PSYCH “In For A Penny” Review Starring William Shatner

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Beam me up, Scotty! It’s Captain Kirk – um, Denny Krane…um…I mean, William Shatner!  Finally, we get to meet Juliet’s father, but more importantly, Shawn gets to meet the “in-law”.  Flashing back to 1990, at Juliet’s 9th birthday party, the birthday girl sits patiently waiting for her absentee Dad to come, only to have her heart broken (apparently, not for the first, or the last time).

Twenty-one years later, and the little girl is about to turn thirty.  Her well-meaning boyfriend and his sidekick are planning her birthday bash with everything she wants: an inflatable bounce house, a slip-and-slide and two ginormous ponies.  Gary Busey may not make an appearance, but Juliet’s estranged father, Frank (Shatner), is in LA and he wants to catch up with his little girl.

Unfortunately, some inconsiderate criminals don’t know when to take a backseat to an important party and the Santa Barbara Police Department is looking for a couple of thieves who have stolen oxygen tanks from a medical facility.  Is there a shortage of oxygen supply?  Perhaps we should hold our collective breaths?

Against Juliet’s wishes, Shawn sees it as his manly duty as her boyfriend to reunite father and daughter to give her a special birthday to remember.  Shawn and Gus track Frank to an exclusive golf course (how exclusive can they be to let those two in?) and without hesitation, Shawn introduces himself to Frank as the guy who is dating his daughter.  Instead of being told to get lost, Frank happily invites the pair to his chȃteau for a drink.

When Frank turns up at the SBPD to pay his daughter a surprise visit and identifies the man who has just broken out of prison as a safe-cracker that he is acquainted with, the truth is revealed to all that Frank is, in fact, a con man.  In spite of this, Shawn is convinced that Frank can make amends with Juliet and ends up hiring him to help out on the case.  Together, they figure out that the reason for the prison break is that there is a crew planning a heist at the Santa Barbara Coin Expo where a 1943 bronze Lincoln penny worth $2million is going on display.

Of course, solving this case is not going to be this easy.  Sure, the coin does indeed go missing, but the culprits are not who Frank leads them to believe to be, and there may be another crime to solve before Juliet gets to enjoy her party.

Things I learned from “In For A Penny”:

  • A die-hard Psych-o reminded me that in Episode 1.02 “Spellingg Bee” (and no, that is not a spelling mistake) when we met Juliet for the first time sitting in the diner on a stakeout, Shawn uses his psychic ability to guess her background, during which he guessed that her parents had been happily married for thirty years after spotting a photo of her parents in her open purse.  Since she did not correct him but, rather, reacted with great surprise that he could tell so much about her background, one can only assume Shawn had guessed correctly.  But let’s not let a little mistake stand in the way of good story-telling and a guest spot from William Shatner.  After all, did Steve Franks know his little show about a fake psychic detective would still be rocking it five years later?
  • I googled “1943 Lincoln penny” and found that it’s known to coin collectors as “the steelie” – that is, it was struck in steel during wartime shortages of copper.  But there was no bronze version.
  • Gus needs to work on his “Southie” accent.  Ben Affleck would not be impressed.
  • DUDES! There’s a Shawn-and-Frank chest-bump!


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