***Please welcome your newest recapper to the fold, streamofatoms!!
According to IMDB, Body of Proof is about a Pennsylvania medical examiner whose “unique approach to solving crimes puts her at odds with her superiors”. Since it’s obvious that this series was reverse-engineered from its ohsoveryclever title, it would have been better if they’d come up with something more original than “sassyfrass perfect pants is a total bitch and should probably be fired” I dunno, I’m just spitballing here, maybe, “former porn star turned doctor and detective, solves crimes using her underworld connections and considerable assets. Sasha Grey to star in BODY OF PROOF”
Take her seriously, I dare you.
But we don’t get to watch that show, we have to watch sassy pants piss everybody off.
In the first few minutes we’re bombarded with information. A beautiful woman on the far side of forty is getting a brain scan, a few years earlier she was in a car accident which ended her career as a prominent neurosurgeon. Her hands go numb, which is a bad thing if your job is cutting into BRAINS. DuR.
We also learn that she is “not most people” as she turns to dramatically answer her phone ”Dr. Megan Hunt”. It’s a ridiculous way to goto commercial! As if the audience was like “WOAH her name is MEGAN! HOOOboy we’re in for a rollercoaster ride!”
Dr. Pretty Smart
Fresh from confronting her doctor about her own ambiguous test results, Dr. Megan Hunt heads to Body of Proof’s first crime scene, it’s a dead jogger. OF COURSE! Dead joggers are these procedural crime dramas’ bread and fucking butter. On weeknight tv, jogging alone = asking for death!
She meets up with her work friend? partner? (I know she’s not most people, her name is Megan and all, but why does a medical examiner need a partner?) We know that he’s an ex-cop (did he get into an accident that left him unable to police the streets?) Throughout the show he never does much, and often makes Megan explain the technical terminology she’s using… so he’s not a doctor? Or he’s a very bad doctor? Which… why would our superhero neurosurgeon want to work with a total moron? He is not even that cute?
Hi, I’m BLONDE!
Anyway, his defining characteristic is that he’s blonde and way interested in helping Megan open up about her terrible family life, and also criticizing her for being so bossy and unconventional.
Two cops are also huddled around the body, Detective Bud Morris and Sonja Sohn from The Wire, a show that I’d much rather be watching instead of this one.
Megan walks up to the body and does a really great job of summing up the evidence with just a few casual glances around. Guys, she is REALLY good at her job. Even though I’m pretty sure medical examiners are just in charge of like autopsies and gathering evidence off the body, not crime scene evaluation. Whatevs, she’s not most medical examiners, right.
She nails time of death because of the sun tan on the jogger’s face. Which is pretty smooth. If I was one of those detectives I’d be like, “awwww yeah, Megan’s on the case! This one’s as good as fucking solved!”
But because Megan’s an emotionally stunted bitch, after she’s done all her summing up, she says “Don’t believe everything you’ve heard about me, the truth is much worse.”
Nice to meet you too, asshat.
Back at the office, Megan helps out colleagues (most prominently Mr. Christina Hendricks) with their medical questions in a Sorkin-y walk and talk through the halls.
Luckiest or smartest man alive? Both.
Once in her office Megan makes a phone call, work related? No! It’s time to learn about the personal side of this steel-toed take-no-prisoners fucking genius. A glittery cell phone rings, and a dickish guy in a suit picks up. It’s her ex husband and the cell phone belongs to their daughter, Lacey. They fight because Megan knows she’s not supposed to call. Then she BEGS to go to Lacey’s birthday party, the jerk says no, and something like “you made your choice.”
I don’t think we’re supposed to like him.
Back to work! The jogging victim is Angela Swanson, a young blonde white woman. Typical model-esque, made-for-tv, ripped from the headlines victim. Yawn.
During the autopsy the dectives tell her that that the victim was not married and was a workaholic lawyer. Megan then encourages them to look deeper, who did she keep herself so fit and pretty for? Why was she so stressed at work? Why were her nails clipped short? Important questions all. Angela also has old dog bite scars on her arm. Clue alert! Detective Bud keeps pushing Megan to ID the murder weapon, and she keeps giving seemingly random personal details of the victim’s life. Which, you know, you’d think a detective would realize are also PRETTY IMPORTANT clues in solving this murder.
He doesn’t though, and when Megan asks Bud what he sees when he looks at the body, he says “a dead girl” And even though he’s technically right, Dr. Megan Hunt, takes the opportunity lecture him on her personal philosophy about being a very important former neurosurgeon now medical examiner.
“I honor the body for what it tells me about Angela Swanson’s life and how that life came to an end. The body is the proof, it will tell you everything you need to know if you just have the patience to look.”
Which… I dunno, is very nice sounding and all, but not really true? There are lots of other sources of evidence and clues. If the body told them everything they need to know, why does Megan insist on going along to interview suspects, which is totally not her job. This statement doesn’t come off as genuine, so much as really fucking stupid and lame.
After she’s done going all last supper on Bud’s ass, Megan reveals that the murder weapon was something heavy and made of iron, like a plumber’s wrench, then she gives Detective Bud her coffee order, ZING!
As Bud goes for coffee, Sonja from The Wire stays and asks Megan why she’s just an ME if she used to be a big time neurosurgeon. At this same moment Megan’s hands go numb (we know this because she squeezes and looks at them with deep pain and regret behind her eyes, IT’S A SAD STORY SONJA) She answers that “you can’t kill someone if they’re already dead.” BAM Opening credits.
Just wanted to drop you a note and say, gosh, I LOVE the 2 second opening to your new show Body of Proof. A sheet going over a blonde dead white girl? HOW FUCKING ARTFUL! Thank you for courageously recognizing the fact that the media and public are only interested in the death of young, Aryan, slim, and blonde women. Diversity media award goes to you.
Women are sexiest when they’re dead and therefore can’t talk back.
Coming back from commercial, Meg is investigating…. buying a designer purse. (Dr. Meredith House Brennen-Bradshaw? She is whatever we need her to be in the moment, great character)
Blondie comes in and they talk about how Angela the jogger was wearing a diaphragm, and why that might be. It could have been for sex or as a precautionary measure before she got her period. Blondie didn’t know women did that! It’s ironic that they are using Angela’s period as a red herring.
I like when characters in a movie or tv series explicitly state their name, job, and purpose. It saves me so much work and entertainment as a viewer. Like when we meet Dr. Curtis as he yells at Megan for spending too much money on unnecessary tests.
“I’m the Deputy Chief Medical Examiner, I’m in charge of the budget for this office.”
That is an exact quote. Gotcha Curt! Sure, there are more elegant ways to reveal character, show don’t tell, etc. But nothing beats a swift kick to the exposition groin, it hurts and I never can remember the names of the black characters anyway. AMIRIGHTGUYS?
Megan and Blondie decide to do a brain dissection and discover that Angela had an old brain injury, she’d been hit in the head way before she was killed by a hit to the head! Wear a helmet, guys, always.
Our crack ME tells us that a blow to that area of her brain would cause changes to her personality and possibly make her hypersexual. Never mind on that helmet guys, hits on the head for everyone!
Turns out, Angela’s ex-boyfriend was in jail for pushing her down the stairs and causing that first brain injury. He just got out of prison a few weeks before Angela’s murder. Meet suspect number one.
he detectives, Blondie, and our hero Dr. Megan Hunt, interview Angela’s ex, Todd, at the halfway house where he lives. Todd’s distraught, he’d been contacting Angela, trying to confront her about the push down the stairs. He claims that while they were fighting she slipped, the neighbors saw it wrong, and Angela couldn’t back up his story because she broke her brain and didn’t remember what happened. He was falsely imprisoned.
Megan immediately believes he is innocent. Angela was hit in the back of the head, she never saw it coming and didn’t have any defensive wounds. If Todd had murdered her, he would have wanted Angela to know that it was revenge, and do her in from the front. Shaky logic, but she’s probably right, cause she’s MEGAN FUCKING HUNT.
The detectives are mad that Megan believes the jailbird ex-boyfriend, and Bud tells Blondie to “muzzle” Megan.
Then this intrepid MEDICAL EXAMINER and her dopey blonde sidekick interview the victim’s parents without the detectives present. This is the point where I gave up on this dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb fucking show.
Whatever, I’ll press on, but my heart’s not in it any more. Angela’s parents tell Megan and Peter that the dog bite scar on Angela’s arm is from when, as a teenager, she tried to save her dog from an attacking pit bull. Recently she had a Strep Throat infection (Blondie confirms during a quick phone call that Angela had “Strep A” and was treating it with erythromycin) She didn’t have a boyfriend or many friends that her parents knew about. Sad lonely Angela with her sore throat and no friends.
Megan asks if after Angela hit her head the first time, was there any change in her personality? They say yes, as a teenager Angela was a “hard and driven” girl, but after the fall she became sweeter and tried to be closer with her parents. Then she went jogging and was murdered.
Asking for it.
In the middle of solving this case, and being an arrogant jerk, Megan is still trying to figure out the best birthday present for her daughter. She’s settled on a “Carol Ramsey Ruffle Tote”, the bag she was calling about earlier, and drags Peter along to buy it. When he sees the $1100 price tag (seriously.) he questions her judgment and suggests there may be more appropriate presents for a twelve year old. Typical Megan replies with a retort equivalent to “you’re not my real dad!”
They storm out of the store and have a tearful car scene where we learn the following things:
-They’ve been partnered for six months
-Megan’s ex got full custody of their daughter in the divorce
-He got custody because of sexism, “A woman who works 18 hours a day is an absentee mother, a man who does the same is a good provider”
-The ex-husband has Lacey-the-daughter convinced that Megan doesn’t give a shit and is just trying to buy Lacey’s affection with expensive gifts. Which is weird because that is EXACTLY what it seems like to me, a viewer who hates Megan and everything she stands for.
There’s a great montage of Megan photographing and collecting evidence from Angela’s body. It’s great because her long hair is down and when she reaches over the body it drags across Angela’s face.
I honor the body… unless it means tying back my hair.
They find evidence that the diaphram was used for sex, but the trace semen had no sperm in it. Angela slept with someone who didn’t wear a condom and had a vasectomy. Megan and dear Peter conclude that no bachelor would “get snipped” instead of using a condom, so Angela was sleeping with a married man. Woah. The body is the proof guys, except in this situation where the diaphragm was the proof.
Of course Megan leaves the proof of the body, to go find some other kinds of proof. She convinces an old doctor friend to violate doctor-patient confidentiality and reveal the name of the lawyer at Angela’s work who has had vasectomy. It’s Bradford Something Lawfirm Partner, aka SUSPECT #2!
The detectives , Megan, and her usless boytoy Peter interview Bradford at his office, which features SO MANY photos of his family you guys. Too many, suspicious many, definitely cheating on his wife many.
School nurse? Definitely being cheated on.
Detective Bud gets one question out to Bradford before Megan jumps in and starts accusing him of murder, and asking for a DNA sample. Bud kicks her out of the office. Outside of the building, Megan sees a trafficlight and has a flashback to her tuuurrrible accident. She was on her cell phone fighting with her husband about who has to pick up the kid and her car was slammed by a semi.
Asking for it.
Anyway, after we see the inside of Megan’s PTSD flashback, the detectives come out of the building and call her a pain in the ass. They also remind her that she is NOT a cop. Megan then decides to prove how good she is by using her super powers of observation to call out Detective Bud’s shitty marital life. He recently got kicked out the house, she shouts across a public street. She uses his wedding band tan line, razor burn, and bad aftershave as proof… bodies of proof…
Yes, let’s belittle the sad divorcing public servant. He deserves it for trying to do his job.
This is like the most standard and generic tv and movie detective bit there is, it has been done, literally, dozens of times before. If I wasn’t so exhausted from trying to make sense of Megan’s pissy attitude and her motivations I would make a super cut mash up of every time it’s been used, and we would all laugh and give my youtube channel 482 views.
The detectives walk away from their interview with Bradford convinced of his innocence, Megan Hunt walks away convinced of his guilt. They also learned that Angela had just been made a partner at the law firm because she won a big case defending the richest family in town from a dog bite lawsuit. Which leads them to suspect #3, the poor janitor dad who loves his dog-attacked son.
At first as he’s questioned, Poor Janitor Dad gets angry and calls Angela “that bitch lawyer”, which trips everyone’s highly attuned murderous-rage sensors. Megan talks him down and asks him why, as a dog bite victim herself, Angela would defend a dog who bit a child. This is when Poor Janitor Dad softens and says that before the trial Angela visited him, showed him her scars, and told him she wanted to settle out of court but she was overruled by her boss, Bradford Vasectomy Suspect. Then after Angela won the case, she visited Poor Janitor Dad again and slipped him evidence that the dog was a trained attack dog, giving them grounds to appeal the case. So here’s my question, WHY THE FUCK WOULD HE CALL HER A “BITCH LAWYER” IF SHE DID THIS AWESOME (highly unethical) THING FOR HIS FAMILY??? I feel like Dana Delany missed the litter box and took a piss on my rug. Bad tv show, very bad!
This entire episode, anytime Megan’s walked into the office, the receptionist has yelled that “the chief” wants to see her, and Meg’s blown her off, you know cause she’s so nice. Also, I think we were supposed to think “the chief” is a man, because when we meet the hawt leggy blonde chief, there’s a weird pause, like it was a huge reveal. It wasn’t.
The boss is a woman?! Land sakes get my smelling salts!
So there’s another scene of Megan having trouble with authority, and getting yelled at for going rouge with the budget. Maybe she will be fired (she’s not going to be fired) Super fun scene you guys.
Then there’s another scene of Peter “the Blonde” Boringtown prying into Megan’s personal life, and suggesting that she get a personal from-the-heart gift for her daughter. He makes the connection between Angela’s workaholic meaness and Megan’s (took him long enough) and suggests that Angela let her accident work for her, not against her. Which is stupid, because even though she’s a shitty person, Megan is a damn good Medical Examiner (or whatever) and she really is making lemonade out of not being able to persue her life’s work of fixing brains. I mean bitch does solve fucking murders, that’s not exactly street vending hotdogs to hookers at three am when the bars close.
This is a good moment to suggest that, if you like what this show is trying to do and failing so profoundly at, you should watch ‘Bones’, from the beginning. Way better crime solving mystery turns, crazier “science”, and -most importantly- infinitely more interesting and well-constructed main characters. I’ve been biting my tongue not to compare every flounder of this show (the entire thing) to how Bones does it better. Watch that show instead.
Bones of Proof
The plot plods on and the Detectives decide that Todd “ex-boyfriend” Jailbird done the deed and arrest him. Meanwhile Megan is still convinced that Bradford “No-Sperm” is the killer. There’s a second emotional scene outside of a building, where Megan admits that she killed someone on the operating table (because of numbhands? maybe…) and describes how she never cared about the personal details of her patients’ lives until she was at fault for killing one. Again, it’s all supposed to be this big reveal, but at this point I could not.give.a.shit.
Back inside work, there is birthday party happening. It’s only happening so that Peter can turn down a piece of cake because of his nut allergy which spurs Megan to think of “allergies!” and run away to analyze Angela’s stomach contents… after which she is headed to her daughter’s birthday party. So… Megan couldn’t have offered him a granola bar or something? Two non-related birthday parties? In consecutive scenes? That is some lazy fucking writing. Cheeto dust on the keyboard lazy.
Cut to the other birthday party, Megan shows up, and her ex is pissed, but Lacey talks to her mom. Megan tells a story about how her dad had a special private toolshed that no one was allowed to go into, and when Megan was about twelve he gave her a key and said it could be her special place too. What a nice story about the time your dad gave you a key to his porn shed.
Megan has taken Peter’s advice and gives Lacey a key to her apartment, telling her with misty eyes that it can be a place to escape to or “whatever she needs it to be”. Your preteen didn’t already have a key to your apartment? That is fucked lady, you ARE a bad mom. Also, look at this poor girl’s face, she needs to cool it on the eyeliner.
Easy on the lipstick too, sugar.
Back at work, Megan explains that Angela was taking Erythromycin for her Step throat infection. A doctor would only prescribe that if Angela had an allergy to Amoxycillin, and Megan just found Amoxycillin in Angela’s stomach contents. ALLERGIES BITCHES.
But whodunit? Megan figures it out immediately, seriously, instantly she knows the whole sordid tale, and demands the detectives get a warrant to search Bradford-the-Lawyer’s house.
When they roll up to the house, the detectives are there, but they couldn’t get a warrant. Bradford and his wife come out and tell them to fuck off. But Megan tells Bradford that if he really loved Angela he will let them search the home. You know how emotional appeals always work so well on high-power attorneys, especially when regarding the hot piece of office ass they tapped twice a week. YEAH RIGHT.
Fuck that dog-bitten kid, but not that girl I fucked.
So yeah, here’s how it went down, mind you Megan knows all of these crazy details, she is the one explaining this: Angela was at Bradford’s house in the morning before she went jogging, they had zeee sexy time, and his wife came home (SO QUIETLY I guess) and saw them at it.
A week or so before that, at the “office party” (yeah, okay) Angela mentioned to the Stepford Wife that she had Step A (totally normal law office party conversation). Turns out Strep A is the rarer form of Strep. A rare form that Stepford’s sons were also fighting, she adds two and two (7) and realizes that her husband had given it to Angela after he caught it from their sons.
Sidebar- Isn’t strep really contagious already? Angela and Bradford worked together, so couldn’t she just as easily caught it from innocent interaction? The show is not at all clear on whether the wife did the math at the office party or when saw them in flagrante on the couch.
Megan assumes that during this totally normal conversation with the lover-boss’s wife, Angela would have mentioned that she was taking also mentioned at the party (angela shut the fuck up already) that she was taking Erythromycin, which trained nurse Wife would know meant that Angela was FATALLY ALLERGIC TO PENICILLIN.
So when she saw Angela and her husband soiling up the sofa, she Lady Gaga’s Angela’s sports drink
TOTALLY NOT GATORADE
with the Amoxycillin her kids were taking for their Strep.
Drinking the spiked sports drink during her jog caused Angela to go into anaphylactic shock. She then fell into the river (seriously.) and hit her head on a heavy iron something… probably Megan says.)
SO WAIT did the penicillin kill her? the iron thing head trauma? or did she drown? This girl was killed like three times over, don’t worry though Stepford, Angela is veryveryvery dead, effective murder, this one.
Wifey is cornered, (even though Megan’s guess is super elaborate, and only loosely based on the BODY OF PROOF) especially when Sonja from The Wire finds the kid’s medicine in the house. Megan rubs it in cause she’s a bitch. Wifey turns tiger eyes and tells her husband that her only regret is that she has one life to give for her country, strike that, that she didn’t kill him instead.
With the pearl wearing perp safely stowed in the back of the squad car, the detectives and Megan part with mutual respect, sure to meet and clash horns again. Blondie smirks about something, who cares.
So glad he didn’t bother to put on a tie for this.
The show wraps up with Megan sharing a moment with Angela’s dead body before covering her with a sheet. The Chief comes in, piling compliments on Megan, but also basically saying people may like her now (I thought no one liked her?) but Megan can’t fuck up because then those people will have “ammo” to use. She also lays it on thick with some “don’t take the job too personally, it will burn you out” blah blah blah blah blah
Hunt returns home to her sparse and empty-like-her-heart apartment. She cleans up an empty glass of wine, then notices a slice of birthday cake on the counter with a note…
Awe, my daughter is just as arrogant as I am!
…and really happily eats the cake.
BODY OF PROOF TAKEAWAY LESSONS:
-make sure that no one knows if you have a severe allergy to Penicillin, or nuts just to be safe.
-if you get hit on the head you will become a sexier and nicer person (except when you send your boyfriend to jail for hitting you when he didn’t)
-$1100 bags are not a good gift for 12 year old birthday (might want to write that one down, don’t forget!)
What a piece of shit. (the show, the cake actually looks pretty tasty.) Or maybe I’m totally off base? The show is not without it’s charms, and who wouldn’t want to root for a kick ass woman, even a smirking presumptuous one. I’d just rather watch Bones, or Murder She Wrote, anything but this.