first right?

The remainder of the episode focused on the case of the week surrounding a dead football player. The app “Tell Me a Secret” begins accusing Jason’s friend Dax, the misunderstood loner with hipster hair. Dax may be innocent but makes a run for it anyway, getting arrested on an existing warrant and held for the possible murder of.

 

 

His sister Chloe turns to Jake Gregorian, an old family friend, who promises to take care of the kids after finding out his old friend and their mom had an episodic breakdown and is in now in psych lockup. That definitely doesn’t bode well for Dax since the football coach advocating for his arrest uses it against him. Chloe gets book on LHL to defend her brother and is surprised when she has to go head-to-head with “tell it like it is” coach. The fact that he’s trying to make everyone believe Dax killed this kid with NO EVIDENCE really makes me believe like he’s hiding something. He calls out Chloe’s parenting of her brother and Louise reads a very threatening text message sent by Dax to Jason, which prompts Chloe to storm off set.

We later find out poor Chloe lied about her alibi the night of the murder because she was trying to hide the fact that she’s been doing everything possible to help support the family, even stripping at a nightclub. With a dead end, Jake enlist’s Ella for help, who comes up with quite the brilliant plan.

During the pep rally, she uses the “Tell Me a Secret” app to lure out the real killer. When two dudes bolt out of the rally, Ella and her partner in crime/ new hookup/ possibly BF Ryan corner them. They confess to hazing Jason the night of his murder but promise that he was alive when they left him. Finally, Jake figures the killer was Dax and Chloe’s best friend Finn.

After Jason was drunkenly hazed, he called the house to score a ride. Chloe and Dax weren’t home so Finn went to pick him up, but got pissed when Jason gloated about “his only real friends” hazing him in. In a fit of rage, he threw a rock at his friend, accidentally killing him and yes, letting his other friend Dax, take the  blame because “everyone would believe it.” What a douche right?

And speaking of Ella and Ryan, the two are the show’s newest “it couple,” which could be good or bad. Both have a desire to get ahead and will do whatever it takes to get there. They could either rely on each other, or use each other. Their relationship though is yet another direct link to Julia and Jake, who are going to get together eventually right?

 

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