Wednesday, July 20, 2016

12 Monkeys, Season Two, Episode Thirteen: Memory of Tomorrow

Memory of Tomorrow is the last episode of season two and it is filled with revelations regarding the Witness.  That's all well and good but I'm still irked by the fact that 12 Monkeys seems to have completely stopped caring about the virus altogether.  Sure, the world coming to an end should take top priority but the entire point of this show was to stop a virus which had killed off a significant portion of the earth's population.  It seems as though they are committed to this bait and switch though we know that Cassie will eventually die as a result of the plague that no one seems to give a damn about right now.

Having failed to stop the paradox, Cassie and Cole are now living together in the little cedar house and it's Christmas time. This is Cole's first real Christmas and he is nervous about giving Cassie the butterfly hair clip that he purchased but he need not have worried because she loves it.  In return, Cassie gives him a razor but Cole refuses to shave.  Cassie's last gift to Cole is a card announcing that he is going to be a father.  Cole is overwhelmed but happy.

As we know, all good things must come to an end.  The first sign that something has gone wrong is when Cole finds that he is the only one who can move when everyone is frozen.  He sees Lillian, who informs him that it's not over.  Cole finds Lillian in a mental asylum and it quickly becomes obvious that she's a Primary. Cole tries to deny to himself that time is ending and to right off Lillian but when he drives away and finds flora turning red, he realises the truth of what Lillian told him.  Cole returns to the asylum and learns that all he has to do is drink a tea made from the leaves and then he can travel back to anytime he's already been and take control of his body.  Yes, they've given Cole a new super power cause he's extra special like that. This is a conundrum for Cole, because by travelling back and stopping the paradox, it means that his child with Cassie will never have existed.  Lillian however tells him that while "death can be undone, love cannot." Lillian also warns Cole that when he returns to his real time, he must not try to save Ramse because it's a trap.

Cole writes this was home on the walls of the house and drink the tea. Cole shifts through some key moments and finally ends up back in 1957.  This time when Cole confronts Charlie and his wife, he has the upper hand. Charlie pleads, explaining that the paradox is the only way he can be with his wife forever in the red forest.  Cole understands and even hesitates because in this moment he is well aware of what he is giving up but he shoots Charlie nonetheless and is splinttered forward in time along with Cassie.   Even with Lillian's warning, Cole is not prepared to let Ramse die and Jones is not willing to lose Hannah for a second time, so it's off to Titan.

Cole doesn't get to mourn the loss of Cassie's love for long because when she makes the comment "not every caterpillar becomes a butterfly" she does the impossible and remembers. Now we know what Lillian meant about not erasing love. The first challenge which Jones, Cassie and Cole have is to convince the daughters to come with them and for that Jennifer needs to impart some wisdom.  Having cast aside her fortunes, Jennifer goes classic and says quotes from Braveheart, Independence Day and Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. It's Jennifer at her absolute funniest and best. They all head to Titan and manage to save Hannah, Deacon, Ramse and Whitley. For this, I'm extremely thankful because 12 Monkeys doesn't need to get any whiter than it already is.  Big moment over, Jennifer suggests that it's time to get moving but Ramse is determined to find the Witness.

They question the surviving Messengers who claim that the Witness is safe before Ramse kills each one.  Jones happens to look up and realises that Titan is actually one gigantic Splintter machine and encourages everyone to run.  Jennifer finds herself cornered and Deacon sacrifices himself for her to escape.  Unfortunately, Jennifer doesn't get far and quickly finds herself splintered to a foxhold in France in 1917. That's gotta suck.  Outside of Titus, Cole, Cassie, Whitley, Jones and the Sisters wait for Ramse, who is intercepted by a Messenger and splinttered to Olivia.  Ramse is not impressed to see her and suggests that Olivia just kill him already.  It seems, having left the 12 Monkeys, Olivia has other things in mind and so she informs Ramse that she has Sam.  Cole and Cassie end up separated with Cassie inside of Titus and she is splintered to the future.

When the clock runs out and Jones and Cole are splintered back to the facility, Jones informs Cole that Cassie is actually in 2163.  This is a problem because they have no idea what 2163 is actually like but Cole is determined no matter what to get Cassie back.  In 2163, Cassie is led into an auditorium filled with Messengers and is met by the Pallid Man.  Cassie immediately wants to know where the Witness is and she is informed that she brought the Witness with her.  That's right, the Witness is Cole and Cassie's unborn child. A tear rolls down Cassie's face and the Messengers chant Mother.

This means that next season, 12 Monkeys is going to have to introduce a new dynamic.  By moving the show to 2163, the writers have the chance to create a new world.  It gives rise to the question of whether or not we've already met Cole and Cassie's child given that the Witness can travel through time.  If so, who is this child? Is their child becoming the Witness inevitable and if so, who raises said child?

Ramse is going to be reunited with Sam but he is going to be in a role reversal with Cole.  This time, it's Cole who has to consider the ramifications of his child's activities and very life.  Will Ramse be as understanding of Cole, should Cole choose to protect Cassie and their unborn child over saving the world? This is going to be another epic test of their friendship.

There were some really poignant scenes this season and Goines in particular really came into her own. She has become my favourite part of this series.  She brings much needed comic relief.  Because of the time travel we've come to see Goines grow.  The difference between young Jennifer and old Jennifer is at times startling and I particularly loved old Jennifer's death scene. I love the relationship she has with Cole and how they've come to depend on each other.

Jones has been tough since she was first introduced.  Perhaps the best part of this episode for me was watching as Jones defended that facility alone, even taking in a stray dog.  Jones has had her doubts and had to deal with the consequences of her actions but she continues to be a vital part of the 12 Monkeys.

Perhaps the least interesting character has been Cassie herself. Yes, she and Cole did pretty much change roles this season but I quickly found myself tired of the very jaded Cassie.  I was equally irritated by the fact that they set up a love triangle between Cassie, Deacon and Cole. There's too much going on for romantic drama on this show.