TV Review: Vegas 1.3, "All That Glitters"

€œElephants. You know how you eat €˜em? One bite at a time€

Now that Vegas seems to have found its feet, it continues to amble across solid ground, towards some sort of end game that was really ramped up in All That Glitters. Again, the leading men, Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis, continue to impress as Sheriff Lamb and Vincent Savino respectively, but this episode started to pick apart the outer layers of the way the mob works within the law and showed an uglier side to the business, one we all knew about but hadn€™t had a good look at yet. All That Glitters saw the arrival of two new characters on the glitzy scene: Johnny Rizzo, Mia€™s father and mob hothead, as well as the boss-man, Angelo, played by Jonathan Banks, fresh from his stint on AMC€™s Breaking Bad. Vincent rushes around tirelessly, trying his best to ensure their visit is smooth but after another visit from Quaid€™s cowboy Sheriff, all hell breaks loose. After being embarrassed in front of his friends and his daughter by Lamb, Rizzo demands that the Sheriff is silenced. Rizzo€™s fondness for new management whenever he doesn€™t agree with something seems to be a prevalent trait of his and it certainly seems to be coming into play in more than one way. Savino, nevertheless, pours cold water on the Lamb situation, telling his boss that killing another Sheriff will not bode well for their tourism and that he€™s working on it. I believe he probably is. Lamb isn€™t the only one hanging precariously from the cliff; Savino himself is hardly Rizzo€™s best friend and the temperamental mobster makes clear his vision of the future which revolves around the Sun shining down on him and his daughter, running the casino whilst trimming a neat profit off the side. Either way, the show suggests that both Lamb and Savino have their enemies from within and character relationships are not as clean and dry as perhaps the show has suggested previously. The subplot this episode centred on the US Olympic Boxing team and the death of one of their gold-medal-winning athletes. The story, whilst well-told, didn€™t pack the emotional punch it was perhaps looking for and whilst it€™s great to see the trio of Ralph, Jack and Dixon solve the case whilst strutting about, weapons resting on their shoulders, eventually it's going to have to break through this conventional procedure and show us something more. For now, this cowboy law that Lamb employs may be diluted down to his own form of questionable (yet unquestioned as of yet) conduct, but it€™s entertaining; Ralph beats on Rizzo in front of a crowd before cuffing him, knowing full well there are easier ways to contain the threat, but where€™s the fun in that€? It has been too easy for Ralph so far, and we don€™t know a lot about the guy yet. Where is Dixon€™s mother? Does she exist? Why does Jack live with them? Does he have another family? Not a clue. The show has been about creating and perfecting 1960s Vegas so far, and despite the production values not quite getting it right (anyone notice the 1967 Pontiac Le Mans driving around 1960 Vegas? Someone from IMDb sure did€), it€™s a lot of good fun, effective performances and solid storytelling. Whether or not that will be enough to save it from cancellation (it is a network show after all), I don€™t know. But, as I was saying, the show needs to get to grips with its intriguing characters; Carrie Anne-Moss is great but she€™s not a character of any substance yet and neither is Jack or Dixon. Ralph can parade around town all he wants with his big shiny badge but sooner or later, someone€™s going to have to take a serious shot at him if this show wants to really kick it into action. If anyone can do it though, it seems to be Savino.
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Appreciates the finer things in life such as The Simpsons, yelling at the football, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, things that aren't True Blood, things that aren't Twilight. Doughnuts.