Executive producer Andy Berman, who wrote and directed this episode, deftly balanced Psych's signature frivolity with serious character development.
Yes, as James Roday told me during my most recent set visit, Shawn is finally wearing his big-boy pants.
Sure, his mom (Cybill Shepherd, reprising her role as Henry's ex-wife) might have picked those pants out for him (and his underwear too), but we can't expect Señor Pantolones de Fuego to grow up too fast.
"Luvvah" marked an important milestone for Shawn and Juliet (cohabitation!) but also for Gus, who finally landed his own serious girlfriend (ER's Parminder Nagra). Even more important, she's neither "a killer nor dating a killer."
However, Rachael, whom Gus met on an online dating site, did drop a bombshell at the end of the episode: She has a young son, a fact she failed to mention in her SoulMateConnect.com profile. A girlfriend (and one who considers apples a "snack," no less) is a serious enough commitment; whether Gus—and his bromance with Shawn—can also handle a child remains to be seen.
SoulMateConnect.com, coincidentally, was at the center of the SBPD's investigation into the murders of two women. Both victims used the site, so Juliet went undercover to draw out the likely subjects. Unfortunately, she didn't share the 411 with Shawn, who discovered her fake profile and crashed her first date at Papa Mia's.
Before Shawn posed as a waiter and interrupted their meal, all was going swimmingly between "Helene" and Mike, a seahorse aficionado. (Fun fact: Mike's "long-snouted," "grandpa" seahorse, Herschel, shares a moniker with writer Berman's beloved Great Dane.)
So while Shawn overfilled Mike's water glass, Juliet desperately tried to salvage the situation by assuring Mike that Shawn was her ex-boyfriend: "He's a little unbalanced and very immature," she said, and added, cuttingly, "He's about to move back home."
(The truth hurts: Shawn did initially decide to reclaim his boyhood room, before he witnessed something so awful he can never unsee it.)
Finally, Lassie ordered undercover waiter McNab to salvage the date. ("I wish I could, sir, but I'm in the weeds right now!" he protested. "Leave the spaghetti!" barked Lassiter.)
In the end, even though Juliet was doing a "bang-up job Jezebeling herself out to half of Santa Barbara," Shawn wormed his way onto the case. With a tub of popcorn in hand, he joined the team in the stake-out van while Juliet caught "Howard the Duck" with her second suitor, a Mensa member and spelling bee champ. (A nice wink to the series' second episode, "Spellingg Bee," when Shawn and Juliet first met. Aw.)
This time, it was an oblivious Gus, on his own date with Rachael, who confronted "Helene," believing she was two-timing his BFF. ("If I wasn't on a date with my soul friend now we would be having words," he warned Juliet. "Know that.")
They weren't the only ones playing Cupid: A confused attempt to save Det. O'Hara ended with Shawn and Lassie pretending to be an amorous gay couple.
"I did get a little action with Lassiter," Shawn bragged later to his parents. "Over the clothes. Middle-school stuff."
"Luvvah" really was all about Shawn's painful journey from dude with a middle-school maturity level to independent adult—and vanquishing a green-eyed monster. Already jealous of Gus's new love interest, Shawn became more riled when he discovered his own girlfriend swooning over her next dating candidate, the handsome and successful Mr. Possibilities.
To lure him in, SoulMateConnect.com's tech guy encouraged Juliet to "spruce up" her "middle-of-the-road" profile. "Who lists The Mentalist as one of their favorite TV shows?" he criticized, a resounding smackdown to Psych's CBS copycat. "You need to get more spicy… We're not trying to attract a 30-year-old guy who lives with his parents."
Shawn's no good, very bad day got even more terrible and horrible when, looking for sympathy, he barged in on his parents having sex.
And in a series of still more unfortunate events, Shawn misidentified Mr. Possibilities and allowed his girlfriend to be caught unawares by Seahorse Mike—the real serial killer. But the badass babe (who also shot Henry's attempted killer last week) took him down singlehandedly.
With that, Shawn realized he was finally ready to move forward, in a scene that was simultaneously sweet, romantic, and hilarious—without being sappy.
"I like the way we fit," he told his girl. "I think it's time we moved in together. Home should be wherever you are, and the dogs we're going to get relatively soon. So wherever you and the fleet of pugs are, that's where I want to be."
(Fun fact No. 2: Real-life cohabiters Roday and Maggie Lawson are also dog lovers with a fleet of their own.)
Meanwhile, Gus deleted his online profile and bid farewell to Single Gus, just before his boo introduced her unfortunately named son, Maximus.
Both Rachael and Maximus are MIA in next week's brilliant Lassie-centric found-footage episode. In case you were troubled by Gus's lack of appetite (lovesickness?) in tonight's episode, never fear: Nourishment is his first concern in the upcoming "Lassie Jerky."
Thanks to Gus's uncharacteristic lack of appetite, "Luvvah" didn't feature the usual offering of tasty treats. Here's the foodstuff rundown: a corn dog (possibly) suffering from freezer burn, pie, fusilli, spaghetti, KFC, flourless chocolate cake, a patty melt, cinnamon rolls, ketchup, garlic sticks, popcorn, and green apple Jolly Ranchers. (The apple hardly counts, does it?)
– "This is my partner, Immaculate Conception."
– "When you show up at the restaurant, guess who's waving at you from the bar? The New Delhi version of Colonel Sanders with a wig." (Shawn warning Gus about Catfishing)
– "She's like an Indian princess who bakes pies, so suck iiiiit." (Gus about Rachael)
– "I wish I could, sir, but I'm in the weeds right now." (McNab to Lassie, taking his cover as a waiter too seriously)
– "Oh, we're gonna play dirty ball? We're gonna play nasty ball? Well, good luck finding more garlic sticks." (Shawn to Juliet and her date)
– "Dessert's going to be on me. I'm going to hit my side work, marry some ketchups. We have a flourless chocolate cake like every other restaurant on the planet but ours really is amazing." (Shawn, making up to Juliet and her date)
– "Lassie, I need a flourless chocolate cake on the fly!" (Shawn in the Papa Mia's kitchen)
– "You just don't know how to take a Swedish practical joke." (Shawn while Juliet tried to assemble Ikea furniture)
– "The British don't get their own heavens." (Shawn, when Gus said that Rachael had "a voice like an angel from the British heavens")
– "This is my lunch, which was packed for me by my mother. It is clearly labeled Goose, so now it cannot be stolen." (Shawn)
– "Please, stop making sounds with your mouth." (Shawn to his dad after seeing his parents in flagrante)
– "I walked into my divorced parents having sex and then my dad sat me down and told me my body was a wonderland." (Shawn, later)
– "McNab, I need one paddy wagon, one patty melt, some yellow crime scene tape, and two cinnamon rolls delivered to the following address." (Shawn after locating Mr. Perfect)
– "Gus, do not be the Tom Selleck to her Paulina Porizkova" (Shawn, accusing Rachael of murder, in the third '80s movie reference of the night, "Her Alibi")
1. Did you spot the pineapple?
2. What was your favorite quote of the episode?
3. What do you think of Gus's new girlfriend?
4. Juliet and Shawn: Cuter than a fleet of pugs?