Another double header review this week. And with these two episodes, we are now in hiatus for a little bit from Revolution! Although the mid season finale lacked the splendor of last season’s mid season finale, it definitely did have its share of revelations!
If you will remember back to last season, “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” was a real game changer. Rachel and Danny escaped from Monroe, but not before Monroe got power! We also got one heck of a dose of Miles/Monroe, where we found out so much more about their relationship leading up to their face off.
Before I can go into the mid season finale “Everyone Says I Love You”, I’ll first write a bit about “Come Blow Your Horn.” According to IMDB, it was written by Rockne O’Bannon and directed by Charles Beeson. To me, the episode felt a little off–it just did not grab me the way the rest of the season has so far. It is to be expected–When you have a show that only has 10-12 episodes, it is possible for each episode to be an amazing mini movie. I don’t think it is too much to ask a show with that short a season to go all out each episode. When you are talking about a show that has 20-24 episodes a season, the writers don’t have the turn around time, there is only a certain amount of time to shoot each episode, yada yada yada…It means you really can’t expect every episode to fire on all cylinders.
Neville uses Justine for leverage to get into the elite circle within the Patriot regime. Cynthia has figured out the role that Aaron played in Carl’s death. Horn begins the experiments on Aaron, with bad consequences and Rachel makes plans to kill Horn and everyone with him, which may include her father.
I think the other issue I had with “Come Blow Your Horn” was one of duplicity and harsh truths. Many characters who have been speaking one way, react in another, or at least show a very violent nature…The episode did expose quite a bit:
–Gene is seen by the people as in league with the Patriots. This is when EVERYONE learns about Gene–including Cynthia and Aaron.
–We find out that the fear Cynthia showed the episode before when Aaron lit people on fire was because she had figured out that Aaron was probably responsible for Carl’s death.
–Miles is torturing patriot soldiers to find Horn. When he doesn’t have Bass around to do the torturing, he resorts to it.
–Truman has alerted everyone in Willoughby that Miles is not Stu Redman, but Miles Matheson. He also tells everyone that Miles is the traitor in charge of the bombing, and Aaron is his accomplice. Gene backs up this story in an effort to protect Rachel and Charlie.
–Rachel was willing to gas her father to take out Horn, but the plan fell through when Horn brought in Aaron as well.
–Justine is killed by her husband after Neville uses her for leverage.
I liked the fact that Miles has sepsis…No, not that he has sepsis, but that someone who isn’t taking care of a hand that badly injured without proper antibiotics would get a very nasty infection. This gives some of that credibility that I think Kripke and the gang have been much better about this season. Their clothes are always dirty, and even though Charlie seems to have an endless supply of tank tops (maybe she has some special spell where she can just magic up another tank top?), they are much better this season with giving us a more gritty picture of a world that has fallen apart. I thought it was a very cute touch too that Rachel found some kind of granola bar that seemed to give Charlie the creeps. Of course they don’t have horribly processed food like we do. This is surely a good thing…But I would also add that a granola bar that is at least 15 years old would be way past its expiration date. I don’t think I’d eat it either…
I really like the new Bass. I know I’m putting both episodes together here, but I really love how in these two episodes, he essentially serves as comic relief. Well, as much as we get comic relief on this show anyway. I also like that we don’t all of a sudden have Altruistic!Monroe. I like that because it feels more real to me. Bass is struggling. He is stuck here. Initially it seemed like he came for some kind of help with revenge, then he finds out that Miles knows where he can find his son. Now, he wants this information, but Miles is hanging it over him because Miles needs Bass’s help. Miles seems to realize that Bass isn’t there because he wants to be buddies again, and seems to understand that if he gives Bass the information he wants, he will go. Since Miles knows that Aaron, Rachel and Charlie aren’t going to get the job done for him, he needs to keep Bass with him. Bass there helps him from sinking deeper into his own darkness, and gives them an actual chance to fight.
So Bass hasn’t really joined their side yet. I love this because it gives him almost the Han Soloness of the second season. He had his dark period, doing what he had to do, and he doesn’t really care much about this whole government thing, but he finds himself swept up in it….again…Or maybe he is like a Lando…He had his own world that is now taken over so he no longer has that and he’s stuck helping his ex best friend. Regardless of which Star Wars character we see Bass as, he has some very fun shiny moments in these two episodes. I love his kick ass then flee thing. Which he did leaving Aaron and Cynthia to get captured…and then it looks like he was going to do that to Charlie too, but then he goes back. That I found fascinating. Why did Bass go back? Was it an attack of conscience because she asked Rachel to fake his death and save him? Was that exit even more heavily guarded than where Charlie was? Will we ever know? We also got that great Stay Puft line from Bass, describing Aaron…I really love how his character has become so multifaceted this season. Last season the second half had Monroe written quite two dimensionally much of the time. Hopefully that will not happen in the second half of season two. I am very interested in what happens with his character. I am definitely hoping for a long redemptive arc with a lot of color and range.
Rachel had her own demons to face in finding out the truth about her father. In “Come Blow Your Horn” you see a very angry Rachel. She feels she has been betrayed by her own father. He made her feel like she was going crazy. It seems that Gene was holding her back on purpose. Finding out her father was working with the Patriots was a very difficult reality to face. I liked that Charlie was able to help her through it. Charlie was able to help make Rachel see that in these times, why people do things is actually important. What was wonderful about these two women working together is that it helped Rachel to come to an understanding about things before it was too late…well hopefully anyway. Currently we do not know where Gene is. Hopefully he is still alive because Miles really needs him to help with the hand. I would rather Miles NOT lose the arm and turn into Krychek (XFiles). Sure, Krychek was hot, but that whole arm losing thing I could have lived without. Also because I would rather Rachel have the opportunity to make peace with an alive Gene than have another thing on her conscience.
The midseason finale, “Everyone Says I Love You” was, in my humble opinion, more on par with the rest of the season thus far. In this episode, written by Paul Grellong and Trey Callaway, directed by Steven Boyum, we had some XFiles-y strangeness, Haley Joel moments, and as predicted, Julia is back! We know she is a survivor, she can always find someone to take care of her!
Miles, Charlie and Rachel attempt to break in to where Aaron was being kept only to find out that he has already somehow escaped, knocking out about 40 captors. Gene is nowhere to be found and the three track Aaron hoping to get to him before the Patriots can. Aaron and Cynthia wind up at the school, where Aaron finds out the nature of his recent supernatural abilities. Neville makes a very interesting discovery on his way to the White House and Bass is Batman.
You see what I mean about those lines Bass has? I think that as strained as Bass and Miles’s friendship is, Bass seems to be a much better person among others. Or maybe he is just happier in the more “pure” element of battle. That reminds me of what Dean Winchester said about being in Purgatory. Being in battle was more pure, things were more black and white, life was reactive. Bass seems to really be in his element here, in the midst of battle. Bass would do well fighting alongside Dean in Purgatory…That would be hot, too. But I digress. We see a bit of a softer side of Miles these days (ok, except for the torture) too, which seems to be about Rachel…
And about Rachel. Now we know that Rachel went to Miles about six years before the blackout telling Miles she would wait for him if he said he loved her. Miles did the noble thing and told her he didn’t, that she should start a family with his brother. Which it seems she did. My question is whether Rachel was pregnant then and didn’t tell Miles because she didn’t want his decision to be based on feeling obligated. We are in the realm where Charlie could very well be Miles’s daughter. I also found it a little interesting the way Rachel and Charlie were looking in on Miles and Bass’s conversation when Bass said that Miles kept his son from him. Will this come up? Will Charlie and/or Rachel question Miles’s reasons for withholding this information from Bass? Will this become a dividing factor? Will maybe Charlie start feeling more empathy for Bass?
About Charlie, I have had some real trouble with her, but the last few episodes I have really liked her. I feel the writers and Tracy seem to be getting into a really decent flow with her. The first season Charlie was very uneven. She got tough too early and acted more dead than hardened. She also seemed to have a Miles swagger. This season, Tracy really seems to have grown into her character and I am enjoying Charlie more and more each episode.
We also find out a lot more about what is going on with the nanites. When Aaron turned on the power, he infused all these nanites with sentience. They are now artificial intelligence. This scares me a little as to what role they will play in the second half of the season now that they have separated themselves from Aaron. Up until now, these nanites had been reacting to Aaron. They saved him, they were going on orders from him. But Aaron’s actions have started to make them question his ability to give them orders. When he told them to kill all the Patriots, I will admit, my reaction was the same as the nanites’ reaction. Why didn’t Aaron ask them to heal Cynthia? Why did he immediately jump to having them kill all the Patriots?
I think this shows a change in Aaron and not a change for the better. This seems to be something that the nanites have sensed themselves, making them decide in the end that they no longer would accept orders from Aaron and that they would leave him alone –the last command he gave them when he seemed to be acting in a normal, reasonable way. But whose command will they follow now? And if they won’t follow any command, will they achieve a level of sentience where they attempt to take over for themselves? Will they attempt to change the way things are? Will we get to a point in this world where our biggest baddie is not the people attempting to manipulate the game, but the actual technology itself? Will we wind up in some kind of Terminator future eventually?
And how about that Julia? I was pretty sure she wasn’t dead. In truth, I was hoping for a little love triangle action with Julia and Justine fighting over Neville, but no, Neville has his Lady MacBeth back and she does seem back to her old tricks. Now it seems almost like Jason is going to be the one on the run–or at least being watched!
We did have a good shoot out scene at the school…Which when you think about it has a scary wrongness to it…So that wraps up to the mid season finale! Let me know what you have thought of the season so far and where you think/hope the season will go in the second half!