Warning. Contains spoilers. Click the “Continue Reading” button to continue.
I have imagination. Yep. Lots of it. But when I imagine something stupid- I don’t tell anyone about it. So conversely, when someone else imagines something stupid-namely Buddy- I don’t want to hear about it.
Precisely why I don’t like this episode.
Now, this episode is a gut-wrencher. Precisely the other reason I don’t like this episode- because now I feel like a jerk for stating my opinion. Dion comes back from a heart transplant, totally changed person. Here’s the third thing I don’t like about this episode: the moral. God can change someone’s heart to be softer because of a tragedy. Fine. A softer heart still goes to Hell. I want to hear about salvation– the fact that someone can be led to Christ because of the Gospel, which can be brought about by first having the person go through an emotional tragedy. The message was almost there- but not quite in the proverbial ball park.
First of all- Dion comes back to school. OK. And along with this- Buddy freaks out and now we are treated to about five minutes or more of Buddy imagining things about Dion. This may be enjoyable for some people, not for me in particular. I find Buddy’s imagination to be out of touch with reality in such a way that it throws me out of the story completely. And I will be honest here- I did not particularly enjoy Trent DeWhite either. That’s just the way I am. I am neither emotionally nor whimsically centered. I imagine things- but I imagine what I could do if I only had a way to animate 3-D models with one of those motion tracking suits. That’s my imagination. Buddy’s imagination is what if Dion was a- I don’t know what that was supposed to be- evil ear-flicking mad cowboy thing. That kind of imagination I do not enjoy, especially from someone as old as Buddy.
So, this imagination appears several times throughout the episode, including the fact that Buddy thinks that personality comes with a heart, I.E., if Dr. Blackgaard ended up getting Mr. Whittaker’s heart, Dr. Blackgaard would be like Mr. Whittaker. Totally ridiculous, and of course Buddy imagines what would happen if he had the heart of Albert Einstein and the legs of a cheetah, etc.
Meanwhile, the star of the show is lost. Dion. What a performance by Alex Polinsky! I deeply regretted that Buddy had to take up so much of our time, I was impressed by Dion and I wanted to hear more about his experience and what he was going through.
Finding out about the kid who died was interesting, though. He had his flaws. That part I was impressed with. His cousin just being like- I really didn’t get along with him. He was a good kid, just didn’t get along with him. I know people like that.
So Dion finding out who gave him the heart and just breaking down- that was a neat scene. The overall tone of this episode was supposed to be somber, all the more reason that Buddy’s imagining sticks out like a sore thumb.
Lastly again, the moral. Is Dion a Christian? Is he nice now because he has been given the righteousness of Christ and is now being sanctified by the Holy Spirit? Apparently not. He is nice now because he went through an emotional ordeal. Big whoop. Although I now really, really, really like Dion’s character, nice is not enough. Has his spiritual heart changed at all? This is where the moral of the story falls short. His spiritual heart, the one that is the actually important one, has given no sign of being changed. The episode could have gone into the fact that: A. Nice is not enough and even though Dion is nice now he is still going to hell, because only his physical heart has been changed, or B. Dion is nice now because he is being changed by the Holy Spirit, which he received upon accepting Christ as his Savior and Lord, and just as he has been given a new physical heart, he has been given a new spiritual heart. Those both would have been great analogies, and the episode came close-ish. Not close enough.
So overall, this episode was not quite there. There wasn’t enough plot to justify Buddy, there was too much serious tone to justify Buddy, and Dion’s turn to being nice ultimately doesn’t mean anything unless he has been saved by Jesus Christ. The performance by Alex Polinsky was amazing, and I only wish there had been more of him in the episode.
Acting: 8.0. Zoe wasn’t too good, neither was the mom, but again- Alex Polinsky. You are the man.
Plot: 7.0. And I don’t want to be a jerk for not being impressed. But- I can’t lie to you, I’m not impressed.
Sound Design: 8.0. The heart sounded fake. Everything else was good.
Music: 8.0. Nothing noticeable.
Final rating: 8.0. Dion saved this episode. I want to hear more of Dion.
This is Kungfunaomi reminding you to come in and nerd out at Odysseynerds!