Damages – I Lied Too (02×01)

There has been some trepidation on how Damages‘ creators Todd A. Kessler, Glenn Kessler, Daniel Zelman were going to continue the multi-layered storyline of the first season of the show. Fans will know that we’re introduced to the series very near the end before being warped back in time and shown how we reached the point where a bloodied and distraught Ellen Parsons (Rose Byrne) would be running down a New York City street. While the season premiere offers up the future again, it isn’t the opening teaser that sets this episode in motion, it’s the final seconds that draw the audience right back in to the show’s comforting grasp.

Fresh off the destructive Arthur Frobisher (Ted Danson) case, a haunted Patty Hewes (Emmy winner Glenn Close) is confronted by her associates into taking a new case. Ellen relays a set-up case provided by her new FBI friends as she strives to take down the women who tried to kill her, but Patty has been contacted by Daniel Purcell (William Hurt). The full scope of the help that Purcell needs isn’t immediately evident aside from a big corporation and chemical work that could be very harmful. Patty initially rebuffs Daniel, who we find out had a previous relationship of some sort, but in the closing moments of the premiere the tables turn dramatically.

Byrnes portrayal of a broken, revenge-driven Ellen is the highlight of the episode and her shut out from an Emmy nod last year is near criminal. While her story isn’t as integral to the “A” storyline, at least at this time, her vivid daydreams about shotgun blasting a-still-alive Frobisher add an element to her character full realized in the aforementioned closing seconds.

Three great things continue over from the first to the second season of the series. The A-list cast is a big part of just how great this series is, with award winners, cult favorites, and solid acting stripes abound, the series continues to compile the best cast on TV with additions like Timothy Olyphant (Deadwood), Marcia Gay Harden, and Hurt. The second and third go hand in hand, the astounding writing for the series is what made it so attractive to these actors and actresses and the premiere already begins the twisty-turny spiral we’ve come to expect. Lastly, its an intelligent series that keeps the watcher engaged, everything in the series has a purpose, and as we saw last season, everyone is connected, everyone is manipulating someone else, everyone is dirty in some way, but who comes out on top is a matter of great discussion once we’re able to see how everything shakes out.

For those worried about the second season of the series, don’t, everything that made Damages one of the best drama series on TV is still intact and just as good as ever. Will the writers be able to sustain the series again for 13 episodes and include as many twists as last year? That’s still to be determined, but if the initial batch of episodes is any indication its going to be a great ride.

Written by Erich Becker
Thirty-something with a love of everything we cover here, and a few things we don't. Erich has run Entertainmentopia since the site's inception in 1999, countless redesigns, a few crashes, and a lot of media later, here you have it!