“ Network: CBS / Genre: Thiller / Actors: Sarah Michelle Gellar „
One day Bridget Kelly - a drug taking stripper and occasional prostitute - witnesses a professional hit by a ruthless crimelord. The FBI dangles a carrot in front of her; they'll drop all charges against her and arrange rehab for her if she takes to the stand in the upcoming murder trial and testify against him. It's a tasty carrot and Bridget takes it...
Now after successfully completing rehab, she is celebrating six months of sobriety and is even in contact, via letters, with her estranged twin sister. But as the murder trial looms in front of her, Bridget begins to fear for her safety and on the way to the court house she whacks her FBI escort over the head, steals his gun and goes on the run, heading to New York after her twin sister sends her a letter, asking to meet up with her.
Bridget's twin sister Siobhan seems to have it all; she is a board member for various charities and is married to Andrew - a self made millionaire in the publishing world - and her idea of going for a spin is whipping along on her very own boat, which she wastes no time in dragging Bridget on to for a quick ride.
From this point on things quickly turn to crap; Bridget wakes up after unexpectedly falling asleep, to find a bottle of pills and Siobhan's wedding ring are on the boat, but Siobhan is not. Looking around her in growing panic, Bridget sees what looks like a body slipping under the water, but when she jumps into the water to save what she assumes is Siobhan, she can't find her. The radio on the boat doesn't seem to work so she can't call for help and by the time Bridget manages to pilot the boat back to the dock its way too late to save her - Siobhan is dead.
What to do now? Bridget's life is still in danger and the only person who was in a position to help her has apparently just killed herself. Oh, brainwave! Siobhan admitted to Bridget that she has never told her husband or friends that Bridget even exists, as she was embarrassed by her train-wreck past, so Bridget comes to the rational conclusion that she can assume Siobhan's identity for a little while, until she figures out what to do next. Genius!
So that is now what she's doing. She originally only planned to live the lie for a week or two, take Siobhan's money and run, even going as far as draining Siobhan's personal bank account. But as she now knows that Siobhan is not the good egg that she appeared to be, Bridget has now taken it upon herself to try to tidy up Siobhan's various messes and make it up to the people who Siobhan wronged. Bridget also sees a version of herself in Andrew's emotionally fragile daughter Juliet and wants to help the girl, before she goes down the same road Bridget took. Plus, in a lovely Jerry Springer moment, she seems to be slowly falling for Andrew herself.
So it looks like she's staying put for the long haul - even when it becomes crystal clear that Siobhan was involved in very shady business and that there is someone trying to kill Siobhan too. Now Bridget is trying to find out what Siobhan was up to, avoid whoever is trying to kill Siobhan and dodge FBI agent Machado, who is searching for Bridget in relation to the crimelord's murder trial. And lets not forget that the crimelord and his cronies are also searching the country for Bridget, plus...
... in a shocking, couldn't-see-it-coming-at-all twist, the viewers know that Siobhan is alive and is now in Paris. We don't know what she's up to, but we know it can't be good and now includes 'getting rid' of Bridget; it seems that dear Siobhan was trying to fake her own death as part of whatever she is up to, a plan that Bridget has ruined by assuming Siobhan's identity and by draining her bank accounts.
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RINGER is constantly throwing new twists at viewers and is unpredictable, so I'm never bored. But when I think about it, it does fall apart a bit. Observe;
Why did Bridget run from the FBI in the first place? I can't speak from experience, but I would think that a drug addicted prostitute, with no contact with her family at that point, wouldn't view having all charges against her dropped, as well as being given a fresh start and new identity as a bad thing. And it wasn't as though the FBI appeared incapable of keeping her safe until she had her freakout.
And when she does run and try to hide she decides on settling into Siobhan's high-profile life. What is it about the life of a fairly well known socialite, who appears in various glossies that really seemed like this is somewhere suitable for hiding and keeping her nose down? And is Siobhan's job something that you can walk in of the street and do without anyone noticing that you don't really know what you're doing [though, it does seem that all she does at work is wear designer dresses and pose in front of mirrors]? And Siobhan is of course married - didn't Bridget think beforehand that Andrew would possibly want to sleep with his wife at some point?
Thinking about Siobhan's life; she has not told anyone that she has a twin, but her various charity contacts and the press has never dug around a bit and found that she has - and that her twin is a drug taking, sometime prostitute? The tabloids and rag mags would have a field day with a story like that in the real world.
FBI agent Machado seems to be buying the whole Bridget-playing-the-role-of-Siobhan thing, but I'd have expected him to be a little suspicious; he's caught her out in various lies, knows that she speaks to Bridget's Narcotics Anonymous sponsor and has emptied her bank accounts. Surely he would have added everything up and realised that he is speaking to Bridget by episode two at the latest? Is he meant to be a little bit dim?
But, for me, the biggest bugbear is; Siobhan's husband doesn't notice that the person he lives and sleeps with isn't his wife? I just can't swallow that the fact that she has the same face makes up for the fact that her entire personality has changed - I can turn of my brain for most of my other niggles, but this big question mark spoils the plots a bit as, like with Agent Machado, it makes me think of Andrew as being a little bit dim, even though he's otherwise very intelligent and on the ball.
Right now it's Andrew that is getting my sympathy; so far it looks as though the real Siobhan is using him for his money and didn't love him and Bridget is lying to him in almost every scene they share. Oh yeah, I'm almost positive that he and Bridget are sleeping together, all whilst he thinks that she is Siobhan. I think that Bridget in somewhat in love with him, but we can't really be sure what anyone is up to, so she could just be playing the role of his wife.
I know we're supposed to root for Bridget, but it's difficult to identify with someone who has made her problems ten times worse by constantly doing selfish and idiotic things. And she is being just as manipulative as the 'evil' twin - I know that she is trying to make up for her sister's actions to people, but I think that she could just be, unintentionally, making things worse when the truth does get revealed. I mean, the truth must be revealed soon. Mustn't it?
The network which owns RINGER has now ordered a full season of twenty two episodes to be filmed, so I'm very curious to see if these holes get filled in, or if everything going to get worse and collapses under it's own weight. I do think that the series will struggle with that many episodes at it's current pace and think that maybe the powers that be should have gone for around a dozen episodes if the show wants to be even slightly realistic; there is one subplot in particular which was revealed way too early [in the pilot] and it is something that can't go on for long without being exposed. The writers mustn't have been planning for a twenty two episode long season, so I wonder if some frantic re-writing is now taking place? And are we going to have a long gap between the first eight episodes and the rest of the season, or is filming going on now? I want more now, but if we have a long wait I may lose a bit of interest.
Niggles aside - I'm really enjoying the unpredictability and the OTT soap opera undertones to RINGER. It's best not to think too hard about it all though, as the absurdity can spoil the fun slightly if I don't switch my brain off. This is just me trying to piece together the half clues, but right now I'm guessing that Siobhan got in touch with Bridget, took her out for a spin on the boat and drugged her in a attempt to kill her, convincingly fake her own death using her sister's body, so she could then vanish to start her new life. Hmm, but then that would mean an autopsy and then everyone would know that she has a twin and the police would start looking for Siobhan as a murder suspect.
Oh; my head hurts thinking about everything that has happened so far. I have no idea what is going on and can't predict how it's all going to end, but I am having fun along the way. I do recommend giving this series a go and it's highly likely that I'll be buying the DVD when it becomes available as I'm sure that there's loads of stuff in the various subplots that I've failed to take in the first time around.
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Sarah Michelle Gellar - Bridget Kelly/Siobhan Martin
Ioan Gruffudd - Andrew Martin
Zoey Deutch - Juliet Martin
Kristoffer Polaha - Henry Butler
Tara Summers - Gemma Butler
Zahn McClarnon - Bodaway Macawi
Nestor Carbonell - Victor Machado
Mike Colter - Malcolm Ward
I just watched the first episode of Ringer and I am hooked. The hour went by so swiftly, filled with so much tension, action and excitement, at times you think there is just a bit too much going on to comprehend!
Bridget (Sarah Michelle Geller) flees to her twin sister Siobhan (Sarah Michelle Geller) when she witnesses a murder by a crime boss and does not want to testify, despite having her prostitution and possession charges dropped if she does so. Waking up whilst on a boat trip with her sister, Bridget discovers that Siobhan has disappeared, leaving her wedding ring behind. Shocked and under panic, she decides to assume her sister's identity, a lavish life of luxury with husband Andrew (Ioan Gruffudd).
Trailed by officer Machado (Nestor Carbonell), chased by Henry (Kristoffer Polaha) as well as dangerous men out to kill her, Bridget discovers secrets Siobhan as hidden that are just as dark as her own, putting both of them in danger.
The complexity of both Bridget and Siobhan and all the things they're trying to hide/runaway from give this show so much potential in terms of character development, they've got twice as much to work with! I'm personally most interested about the 'Siobhan' killer and the sudden 'death' of Siobhan.
I am so intrigued by all the loose ends and twists that this show has thrown at me just in one episode! That final scene... I was desperate for more!!
Episodes two and three were similarly filled with more open ends and mystery surrounding the very much alive Siobhan. Ending in a cliffhanger each time, the show draws you in and really gets you hooked. I have not seen such an engrossing show in a very long time. I will definitely be watching this series and welcome back Ms Sarah Michelle Geller to the small screen!!
- Sarah Michelle Gellar- Bridget Kelly/Siobhan Kelly
- Ioan Gruffurd- Andrew Martin
- Kristoffer Polaha- Henry Butler
- Nestor Carbonell- Agent Machado
- Tara Summers- Gemma Butler