After surviving his heart attack, Jason Bull returned to work on Bull Season 3 Episode 1.
Was he a kinder, gentler Bull?
Bull has never been the touchy-feely type but he seemed even more standoffish and uncomfortable when he came off of that elevator and found his entire staff there to greet him.
Marissa and Danny both ran up to hug him but Bull's response was awkward at best. It appeared as though he couldn't wait to get away from everyone.
Marissa: You look fantastic.
Bull: I bet you say that to all of the acute myocardial infarction survivors.
Marissa: How are you feeling?
Bull: It’s hard to explain. Everything feels new and a little brighter but familiar and old and maybe a little worn at the same time. It’s good to be back.
Bull said things felt new and brighter but it didn't seem as though Jason felt very good about himself. As a matter of fact, it seemed like Jason was depressed and, as a viewer, I found much of this episode depressing.
Part of that had to do with the case of the week.
Julia Summerfield was not only a young mother battling cancer but then a freak medical equipment accident burned an apple-sized hole in her liver and then her insurance company refused to pay for a liver transplant.
How much bad luck is one person supposed to take?
The team at the Trial Analysis Corporation looked about as morose as I felt but Jason made it clear that their feelings were not a priority in this Bull quote...
I suspect you think we should be on the other side of this one. That you’d rather be representing the woman who through no fault of her own lost the use of her liver and most certainly is going to lose her life. You want to go home at night and feel good about yourself. Plus, it’s kind of a slam dunk. It’s not hard to find a jury let alone mount a case against a big, bad insurance company. Of course, one problem with that, she didn’t hire us. The big bad insurance company did and this is a business, not a charity.Bull
Marshall Hitchcock admitted to Bull that this kind of work is extremely unpleasant. Most people won't do it and that's why the people that do get paid so much money.
If taking that check for $2 million as payment for sealing Julia's fate didn't make Bull feel at least a little dirty I don't know what would.
It also made me wonder how much the guy who first called Julia to say they were rejecting her claim got paid. What kind of person is the one to make the phone call to tell someone we won't pay to save your life?
It's one thing for a doctor to say, "We can't save your life," it's another for a company to tell you, "We won't."
It's difficult to review an episode like this one. On the one hand, it left me feeling quite sullen, which isn't fun, and yet I was never bored.
I cared about Julia and her family. Three years might not sound like very long when put up against decades, but those three years would make a huge difference to her children and no prognosis is exact.
But there were certain scenes that felt trite. Take Bull escorting the little boy into the men's bathroom.
No mother of a boy that age would hesitate to take him into the ladies' room and no woman in the ladies room would think twice about seeing him there with his mom.
It was obviously a flimsy excuse to allow Bull to get closer to the boy and feel bad about taking the case.
All along I was wondering if Bull wanted Benny to lose but I couldn't tell one way or the other. My guess is that perhaps he was torn over this case too.
Jason was certainly facing his own battles. In order to keep from taking a drink, he had to ride around in a cab all evening to stay out of the bars.
Marissa was right. He's lucky he's rich. Most normal people can't afford hours long, nightly taxi fare.
I was glad Marissa brought up the discrepancy between money and care. Jason Bull is a rich man which means he most likely got the best treatment from the best doctors during his recovery. Most heart attack patients don't have the luxury of going to a fancy rehabilitation facility in another state to recuperate.
It felt as though Jason was feeling sorry for himself and perhaps he has reason to. Despite having an entire team of people who work for him he is still very much alone.
And now, his gal Friday, Marissa, appears to be happy and in love. When you're miserable it's difficult to see other people happy, even when they are your friends. At least Bull was able to communicate that to her and that's a start.
As for Bull handing over that $2 million check to Julia and her family, that felt like the TV equivalent of a smiley face emoji at the end of a text, cute but not much substance.
Could Bull even do that? If you give a retainer to a law firm they are supposed to keep it in an account for billables. I know that TAC isn't technically a law firm but since Benny is the attorney of record for many of these cases, it kind of is.
Then again, perhaps I'm delving in too deep for this type of show.
Finally, we get to Cable.
I kept wondering what that scene was at the very beginning of the episode. Why were we seeing a family drive off a broken bridge? Was it some sort of weird dream sequence.
It seemed to make no sense.
The moment Danny went to Cable's apartment and found nothing disturbed, I kept waiting for them to find her body and in a way they did.
I had read that the actress was leaving the show but I was still surprised that they killed her off. That said, I won't be disappointed if they manage to use this to effect with all of the characters at TAC throughout Bull season 3.
So what did you think of Jason Bull's return, TV Fanatics?
I didn't love it but I didn't hate it. It left me feeling melancholy and a little disappointed but still curious about where these characters are headed.
Are you still on board for Bull season 3?
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.