Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Beyond, Season One, Episode Ten: Into the Light

Into the Light, marks the season finale of Beyond, and I have to say that I want the ten hours I spent watching this back. We still don't know what the hell the Realm is, or how it's connected to our world. Into the Light, confirmed that Holden is indeed the super special chosen one but that's something we known all along.

With Willa alone in the Realm, and Luke being held captive, Holden feels he has no choice but to give in to Frost's demands and take him into the Realm.  Frost makes it clear that if anything happens to him, Luke is going to die.  He assures Holden that he wants the best for Willa because she's his daughter, a fact which surprises Holden. The two make their way into the Realm and end up on the outer edges, in the middle of a snowstorm.  Holden is pissed that this is the chosen landing area because it hasn't been mapped.

Luke actually manages to make his own escape from the room that he's locked in, only to run right into Tess.  Luke quickly realises that his last meeting with Tess was not an accident and accuses her for preying upon peoples sadness. Tess makes it clear that she may not believe in heaven or an after life but she has a firm belief in making money.
At this point, Luke is completely feeling himself believing that there's nothing that Tess can do to stop him.  Of course, Tess alerts security and they are quickly surrounded.  Tess then takes Luke to the machine so that he can see Holden.

After little chat with pastor Ian, Diane has begun to feel concerned about Hollow Sky and so she pays a visit to Tom.  Diane suggests that they go to the police together for the safety of their children and makes it clear that she is not consenting to a rekindling of their relationship.

Frost and Holden reunite with Willa in a safe zone. Frost is determined to make his way across the bridge so that he can reunite with his long dead wife. He explains that she promised to wait for him there.  Frost makes it clear that if Holden doesn't continue to help out, he will have his own group of dead ones to mourn.  The three make their way to where the bridge is supposed to be but there's no bridge. Frost demands that Holden do something and Willa, full of support and encouragement, tells Holden that he can do it.

Arthur has been out of the loop since he refused to help Willa free Holden from Hollow Sky.  At this point, he's feeling a little down and so he receives a pep talk from Daniel.  It's Daniel who encourages Arthur to fix his machine, explaining that Arthur needs to secure his own legacy.  Daniel believes that Arthur's big mistake was his dependency on others and that he can do this all by himself. 

Holden starts to build the bridge but the effort quickly starts to effect his health. In the real world, Luke watches in horror as the machine starts to short circuit. Luke demands that Holden be released but Tess is all about getting her paper, so the experiment keeps running.  Holden remembers being taught by Arthur that the pain he feels in the Realm is a memory of the pain he felt in real life. When Holden gets a hold of his emotions, he manages to build the bridge. A woman appearing to be Willa's mother appears on the bridge and Frost goes running, relieved to be with his wife again.  Willa watches in fascination, seeing her mother for the very first time. Just as Willa is about to approach her mother, Holden pulls her back.  That's right, the woman Frost is about to kiss isn't actually is long dead wife but some creature from the the Realm with a rotting face. They watch in amazement as Frost begins to kiss the creature and it's Willa who realises that Frost is only seeing what he wishes to see.

Diane and Tom make their best pitch to the cops that something is not kosher about Hollow Sky but all they have to present are Jeff's theories which come across like conspiracy theories.  Diane finally admits that she confronted Pastor Ian about the organisation and that he scared her. Sheriff Dayton isn't convinced but he agrees to look into it.

Creatures akin to the monster Frost is in a lip lock with begin to swarm the bridge and Holden and Willa realise that they need to destroy the bridge. Holden is reluctant to do so because he realises that the vision he head of Willa dying when the bridge was destroyed was a prophesy and not something that happened in the past. Willa and Holden join hands and she promises not to let go if destroys the bridge.  Holden does what he has to do.

Willa is the first one to come out of the coma and she struggles to wake Holden up. Eventually, Holden awakes in time for Jeff to burst in.  Now that everyone is free, it's time to get the hell out of the Hollow Sky compound.  They manage to steal a car and head to one of the two exists.  Unfortunately for the crew, a car is driving right towards them in an attempt to block their escape.  Holden tells Jeff to keep going and uses his power to pick up the vehicle travelling towards them up and throw it behind them.  This is the first time that Luke has gotten to see his brother's powers.

With everything settled, it's time to say goodbye to Willa and Jeff for now. Willa promises Holden that he'll never be alone again but warns that he cannot explain everything to his family if he wants to keep them safe.  Before heading inside the house, Holden tells Luke that he's exactly the same and that he will do his best to keep the family safe. The two brothers enter the house and sit down for a family meal with their parents.

Yellow Jacket (who still doesn't have a damn name) pays Charlie a little visit. Charlie keeps her cool even when he brings up her step sister.  Yellow Jacket explains that he's not there to kill Charlie, he wants her to do a job for him. Yellow Jacket then hands Charlie a slip of paper. I would bet money that Tess's name is on that paper. 

Holden starts packing up his various trophies, clearly ready to put the past behind him and move on.  At the police station, the sheriff looks through Jeff's pictures and after a few moments of thought, picks up the phone to call the feds.  

Arthur works on his machine and manages to get it to power back up.

Holden has a dream about being in a different world and it's completely destroyed. A kid appears to him and asks Holden what he thought was going to happen when he built and then destroyed the bridge.  The kid warns that this is what happened to his world and that Holden's is next. Holden wakes up to find himself alone in the woods. When he pulls out the compass, the dial is moving wildly.  

The best that I can surmise is that the Realm is something which connects other worlds.  By making the bridge, Holden allowed the creatures who live in the Realm to have access to alternate worlds.  At this point, we don't know who the kid is that Holden spoke to but I suppose he's another super special one who survived a coma. It's worth noting that this kid is also White. I guess that means that chosen ones in Beyond can only be white for some racist reason.

Frost may be done, having died on the bridge but Tess is still roaming free. Given her love of money and power, I doubt that we've seen the last of her.  I suspect that Yellow Jacket is going to use Charlie to go after Tess but am not sure how big of a role that will have in the next season what with Frost gone and Hollow Sky feeling pressure from its investors.

I'm a little curious about Daniel. He told Willa that he's an ex con that Arthur took a chance on but it feels like he knows more than he's said. It's Daniel who gave Willa the location of Hollow Sky and Daniel who encouraged Arthur to rebuild his machine. That seems like some pretty blatant manipulation to me. 

In terms of inclusion, Beyond hasn't been great.  There hasn't been a single GLBT character and the women have largely featured as love interest and mother. Jeff really never rose about the level of side kick, there to pull Holden's ass out of the fire.  Jeff and Tess are the only two characters of colour to make it through this season and they feel like ridiculous tokens at this point. 

The entire narrative of cis, het, white dude saves the world has been done to death and it looks like Beyond plans to double down on that next season with the revelation that Holden's world is now in danger of destruction. None of this is aided by the fact that Holden is about as interesting as overly dressed limp lettuce.

Finally, we should talk about just how anti science this whole thing has become. The narrative makes it seem that science leads to human overreach and that there should be limits to human discovery.  It flies in the face of the fact that scientific research is directly responsible for the world that we live in today. It's all extremely heavy handed with absolutely zero nuance.