"Mother's Day"

A review by Jenni:

What I love about this episode:
Well, I love the concept that not everything is perfect after angels leave their assignments.  For a long time I've been drawn to Rilke's "Every angel is terrifying."  And I think this episode kinda hits on a lil bit of why.  They open the door just enough to something better, something superb and leave us longing for what and who is there that we can't reach. 

I also thought it was interesting how Monica said assignments remember their experience of angels but not necessarily the angels.  That explains some episodes where the angels run back into old assignments who don't recollect them or else can't place them.  Plus, it does make sense.  I can remember some profound experiences in my own life but can't necessarily call to mind some of the others who were part of it.

I actually think it makes a lot of sense that it doesn't necessarily become easier when one learns God is real.  As Tess said, it can give the person someone to blame.  But I think it goes beyond that.  If something terrible happened to me, I would likely be miserable for a while either way.  But in some ways it would be easier to believe it was just bad luck, fate, or chance.  But to believe in an all powerful God... to love Him even... and then have to ponder why He allowed you to feel so much pain... that's tough.  And I wish this episode woulda pursued this more and let some of the hackneyed aspects of the plot fall by the wayside.

I like Emma.  She's my kinda angel!  She could probly help me find a dust-fighting product that would really work!  It's just too bad I'm watching this episode during one of my more OCD modes so it fed right into that.  And she can't drive.  Like me.  I just wish the character woulda been more substantive.  She actually didn't interact with Audrey much.

I love how Emma assures Audrey she'll never do crossword puzzles until after she's finished with the paper.  Nice!  And it's the kinda quirky line I like.

I like that Andrew was surprised when he heard Celine phone into Liz's show.  Not sure why.  I guess I just like it when the angels don't know a whole lot and experience the assignment's twists and turns as they unfold.

"He made you a promise that He would mend your broken heart if you gave Him all the pieces."  I like that quote from Monica to Audrey.

And I can't decide if Monica's bleeding hand was a nifty object lesson or just creepy...  Since I feel like I've griped enough below, I'll go with nifty.

The last couple minutes were nice and seemed to fit more with "Psalm 151" than the rest of the episode.  They were simple, sad, and, yet, peaceful.  And in a way it kinda mirrored the opening of "Psalm" with all the grass and Audrey singing and a celebration with sadness hanging over it as the angels watched over the humans.

What I didn't love about this episode:

Andrew screws up the Stages of Grief.  Or maybe it's just all been updated since this episode was written.  But from what I've read it's generally accepted now that they're more cyclical.  You can go through anger, wind up in depression, and then go back to anger.  It's not a check list where you can say when one "step" is complete and it's time to move past.  Insisting otherwise can hurt people.

Really this episode just seemed rushed to me with the characters having to hurry things along so the writers could cram all they wanted to in.  For example, I think it's fairly creepy that Andrew brings up Liz's lost child so soon after meeting her.  I've never lost a child, of course, but I have remained silent about sad things in my life for years... not even telling family and close friends.  So it's just weird to me and something of a social faux pas if not just rude that Andrew rather casually bring it up to a near stranger.

Where the heck are Celine's parents?!?  Sadly, I can find it believable that a child would take on huge responsibilities cause of alcoholism.  You hear stories of kids basically raising their own siblings due to drinking or drugs.  But this scenario is different.  It seems so unrealistic to me that parents who we're apparently supposed to think fit would allow their child to spend countless hours caring for a mean drunk.  It's so sad and shows how unready Celine is to have so much on her plate when she tells Audrey she's an alcoholic and "probably has a drinking problem, too."  That poor girl couldn't fully understand the situation and was definitely over her head... all with her parents oblivious.

I just found some of the scenes grating.  Especially the one where Monica and Audrey are in the bar.  The parrot-like nature of the conversation drove me bonkers.  And, again, I'm in major cleaning mode so Monica continuously pouring that drink all over just distracted me.  I didn't get it.

Honestly, this episode kinda beats up "Psalm 151" a bit for me.  I wish they'd just left Audrey and Co. alone.  This one doesn't work for me.  It just seems needlessly complicated what with Audrey's kidnapping and the radio ploy, etc.

Poor Tess gets banished for virtually the entire episode!  Although I haven't yet watched the CBS version so maybe THC just cut her scenes.  ETA: Yep, THC cut her biggest scene out.

Lingering questions:
When Tess says that only God can understand the pain of losing a child... is that a vague reference to Jesus?  Or did she just mean all of us as His children?  Monica's bloodied hand kinda made me go there...

Okay, so what exactly where those dreams of Audrey's?  How much was her and how much God?  Cause Tess made it seem like Monica was actually going somewhere and Monica does later say it was her in the dreams.  Yet, in the dreams Monica says she's not there.  Further... they were so freaking trippy!  If God was creating them... why make them so freaky weird?  Unless maybe God was creating them but through the filter of Audrey's alcohol soaked consciousness they just came out trippy?  No clue.  But they kinda reminded me of the coloring on Pushing Daisies which I miss...

Audrey remembering Liz's song, at Monica's prompting, made me think about a question I sometimes ponder: exactly how much do we have stored away in our brain?  Is every moment of my life somewhere in mine, I just can't access it?

Parts that made me feel swoony:
This section really needs to be renamed "Parts that made me feel swoony/sappy."  Cause, honestly, I wasn't swoony much in this.  But sappy... a lil.  First, I'll admit that on one level I am a lil perturbed when the angels think they can speak about something like the loss of a child or lover.  They can't.  So a part of me thinks Audrey was justified in telling Andrew to come back when he's lost a child.  On the other hand... it makes me feel bad for him.  True, Andrew can't lose a child.  But he also can't have one.  Not even
for the few years Audrey had Petey.  Or, at least, it's highly unlikely.  Kelly in Season 9 seemed like a rare, rare exception.  Anyhow, Andrew just looks really sad and sympathetic after that and I wanna hug him.  And then go adopt a baby. 

If Andrew still wants to do a radio series on addiction, I have an idea for a topic.  :-)  It would be really ironic...  AOD Addiction.

Random thoughts:

Music:  "Testify to Love" from "Psalm 151" plays, naturally, over the "Psalm 151" flashbacks at the beginning.  "Peggy Sue" is playing when Audrey goes to the bar.  Finally, the Judds sing "That's What Makes You Strong" at the end.  In a cut scene, a country song can also be heard at the bar.  All I could make out was a male voice singing "I see you runnin'."

Turns out Audrey lives in IL.  Nice bit of trivia.  I wish I'd caught the town.  Sounded like Valentine once but then Pallantine or something another time.  ETA: It's Palatine.  You can see it clearly on the moving van in a cut scene.

Strangely, this episode makes me think I want to be cremated.  I don't want anyone to ever feel bad about leaving my grave.  Of course, I really don't want to be on anyone's mantel, either...

Scenes Hallmark cut:
-After the scene of Emma and Celine talking about cleaning and Petey, Audrey comes down the stairs.  She surveys the house which is already looking much nicer.  She sees Fluffy's cage, now donning a ribbon, and tells him she had a dream about him.  Then she goes to the fridge where she hears Emma humming while washing windows.  Audrey asks the angel what she's doing and Emma tells her she's spring cleaning cause it makes you strong.  That's when Audrey starts working on "That's What Makes You Strong" which is where THC starts.

-Okay, there was a cut Tess scene.  Celine is walking in front of her house and you can see a moving van.  She notices Tess sitting on the porch and approaches.  Celine tells her that she hasn't seen her since Petey...  Tess tells her she remembers and asks how she's been.  Celine responds with "Okay, I guess."  She tells Tess that she prayed for angels and hopes she'll do.  Then she confides that her family is moving to TX.  Tess assures her that TX is a very nice place.  But Celine explains about her concern for Audrey.  Tess asks if she's told her about the move and the girl answers no.  Celine goes on to tell Tess about Emma and Tess explains that she knows Emma... and that she's an angel.  Then Tess says "And so am I" and lights up.  This completely explains how Celine knew they were angels cause I could not figure that out at all.  Anyhow, Celine thinks this is very cool.  Tess tells her that Audrey does need help and they're all going to need to work together to get it for her.  Celine's dad then walks by, carrying boxes, and asks her why she's sitting there all by herself.  Celine is much amused.  She tells her dad she's talking to an angel and he just says "Okay..."  Celine and Tess both giggle.  Scene ends.  And...

-THC also cut  a brief scene of Audrey arriving at the bar.  She looks around and prays for help.  Then it goes to Emma cleaning Audrey's music room which THC has.

Further on down the road...
Well, this isn't my usual routine but I'm watching this on a Wednesday night while doing computer back-up.  I'm just not a huge fan of this episode so wanted to have "Pandora's Box" to look forward to this weekend instead.

Monica's outfit in the opening scenes is really cute!

Okay, Andrew says "ya" a lot, apparently.  Dunno why I was having a hard time getting that.

I actually handled Audrey's remark to Andrew about losing a child pretty well.  The first time I watched this episode after John Dye's death, I had to stop the show and go run around for a bit after that.  Speaking of the stages of grief...  Progress.

Oh boy...  Some things don't change.  Earlier in the day I was ticked at myself for forgetting to pick up the dusting product I did eventually find that I think works pretty well.  Always with the dusting!

Is it weird that I've never dreamed of talking animals?  At least not that I recall.  I've even dreamed I gave birth to an animal.  But he was mute...  I wonder if talking animals is a common dream motif?

I still do not understand... given Celine's father appeared to know Audrey was an alcoholic... why he let his daughter spend so much time over there unattended.

The monotone Monica speaks in when echoing Audrey just makes me want to laugh.  I know I shouldn't but "You were stuck at the bar"... "I was stuck at the bar" just sounds so goofy.  Like I'm watching a hypnotist at a carnival or something.  So at least it doesn't drive me bonkers any more.  But I do think it's just silly.

"God's voice will be heard no matter what... whether you listen is up to you."  That's a really good quote from Monica to Audrey.

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