Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Psych: “Juliet Wears The Pantsuit”

Illustration for article titled Psych: “Juliet Wears The Pantsuit”

In the aftermath of Juliet discovering Shawn’s not-so-hidden secret—that he isn’t psychic at all and instead merely incredibly observant with an astounding memory—while sifting through all her feelings of betrayal and anger, she still kept her mouth shut to Lassiter and the rest of the SBPD. Henry and Gus know that Shawn is a fraud, and now Jules does too, but she can’t act on her rage and severe disappointment, because then the series would either have to construct some way for Shawn to continue working or end immediately.

But the second implication of her choice not to speak up to the SBPD about Shawn’s lies is that she’s starting to turn around just a little bit. She has to, because that’s what Psych is going for here, to sever the bond between the romantic leads, then slowly build back their relationship because it can’t stay stagnant at happiness. But the end of “Juliet Wears The Pantsuit” suggests that the way Shawn can win back Juliet’s trust and affection is to do what he’s been doing all along: use his keen observations to solve cases. Professional prowess and success instead of, I don’t know, owning up to his mistakes and working to rectify the situation.

Following up on her decision last week, Juliet asks Shawn to move out, but he’s clearly unprepared for this scenario. He can’t stay with Gus because Rachel and Max are staying there, refuses to stay with his Dad after walking in on his parents together, and can’t go to Lassiter’s because, obviously not. Which is how he ends up with Woody in the coroner’s Airstream trailer, pitying himself for the lamentable situation he brought on himself.

Psych doesn’t need to teach viewers how to watch the show. If you have any passing familiarity with a mystery structure, you can pick out suspects without discerning much. Juliet interviews a potential new roommate, Kimberly—with Shawn butting in incessantly—but the girl turns up dead the next day. Kimberly’s former roommate Laura, also looking for a new place, ends up in Juliet’s house, but Shawn senses something doesn’t add up. Well, maybe not senses—he notices several details that inform the main direction of the case.

When Laura shows up to become Juliet’s roommate and raises suspicion, she immediately becomes a red herring candidate. Psych rarely goes with the first suspect, someone leaned on heavily in the early goings of a case as dangerous or suspicious. Sure enough, after changing her appearance to look just like Jules, stealing nearly all of her clothes, and careening off a bridge in a white Jeep, Laura didn’t kill her former roommate. She’s stealing identities in order to stay on the run from an abusive husband in Arkansas, a guy who popped into Juliet’s place earlier in passing, claiming to be looking for Laura.

Once Laura reveals that wrinkle, it’s clear what happens next: lights go out in the house, abusive husband shows up, and some type of struggle ensues. As Shawn notes, the case shifts from Single White Female to Sleeping With The Enemy. But as the show has done several times before, it follows through on Juliet’s impatient declarations to Shawn that she can take care of herself, kicking the intruder’s ass while Shawn and Gus hang back miming striking the guy.


Juliet has proven on many occasions to be fully capable of handling dangerous situations—the season premiere ended with Juliet on her own outsmarting a criminal to get him in custody. And Shawn recognizes her abilities in the field, though he attempts a bit of actual chivalry when trying to fix Juliet’s broken window, unlike his earlier, hollow machismo. And though Shawn insists on keeping up the psychic charade in the police station, faking visions and grabbing Juliet’s shoulder, all of which annoys Juliet even further, Shawn keeps reaching for a simple solution. By the way Juliet looks impressed at Shawn’s investigative skills as he walks away to meet up with Woody, she takes a step toward forgiving him. It should be Shawn apologizing and taking responsibility, but the quicker fix to this temporary breakup is to plant doubt in Juliet’s mind that this is such a big deal. At the end of last week’s episode she said the more she thought about the revelation, the angrier she got. But now, after watching what Shawn’s powers of observation can do, the significance of the lie seems to be shrinking.

Stray observations:

  • Woody trying to get Shawn to be his wingman with cougars is hilarious: “Which one is the grenade?” “I don't remember!”
  • Gus has a problem with Cuba Gooding Jr.’s declining film career.
  • Gus knows area codes across the country, as well as the Fibonacci sequence. Very impressive.