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"Private Practice" Rundown: Episode 3, "In Which Addison Finds the Magic"

"Private Practice" Rundown: Episode 3, "In Which Addison Finds the Magic"

This week's episode of "Private Practice" presented me with a whole new problem: overwhelming boredom. I've found previous episodes to be eye-rollingly bad or, in the case of last week's, actually kind of OK. But this one really had me struggling to keep my eyes open. The ratings have been good, so people are definitely still watching — but I really hope the show picks up soon. For more of my thoughts, just

This was supposed to be the original second episode of the series, and I think it would have made a lot more sense that way. It was strange to have Addison feeling alienated from her coworkers when we'd seen her working pretty seamlessly with them the previous week, and it's obnoxious that all of her conversations still end up with "you kissed Pete!" On the other hand, her whole disgust with the rain in LA, and with LA not living up to her expectations in general, made sense. I was glad to see her acknowledge that making this drastic change did not automatically make her life magical (though if one more person said "magic" or "magical" in this episode, I was going to slug them on the nose).

Speaking of characters not advancing: Violet, what are you doing? Are we supposed to dislike her? I thought she'd made a little progress on not mooning over the ex when she destroyed the bike last week, so it was jarring to have her listening to his lame phone messages on repeat again. Hopefully that will be an issue that shakes itself out once we're back to having the episodes airing in order, but sheesh, that character needs something else to do. I giggled in joy at the sight of Andy Milder, aka Dean from "Weeds," as her patient, but other than that, the case didn't grab me.

I'm so not interested in Sam and Naomi at this point, either. Are we still supposed to think Naomi has a crush on Dell, or did that go out the window when Merrin Dungey did? The cake thing was kind of cute, but it was also weirdly sexist — did Dell actually say something like "you have to give women what they want?" Dude, you're barely legal. He did have one great line though: "They're women, Cooper. Tiny, blue women. But still."

Speaking of Cooper, he was a bright spot this week. I was glad the kinky-sex bit was tamed down this week to allow him to play up the goofiness of his character. That scene with him in the fairy wings and the wand was priceless, and by visiting the blue girls' house and figuring out what was wrong with them, he actually seemed like a good doctor.

I'm glad this episode gave Pete a little more depth; finally, a character with a real back story! We already knew his wife had died, but it's interesting to learn that their marriage wasn't that happy when she was alive, either. Did that teach him not to take the good things in life for granted? Or did it give him even more emotional damage?

Am I being too harsh on "Private Practice"? Or are you in danger of tuning out? I felt like this week's installment was utterly mediocre, and I have to believe the show is capable of more.

Photos copyright 2007 ABC, Inc.

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