This part was even better than the last one! But they're getting harder to review. It's difficult to review an episode that's a part of a bigger story. That's why, in past seasons, I've always reviewed episodes as a whole when all the parts have aired. That's not really possible this season though, so I'm going to do my best. By the way, if you haven't been there, FreddyJay at The Campbell County Connection is reviewing the episodes in a very interesting way. He's comparing them with the episodes in Album 25: Darkness Before Dawn each week. The first review last week comparing The GRC Part I to A Little Credit Please was very interesting, and I expect this week's to be even more so, so go check it out!
I thought that the opening scene to this second episode was even better than last week's opening scene with Matthew and Emily. This time we got some answers to questions right off the bat, and I hope the same thing happens next week. I really like the characters of Mr. Skint and Buck, but already a bunch more questions have been brought up. I'm wondering if the fact that they both have southern accents will come into play later on. I would think Detective Polehaus should have been more suspicious of Buck upon hearing his strange accent. (I personally think it sounds fake--kind of like the Australian boy, Simon, in A Little Credit, Please.) Somehow they have a connection with Uncle Archie of the carnival, and I think that's going to matter later on.
Detective Polehaus keeps making a big deal about how bad of a family background Wally Haggler has, and I don't know if anyone else caught it, but Uncle Archie is his brother. (So does that mean he's Jay's dad?! Or just another uncle?) I think the detective must know something about Archie's involvement in something, or at least he's suspicious, or he wouldn't be harping upon Wally's background so much. I thought it was intriguing that the detective also knew immediately who the Stiletto is, and that he thought Wally was lying as soon as he was brought up. I looked up the word stiletto in the dictionary to see if that'd give me any clues, but it only means "a small dagger" or "a thin high heel on a woman's shoe". I still think it could be Mr. Charles or the Chairman. I don't think it's Mitch, Richard, or Jason, because each of them is a Christian, and wouldn't do something like that. Well I guess Richard isn't necessarily a Christian, but he's always been a good guy, and he understands forgiveness and repentance. I really have no clue who he could be though.
Monty works in the Secret Service? I never would have guessed that he'd go that direction from his earlier shows. I wonder if Jana knows anything about it. Maybe his dad got him into it. But I think it makes sense that he'd be investigating the counterfeit case. My theory is that he is a spy for the government, and Dirk Beggs, Mr. Skint whoever the other guy is think he's in on the plan. The only sign that he was an agent was the disc under his skin, so I don't see how any of them would know, or why he'd tell them. I can't see him being a double agent against the government, so I don't think he's actually working with them. But now he's right back out of the hospital, and he left us with another cliff-hanger!
Eugene seems to have his action/adventure cap on in these episodes. His attitude and tone remind me of the days when he was trying to find his father with Whit. The chemistry between him and Emily, in my opinion, is really, really good, and I think he'd make a more fitting partner for Emily in a detective agency than Matthew does. ;) And also, the music again really added to the show. John Campbell does a great job composing for mysteries. It hearkens back to the Novacom days. But I'm still waiting to hear from Katrina! I hope she comes in soon. And I hope Audrey Wasalewski starts doing a better job with her voice. In past episodes with her and Eugene, I agree with those who say that she isn't as good of a Katrina as Pamela Hayden was. But she hasn't been in mystery mode for a while, so maybe she can redeem herself.
The kids were really good in the episode again. I thought Matthew especially did a good job. He was right to say that he shouldn't go to meet a stranger, and then I thought it was great that he said he wanted to meet at the police station. I'm really itching to know what's on the AppleBerry phone, to find out why Mr. Skint is so concerned that it will fall into the wrong hands. Georgina Cordova continues to do a great job playing Nelson, and I'm continually amazed at how much she can make him sound like a boy. His argument with Jay about the plane crash made me laugh. Jay also did a good job in the episode. It seems that he's going to be a very important character in the episodes to come, since he links the bad guys to the good guys. I look forward to hearing more from him, since Marvin says that he's in every episode this season.
There are still so many questions, despite how many were answered in this episode: What is Dirk Beggs' secret? What's on the AppleBerry he dropped? What's Uncle Wally's part in all this? And what is the significance of his relation to Uncle Archie at the carnival? Who is Monty working for? Why and how did he escape from the hospital? What's going to happen with the counterfeit money? Is that the "knapsack or something" that dropped from the plane during the fight in the air? Why is Detective Polehaus so suspicious and hostile toward Uncle Wally? Does the detective have any secrets himself? Who is the Stiletto? And why do all the suspicious people know who he is? What part is Connie going to play as the episodes continue? Is her place at the college going to play a role? What's going to happen at Uncle Archie's carnival? And when will we ever learn if a duck's quack really echoes?!
I can't wait to hear the answers to all these questions as the season continues to unfold. I'm glad that this episode had a good moral presented by Chris at the end. Hopefully the rest of the episodes will end up following suit. Thank you for taking the time to read my review! Please comment!
P.S. I think this should be okay since the Official Podcast has released it, so here's the album art for Album 54!:
I have to admit that I don't like this one as much as I've liked the ones in the past. I feel pretty much the same about it as I did about Album 51's art when it first came out. It just doesn't seem like it'd look good on the front of an album. But maybe it will look better when it gets a border around it and actually goes on the album.
By the way, I think, based on the title as presented on the Official Podcast blog, that the title of Album 54 has been changed slightly from Clanging Cymbals and the Meaning of Love to Clanging Cymbals and the Meaning of God's Love.