If you haven’t watched the March 10, 2013 “Army Wives” season 7 premiere, then let me forewarn you – yes, sure, there are spoilers in your midst, but more than that you’ll be needing tissues. Lots of them. “Army Wives” came out of the gate with a crushing (though not entirely unexpected) loss for its seventh season premiere, Ashes to Ashes, and the Lifetime drama wasted no time dropping long-time fans to their TV watching knees.
I’ll work on drying those tears I alluded to while you prepare yourself for any potential spoilers. Everybody ready? Okay, let’s get on with some highly anticipated, long-awaited “Army Wives” dish.
You’ll recall when “Army Wives” left us in Sept. it was with our recently deployed experiencing troubles in the air followed by an ominous sounding phone call to General Holden; things picked right up from that phone call. We knew it was after midnight as Michael pulled into Denise’s driveway, and the mind raced, trying to figure out how it could only be Frank, and then you realized…Who haven’t we seen in forever? Who’s a likely candidate for a right-off-the-bat exit? You guessed it Claudia Joy.
On the verge of returning home from “touring Army bases all over the world with the First Lady,” Claudia Joy went to her hotel room alone and was found later on her bed, having died of heart failure. Michael assumed it was a combination of her diabetes and the kidney transplant…Her body just wore out.
Ashes to Ashes was filled with Claudia Joy related flashbacks and familiar faces brought back to mourn the loss of one of the originals. We can assume that giving viewers the gift of all our original “Army Wives” was not only important to the storyline, but it was quite probably meant to ease us into the transition of a whole slew of new “Army Wives” being added to the mix in season 7.
Most notable flashbacks…
- Claudia Joy teaching Emmalin how to drive a clutch to the revelation that this was how she taught Amanda and how her mother taught her, and how Emmalin would one day teach her daughter…Bittersweet, to say the least.
- Sara Elizabeth’s birth – This memory was preceded by little miss coming in and telling Roland that she was hungry, and it was a scene with multiple levels of importance. First, that life goes on even when your heart is breaking and second, that a loss like this has countless ripple effects.
- Denise and Claudia Joy on the beach, C.J. helping Denise through the impossible loss of her son: “It’s true what they say, isn’t it? Parents aren’t supposed to bury their children.”
But let’s get this train back on track. Michael’s first stop was at Denise’s, he hadn’t even told Emmalin yet, and it was surprising to me that he broke the news to his daughter over the phone. I know she’s away at school, but it just didn’t seem like a conversation to have over the phone…At any rate we watched (and cried a little…or a lot) as Michael struggled into that conversation, then as Denise broke the news to Roland and they gathered with Jackie and Gloria to game plan helping the Holdens through this. At this point it was looking like we’d get a Pamela fix, but no Roxy since she and the fam were well on their way to the new base.
Have no fear, Roxy is here; with twin babies in tow as Trevor and the boys head west.
Perhaps the thing that struck me most (and required the most tissues) in this hour-long sobfest was the scene with Emmalin and Denise at the cemetery – Amanda’s grave to be exact. As it struck her that her mom wouldn’t be at her graduation…At her wedding…That she’d never meet her grandchildren…It was an emotionally devastating moment that sucked viewers in with its raw emotion.
We didn’t quite make it to Claudia Joy’s funeral in the season 7 premiere of “Army Wives,” but we can expect to puddle our way through that in the second episode of this latest season, all the while getting introduced to some new faces.
What did you think of "Army Wives" long-awaited season 7 return? Are you looking forward to fresh faces, or dreading the change?
Tune in for new episodes of “Army Wives” Sundays on Lifetime at 9 p.m./8 c.
Cast of “Army Wives:”
Kim Delaney…….Claudia Joy Holden
Catherine Bell…....Denise Sherwood
Sally Pressman……Roxy LeBlanc
Wendy Davis……...Lt. Colonel Joan Burton
Brian McNamara.....Major General Michael Holden
Sterling K. Brown...Roland Burton
Terry Serpico……..Brigade Commander Frank Sherwood
Drew Fuller……….Sergeant Trevor LeBlanc
Katelyn Pippy…….Emmalin Holden