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'Damages' finale: Patty stands alone

April 20, 2010 |  8:18 am
Damages-finale-fx-patty In the season (and possibly the series) finale, “Damages” does a good job of wrapping up the season and other open questions from the series itself. There were parts that made me feel the producers had made some cheap teases throughout the season that ended up being throwaway details in the finale. If the series does get picked up, I hope the producers try to keep their flash forwards relevant to the mysteries at hand. After all, they don’t want to lose those of us who have been willing to play along this long. As a whole, though, the episode was a good one.

Joe in the bathroom with the toilet
We’d known Tom was dying since the first episode, and still we had no clue how. Now we know he fights to his last breath. I’m interested to hear what you think of his demise. Though I felt he fought valiantly, at the same time, he went against Patty’s orders to abort mission and deceived Ellen about it. In the end, Joe Tobin reached him and drowned him in, of all places, the toilet bowl. How terrible was the sight of Tom’s body sticking out of a toilet bowl? Is that where you end up if you don’t listen to Patty?

Lenny is off to con another day
Leonard Winstone, as we noticed last week, has an interesting code of ethics. First, he saved Tom’s life (and gave him a fighting chance) from Zedeck’s henchman. Then, after apparently being strangled to death, he coughs back to life and into the protective arms of the hobo. We last see him boarding a plane, no doubt embarking on yet another new life and identity.  Do you think by trying to save Tom’s life and turning the evidence in on the Tobins that he earned his free pass?

The Tobins’ worst Thanksgiving ever

Karma was working overtime for the Tobins this week too. After Marilyn revealed that Louis started the Ponzi scheme after Joe made some promises regarding investments that he couldn’t back up, Joe basically disowned his mother. In a bid to make up for the secrets she had kept for years and especially since that fateful Thanksgiving night, Marilyn tried to turn herself in to Patty. When Patty wouldn’t bite, the fish did. She threw herself into the East River (making her the body we saw going off the bridge in the season’s earlier flash forward).

I thought it was fitting that Joe’s stupid mistakes and egotistical moves this season landed him in the actual role of ultimately killing Tom and then paying for it at the hands of Patty later.

Ellen gets closure
Ellen has had quite an episode. Not only did she lose one of her closest friends, but also she finally learned the truth behind her fiancé’s murder, and it led her right back to Frobisher. We all knew that Frobisher’s storyline would have to be pulled back into the show’s web at some point, but did you think it would be wrapped up as easily as it was? I’m still not sure if I cared about Frobisher’s storyline at all, no matter how enjoyable Ted Danson was in the role.

After learning of Wes’ association with the bearded cop, Ellen met up with him again. When he offered to provide the evidence to lock Frobisher up, though, Ellen declined. She knew that it would mean Wes would have to turn himself in, as well. It seemed that Wes’ own guilt got the better of him, and he did it anyway. Justified?

The roots of Patty’s ambition
And, finally, there’s Patty. Ultimately, she got herself on track again after all that had clouded her mind this season. The scene that opened the episode and unraveled throughout, one of a young Patty, pregnant, petting a horse at a farm owned by Julian (who we now know was always a figment of her imagination) seemed to be the defining moment of Patty's life. We learned that during law school she was at a crossroads. Her choices? Stay in town and marry the man who got her pregnant or leave as a single mother and try to get her career started anyway. Her obstetrician gave her the answer when he ordered bed rest due to complications of her pregnancy. Instead, she walked far out of town to Julian’s farm and basically forced herself to miscarry. It would define the strength of her ambition.

In this episode, she sent her son’s pregnant cougar girlfriend to jail for statutory rape after finding out that she didn’t leave as she had said she would. We then find out that an angry Michael was the one who hit her after stealing Tom’s car from Ellen. She ended up keeping that detail from the police. After putting Joe Tobin in jail and recovering the Tobin money, we met up with Patty and Ellen at Patty’s favorite pier. When Ellen asked her if it was all worth it, Patty looked back on her losses and didn’t answer.

If this episode were to serve as the series finale, are you satisfied with it?

-- Jethro Nededog (Follow me on Twitter @TheRealJethro)

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Photo: Glenn Close as Patty Hewes on "Damages." Credit: Timothy White / FX
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