Thursday, April 10, 2014

From Dusk Till Dawn, Season 1, Episode 5: Self-Centred

Jacob has a flashback (because this is From Dusk Til Dawn and we need a flashback every 10 minutes, it’s a rule!) about the car crash that killed his wife; which is probably a bad thing for a man driving the getaway vehicle to do. The radio does confirm that the police don’t know which vehicle the Gecko brothers have escaped in. Jacob and Seth verbally fence a little bit out of which comes Seth’s protestation that he’s not a murderer and Jacob being far far more worried about Richie. As they should be as Richie hallucinates a woman telling him he’s nearly there but that they will try to stop him.

I think being “they” is not healthy.

Seth has a call from Carlos where they both snarl at each other – Seth isn’t happy by how little help they’re getting from Carlos considering the money they’re giving him and Carlos is furious about the swath of destruction they’re cutting across Texas – and the Ranger on their tale.

Speaking of, said Ranger, Freddie, is being chewed out by his ornery boss because of the mess of the Motel and disobeying his orders and he’s dragged away in cuffs. He has a convenient flashbacks of crusty old Earl advising him to stop running around on his own and actually rely on the other rangers a bit more and how he should never oppose them. Advice he ignores when he beats up the ranger who lets him out of his cuffs and runs off with his car.

Back in the RV, Scott asks Richie to stop pointing his gun because he has a super knowledge of guns and knows this one has a hair trigger. Not that Richie cares – after the obligatory Asian comment (though Scott does correct Richie’s conflation of Asian nations), Richie has a snaky hallucination followed by a demon one

Well, this calls for a flashback to Jacob arguing with his dead wife in the car before it crashes, because we’re all absolutely fascinated by this guy’s martial problems. Anyway, his wife was sad and wants a divorce and Jacob’s solution is “let’s go to Mexico” which seems to be his answer to absolutely everything. She found this solution less than reassuring and tried to leave a speeding car – his attempts to stop her cause the crash.

To the present and Seth stops his brother slaughtering everyone but it’s ok, Richie explains how he has to kill everyone because the hallucination woman tells him so and she wants him to go to the other side. Also the old man is a demon. It has to be said, as far as reassurance goes, this is pretty poor. While the Gecko brothers discuss the reflection woman who wants Richie to kill everyone, Scott shows his sister that he owns a gun and is ready to use it when he gets the chance. Something Kate thinks is a bad idea, though she does warn Scott her dad is dangerous because she thinks he killed their mother.

Seth trying to talk his brother to common sense is interrupted by Jacob nearly crashing into stationary traffic, reaching for a hidden weapon. They’ve reached the border

Jacob pokes at Seth and how Richie isn’t going to be any more stable in Mexico so Seth hits back by talking about Jacob’s dead wife and his lack of faith. In the back, Kate wants to provide the distraction her brother wants so convinces Richie, with his visions, to join her in closed-eyed prayer. And Scott draws the gun, there’s hallucinations and a multi-sided weapon brandishing stand off. Seth talks Scott intro dropping his gun, on the strength that, unlike him, Scott’s not a killer and doesn’t want to be. Then Seth has to stop Richie killing Scott because hallucination woman says so.

No sooner has that been calmed down than Jacob shunts the car in front – which means he has to go out and talk to the not happy man because Seth certainly can’t. Jacob waves his pastor-ness like a get-out-of-motor-accident-free-card which quickly calms down the man he shunted. Except he still wants to exchange insurance details so Jacob punches him out

I can’t help but feel that exchanging insurance details may have been the quicker and easier way to resolve this.

So now they have another hostage and more bickering and more arguing and bickering between Seth and Richie and Kate and Jacob… And Scott has to drive the man’s car across the border so no-one is suspicious.

Freddie also arrives at the border, but his captain has already ordered him arrested so he doesn’t get to check the RV. Especially since the Border Patrol Agent stopping him is a vampire (who just ate the real agent). Freddie tries to make a big case with the Vampire Agent how he can be involved in bringing down Carlos’s Cartel and get a huge career boost – but since the vampire probably works for that Cartel since Carlos is a vampire, it’s not very convincing.

But Scott does get asked to talk to the border police and Richie starts making suspicious noises because he’s angry that Seth doesn’t believe in his psychic visions. The Agent investigates

Meanwhile, vampire agent releases Scott (and seems to sense something about him) and then goes to tell the investigating agent to go back to the office.

Freddie does his own investigating of the office he’s been locked in since he sees a blood stain. The ancient ceremonial serial killer dagger also doubles as a handy lock pick to open the closet and see the body of the agent the Vampire ate and cloned. Just as and agent enters the room. Freddie punches him and leaves –because this spree of criminal charges he’s building up are totally not a important.

Do you know what we haven’t had for a while? A flashback! Yes, back to Jacob in his crashed car and his wife who dies slowly while he begs god to save her and then cursing at deity when she dies.

And in the present Jacob explains the whole crash to his kids because this is totally the best time – that he crashed the car because he was arguing with his wife.

They cross the border – Freddie tries to follow and runs into Agent Vampire who morphs into Carlos and sends him flying into a hay bale with super strength. This would be more devastating if it wasn’t, y’know, a hay bale. I mean, given the state of the terrain they must have gone looking for a hay bale to throw him into. It’s about as realistic as a randomly appearing pile of mattresses.

Anyway, 2 of Carlos’s men with big guns also arrive for the party and shoot a lot of border patrol agents. I’m not even sure why at this stage, since the Geckos have been cleared to cross the border. But hey, random gun fight! It also allows Carlos to walk calmly through all the shooting looking cool and awesome.

The Geckos escape into Mexico and they dump their spare hostage with a handful of money. Freddie also crosses the border, on foot, leaving his badge behind.

And the Geckos and co arrive at their destination – the infamous “Titty Twister”.

So, a group of people in an RV bickered, hallucinated, bickered, threatened each other, bickered some more. Richie is unstable and dangerous. Seth is in denial and trying to keep the peace. Jacob is full of repressed crap and Kate is suspicious and throwing passive aggressive sniping and Scott is frustrated. Bicker bicker.

Meanwhile Freddie continued to be driven and not very clever and to seems have completely forgotten the young family he’s left at home.

In between all this, they cross over into Mexico

So what happened this episode? They crossed over into Mexico. And bickered. Nothing else was really developed, changed or advanced. The flashbacks? We knew she died in a car crash with him, nothing new was added. Oh, we have some random vampireness – but the vampires are working for Carlos and want Richie and Seth in Mexico. We knew this. It felt like a very slow episode, most of the relevant action happening in the last quarter