Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Falling Skies, Season 4, Episode 3: Exodus

Tom is bike riding chased by Skitters again – where does he get the fuel for this thing? And why haven’t the Espheni dealt with him by simply destroying all motorbikes in their ghetto? How many can there be?

Ah, if Falling Skies were ever meant to make sense!

Anyway he makes his way to overlooking the wall which was supposed to have been taken down. And we move back to 60 hours earlier

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – tell your story IN ORDER damn it, this showing the action then cutting back before it is annoying

Back then Tom discusses his plan with Hal and Botha – who is going to climb the fence in his secure suit and use volatile explosives to destroy the very obvious power lead the big flying space ship uses to power the fences. Tom intends to act as a distraction while Botha blows up the power cord – but first Tom has to Inspiring Big Damn Hero Botha into risking so much for all of them rather than saving himself.

Lots more plan exposition with extra arseholery from Pope. They begin moving the population and rigging their explosives, ambushes and traps.

Tom acts as a diversion by setting the Espheni on fire – because the Espheni has decided to meet in person rather than send his harnessed meat puppet to do his talking because REASONS (no, “REASONS” is too much credit. Because FALLING SKIES NEVER MAKES SENSE!). The meat puppet screams orders which seems unnecessary given they don’t need humans to talk to Skitters

And for completely random bad luck. Botha breaks his hand which means he can’t use the suit (what, did a POC nearly be an integral part of the show?). Since Weaver has a heart condition and can’t use the suit that leaves Pope to save the day.

Pope. To save the day. I may have invented all new forms of profanity.

Pope drops the bomb but proves he’s a good guy after all by going back for it and not saving himself. There’s a brief panic on everyone’s part when Pope is knocked out (and the pipe turns out to be explosive proof but not hammer proof) meaning everything is delayed and Hal has to kill a gazillion Skitters with a  stick.

But the fence goes down, Tom sets his trap and rawr lots of explodey Skitter death (the whole “the Skitters are an enslaved species” is no longer on anyone’s mind so celebrate their splodey deaths!) Celebrations for all! And we all misjudged Pope by thinking he was an arsehole because he’s spent 4 seasons being an arsehole! We should totally trust more guys.

They’re also watched by something… unknown, which Weaver sees but decides not to talk about. Of course.

At the Espheni Youth, we have more Nazi-imitating with not the slightest subtlety. We have the very-Aryan Kent praising Sheila for betraying her parents like a good little collaborator.  Daddy’s quick to say how wonderful the Espheni and their re-education camps , but collaborator Sheila’s mother calls her a traitor.

Mira worries to Matt that they may be broken in the camp and wants to escape; she’s sure that Matt’s confidence about being immune to brain washing is wishful thinking. She has stolen and hidden wire cutters. They’re found by Kent in one of his searches since the Espheni quickly notice anything missing. When facing collective punishment, Matt confesses. As he’s lead away, Cochise (who, remember, has put on hold whatever mission he was left with to go babysit Tom’s kids) watches from a distance.

Anne leads her people on their forced march until she actually collapses. Anne, as a leader, rather lacks planning skills (but bad decisions just makes her fit everyone on this show). She now starts hallucinating while unconscious, as you do, or maybe a memory, back in the shop when she was pregnant and the Espheni was connected to Anne’s pregnant stomach by a tube and calling it “our baby”.

No. No. no no no nonononononononono. There is not enough no in the world.

Anne wakes up all energised and determined having psychically detected Lexie.

At Camp Cult, Ben tells Maggie about Lexie’s little get together with the Espheni. Maggie is not a fan of this and reveals her cache of hidden guns she’s been keeping just in case. Ben has to push to talk to Lexie rather than go in guns blazing because Maggie is very very not impressed with Lexie lying and meeting with the enemy.

They interrupt her little cult worship (much to Lourdes’s annoyance) but Lexie doesn’t care that she lied or see anything wrong with meeting the Espheni – and breaks Maggie’s wrist for bringing a gun. She says the Espheni is a part of her and that the Espheni want peace and Maggie’s gun toting is threatening that.

In a show where people actually used logic and thought, someone would have pointed out that the Espheni have destroyed the majority of the human race. For some reason no-one is asking Lexie about this.

No-one does that, instead Lexie appeals to Ben out of sibling need. And then Anne and co arrive. Lots of reunions and hugging!

Lexie being experimented on as a baby is one thing – but Anne being inseminated by an alien while unconscious and helpless? (And yes, she was already pregnant so insemination is a weird word but this is Falling Skies it does not make sense, ever!) No, no, hell no.

Ok 3 episodes in and it’s time to poke some of the fail of this series (beyond the plot making no sense, the aliens making no sense, nothing making any sense at all, ever). The role of POC on this show – because this is… not good

Most of the POC are with Anne – and Anne has rather rapidly established herself as a pretty poor leader, with Anthony and Deni both following her around trying to make her see sense. She faints because she forgets people need to eat. Her plot line is the least involved and least meaty and least meaningful of them all because it’s just Anne wandering around being a hardarse with Anthony and Deni following in her wake. Now, bad decisions are pretty damn common in Falling Skies, but the show usually pretends that Tom’s are good ones – Anne’s are clearly bad. Just like Marina Peralta in Season 3.

In the Epsheni Youth Camp, Matt’s crafty planning is damaged by… Mira.

In cult centre, well, Lexie is a WOC to begin with then there’s her high priestess – Lourdes. Who sees through all this? Maggie, Ben and Kadar.

And Tom’s great plan nearly fails because Botha breaks his hand and has to be replaced by Pope. Seriously.

POC are incidental or an active problem to work around repeatedly in this season – and it’s not the first time we’ve seen this. Also of note – Maggie is the only woman who hasn’t fallen into the same trap (maybe Deni by the sheer fact she has virtually no screen time) and even she had to wait for Ben to guide her.