Birds of Prey Review – “Feat of Clay” and “Devil’s Eyes”

It’s been advertised as a season finale, but it’ll take some amazing ratings tonight to prevent it from becoming a series finale. They’ve finally produced episodes good enough that make me regret the WB’s decision to cancel this show. It took time to find its legs, but they did some good work on these episodes.

Cast

Dina Meyer as
Oracle/Barbara Gordon.
Ashley Scott
as Huntress/Helena Kyle.
Rachel
Skarsten
as Dinah Lance
Shemar Moore as
Detective Reese
Ian
Abercrombie
as Alfred Pennyworth
Mia Sara as Harley
Quinn

The first hour was written by Adam Armus and Kay Foster. The
second hour was written by Adam Armus and Melissa Rosenberg.
The first hour was directed by Joe Napolitano.
The second hour was directed by Robert J. Wilson.

Original Airdate


Feat of Clay
and Devil’s Eyes
originally aired on Wednesday,
February 19, 2003 in a two hour movie cut.

Synopsis

In the first hour, Huntress needs the help of Clayface to stop a
similar killer.

In the second hour, the final showdown between Harley Quinn and the
Birds of Prey takes place.

High Point

In the first hour, I’d pick Clayface. I don’t know if that’s an
accurate adaptation of the comic book character, but the scenes with
him in Arkham were excellent.

In the second hour, I’d pick the scene at Helena’s day job. Or,
rather, her not-as-late-at-night job.

Low Point

That was the elaborate plan that Harley Quinn has been working on for
years? They knew they were being cancelled with five or six episodes
left to produce. There’s no reason they couldn’t have expanded that a
bit. The early build-up just collapsed.

The Review

The revelations that let people in on the secret identities helped
give the show a new feel, which boosted the originality
score. Unfortunately, just about everything else had been done
before. I give it 4 out of 6.

The effects in the first hour were passable. Those in the
second hour were minimal, but (apart from the two humans hopping up a
floor) were pretty good. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story was fairly well written when regarded as an
isolated pair of episodes, but it really didn’t work in the larger
scheme of things. The payoff was just too fast, and the scheme too
cheap. At least Oracle only made one logical leap (about the identity
of the Big Bad) this week. I give it 5 out of 6. (I’ll forgive them
a bit for rushing the ending considering that they probably had
planned on 22 episodes, not 13.)

The acting really picked up this week. The guest star
playing Clayface (Kirk
Baltz
) did an excellent job. Dina Meyer really had some meat to
work with this week, and she did it well. Shemar Moore and Ashely
Scott had much better chemistry this week than they usually have. I
give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response was better this week than it was in
most of the series. It was rushed, but the team putting this together
finally did some great work. The lackluster grand evil scheme was the
only part that really didn’t wash for me, and that wasn’t entirely
their fault. I give it 5 out of 6.

The production of the second hour in particular was
excellent. They decided to go out with a bang by the looks of things,
and they managed it. The music was great, the editing and direction
was very good (especially in the final battle scene), and the fight
choreography was mostly good, but seemed to be limited by the
abilities of Mia Sara and/or her stunt double. I give it 5 out of 6.

Overall, I’d say this was the best entry in the series. Too
bad the first few episodes were so weak; they might have stayed on the
air through 22 episodes. I get the feeling a full season would have
ended very well. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, the two hour series finale of Birds of Prey
receives 33 out of 42.

8 replies on “Birds of Prey Review – “Feat of Clay” and “Devil’s Eyes””

  1. mbourgon says:

    Um…. crap.
    That was on? Um, how’d I miss the ads? Oh yeah, I don’t watch anything else on there. Still, sad I missed it.

  2. y42 says:

    season?
    Its not officially cancelled yet? That’s weird, I was sure it was.

    • fiziko says:

      Re: season?

      Its not officially cancelled yet? That’s weird, I was sure it was.

      It was officially cancelled last October. I suspect they’re hedging their bets in case they can’t come up with much in the way of new stuff for next fall.

      • y42 says:

        Re: season?

        Its not officially cancelled yet? That’s weird, I was sure it was.

        It was officially cancelled last October. I suspect they’re hedging their bets in case they can’t come up with much in the way of new stuff for next fall.

        Man! And while they won’t let that crappy [stops himself from crossing over into a troll-like rant] show die, we never even got to see actual Reavers! : (

        I hate fox so damn much!

  3. Daemonik says:

    A quick Homer…..
    Dina Meyer…mmmmmmmmmmmmngrgh

    May she get new television work soon. :)

  4. y42 says:

    Humour me
    I didn’t watch it, but I’m curious to know how they handled/showed Clayface. How was he? Any good morphing shots? Did he drip? : )

    • fiziko says:

      Re: Humour me

      I didn’t watch it, but I’m curious to know how they handled/showed Clayface. How was he? Any good morphing shots? Did he drip? : )

      They had two morphing shots, which weren’t all that impressive. His face sagged somewhat, as well. Mainly he was just a psycho who admitted to being the man who stabbed and killed Catwoman, and he thouroughly enjoyed stirring up Huntress’ emotions so he could be inspired to sculpt.

  5. UncleJam says:

    My thoughts (and a request)
    First hour: boring. I totally stopped paying attention until I saw Harley at the charity event. And the actor playing “old” Clayface (was his kid called Clayface II or anything?) had the worst voice. It sounded like he was trying for a bad Brooklyn accent muffled by a heavy blanket.

    Second hour: I started out liking it. But I didn’t like Harley going meta; she shouldn’t have any powers. Then, I fell asleep right after she killed Wade (thank god someone did!). I woke up to see Barbara holding something (a knife? a baton?) to Harley’s throat while Helena exhorted her not to kill. Can anyone fill me in on what I missed?

    Harley turned out to be a really lame villain. But Mia Sara sold the body language, I thought. She had some good ticks and slightly off mannerisms that got across the character’s warped sense of reality without going over the top.

    Barbara Gordon should never walk. Part of the strength of the character is that she has accepted what was done to her and isn’t trying to find some way to fix herself, unlike Bruce when he had his back broken by Bane. He would never be able to adopt an Oracle-like role, but that is one reason why, in many ways, Barbara is a stronger person than Bruce. I didn’t like when they recently gave Barbara the use of her legs again (even temporarily) in the comic, and I didn’t like it here.

    I really liked Alfred’s phone call at the end. That’s my single biggest disappointment about this very disappointing show: I was so looking forward to a Batman guest shot in the future.

    Birds of Prey now joins my list of shows that had a great concept but piss-poor execution. Too bad.

    P.S.: I have never understood all the Dina Meyer love! Sure, I guess she’s kinda good-looking, but I thought she looked better years ago (check her out on reruns of 90210, for instance). But her acting is and always shall be just plain bad. She can’t do emotion at all. But I guess that’s just my personal opinion. :)

Comments are closed.