Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Tomorrow People, Season 1, Episode 22: Son of Man

Stephen is attacking Ultra to free his father and stop humanity dying, but not alone because Jedikiah has gone as well, according to John. Irene says the human body eventually rejects Tomorrow People powers (and yes, Jedikiah did steal Irene’s powers. He stole her genes. No it doesn’t make sense of course it doesn’t make sense this is The Tomorrow People) so Jedikiah clearly took hers not to fulfil his dreams but out of noble sacrifice or some crap.

It also seems that Jedikiah can kill with his powers – as he, at least, severely injures one guard – before having to pick up a gun when he runs out of juice. Of course now he’s human he can’t go near ther machine without dying so we have a dramatic angst moment when Roger urges Jedikiah to shoot him to stop the machine. Drama drama angst, sorry the ridiculous storylines have left me caring so little about these characters.

Stephen arrives, rather late, and runs through the trail of carnage Jedikiah left in his wake and, of course, arrives just in time to see Jedikiah shoot Roger and the machine power down. If you’d just been 3 minutes sooner Stephen.

While they’re all tragic and dramatic, the Founder arrives all evil like because the machine is still working – it’s already got its Roger stuff (don’t ask, it’s Tomorrow People). The Founder and his goons kind of just stand and watch while Roger gives his son an empowerment speech then they let him teleport away. The Founder also wants to be dramatic in killing Jedikiah and Roger too, so he gives them chance to teleport out as well. Perhaps he should quit on the dramatic pauses?

Roger teleports them to a flat somewhere where he dies in Jedikiah’s arms.

Stephen staggers back to the Tomorrow People HQ grieving, telling Cara how he can stop time but he was too late (oh dear gods, did this show just lamp shade its awful inability to keep the powers coherent over a character’s death?). Dramatic grieving Stephen grabs a gun and asks John to take him to the facility where John was experimented on until he learned how to kill – taking the info from John’s mind. Cara asks why he’s doing this and Stephen says “revenge”. Which should have been fairly obvious.

Cara runs through the machine with Tim and this super computer basically has the answer “humans should get far away.” Useful Tim, really useful. Cara wants John to run though he points out without a car, passport or the ability to teleport it’s not like he can. He’s having trouble adapting to humanity but they seem to drag their relationship up again with Cara promising to get to him as soon as she’s stopped the machine. Well at least she has decent priorities.

John goes to Jed’s flat for money and he and Jed have a “awww let’s pretend we have a father/son relationship and forget about all the torture and killing” moment.

Stephen goes to the lab where he finds the Founder is mass producing turn-paranormals-into-killers drug which is ominous but kind of lacking next to the whole apocalypse thing.

Russell with Ultra, is surprised to realise the Founder is evil and now wants him to kidnap Cara. Or he can’t be part of their new genocide future. They end up leading a Paranormal kill squad – Evil Natalie goes ahead to tell Cara she made a “mistake” by becoming evil, of course she’s evil and is just leading the kill squad right to Cara. They knock her down but Russell throws them all against the wall because murder is not part of the deal. Except Roger. And wiping out humanity. But murder bad!

Cara joins Stephen in his easily-found-bedroom Cara tells Stephen how special he is but he won’t save them all by giving up his humanity (um… since killing is something humans can do but paranormals can’t, wouldn’t he be claiming his humanity?). He doesn’t take the drug.

Now Cara has called Stephen special, John goes back to Second-Choice Astrid and all 4 of them meet up. They have 2 hours before the machine explodes and time stops for all humans – and never starts again. Then Russell joins them – Stephen understandably jumps him given the whole father murdering thing and Russell actually has the gall to claim he didn’t know. Russell gives them the plan Roger had – though it required a dozen not 3 (Astrid and John object to being missed out of the plan). The plan involves attacking with someone sneaking in the back (that would be attacking agents who can kill but they can’t because HUMANITY!)

Cara and Russell fight the agents and do really well because the agents keep using guns which are really kind of useless when telekinesis takes out whole scads of people and stops bullets. They’d actually be much better off putting the guns down and just using telekinesis. John shows how you really use a gun – sniping (Astrid tells him there’s someone to shoot – wow, you didn’t even try to make her useful).

Inside Cara and Russell split up for REASONS. Cara gets to confront the Founder while Russell confronts Natalie where he says he simply has to draw the line at genocide (y’know, eventually. Rather belatedly). Natalie is still all “yay genocide!”

While they dramatic speech at each other, Stephen goes to the machine – which goes off, starting to freeze humans. John and Astrid kiss as the bubble overtakes them, freezing them. And the Founder goes to make speeches at Stephen next about how amazing genocide is. They have a telekinesis battle of lifting each other off the floor before fighting (Stephen still doesn’t stop time). The Founder could probably win if every time he knocked Stephen down he didn’t stop to monologue a little more. Stephen tosses the Founder aside and then holds up his hand to the machine – to which glowy stuff touches his hand. He opens a portal with the machine and the time bubble retreats – he then teleports the Founder to his hand (yes, teleports someone else at a difference. Yes it’s a new power) and throws him into the portal.

The Founder is a Load Bearing Boss, so the machine falls apart once he’s gone, pulling all the bits into the portal as it goes – and then closes. The day is saved

Except Natalie shoots Cara. Because… oh who cares, it’s Tomorrow People, it doesn’t need a reason. John and Stephen run to her side but, nooooo she’s dead. So Stephen reverses time.

Oh c’mon, seriously? Is there a limit to random powers he can pull out of his arse? And it’s the last quarter of the last episode of the season – do we really need another pointless moment to remind us how special Stephen is?

With time reversed, Stephen just takes the gun off Natalie. He’s pretty much become god now. Cara hugs Stephen and John looks kind of sad but then Second Choice arrives so he can hold Astrid’s hand.

Two weeks later, Astrid teaches John how to actually use the subway and Jed interrupts and takes John home to offer him powers – Roger’s powers. With lots of drama over whether Jed wants his “son” to be a man or more than a man.

Stephen walking with Astrid is interrupted by Cara pulling Stephen away. Wow, Astrid, ever feel surplus to requirements? Anyway the Tomorrow People HQ is overflowing with new paranormals because, among every other new power he spawned, he also sent a huge telepathic tracking beacon for others. And Stephen is now their special leader. Russells also around and apparently forgiven for the whole murder of Roger/genocide thing because why not?

There’s so many of them they decide to take over Ultra because, whatever. No-one’s tried to make sense on this show you can’t expect them to start. They play in the Founder’s bomb proof chair.

And Jedikiah goes to see political guy – a senator apparently – to talk about teleportation, hold him at gun point and ask for a paranormal partnership with the military to make super soldiers. With a newly empowered John to sell it. As they leave Jedikiah gives John a dossier of Russell and Cara calling them his next mission – John doesn’t recognise them. Jedikiah wants to recruit them.

AAARGH but that is so ridiculous – even aside from Jed’s character changing AGAIN – of all the people to recruit why the ones guaranteed to recognise John AND have the mojo to put his memories back?! WHYYYYYYY WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?! Oh this show! Even its hooks for a desperate second season make no sense

It’s done! It’s over! I feel vaguely impressed with myself for getting through this.

Oh this show, it was broken early and it just got worse and worse. The main problem, beyond anything else, was the sheer awfulness of the plot with so many ridiculous holes in it I honestly suspect the writers of being drunk. Characters shifted personality so much I got whiplash – Astrid and John have transformed so many times it makes my head ache. I can’t even begin to gather why Hilary, with her supposed wish to be a hero, followed her character arc. Marla deciding to keep everything secret from her kids and drug them instead was so far from making sense that even a vast of tequila couldn’t explain it. And Roger set up the whole Tomorrow People without telling Marla, without even telling her what ULTRA WAS?! Here, I’m going to abandon you to raise our children alone and there’s a secret organisation that may enslave or murder them but hey, you don’t need to know that?! Jedikiah’s motivations change on a twice hourly basis. Cara’s brain turns to marshmallow the instant she becomes leader and, despite being co-leader for so long, decides to make a series of decisions that actually hurt my head to even contemplate. Then there’s the Tomorrow People deciding to trust Ultra to inject random killer substances in them because REASONS

In fact, there’s everyone’s ridiculous trust. Jedikiah, the Founder, you name it, people trust them. FOR NO DAMN REASON

And the world building is broken. Telepathy works, except when it doesn’t. Ultra is immune except where it isn’t for plot reasons. Areas are secure, then guarded by keypads of all things. John and Russell teleport across half the continent. But Cara and Stephen take a bike, or the subway. The Tomorrow People can’t kill – except in various ridiculous convoluted ways when it’s clear they can

It’s a great big stinking MESS of awful characters, ridiculous decisions, nonsensical plots, shredded world building all with not one damn shred of redeeming features to make this worth watching.

Shall I look at inclusion? I suppose I must. So no LGBT characters despite 8 squillion characters. yet another all erased show.

We had 2 regular POC who lived to the end. Russell – who was comic relief and such a blatant add on to the core 3 that it couldn’t have been more obvious. They made some vague attempts at backstory for him, but he felt like an extra slapped on. I would complain that his characterisation is awful – but so is everyone’s on this show

And Astrid, even more of a hanger on than Russell. She loves Stephen, then he finds Cara. She and John develop a thing – but he’s still with Cara. Until he becomes human then Astrid is suddenly the one. Uh-huh. She’s never really integrated into the show, seems to be holding a crush on Stephen for a long time and is fairly tokeny. Her characterisation is awful – but, again, so’s everyone.

To Cara – an intelligent, decently strong character who becomes leader and then loses her ever loving mind. What happened? Oh yes, Tomorrow People. From co-leader with John to utter failure she becomes a steadily worse character as the show progressive and her decisions make less and less sense. I cringed when she made decisions because no good would follow. And was it necessary for both John and Stephen to be focused on her? Which leads us to Hillary who had a decent redemption train but still died for the man she loved after, yup, awful characterisation.

We had Darcy early in the series but since she was quickly killed off so Hillary could step in.

In summation… It’s awful

Really really really awful.