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Review: ‘Pushing Daisies’ – Bitches

The following contains MAJOR SPOILERS for the “Bitches” episode of the ABC series, “Pushing Daisies.” Previously on “Pushing Daisies,” Ned rescued Olive from a charging horse, and she gave him a great big gratitude kiss. Our story opens with Ned awakening and watching Chuck sleep. She awakes and, when getting out of bed, stumbles and […]

The following contains MAJOR SPOILERS for the “Bitches” episode of the ABC series, “Pushing Daisies.”

Previously on “Pushing Daisies,” Ned rescued Olive from a charging horse, and she gave him a great big gratitude kiss.

Our story opens with Ned awakening and watching Chuck sleep. She awakes and, when getting out of bed, stumbles and falls on Ned. When Chuck doesn’t die, they believe they can now touch, and then start touching. And that leads to the removal of clothes.

Chuck says she is still wearing too much, and removed a her skin, revealing Olive. Ned awakens, and finds himself watching Chuck, and the same banter begins that occurred in his dream. He uncomfortably gets out of bed.

In the Pie Hole, Olive and Chuck are undergoing female bonding, with Olive telling Chuck about the kiss. Chuck wishes that she had been told by Ned, and Olive laments the fact that Ned didn’t feel it was worth mentioning.

Meanwhile, Ned is spilling his guts to Emerson about the kiss, concerned about the fact that he’s thinking about Olive, and downplaying the intensity and duration of the kiss. Emerson would much rather discuss the latest case.

A dog breeder, Harold was apparently stabbed to death in his office at the kennel club, and the club has offered a reward for the arrest of the murderer. Emerson, Chuck and Ned go to the morgue, and question the victim. Harold tells them he wasn’t stabbed to death, he was poisoned.

He then relates how he drank his poisoned almond-tasting coffee, spilled the coffee, and then slipped on it. He repeatedly fell onto his desk, stabbing himself with a letter opener. He proclaims his wife killed him, as Ned touches him and returns him to death. Emerson takes delight in how easy solving this case was.

But as it turns out, it wasn’t that easy. Harold was a poligamist, with four wives. Wife one raises show dogs, wife two was a dog psychologist, wife three was an obedience trainer, and wife for trained dogw to work with the blind.

Emerson, Chuck and Ned are joined at their table by Olive, who asks if she can play. Emerson says she can, since there are four wives, and four of them, but Olive isn’t going to get paid. Olive is just delighted to be a part of things.

They set off to question the Breeder’s wives, with all but Emerson giving more information than they got. When they compare notes, they learn that each wife sent her husband off with coffee on his last morning, as well as the story behind Bubblegum, his perfect dog, bred from the dogs of his four wives.

The four wives arrive at the Pie Hole thanks to Olive, and want to know what is going on. Emerson in turn wants to know what kind of flavoring each used in their husband’s coffee. Each wife reveals her flavoring, with the fourth wife admitting to using an almond flavored cream.

The fourth wife is arrested, and Emerson is back on the case, as the blind people she trains dogs for hire him to prove her innocence. He learns Harold sold the Bubblegum to Snuffy, the pet store mogul. He also learns that wife three accidentally ran over Bubblegum.

However the death of the dog doesn’t end his rights, he gets the dog dead or alive. He has an urn containing ashes, and plans to clone Bubblegum. Emerson relays this information to the others.

In a dream, Emerson finds a clue, and goes to confront wife number three. He tells her he figured out Bubblegum wasn’t dead, and she drugs Emerson, and kidnaps him. She admits she faked the dogs death to keep it away from Snuffy. She says she didn’t kill Harold.

Wife number 1 comes to the Pie Hole and to drop off items purchased by Olive while she was undercover, and Olive mentions the dead or alive clause in the contract.

Emerson frees himself, and returns to see Snuffy with Ned and Chuck. There they find Snuffy dead. They hatch a plan to capture the murderer. They take the dead Snuffy to Harold’s funeral, and wait for the mourners to leave, and Ned touches Snuffy. Wife number one freaks and runs from the church, chased by Ned and Digby.

It’s revealed that wife one resented not being special, by Harold marrying others. When she learned of Harold’s plans to breed Bubblegum and have his litters in pet stores all across the country, she couldn’t stand for it. Bubblegum needed to be unique. When she learned from Olive that Snuffy could still use Bubblegum, she killed him as well.

The Ned/Chuck story was minimal in this episode. It was all about Emerson. Chi McBride gives an excellent performance, both as the straight man to the loons at the Pie Hole, and as a detective.

What Worked

This was an Emerson episode, and all of his scenes worked perfectly. I loved the third wife using the clicker to train him, and I loved the Vertigo inspired dream sequence.

But best of all, I enjoyed seeing Emerson actually acting like a detective. His picking up the clue about the collar and leash was good. Emerson doesn’t do the detective thing often, he appears to have gotten lazy since Ned revival ablity does most of the Work.

I also enjoyed Ned being analysed by the dog psychologist. Spilling out his issues as if it was Digby’s problem was a great little twist.

What Didnt Work

Ned’s reviving Snuffy at a crowded funeral was unbelievable. He has gone to such trouble to hide his ability, and then to use it in public like that, just strained credibility.

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

“Bitches” was written by Chad Gomez Creasey and Dara Resnick Creasey and directed by Alan Kroeker. It stars Lee Pace, Anna Friel, Chi McBride and Kristin Chenoweth.

“Pushing Daisies” airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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