“Exposition Boulevard” was a quite fitting title—apparently it is also the road that the writers take daily to work per David Rambo’s twitter…We found out quite a bit about the game the Patriots have been playing, and how long they have been playing it.  (Tonight playing Evil!FDR we have Jack Davis!) Written by David Rambo and Trey Calloway, and directed by Nick Copus, last week’s episode gave us quite a bit of information to chew on…and some more questions to ask…

After returning from New Vegas, Monroe finds out from Miles that Neville is working with the Patriots—and after him.  Miles also tells Monroe about the “re-education center” the Patriots have set up for the Willoughby children.  Rachel finds out the unsettling news about the nature of Connor and Charlie’s association, and questions many of her own choices. More is discovered about how far the Patriots are willing to go…Neville finds a fellow conspirator in Truman, more about Jason’s “training” is revealed and Aaron and Priscilla get closer on the way back…

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Quite a bit went on in this hour or television—and there was even a lot of back story crammed in!  I think that what baffled me the most is how Truman could still be around since he has always seemed like a fairly weak person that winds up just taking orders. We find out that he was stationed at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, when a faction of the government, lead by the Secretary of Defense, Jack Davis, came in.  We find out that the President and many key people were in Air Force One when the blackout happened.  It that after that happened, Davis planned a coup to take out the Vice President and put himself in charge.  He spoke to those at Guantanamo Bay about the blackout as though it wasn’t done purposely, so Davis is a lying liar that lies even to his own people.  Davis purposely brought in people like Victor Doyle to create this re-education program—that idea was essentially that the would cull all the people who didn’t meet their profile of the ideal, and figured they would then brainwash anyone who didn’t fall into line.  Pretty scary stuff….We also see that as far as Neville is concerned, Doyle is no longer playing Mr. “Nice Guy”.  He wants to sabotage Neville if possible—although who can blame him for that?  As Miles says, Neville is even more slippery than Monroe…Who could trust him?  I do feel though that ideally Neville should take out Doyle.  

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While I’m pretty sick of Neville’s ways, I think there is the possibility that he could be a great bad guy.  I agree with Monroe that they should take him out— “What’s more important than killing someone who wants to be killed?” But I doubt that will happen. I don’t see him joining our group of wayward heroes, either.  First off, Monroe is too great a character to have with them, and having two people who are walking the line would just be too many.  Monroe is the group’s wildcard—there isn’t room for Neville there…I imagine Neville will go all evil when Jason gets killed.  

True that Jason hasn’t gotten killed, and maybe he won’t, but I just don’t feel that we have a prayer of Jason surviving into a third season (should the show be renewed).  It pains me to see Jason as this season’s Danny, but I just can’t figure it any other way.  No time or story has been dedicated to Jason, aside from as furtherance to someone else’s story.  We didn’t actually see Jason get brainwashed, or see him in the camps—we only really got to see how his brainwashing effected Neville.  Again, I see his death as being used as a catalyst to impact Neville’s dealings with the group—make things personal maybe, and maybe throw in some interesting additional things into the works on other relationships—like for instance driving a wedge between Charlie and Connor if Connor is the one that takes him out.  We do know one thing—Jason has been activated.  That soldier girl didn’t last long after activation…I wonder what Wednesday might mean for Jason…

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The last few episodes my questioning regarding Rachel’s character development has increased.  I am not talking about “Dreamcatcher”—In that episode I liked Rachel’s character very much.  This last episode I really felt there was a push to make Miles choose between Rachel and Bass.  Bass and Miles’ relationship has had gaping holes in it and serious trust issues for quite some time.  In this episode, we saw a very Machiavellian version of Bass.  Miles seemed to understand Bass and saw the logic in what he was saying.  Rachel, who has done so much, now has drawn the line.  I do have some questions on that.  She seems to see Danny everywhere now.  She doesn’t want to hurt someone else’s children, even helping someone who has been brainwashed to escape.  This seems very different from how she just let Nora die back in the tower.  Rachel mentioned that she doesn’t want to do the smart thing, she wants to do the right thing now.

I can understand where she could come to a place where she says enough is enough, but I’m taking some issue with it, especially with her timing.  Here it seems contrived, like it is because Monroe is there, and so if Monroe wants to do it, there has to be a wrongness about it.  Before Bass was with them, she was letting Nora die and stabbing people with screwdrivers, etc.  Aaron even says in “Dreamcatcher” to Rachel that she wasn’t a “soccer mom”, that she was actually kind of scary, and that he needed her to be that now.  I feel as if I need, and they need, for Rachel to be scary now—she needs to find her inner Buffy again, because I feel she is losing it.  It is possible for a woman to be strong and empathetic.  To see the wisdom in one way, but opt to try something else first before taking extreme measures.  I feel she needs to find that…Although I also think that if she was more logical, more reasonable about this, she wouldn’t be the “Yoko Factor” that Bass alluded to.

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I loved that episode of Buffy, and since I have compared Monroe to Spike in the past, I’ll bring it up here. Yoko Factor was a term Spike used about the game he was going to play himself.  As Spike points out, people blame the Beatles breaking up on Yoko and how she built up John, but the truth was that the differences within the group, possibly brought under closer scrutiny through Yoko, were the actual causes of the breakup.  Spike planned on pointing out such differences within the Scooby Gang.  He fed on the insecurities, and issues that each member of the gang had.  Considering this, it is very interesting that Monroe would use that comparison.  Rachel brings out the differences in Miles and Bass.  She doesn’t actually drive the wedge between them, it is a wedge that is already there, but she acts as a crowbar using the wedge as leverage to make the distance between the two of them greater.

Bass always has great lines, and with David Rambo as one of the writers, Bass’s lines are just gold.  “Blackout with your crack out”?  The slight Charloe moment there with Bass asking Charlie how she found time to sneak away from Earth, Wind and Fire to bang his son?  Bass also had some moments of insight—like when he said that “the Nazis were someone’s kid”.  There were some things about Bass that came up that I am not entirely convinced we have the whole story on yet.  First, where he said he was in it to win, not to save people.  He also appeared to admit it was about setting up a father son republic.  I am not convinced about any of this.  We have a man who was hiding in New Vegas, who had burned off his tattoo, seemingly in an effort to put an end to his past life, hide who he was.  He fought for diamonds and booze with no apparent larger ambition.  It wasn’t until he was kidnapped, then escaped, then found Charlie that he started looking for anything more.  If he does really have the goal of restoring the republic, it would only be because he sees this as a way to prove himself to his son.  Bass doesn’t feel he has anything to offer his son, so he may feel that if he doesn’t want that, Connor will leave him.  But his vision being solely what he can get for Connor falls into the “living vicariously through one’s children” paradigm…I would rather he find his own reason for what he is doing…

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Bass did bring up a very interesting question in his conversation with Miles—what does Miles hope to get out of this?  He seems like the classic example of someone who is arguing with the group over not wanting to do something, but not offering up a better alternative.  He doesn’t like what the Patriots are doing, but what is going to happen after he takes them down?  who is going to fix things?  Maybe here we see the problem they ran into in the first place.  Miles can’t seen beyond the initial injustice, whereas Bass sees that once the government is taken down, there needs to be something put in its place.  Miles apparently never wanted a part of that.  Maybe Bass isn’t the right person to put in that place, but he seems to be the only one thinking that far ahead.

As far as the re-education camp is concerned, I felt like the brainwashing happened a little bit fast.  It happened like Derek Zoolander “Kill the Prime Minister of Malaysia, obey my dog” fast.  

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And what about the Priscilla with the fireflies moment at the end?  Please don’t let there be a midi-chlorian birth…Another possibility could be that Priscilla isn’t alive at all…She could be dead and the nanites have reconstructed her for Aaron…And actually, couldn’t even Aaron be a Kara Thrace and actually be dead.  Considering what these nanites can do and how we know they can realistically make people who are dead appear, I think it is entirely possible that anyone who died whose resurrection could not be explained (like how Bass was given tranqs to make him seem dead—he wasn’t actually dead), could actually be dead and only recreated by the nanites….I’m excited to see what could happen with that.

Let me know what you thought of the episode!  Screencaps from grandecaps.tumblr.com

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