It’s another mostly mediocre week for Jessica Jones this week but also another trigger warning as this episode’s most shining scene is also one of its darkest. I’m here at my desk breaking it down while an intimidating and knife-wielding Scott Buck glares at me from the corner. Beware of spoilers and beware the Buck. Here’s five thoughts on “A.K.A. I Did Something Today.”
This week opens with Trish and Jess dealing with the aftermath of Trish’s attack on Sallinger and the loss of Dorothy. Jess tends to a shock-stricken Trish in the hotel room as the latter is mostly catatonic. It’s a quiet scene, meant to impact the viewer and highlight the severity of the rising stakes this season but it doesn’t so much land as it just floats about, bereft of any real emotional weight. It’s filler, and a full five minutes worth at that.
2. A Difficult Position
As the main plot plods along we learn that Costa has evidence from one of Sallinger’s victims that can tie him to the killing. Unfortunately, Sallinger has evidence that implicates Trish in his own attack. Jess is forced to make a difficult choice: bring down Sallinger or save Trish. As Erik points out, it is an “either/or” choice.
This culminates in Jess gaining access to the crime lab after blackmailing a police officer and turning a sewer valve. By the by, I’m no plumber, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t how shit works. I say shit quite literally. Jess creates a shit puddle from a drain in the center of the crime lab causing it to be evacuated so she can sneak in and tamper with evidence. This is a sharp turn from the seriousness of the situation when the resolution is basically a sitcom plot-device.
3. Basically Stalking
Is anyone else disturbed by the fact that Jeri admits to basically having stalked Kith for twenty years or so? When trying to convince Kith she needs her representation Jeri tells her she exposed Kith’s now-dead husband “because I goddamn love you.” We then learn that Jeri has been pretty hardcore tracking her former lover for a very long time, following social media, knowing her address, watching from that bush outside the window. Okay, I made that last part up. But it is a little obsessive on Hogarth’s part. Though, this may be one of the most in-character moments this season has given us.
4. Father Daughter Time
I’ll add yet another trigger warning here as the scene I am giving commentary on deals with the sensitive issue of childhood molestation. The most emotionally-resonant moment of “A.K.A. I Did Something Today” comes as Erik describes his first use of his powers. Erik’s bad-people-induced-headaches act as a sort of sixth sense that allows him to see someone’s true nature. And the first occurrence of this emanates from his own father.
It is from this he deduces that their father has been sexually abusing his sister Brianna for years, during what he referred to as their “father-daughter-time.” Erik confronts his father, sees him arrested, suffers the loss of his mother when she overdoses and has his sister blame him for the loss and for telling the truth that was hers to tell. It was the first, and last time he used his power for “so-called good.” This is Jessica Jones operating at peak dramatic efficiency, but it is also one more reason to be disappointed with the rest of this season and how it wastes a cast with such strong acting abilities.
5. It’s Her
“It’s like Clark Kent. How does no one know Trish is the masked vigilante?” My query sees no answer from the corner. But this makes no sense. Jessica Jones is known publicly, as is what amounts to her only friend who is famous. Jess her self mentions Trish is syndicated in sixteen countries. It is baffling that no one can connect the dots here until Jeri pulls a major trope by zooming and enhancing on a screen reflection in the footage of Trish’s break-in at her office.
“Melissa has been very displeased with your reviews. She feels like you’re nit-picking a lot here” Buck finally tells me, bouncing his knife back-and-forth in his hands. Perhaps some of this is nit-picking but I’m a firm believer that suspension of disbelief is balanced by an overall enjoyment of any fictional media. In past reviews on this site and my podcast, I’ve always taken the time to note that if the overall product is palatable the audience or a critic will be more forgiving of small plot holes, overused tropes, and out-of-character moments. But this season has been rife with them.Continued below
It’s beginning to feel like a life-or-death decision to review the third season of Jessica Jones but I’ll be back next week to review “A.K.A. Hero Pants.” Hopefully, Scott will not be further upset by my thoughts on it. That is a very big knife he’s holding.