Season 2 Episode 8

Too Close to Call

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Nov 14, 2005 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
197 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Allison has a vision that could jeopardize D.A. Devalos' chances for re-election. Meanwhile, Joe runs into an ex-girlfriend from college.

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  • A strong episode that highlights issues of privacy in a world of psychic ability

    This series seldom fails to deliver, and this is another strong episode. I was expecting the whole re-election question to stretch out a bit longer, but the writers must not have wanted to introduce long-term arcs. That’s usually something I prefer, but in this case, it may not be necessary yet. There’s still quite a bit of character work that can be done independently of an arc structure.

    A good chunk of this episode was another look at the Allison/Joe dynamic, which is easily my favorite aspect of the series. I really liked the way that Joe stood up for his marriage; there wasn’t even a vague hint of extra-curricular temptation. As usual, his method of shutting down a potential problem was rational and complete. In fact, it’s increasingly clear that his emotions are reserved largely for his family, and even then, he tries to balance out Allison’s more unusual point of view.

    On the other side of the equation, I once again found Allison’s point of view hard to accept. This episode reminds us that Allison knows far more about Joe and his activities than he could ever know about hers. In a lot of ways, it’s beyond unfair, and it brings up a personal example of what the episode highlights: how Allison’s visions are, in essence, a massive invasion of privacy.

    Under the best of circumstances, even if things turn out well, Allison and her work with the DA could be perceived as a violation of civil rights. It’s come up before, but for all that Allison can prevent situations from getting out of control or crimes from being unsolved, her visions aren’t nearly clear enough to justify some actions. This episode is a perfect example: someone almost gets killed because of an ill-considered, pre-emptive action, and one that was not legally advisable.

    Does Allison’s ability constitute an abuse of power? Or more correctly, when does the response to one of her visions constitute such an abuse? Allison points out that she can stray into “Minority Report” territory rather quickly, and sometimes, she can act a bit too proactively. From her point of view, can she just let something happen, just because she can’t prove her conclusions with solid evidence? Can she fail to act? Maybe not, but from an outside point of view, where does she draw the line?

    All of these concepts are mixed well with the murder mystery at hand, and as usual, the pieces all come together in unexpected ways. One thing, however, is rather perplexing. Perhaps it happens more than I realize, but this episode seemed to be overflowing with product placements. Two movie references, a comment about TV was more than a little fishy. It wasn’t as bad as some “Alias” episodes, but it was still pretty bad. Thankfully the episode itself overshadowed that annoyance.

  • This is physics.. everything is physics! Oh poor Joe.

    Another great episode that began with a disturbing dream. In fact it really scared me. I know I won't look at voting polls the same way again.

    The DA is running for election again when Allison has a flash of campaign add the opposition will use in the future when a violent crime is committed by a young man DA Devalos gave a light sentence to a few years ago. The opposition will use it against him, so Allison must find the young man and stop him before it is too late.

    Back at the Dubois house Allison and Joe run into a woman from Joe's past who he says was just a friend. To Joe's horror Allison know every intimate detail of there "friendship" and is convinced this woman wants something from him.

    I really liked this episode and especially the ending.moreless
  • great episode

    Allison dreams of an election taking place, this election is between devalos and his rival. joe bumps into an old college girlfriend, and allison sees a vision of him in the past. allison dreams of a man murdering a woman in her kitchen. she asks the help of the police to help her track down a man who was released from prison. it doesn't work out as planned, but an unfortunate accident leads allison to another incident that might have something to do with her dream. it's a well written episode, it's a really exciting story, the way it was directed, it looks really well made.moreless
  • Davalos is running for re-election while Allison has a vision of his defeat.

    The episode starts with Bridgette way too caught up in the democratic process to realize she’s too young to vote, Allison amazed at how many envelops her daughters have finished and Joe busy planning their night out without the children.

    By the time Allison gets to work, she has a vision of Davalos’s rival winning the election due to a commercial which accuses the D.A. to set free one Clyde Morton who later kills a woman after he’s released out of jail, as if this weren’t bad enough, she has a vivid vision of Joe’s one night stand with his former research partner from college when they ran on each other during their night out.

    Allison does have a funny way to call on Joe’s fond memories for someone who’s cheating Davalos with detective Scanlon but as much as her boss forbids her to go near Clyde Morton, she asks Lee to visit his house in order pull out a pre-emptive crime thing to save his future victim which place them both under the worst possible scenario.

    It’s amazing how far these two have come since "A couple of choices" aired last season and rather touching to see the way Lee sticks by Allison and defends her from Many throughout the episode (especially since these men are old friends). Even before Lee & Allison were reprimanded by Davalos, they felt as a team whose partnership have gone long enough to laugh out of the same jokes or share the same criteria during a situation, which is precisely what allows them to protect the victim from the real attacker saving both her life and Davalos’s election in the process.moreless
  • I cannot imagine bein Allison Dubois...

    This wasn't my favorite episode, but i always think what if Allyson's reality was mine. I can't imagine dealing with all that knowledge. In this episode 2 close people to Allyson were involved in their visions. Her husband his boss.

    Joe finds some girlfriend and has to deal with her seduction, of course he chooses his wife, but i really like Joe's character because even he is not alwyas happy with her wife's gift, he is always there for her.

    On the other hand, apparently Devalo's career is in trouble and Scanlon and Dubois start looking for a murder not happened yet. They cause an inocent's kid accident and she felt so guilty. So everything turn out well, once again all tv shows try to mention how people jump into conclussions.moreless
Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell

Steve Herzfeld

Guest Star

Brian Kerwin

Brian Kerwin

Nathan Bradley

Guest Star

Perrey Reeves

Perrey Reeves

Karen Herzfeld

Guest Star

Kendahl King

Kendahl King

Devalos' Assistant

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • When Allison walks into the kitchen Joe is reading the paper. You can see the front page of the paper, but when it shows a side shot of Joe, he is reorganizing the paper and the front is facing him. He then turns it around and it is facing away from him again.

    • The information beneath Nathan Bradley's picture at the end of his commercial reads:
      (C)2005 Nathan Bradley organization. Paid for by the committee to re-elect Nathan Bradley. For promotional use only. None of the likeness of Manuel Devalos were used with his permission or that of his re-election campaign and should be understood to defame and slander such district attorney.

    • Joe and Allison go and see a preview of Memoirs of a Geisha, which opened in theatres a few weeks after this episode aired: on December 9th, 2005.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Ariel: Are you guys going out tonight?
      Joe: Yup. It turns out the temperature in Hades has finally plummeted below zero and your mother and I are gonna go out and we're gonna see a movie, and maybe we're gonna get some dinner...alone, with just each other.

    • Joe: You mean you saw it?
      Allison: Trust me, it's not something I sought out. It's not like I saw it in the TV guide and put it on my must see list. It just popped into my head.

    • (After being wakened by a 'normal' bad dream about the upcoming election.)
      Joe: Aha, I see. My wife is suffering from "electile" dysfunction.
      Allison: Now that's scary.

    • Joe: What's the point of going out for a hamburger when you have steak at home.
      (Allison chuckles.)
      Joe: I'm taking the kids to school, I'll call you from work.
      Allison: It's so funny, I was sure you'd ordered the fish.

    • Allison: Good thinkin', Lincoln.
      Joe: I aim to please, Louise.

    • Allison: Sometimes I'm so wrong, so wrong.
      Joe: Stop, who are you and what have you done with my wife?

  • NOTES (1)


    • Joe: ...temperature in Hades...

      Hades is a god from Greek mythology. He is the lord of the dead and rules the nether world. The nether world is called the domain of Hades. Or just simply Hades.

      Hades is often used as a substitute for Hell by parents who don't want to teach their children swear words.

    • Det. Scanlon: You know, I've never done this pre-emptive stuff before. Do I at least get one of those flying motorcycles, like Tom Cruise had?

      This is a reference to the movie Minority Report, released in 2002, starring Tom Cruise as John Anderton. Cruise plays a police officer who arrests people who, as determined by three psychics called precogs, will commit crimes in the future.