Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Beyond, Season Two, Episode Eight: Last Action Hero

More than any other episode so far, Last Action Hero has me wondering how the hell this crap got renewed? Look, I like a little popcorn for the brain as much as anyone else but I barely managed to stay awake during this tortuous hour which went absolutely nowhere.  There's barely a plot going on and yet for some inexpiable reason, the authors thought they had to drag it out even more. Admittedly, I'm not the target audience for Beyond but come on already. I'd be willing to bet that if this aired on any network beyond the CW and Freefrom, it most certainly wouldn't be getting a second season as it stands. 

At any rate, since I had to watch it, it's my turn to torture you with a recap; that is if you still even care about this crap.

So, when we last left Holden, he had been shot in the shoulder after Jeff helped him escape from Yellow Jacket's ambush. You'll note that this is episode seven and the writers still haven't gotten around to giving Yellow Jacket an actual name yet. At any rate, Holden and Jeff decide that because they are being chased by Yellow Jacket that a hospital is out of the question.  They decide to stop at a pharmacy to get some medical supplies so that Jeff can dig the bullet out of Holden's shoulders. Lydia, the pharmacist on duty is helpful at first until she notices that Jeff has a gun in his back pocket. Being an aficionado of action movies,  Lydia decides to draw her own gun on Jeff.  After some back in forth in which she quotes lines from a movie, from some inexplicable reason, Lydia decides that she is going to help Jeff.

Having spent the night at Diane's, Jeff is getting ready for the day.  Downstairs, Diana is cooking breakfast for Luke while he snarks about Holden getting the freedom to roam around. Yes, it's typical sibling rivalry stuff. The subject then turns to Luke's lack of employment with Diane stating that Luke should be making her breakfast before she goes off to work.  I cannot say that I disagree with her on this one, given that Luke is a grown ass man sponging off of his momma.  Things get awkward when Ian comes downstairs wearing Tom's aftershave.  Who the hell does that? Why would you want to smell like your bae's ex?  Diana has to tell him never to do that again.
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When Diane leaves the room to continue her phone call, Luke questions how regularly these sleep overs have been going on.  We learn that Ian and Diane have been hitting it since Luke went off to college and predictably, Luke is grossed out. Ian once again offers Luke a job and this time he takes it, having found out that it's difficult to get by as a college drop out.

Yellow Jacket and Tess are on the phone to discuss what to do now that they've lost track of Holden. Yellow Jacket suggests that they will have to look at alternative places because Holden will not go to a hospital.  Tess decides to head to Fort Reed certain that at some point, Holden will have to make his way home. 

Lydia and Jeff talk about how best to deal with the bullet in Holden's shoulder.  We get a flashback to Holden's time in the Realm and meeting Arthur for the first time. It seems that Arthur has been waiting for Holden. Arthur believes that Realm isn't done with Holden and that if he's going to get home (read: return to his body), he's going to have to do that himself. Arthur then explains his life goal - to stop humanity from stepping out of its lane.

In the present, Arthur is up and out of bed.  Arthur gets a visit from Willa. Arthur's first thoughts are about getting in touch with Holden, who he credits for waking him from his coma.  Willa however has different ideas and she reveals that she broke into Arthur's safe while he was in a coma and that she now knows that Celeste and Frost were her parents.  Arthur explains that Frost is responsible for Celeste's death because he hooked her up to the machine and adds that he didn't have to keep Frost away from Willa, because he never wanted to see her. 

Jeff and Lydia manage to get the bullet out of Holden's shoulder and after a little worry about Holden having a fever, Lydia goes back to her action movies.  I gotta say that I don't understand why Lydia thinks that Con Air is even remotely relative to what is going on. When Jeff quotes a line from yet another movie, Lydia pipes up to say that Jeff is coming out re his secret love of action movies. Dear Beyond, NO.  Let me say that again for emphasis, NO. You don't get to appropriate coming out of the closet and then compare it to revealing a love of action movies when you don't even have an LGBT character. 

It's flashback time again and proving that Beyond is determined to beat a dead horse, it's Holden who makes reference to the Karate Kid to explain the training Arthur is giving him in the Realm. All the flashbacks are causing real world problems. The electricity keeps flashing on and off and the room they are in keeps shaking.  

Ian and Diane talk about Tom and the fact that he is now hanging out with Jeff. Ian starts probing for more information. How the hell is Diane not suspicious of this dude already? Ian suggests that Jeff would do well to join his discussion group, which apparently would help Jeff deal with the loss of his brother. Diane is quick to concur, particularly after pointing out that Jeff is a veteran. The writers need to explain why it is that Diane cares about Jeff given that she blames him for Holden's twelve year coma?

Back in the Realm, Arthur reveals to Holden that he is the chosen one. Well, of course he is. Heaven forbid we have one of these stories in which the White, straight, cis, able bodied dude is not the super special chosen one.
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Luke is at work at his new job and a volunteer points out that Hollow Sky, which is attached to the charity, works to help people deal with the loss of a loved one. Okay, pause for a moment. Notice how the volunteer is a woman of colour and Luke, the white dude is getting paid.  The volunteer gives Luke a pin with the Hollow Sky logo on it.

Jeff and Lydia continue getting more familiar with each other and Jeff talks about his dead brother. It's this loss that is inspiring Jeff to take care of Holden.  The conversation is cut short when Yellow Jacket shows up at the door. Lydia answers the door and tells Yellow Jacket that they are closed but he notes the lights flashing on and off, the blood on Lydia's jacket and well, the whole shaking ground thing.  Yellow Jacket leaves but of course, he'll be back. When Lydia heads to the back, she warns Jeff, who tries to wake the drugged up Holden.

Luke is at a coffee shop and he takes a picture of the pin to send to Willa.  This is when Tess conveniently makes an appearance and she buys him a coffee. 

Yellow Jacket and his partner start a raid on the pharmacy. Lydia stays in the back with Holden at first as out front, Jeff and the other bad guy have a shoot out.  Tired of living in the action movie fantasy land, Lydia grabs her gun and sneaks up on the bad guy Jeff is battling. Holden finally wakes up after remembering his battle with a beast in the Realm and the room is covered in smoke. Lydia manages to come in handy and actually saves Jeff's life before smashing the bad guy in the nose with her gun. I suppose all that movie watching came in handy for something. 

Tess continues to cozy up to Luke and even offers to help him find a job after he admits that creating his own app didn't work out the way he had planned. Tess pauses when she gets a text from Yellow Jacket, informing her that Holden has been captured.  Tess stands, writes her number down and then makes her exit. 

A shaky Holden gets to his feet and heads outside, only to be shot with a tranquilizer in the leg. When Holden looks up, he finds Yellow Jacket in front of him. Before Holden can act, he passes out. 

When it comes to capping up my thought on this episode, I don't really have anything to say except to wonder how this continues to be on the air.  What the hell was the point with all of the movie references, particularly when most of them really didn't fit?  It feels like Last Action Hero exists for the sole reason of stretching out a meta that already feels like it's going nowhere fast.

Tess hitting up Luke in the coffee shop is both awkward and ridiculous.  Maybe it's my Cannuck attitude of no need to have that much discussion with a stranger that's kicking in here.  It worth noting, I feel the exact same way about Lydia and Jeff revealing their life stories to each other after knowing each other a New York minute.  Also, don't give me any bullshit about stress bringing people closer to explain the Jeff/Lydia thing.

I'm going to need more from Arthur than his belief that death gives meaning to life to explain why he's so determined to stall the progress of humanity. It's an absolutely weak explanation for his initial resistance to Frost's plans and reveals a lack of imagination on the part of the writers.

Finally, where the hell are these people that they can have shoot outs and the cops don't arrive to settle shit down? Neither side is worried about attracting attention and is just running roughshod all over the damn place.