I am a TV show blitzer and for this I make no apologies. I will quite happily blitz through season after season of a single show over a sustained period of hours, days, weeks until I have seen every episode ever made, and this is how I watch television.
Psych is the show currently taking up every slot in my imaginary tv guide and with seven seasons of sixteen episodes at 45 minutes each to get through...it's fair to say that it's become a labour of love. Now I'm nearing the end of season six and, as with all intense-yet-fleeting love affairs I'm all too aware that it will soon reach its inevitable conclusion and I will be left with an empty void where Shawn and Gus used to be... (until I quickly find myself a different show with new characters to replace them - I'm pretty cut-throat like that).
So with the end drawing near, I'd like reflect on the reasons why I have grown to love Psych:
Psych centres around the adventures of Shawn Spencer, a freelance psychic detective for the Santa Barbara Police Department, and his childhood friend Gus. Wait! Before you click the 'close tab' button because you didn't watch that Medium nonsense and you're certainly not going to watch this thank-you-very-much - there's a twist...Shawn is not actually psychic (well, duh! I hear you cry). Shawn's actual ability is one of heightened observation, developed at an early age with the help of his well-meaning father who obviously read the drill-sergeant guide to parenting. We're all in on the secret except his colleagues at the SBPD, for whom he performs the whole psychic shabang complete with crazy dance movements and sudden 'visions'. It's a novel take on the detective genre and one that allows for a lot of laughs...
Whether it be because of the outlandish costumes, the constant references to obscure 80's films or because of a genuinely funny gag (of which there are many), Psych usually makes me laugh out loud at least once an episode, which for me is quite the achievement. I am struggling to think of another detective show that is also so incredibly funny, and I simply can't.
'Dual Spires' is probably hands-down the best episode of Psych if you're a Twin Peaks fan. James Roday (who plays Shawn) lovingly co-wrote the script for this episode as a tribute to his favourite television show of all time. The episode stars seven of the original cast members from the cult classic series and pokes a little friendly fun at the overly dramatic and downright bizarre aspects of the show, containing numerous references for the ardent enthusiast to uncover. Apparently Roday was set to approach Twin Peaks creator David Lynch to guest star in the episode and then changed his mind for fear that he might respond negatively. Had the eccentric director done so he would have been severely mistaken, for Dual Spires is clearly a project born out of true love and is an excellent homage to the somewhat insane, but truly wonderful series.
A Great Cast
A television show is only as good as its cast and Psych has a really fantastic one. As well as Shawn and Gus, the SBPD detectives Carlton Lassiter (Timothy Omundson), Juliet O'Hara (Maggie Lawson) and their chief (Kirsten Nelson) bring depth and some much needed discipline to counter the crazy antics of their (not-so) psychic colleague. Supporting performances from Corbin Benson and Kurt Fuller as Shawn's Dad and Woody the Coroner complete the ensemble. It's clear to see from the 'psych-outs' (bloopers) that these actors have a great time on set and that sense of humour and camaraderie is evident in the show.
The thing I probably love the most about Psych and what makes it a joy to watch every episode is the close friendship between Shawn and Gus. Every episode begins with a flashback to them as childhood buddies and James Roday and Dulé Hill have such great chemistry that it's not difficult to believe they've been friends their entire lives. The warmth and fun they bring to the show is abundant and you know you're in for a good time once the theme tune begins.
Speaking of the theme tune, it's not great but it's insanely catchy. I'll leave you to get acquainted with it.
I've heard it literally 200 times (beginning and end), so I'm good.