"Vengeance is Mine
(aka Saving Grace) Part I"
A review by Jenni:
Well, I decided to write reviews even as I'm seeing these again
for the first time in years... rather than waiting til I
re-re-watch them! The sooner I can gush about Andrew the
better for me. :-)
I would also like it noted that I watched around 5-6 episodes of
Promised Land every
weekend for the past month or so just trying to get caught up to
its S3 so I could get to this episode and proceed with my
much-delayed (still waiting on those DVDs, Paramount!) viewing
of TBAA's Season 5. I did it!
What I love about this episode:
First of all, while it's sad, I'm glad baby Grace is referenced
numerous times in this episode. One thing that really bugs
me about PL is the Greenes' lost a son and then that plot
element just got abandoned. This was revealed in a very
touching episode called "The Secret." But then that baby
never seems to be mentioned again, even when Claire's pregnancy
is so difficult and there were worries about whether Grace would
even be born. It just seemed so unreal to me that they
would never bring up that little boy in light of that. In
one episode, Russell even talks about his first child being born
(Josh) and then the second child (Dinah). But he skips
over the fact that the other son was before Dinah. And
Claire musta been pretty far along since lil Josh knew a baby
brother was on the way. Too weird. So I'm very glad
this episode doesn't repeat the same mistake.
I like Tess' guidance about never touching a paper more than
once. I try to be like that at work and find it pretty
effective. Of course, these days it's more like "never
open an email more than once."
This episode really hits me in a different way as an adult than
as a teenager. For example, I was much more struck by the
boy's ideal city and the sheer number of bottles he used.
When I first saw this I remember thinking "Whoa, that's a lot of
bottles." But now I'm more aware of how much alcohol
content is in each bottle and... geez. How frightening.
How I relate to child abuse and neglect has also changed.
These days, I know a bit more about how widespread it is.
So I find myself really unsympathetic to Sondra. But I do
think the portrayal is good... up until she kidnaps
Nathaniel. But previous to that I do think TBAA
demonstrated how a person could lose control and lash out at
those they love. That doesn't mean I understand how
someone could hurt their kid, though. The look on her
son's face when Sondra yells and smashes things is so
heartbreaking. It reminds me of one time I accidentally
kicked my dog (she was walking right behind me and I didn't
realize). She looked so hurt and betrayed. I can't
imagine seeing that look on a kid's face and knowing I'd caused
Dinah is a total nostalgia trip for me. Those lil side
braids and her choker were two things I remember wearing when I
was that age. Right around that time, actually. It
makes me happy and sad all at once.
just hoping Part II (which I barely recall) doesn't make a big
sympathy plea for Sondra. When she threatens Nathaniel's
life, I pretty much checked out of the Sondra Show.
What I didn't love
about this episode:
Absolutely no offense to the actress playing Sondra but... as I
said in my "Joe's Return" review, I find it distracting that the
role is played by two different women who look and sound nothing
alike. You'd think they coulda found someone with an
accent, at least.
I'm uncertain about getting a vibe that Claire needed Russell's
permission to go to the jail. On one hand, I guess I would
want a say if the other parent of my children was going
somewhere potentially dangerous. On the other, it just
doesn't sit well with me to think a grown woman needs permission
for something. So I dunno if I like that scene or
Not a complaint but something that I find hard to watch: Sondra
breaking her husband's mug in front of the lil boy. It's
I kinda find it hard to believe that Sondra didn't think Monica
looked familiar given she was the one that spent time comforting
her after her husband and son died. But maybe that's
realistic. She did have a lot on her mind, of course.
Would a company seriously leave a fired employee alone at
her workspace? Sondra gets left for at least a few
minutes. That never happens in my office. It's kinda
Does God worry? Sondra expresses dismay that God is
worried about her drinking and Monica answers "Yes." It
just struck me cause I never attribute worry to God.
Concern, yes. Worry, no. Even in writing about
Andrew I generally try to avoid using "worry" but I guess I
won't sweat it now!
Parts that made
me feel swoony:
He looks so relaxed at the start... the way his foot is moving
and he's just sprawled out on the grass. I wish Andrew had
seemed that peaceful more often in the second half of the show's
And his laughter over Tess teasing Monica about her desire for a
yellow cucumber flower! So cute! Makes me happy!
Seeing Andrew behind bars always makes me uneasy. Seeing
Andrew behind the bars of death row makes me really
uneasy. I started to run around the room. And wanted
to pull him outta there and take him back to that lovely green
I continue to feel bad for Andrew and want to hug him basically
whenever the Greenes talk about him. It always seems to be
"Saw Andrew... something bad will happen." No thought to
poor Andrew. Yes, I know I'm biased but show the man a lil
"Sometimes the only thing that we can do is just be
there." When Andrew says that to Monica, he pretty much
encapsulates why I came to believe in AODs. Because
sometimes I just want to think "Someone was there. They
witnessed this. They comforted that person." No
heroic rescue. Just being there. A warm, loving
presence. I love that TBAA gave us three portrayals of
beings like that.
I got the giggles when Monica asks her class "Haven't you ever
imagined living somewhere else?" Yes, Monica, I
have. And your co-worker lives two doors down...
TBAA and PL repeat and swap actors A LOT. I'm pretty sure
some of these supporting actors have appeared on both shows,
maybe multiple times. Sondra's boss and the volunteer
leader lady at the jail looked very familiar.
Eeek. I'm watching this on a delay of several weeks and
saw a Hallmark I Love Lucy
banner announcing back-to-back episodes during TBAA's time
slot. I had to remind myself this was a recording and TBAA
has its time back. Yay!
Scenes Hallmark cut:
-Didn't notice anything.
And further on down the road...:
notice before how Andrew balances Tess and then puts away her
Monica: Everyone grieves in different ways on different
schedules. Don't they, Tess?
Tess: Well, that's because every person they lose is
different. They love them a different way, they lost them
in a different way. They miss them in a different
way. The only thing that remains the same is the pain.
"Get the old things behind you and move on. You'll feel
better about it." Tess' advice on filing but I think it
applies to a lot of life.
Augh... I think my eye sight is not as good as it was
three years ago. This page and the "Miles" one seem more
difficult to see text on. I've bolded it now. But
then I was using a different puter so maybe the color on the
monitor is just different. I hope! Anyhow...
Not sure but I think the lady showing Claire around at the jail
also played a prisoner in "True Confessions." Yep.
She did. Ha.
Kudos to Monica for keeping it together over Matthew's
city. I probably would have dissolved into tears.
"God is real." Simple but true from Monica. Followed
soon after by "You cannot hide from God."
"God loves you... He knows what you're going
through. He watches you going through it alone when you
don't have to. He's the restorer of souls: a husband to
the widow, a father to the fatherless. He can be your
peace and joy right now if only you let Him." Also from
Monica's revelation scene. Such a powerful truth: God
knows what you're feeling.
"Sometimes the only thing that we can do is just be
there." I still love how Andrew says that. Maybe
cause it's how I felt about John. How I still do. It
just mattered that he was there.
Considering Joe is calling all the way from Turkey, I find it
odd Dinah didn't run after Nathaniel (who had left the house
only seconds before) so he could talk to his dad. There's
no way he could have gotten out of yelling distance in that
space of time.
the Episode Guide
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