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Despite plot problems, ‘Psych: The Movie’ still delivers that Shawn and Gus magic

December 7, 2017 GMT

With nostalgia all the rage on TV these days, it was really only a matter of time before USA Network brought back one of its all-time most popular shows, “Psych,” which last aired in March 2014.

“Psych” gave us some of the most original and fun characters to ever grace a television screen, so I was looking forward to seeing the gang back together again in “Psych: The Movie.” Unfortunately, the convoluted plot and the unavoidable absence of a major character make what should have been a joyous reunion a bit of a disappointment.

As the action opens in “Psych: The Movie,” Shawn Spencer (James Roday) and his best friend, Burton “Gus” Guster (Dule Hill) are still in San Francisco, where they relocated in the series finale. Gus has gone back to pharmaceutical sales, but he and Shawn also still run their psychic detective agency, which is now called psychphrancisco. Shawn’s fiancee, Juliet (Maggie Lawson), is a detective for the San Francisco Police Department, working under Chief Vick (Kirsten Nelson).

When Juliet’s partner is murdered, Shawn and Gus jump in to try and help. But Juliet doesn’t want their help, and her continued insistence that they stay out of it starts to make the guys think that maybe she is hiding something.

Joining Shawn and Gus along the way to help with the case are Shawn’s dad, Henry (Corbin Bernsen), and Woody the coroner (Kurt Fuller), as well as a few other “Psych” regulars making cameos. Timothy Omundson, who suffered a stroke before production began, does make a brief appearance as Detective Lassiter.

The plot seems simple enough on paper, but it never quite comes together. Story points come up but are never carried through. A subplot concerning Chief Vick’s daughter goes absolutely nowhere and is only slightly relevant to the movie’s conclusion. After watching the entire two hours, I still can’t tell you why Juliet’s partner was killed in the first place. And Omundson’s presence is truly missed at nearly every turn.

The movie is not a total disappointment, however, because the heart of “Psych” is still intact — the relationship between Shawn and Gus. The unbelievable chemistry between Roday and Hill is in full effect as they do plenty of comedy bits for the fans. I laughed out loud several times, even though I knew what I was seeing really didn’t make much sense.

If you were a fan of “Psych,” I still encourage you to watch, because it is great to see almost everybody back on screen together. Just don’t be surprised when the movie manages to “psych you out in the end.”

“Psych: The Movie” premieres at 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7, on USA Network.

Angela Henderson-Bentley writes about television for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact her at ahenderson-bentley@hotmail.com.