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'John From Cincinnati': Papa don't preach

August 13, 2007 |  8:20 am

Um, OK.

Johncincy__275 So John and Shaun return from what I can only assume is a Laird Hamilton-style surfing tow-in from heaven, outfitted in stylish camo wetsuits.  Shaun has become as incomprehensible as John when asked about where the duo went.  (He replies "Cincinnati.")  John rambles something to Linc about 9-11-14, like he's suddenly read the Book of Revelation and wants to jabber about it.  Cass films the whole scene with her video camera, which has magic Wi-Fi capabilities.  Other hit men come from Hawaii and wander around.  A TV newscaster recognizes Tina from porn.  And Linc convinces the whole family -- John included -- to sign with Stinkweed and have a parade to celebrate Shaun's return.  Mitch stops levitating after the deal is done, which is good because treatment for levitation is totally not covered under Stinkweed's HMO.

And with that, "John From Cincinnati" throws in the towel.

It appeared from early episodes that Linc was the root of all evil, that he was trying to corrupt the Yost family by co-opting their surfing talents into something mainstream and marketable.  And yet, in this episode, it seems as though John favored the family signing up with Linc because it would help get "his father's" word out.  I know there's a group of X Games moto athletes who call themselves Riders 4 Christ, but for some reason I doubt that's what they were going for in "John."

Actually, I take that back -- I have no idea what they were going for with "John."  Or did I just fall asleep during a critical two-minute explanation of what happened and now I'll be forever in the dark?  It's not good for a show to make viewers question if they were actually conscious for the entire episode.

On top of all this, I went to StinkweedUSA.com, a website that was part of the promotional banners in the scene with the parade.  Yep, it's a Time Warner site (check out the privacy policy) -- and there's exactly one mention of Shaun Yost on the whole thing, as far as I can tell, a reference to his "sprained neck" from an earlier episode.  Baffling.  Was the site not updated when the response to "John" didn't go as swimmingly as hoped?  Or is it an indication that there's an entirely parallel story line that was never explored?

Hey, I guess it's like life.  More questions than answers.

-- Ann Donahue

(Photo courtesy HBO)

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