Thursday, April 28, 2016

The Last Ship, Season Two, Episode Seven: Alone and Unafraid

Alone and Unafraid is an action packed episode.  Having discovered that President Michener is alive, the question is what to do with him.  Chandler and his men  watch Michener carefully at first, wondering if he is being held against his will.  It becomes clear rather quickly that Michener not only drank the kool aid but went for a big ole swim.  As much as he is ambivalent about being President, Michener seems to believe wholeheartedly in Sean.

Chandler and a few members of his crew stage a fake bomb in order for Chandler to get on Michener's protection detail.  That's a lot of risk for a man who doesn't know that he is being played. Sean is not at all welcoming to Chandler and snarks about giving him a cookie and sending him on his way for potentially saving the President from dying in a bomb but Michener is adamant that he wants an American on his protection detail.

Danny and Tex are busy loading up food for the immunes.  Sean has collected so many people that their subsistence needs are huge. Danny and Tex both recognize Niels, and are surprised having believed that he had died. Niels has been busy finding a way to spread the sickness without him actually being present.  He creates a potion of sorts and then inserts it into teddy bears. Yes, this asshole is planning on targeting kids.  Can we just kill him off already?  Ned has always been disgusted by Niels but I think that even he finds this to be a new low point.

Back on the Nathan James, Dr. Scott has produced a powdered version of the cure and gives it to mice to check it's effectiveness. Slattery continues to search for the sub.  As for the crew of the sub, it doesn't seem that spirits are high and they seem a bit adrift because of an inability to contact Sean and his forces on land.  Where the Nathan James has a clear chain of command and everyone has a role to play, things just seem to be barely holding together on the sub.  I wonder if this means that we can expect a mutiny?

Chandler and his men manage to get Michener and Niels away from Sean and back on board the Nathan James without losing a man.  Chandler explains to Slattery that Sean has managed to fill the vacuum of an absence of leadership and that he hopes that Michener will be able to fill this void. I really do think that Michener is more trouble than he is worth.  Tom's decision to take the president back to the Nathan James is really about reminding us that he is the good guy, who believes in the rule of law and the chain of command but that being said, it actually makes me question his leadership capabilities.  Michener is a cult member and while the American citizens needs a symbol to rally behind, I don't think that Michener is it.  He seems weak, with little to no backbone and is hardly presidential.

With Niels and Michener gone, Ned believes that they should just leave America and get on with business.  Sean however doesn't even seem to register that he almost lost his brother because he is so fixated on losing Niels and Michener.  Clearly, their loss is going to be a blow to the little cult that Sean has been building.  At this point, I'm beginning to wonder how long Ned is going to be content to risk himself and follow orders so that his brother can be a cult leader? When will his self interest finally kick in?

For some reason, the desire to spread the cure has meant a loss of characterisation on The Last Ship.  Beyond the tension between Ned and Sean, we don't really know the inner thoughts of the crew of the Nathan James.  Do they even remember that Foster is pregnant?  When is she actually going to start to show and how is this going to effect her duties on board the Nathan James? What about the flirtation between Rachel and Tex?  Do the writers even remember that they started that storyline?  It seems that the writers plan on doing nothing with it.  Can we have a few less gun fights and more personal drama please? Rapidly, The Last Ship is moving away from their characters and quickly becoming all about American propaganda and the greatness of White men as leaders and saviours.  Enough already.  There are actually a lot of characters of colour on this show but because of the focus of many of the episodes recently, you wouldn't really know that. I hope that this is shift to largely action is short lived because The Last Ship is a much better show when we see the personal lives of its characters.