This week’s episode of Falling Skies finally gave us the action we’ve been waiting for. No matter how slow last week’s episode was, this episode was just as fast. Though despite these minor improvements, one has to wonder if this is all too little too late. This season has still been a bunch horribly predictable events and continuity error provoking twists that basically lead to an overwhelming sense of inconsistency. As someone who used to respect this show ‘s writing and interesting characters, it just feels like this show has abandoned the quality it used to have in order to focus exclusively on the drama – no matter how little sense it makes.
Death, Death and More Death:
As the episode name – “Saturday Night Massacre” – might suggest, this episode had tons of character deaths. No one central actually died; but we did lose 3 supporting characters and basically every non-central character to a gas explosion – coincidence? I think not. Originally, it seemed Lourdes only reason for being brought back was just so we could make this once loved character even more hated than she had become. Though Lourdes death in this episode served to finally show just how far gone Lexi was.
Doctor Kadar’s death didn’t really have a purpose and basically just served to thin the herd – as most of the deaths this episode did. Tector’s death on the other hand did serve a purpose; but made it no less sad to see this character go. Tector was an amazing shot and a great; but in the end his death was meant to truly demonstrate the repercussion of Toms actions – or inaction. Tector died to save Tom and even donned the guise of Ghost when he did it. Whether this was to honor ghost or trick the Espheni into thinking they killed Tom, it isn’t made clear.
As for all the other deaths in this episode, we also saw some ‘pacifists’ get riddled with bullets. Though they’re misinformed course if action was expected, Dingaan’s response wasn’t. We see him get upset when they won’t move, which is understandable. The part that didn’t make sense was why he kept wanting to go back and get them even after he saw them shot. Dingaan escaped from multiple other camps. Those couldn’t be the first people he saw shot. He was reacting as if his wife and children were out there; but in reality they were just a group of people he didn’t know. Still horrible to whiteness; but not to the extent he reacted in this post apocalyptic world.
Lexi – Too Far Gone:
So remember how we took comfort in last weeks episode that we finally learned Lexi did mean well? HA! Yah, about that. When Lexi said she would always need her family, she didn’t actually mean her real family; but rather the Espheni. Lexi then accused humans of being too violent and decides she’d much rather live with the genocidal Espheni.
Also, how much is Tom drawing the short end of the stick? He decides to protect Lexi with out any ‘visions’; but Lexi doesn’t see him as her father. Lexi didn’t mean Tom when she said last episode ‘her father is coming’. She called Tom Tom, not dad. She was upset that she awakened to him and not The Monk. It’s also awful that she charges humans as only loving violence when her family just stopped the violence to protect her.
In the end, Lexi mercilessly killed Lourdes as she begged for her life and abandoned her family to get slaughtered. As much as I’d love to see Lexi ‘get it’; I know she won’t. The signs are all there that she’s going to be redeemed. Though after everything that happened this episode, I severely doubt that redemption will be handled believably – and more likely just be swept under the rug like everything else this season.
Beating a Dead Horse:
Hey, did you know Weaver’s daughter was turned into a monster; but still remembered him? Yes, we all do! In fact we’ve heard Weaver tell this story at least several times by now. So this will either be the theme of this season – and Lexi is still good – or the exact opposite will come true and defeat his theory. Either way, WE GET THE PICTURE! Good stories don’t need a character to remind their viewers about something every single episode – that’s what ‘Previously on…” moments are for at the start of an episode. Whatever happens with the human-skitterization process, Weaver’s constant preaching is starting to sound as annoying as Lourdes.
Pope’s Found His Stride:
One of the few good things about this season is that Pope seems to finally be hitting his stride. Right now he has the perfect balance between lone wolf outlaw and showing signs of something deeper. His conversations with Sarah definitely showed him to be concerned as well as juxtapose him with who he used to be. Although the downside here is that Sarah at first seemed to be the foil for Pope; but this episode kind of showed her to be all talk.
Whatever short comings Sarah’s character has, Pope’s at least showing some consistent complexities. He’s grown over the past few seasons – as well as this one – from the man who’d rather risk it on his own to the man who chooses to fight alongside the Masons. Though sadly, not all the characters have been so consistent this season.
As I said in the beginning, this show has become painfully inconsistent this season. The prime example of this is Hal who has changed sides so many times in the past two episodes it isn’t even funny. Last episode he went from humble leader and believer, to throwing angry rants at Tom and finally to deciding to stand by and wait for Lexi. This episode wasn’t much better as Hal once was the first to throw ‘I told you so’ in his fathers face. Though Hal didn’t stop there, he uses this ‘I told you so’ moment to jump into telling Maggie that love is weakness and has to be killed.
This is the person who was cold towards Maggie in the first episode, then pleaded for them to get back together last episode. 24 hours have barely passed and he’s acting colder to her than he ever has before. Don’t worry though, he’s back to pleading to find Maggie when she goes missing at the end of the episode. Add in a martyr speech about Hal sees himself responsible for Lexi and he has truly become the most inconsistent character this season.
Don’t get me wrong, characters are allowed to change. It’s called character growth. Though Hal has flip-flopped so much in the past few episodes that his entire character just seems to be less and less realistic and more prone to jump to whatever side can cause the most ‘drama’ for the show. If this season’s purpose is to just push Hal away from Maggie, then it’s going above and beyond the call of duty. Although the person they’re pushing Maggie towards turns this overkill strategy into something that is just plain awkward.
I CAN Wait For Next Week:
If the preview for next week is to be believed, then our awkward fears are about to be realized – along with a few more random WTF occurrences. When we last saw Ben in this episode, he was following Lexi into an Espheni ship. Next episode on the other hand, Ben apparently returns to have his spikes implanted into Maggie.
I thought Bens spikes couldn’t be removed; but I’m sure some Volm tech will be used to explain this away. Though it’s not the removal that concerns me but the idea of transferring them. The scene makes it look like each spike is some spider like being; but that can’t be because they’re merely the remnant of the harness. Also, how are they going to be inserted to Maggie’s spine when they’re simply stubs of a now removed harness? Though all of this pales in comparison to what’s inevitably going to come – Ben and Maggie bonding over their spikes. It wouldn’t be the first time Ben hooked up with a spiked version of one of Hal’s exes – *cough* Karen.
Beyond all this, it also looks like Tom and Dingaan find themselves in an Espheni ship – most likely the one that crashed into the building near where Tom and Tector were. It seems as though something burrows it’s way into Toms skin as well – another poisoned by alien device story I guess. Overall, I personally am torn between putting off the next episode and just ending the season already.