Friday, November 22, 2013

The Tomorrow People, Season 1, Episode 7: Limbo

There’s apparently a “lunatic” on the loose. So much so that a man is escorting people from a building to the subway or their cars. But one woman doesn’t want to wait for him to come back – to be fair, she can actually see her car. Seriously, she could throw a rock and hit it, so being escorted, say, 50 feet does seem a little silly (or he could escort her first).

Anyway, of course she is accosted on the way – by a man who disappears from one place and appears in another. She tries to pepper spray him and he reflects it back – and teleports away with her.

Stephen wakes up in a hotel room and reaches out telepathically for Cara. Who is in the bathroom and having a massive case of the regrets.

And at HQ, John and Russell are back from their road trip and John has even bought her a present. Feel that guilt churn! She also claims she was in a hotel for “me” time – right before Irene and Tim arrive with news of a breakout to cut the awkward: the man who sexually assaults women. Cara is shocked that one of them can become a rapist and has a bit of a rethink of the whole “homo superior” thing. John points out that their powers make them more powerful, not more moral but Cara seems to have been really invested in the whole idea of them being better people, especially with her history.
They decide to go after the guy because they’re better than Ultra and may get him before another woman is attacked – but they need Ultra’s intel so John suggests Cara contact Stephen. AWKWARDNESS!

At Ultra, we have a new character giving Stephen grief for killing his partners – repeatedly. He says “you’re too young, too green and your partners end up dead” no lies detective – except he missed the part where Stephen is so obviously a double agent that it’s amazing everyone doesn’t burst out laughing at the idea it’s even a secret. Jedikiah interrupts to tell them about the rapist and shockingly is more upset about exposure than women being raped. Stephen is shocked and appalled that his evil uncle is evil despite endless proof of said man’s evil and has a little tantrum. He also adds more angst for killing agents (in the evil organisation that you are supposed to be actively sabotaging, remember Stephen) and Jedikiah gives him time off and reminds him that quitting gets him killed (since Stephen seems to have forgotten the whole evil thing yet again).

John drops in to learn Stephen is being given time off for stress – and Stephen adds that it’s extra stressful keeping his secret identity! I KNOW! He actually believes his being a double agent is still somehow secret?!

At school, Stephen is keeping up his angst marathon about how he breaks everything and Astrid advises him to have a little fun with his powers (and try not to listen to classmates thinking they have crabs). This involves playing basketball and stealing a scene from Teen Wolf (the original movie) where he uses his special powers to make his team win despite being apparently underclassed (the ones supposed to be good athletes appear to be Black men while the lesser athletes are either women or unfit white men – there’s some lazy coding there). Downside is, the coach pushes him to join the team since several of his normal players are out.

Meanwhile the story – hah, no not really. Cara and John are still bickering, John thinks Cara is angry at him for daring to keep part of his mind to himself – which she could be or it could be guilt over her sleeping with Stephen.

Astrid and Stephen return home after many teleport jaunts only to find Cara waiting, giving Astrid the chance to meet Cara and end all the fun. With Astrid gone Cara tries to be all business but Stephen wants to talk gooey feelings. She calls it a mistake, he demands that she tell him she doesn’t feel anything for him and he’ll let it drop (hmmm, how about letting it drop because she isn’t interested?) and he wants to read her mind at the time to see if she’s not lying (incredibly invasive and out of line – it’s not right when Cara does it, it’s not right when Stephen does it). Cara just teleports out.

Back at school, Stephen enjoys new popularity as part of the team – and volunteers his house for a pep party before the match since his mother is working night shift. She’s going to be absolutely thrilled about that one. Of course the party is a gazillion times huger than he imagined (yet he still managed to pull out the snack horde) and he deputises Astrid to help protect the couch, tries to keep his little brother away from, well, everything and Jenny draws him away somewhere private for an “emergency”.

Astrid swoops in to warn him that the police are coming and he needs to fix it. She’s angry and sharp with Stephen and he’s not sure why she’s so mad at him when he hears her thoughts “I’m in love with you.” She catches his change in facial expression and realises what happened and is Not Amused.

To finish off the evening Jedikiah and his new minion drop in to plant a suppression cuff on him which turns off his powers. And the next morning his mother is understandably annoyed as well.

Meanwhile at Tomorrow People HQ Russell’s clowning still fails to carry the idea that any of these grown adults are teenagers but does make for some cringing. And Cara decides to have a dramatic angsty confession of sleeping with Stephen.

Another woman is accosted by the rapist, but this time Cara senses the teleport and John drops in to fight the man. He’s shocked to realise John is also “one of the blessed ones” but teleports away when Cara and Russell joins them.

Stephen goes to HQ to complain about the cuff but they can’t remove it and they’re busy – Irene and John are pretty nice about it. Cara is pretty much an arsehole, quite possibly to prove to John how over she and Stephen are – either way it’s not a good look for her. John then gets his chance to put his dagger in, teleporting Stephen out and promising to have Stephen’s back during the game just like he had John’s (snide comment about sleeping with his girlfriend, not the times they’ve fought together).

At the game John arrives late (but he arrives much to Stephen’s relief). In John’s defence, he ensures they score lots of points – but usually by Stephen tripping up or having a ball hit him in the face. Hey if there’s a nice way of getting petty revenge, he did it. After the match he confronts John and the secret comes out. Stephen’s excuse is “it just happened.” Which is the worst excuse ever. How does it “just happen”? It’s not like sex is some random event that happens purely by chance. John is pretty mild in his rebuke all things considered and Stephen pushes him – I guess the apologetic route is not the way we’re going here. John points out Stephen has no powers and repeats Cara’s accusation of him being useless, Stephen hits back that John is a useless leader since he doesn’t fight and John responds with a low blow about the number of deaths Stephen has caused. Stephen hits John and then they fight. Of course.

Until Cara arrives and splits them up with telekinesis. She says she is entirely to blame, it was a mistake and she is with John. Fighting each other is ridiculous considering they’re fighting for the survival of their species so it has to end.

Alone, Stephen spots a badge that is a copy of the badge that was on the rapists jacket – the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, which also makes him think of when Cara told him water could be a psychic barrier (he saw this badge at Ultra, and John, Russell and Cara saw this badge and put it up in their HQ. With their super computer, Tim. None of them managed to identify this badge. Seriously, it was a mystery to them all.)

He decides to check this out, alone and heads into the sewers or water tunnels under the city surrounded by running water. I’m not even going to try to imagine how many of these tunnels there are or how likely it is for Stephen to find exactly the right point because it’s Tomorrow People and I’ve completely given up on them trying to be remotely reasonable in their plotting. Do I even have to mention the foolishness of going alone without his powers when this man managed to match or beat John? Argh, my eyes are rolling so fast I’m getting friction burns.

Stephen hears the rapist’s newest victim (coincidentally in the right place and right time, ow friction burns again) and rushes to help. The woman runs away and Stephen tries to fight the paranormal without his power. Guess how well that goes? Don’t worry his special specialness kicks in and he manages to send a telepathic help message to Cara despite the cuff (John asks how. Oh John, it’s the Tomorrow People consistent storylines and world building are for other shows. Go back to brooding angstily).

The rapist smacks Stephen’s head on the floor and kicks him into the water (a loophole in the “can’t kill people” rule). Cara and John arrive and John rushes to rescue Stephen as he flows away in the current while Cara vents out her rage by beating the rapist until she gets carried away and tries to smash in his head with a metal pipe – which, of course, she can’t do (can’t kill). Then Russell appears to kick the man in the head to ensure he stays down.

Stephen, drowning, has a vision/hallucination of his father telling him to stay back, he doesn’t want him there. And that Stephen has to go back, save himself and save all of them. He then tells Stephen “Thanatos” (Greek god of death – because visions have to be cryptic, it’s a rule).

John pulls Stephen from the water and gives him CPR, the music plays dramatically like there’s a chance in hell he won’t survive. Cara looks on tensely (Cara, CPR is hard work and, ideally, a 2 person job – chop chop!). After a minute, Stephen coughs up water and returns to consciousness. Yay.

The rapist is delivered to Ultra with Stephen claiming full responsibility. Having no powers. Or Ultra resources. And Jedikiah doesn’t demand a full explanation for this utterly dubious claim. Stephen also says he wants to return to Ultra – with some ridiculously trite saying – and gets his cuff removed. Jedikiah also reminds us he’s evil - which is good, Stephen tends to forget.

John and Cara talk about where to go next, Cara agrees that there’s a connection between her and Stephen but she will lie about it to Stephen for the sake of harmony since they need to work together and Stephen finding his father is still end game. John asks if Cara loves him – she says yes.

And Stephen goes to make peace with Astrid and apologises for acting like a jerk (which he… wasn’t doing. Except the whole reading her mind part). He tells her he loves her but there’s someone else – Astrid correctly guesses Cara but Stephen assures her that Cara doesn’t love him, to which Astrid points out is one great big lie.

Stephen goes to Cara and points out their connection let her hear him – and how they’re “inevitable” then promises never to bring it up again. Yeah, right because a guy declaring your being together is “inevitable” means they’re going to drop it. And John arrives – just in time for Stephen to tell him about his hallucination.

The Tomorrow People have absolutely no concept of boundaries. Stephen and Cara both feel they have a right to look inside people’s minds for social convenience – not the necessity of the war or anything like that, but for their own love lives.

And this whole “I’ll never bring it up if you don’t have feelings for me,” aside from the fact that if someone says no, you respect the no – maybe they DO have feelings for you. And? It’s their choice how and if they act on those feelings

There’s a paranormal running around raping women and it seems to be on no-one’s priority list. These people are supposed to save their people when their personal issues are all encompassing?

Jedikiah put a cuff on Stephen. The man who, in episode 1, managed to teleport out of a teleport proof room and stop time. Are we just forgetting all of this and pretending it never happened? I really do hate the really shoddy, sloppy writing of this series.