Synopsis of 1×05: This week’s road trip is brought to you by a kitten, Dirk’s cool new jacket, and Todd’s new American flag shirt.
After last week’s Gordon-centric show, it’s only natural we have a Gordon light episode. This week, the only scenes of Gordon we have are in the opening. Gordon is packing away all of his Lux swag, including Sammy’s dead body, into the back of his car. Felicia the corgi, still inside Lydia Spring’s body, is running around in some leaves. And Gordon doesn’t have the heart to kill her. Not yet.
Dirk and Todd are on their road trip adventure. Dirk has a cool new jacket, and Todd is fashionably out of the loop in his plain white tee. That is, until a waitress spills coffee on it and Todd’s best friend Dirk buys him a new shirt. A shirt Todd has seen before.
Travel back with me, if you will, to Episode 1. Todd is working at the hotel, the elevator doors open, and he sees himself in an American flag shirt and (I’m guess Lux’s) white fur jacket. Of course, Todd remembers this. But he and Dirk continue on the journey, despite apprehension.
Most of their time is spent having philosophical conversations while digging holes. Yes, it is much like the film Holes, except there is no Sigourney Weaver or Shia LaBeef. One of their most poignant conversations digs deep into their individual self-loathing. Dirk, having been intuitive his whole life, admits to being a very lonely child and a lonely adult. Todd is the only person to have stuck around, to be Dirk’s friend.
Todd’s confession is a bit more revelatory. He never had Pararibulitis. It’s true that it runs in his family. But Todd lied about having it; he just wanted the money from his parents. And now that Amanda actually has it, Todd has been doing everything he can to help her. Todd refers to himself as an asshole repeatedly. And one can certainly can understand why. But Dirk, and his infinite friendship, doesn’t see Todd that way. Maybe together, they can combat their own loneliness.
Todd and Dirk make some other revelations along the way. They discover the pieces of a machine that surely were left by Patrick Spring. And after getting attacked by some of Gordon’s henchmen, they discover that inside the kitten is the soul of a shark. You know, like the one that killed Patrick Spring. What Dirk and Todd don’t know (and what we, the audience do know) is about the soul-switching. So that’s audience – 1. Dirk Gently – 0.
Amanda also has her own supernatural adventure. After weeks of being stalked by the Rowdy 3, she finally builds up the courage to hop a ride with them.
We learn quite a bit about the Rowdy 3 in this episode. They’re a part of Operation Blackwing, under Project Incubus. They feed off psychic energy. They’re like Energy Vampires. Dirk and Amanda taste particularly yummy. And they have names! Martin, Cross, Vogel, and Gripps. They even manage to help Amanda during one of her delusions, promising she’ll “never have to deal with this sh*t again.”
What she does have to deal with is an encounter from the military guys, Colonel Riggins and Agent Friedkin. Friedkin is doing his best Legolas impression: be blonde and provide exposition. Not only did we learn about the Rowdy 3 but we get a closer look at Riggins’ relationship to Operation Blackwing. Too close, some might say. Riggins takes a more personal approach to catching guys like the Rowdy 3. But Friedkin thinks that’s too slow and takes matters into his own hands, drawing Amanda into the fray.
Bart and Ken return this week, having made it all the way to Seattle. Too bad Dirk has already left for Skagway Valley. Ken eventually gets her a meal and a hotel room to shower and sleep. Who knew that Bart was carrying around $17,000 in cash?
This week we also saw the rise and fall of Estevez and Zimmerfield. They follow the clues to Gordon Rivers workplace, a zoo where he was in charge of the now-defunct animal transport unit. The building he was working out of was condemned. So it’s easy to connect the dots on this one. Supreme Being Kill Room = abandoned zoo building. (Also, he was known as being a prick. Somehow, that’s very satisfying.)
The buddy cops try to tell the higher ups that they need to check out the abandoned building, but the boss says to look elsewhere. Following their instincts, they go to check out the building. Lo and behold, Farah is spying on that same building. And good thing too. Once they step through the gate, Zimmerfield is shot through with an arrow. Ned and Zed attack them and luckily, Farah is there to defend them. In possibly the saddest moment of this comic show, Richard Scheiff is killed off. RIP, Eyebrows, RIP.
The episode ends with Todd and Dirk losing the kitten, Farah seeing Lydia (in human form) in Gordon’s car, and Agent Friedkin getting permission to be more aggressive on Operation Blackwing. We’re half-way through the season, so here’s hoping more mysteries get solved in the oncoming weeks.