Gilmore GirlsOuch! Quit it! Cut it out! Ow! Make it stop! Yeah, that was me bobbing and weaving, ducking and diving my way through the entire hour. I barely made it, battered and bruised by all the blatant symbolism in this ep. And now my head really, really hurts. It's hard to decide which one was the knockout blow. So many to choose from Jess is back! From out of the shadows! And he wrote a book! He's (are you ready?) doing something with his life

. Logan is drunk! He parties all the time! He doesn't want to go with his dad to Omaha! He's... (are you sitting down?) aimlessly wandering through his life. Rory's fed up with Emily's strict rules! She spends the night at Lane's! She refuses to wear her party dress! She's... (wait for it!) pushing her grandparents out of her life. Lorelai's a mess! She's crying over her crazy, sick dog! Who's been bringing pairs of shoes down from her closet! That point to Rory's room! She's... (can you handle it?) lost without her daughter in her life.

Sigh. Even my high-school English class didn't force-feed so many metaphors. This from a show that can wow and zing us with witty cultural references that fly, no, sail right over our heads if we're not giving it every ounce of our attention. Whatever happened to subtle? Ugh. Pass the Tylenol. Robin Honig

To read Matt Roush's take on last night's episode, click here.

My Name Is Earl
Earl, I forgive you for making the husband sing the Smokey and the Bandit song for the next 48 hours. But only because we got an extra dose of Randy cuteness and a dog named Poochie tonight. Though I'm not exactly with him on Amnesty Day at the adult-video store or the cheerleaders' bikini dog wash (do the dogs wear the bikinis?), I was awfully disappointed for Randy every time Earl chose golf-obsessed Scott (Johnny Galecki from Roseanne) over going to the fair. And really, wasn't Scott's downfall caused by his own hubris as much as by Earl's quest for free beer? Hubris must've been a different episode on Carson Daly. Through Randy's eyes, Scott was pretty well off just having that car with a TV in it and, as Randy put it, "Now you have beer, so sometimes things work out." So when Scott's girlfriend, frustrated that he'd never taken her to Colonial Williamsburg, went off to Ozzfest and "churned some guy's butter," I think he kind of deserved it.

Other things to love about this episode:
- The messed up Say Anything reenactment, during which the black downstairs neighbor thought they were burning a cross and throwing shoes at him. "We're not moving!"
- Seeing Earl and Randy in their idea of preppy clothing. And Randy's "I need to call my banker" excuse for not revealing his golf score.
- Earl renting Smokey's Trans Am. But could it possibly be cooler than Joy's Subaru Brat? And is it completely obvious that I had to get the husband (who's still singing) to tell me the names of these cars? "Eastbound and down, loaded up and truckin'..."  Sabrina Rojas Weiss

House
One might call House's patient this week the Human Taser. Carnell, a recent Princeton University grad of modest beginnings, is suffering from self-generated electric shocks. They're so bad that his sphincter is paralyzed and he poops himself. Holy crap, they showed that on TV? Shocking! Even more surprising is the fact that the cause of Carnell's malady is the radioactive key chain his father, Ken, gave him. A token to remind Carnell of his humble roots. The thing is, radioactive key chains are absolute no-nos as gifts. I'm going to stand firm on this one, especially with the holidays coming up. No matter how cute that nugget of metal from the salvage yard may look, leave it be. Sure you might be thinking, what do I get the Princeton grad who has everything? Remember this: A hunk of radioactive waste is not a cool gift. Now get thee to a Target and stop lying to your son about his mother's death.

So halfway through the show I got excited not just because we were going to meet Ma and Pa House, whom he was desperately trying to avoid, but also because I thought this would be the week without a tumor. I was wrong. They stuck one in the spinal cord real cute-like, but who cares? House has parents! Finally someone to tell him to go to his room. Alas, this fantasy went unfulfilled but House did get a dose of reality from dear old Dad and that was worth the price of admission.  Rhoda Charles