BRAINDEAD Review: “The Path to War Part Two”

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turns to filmmakers when they need to send a message the masses for “The Path to War Part Two: The Impact of Propaganda on Congressional War Votes.” This episode wasn’t so much about the aliants but a completely different kind of insect; documentary filmmakers who shape their interviews to support their message.

Luke hires a guy named Ben to make a documentary he hopes will help curb the vote for war, but he’s unhappy with the cut Ben turns in. He asks Laurel to take a look and write up notes to get Ben back on message. Ben’s view is a heavy indictment of the one percent who neither Luke nor Red want to anger or abandon. Luke wants Ben to concentrate more on extremism. It turns out Laurel knows Ben personally. They may have started off a couple of dreamy kids, but both have grown their debts and outgrown their ethics and ideals. For Laurel, Ben is a benchmark for growth and transformation.

"The Path to War Part Two: The Impact of Propaganda on Congressional War Votes" -- Laurel must work alongside an old boyfriend, Ben Valderrama (Michael Zegen), when Luke enlists her help in putting together a political documentary to support his anti-war initiative. Also, Laurel worries about the health of Luke and Germaine's baby, on BRAINDEAD, Sunday, August 28 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Laurel Healy Photo: Michael Parmelee/CBS ©2016 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Ben agrees to revisit the work and schedules a few more interviews to focus on the extremist issue. He calls in dangerous Noah, who he prods into physical attack. Ben also schedules Gareth, who he ambushes. Laurel doesn’t like the way Gareth is treated and she almost says what I think might be one of the points of this weird show. Gareth isn’t an extremist; he just has a different point of view. Gareth on the other hand realizes that this different point of view may be harmful to his and tells Laurel they need to cool it while the war vote is still an issue. She gave him the brush off last week, so not much has changed. Different point of view, yes, but still intolerant.

Ben’s final cut is better but still off message, Luke can’t use it. Laurel re-edits the documentary and turns in an extremist focused indictment against factions on both sides of the isle. It’s a big hit and actually sways the vote. Ben is also a big hit and takes complete credit for the final cut on all the talk shows interested in having this little worm on air. Red’s war will have to wait for now. Laurel finally got to make a documentary that saved lives. It’s something to be proud of even if she doesn’t get credit. This is the life of real public servants.

"The Path to War Part Two: The Impact of Propaganda on Congressional War Votes" -- Laurel must work alongside an old boyfriend, Ben Valderrama (Michael Zegen), when Luke enlists her help in putting together a political documentary to support his anti-war initiative. Also, Laurel worries about the health of Luke and Germaine's baby, on BRAINDEAD, Sunday, August 28 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Laurel Healy Photo: Michael Parmelee/CBS ©2016 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Luke, on the other hand, should be ashamed. His wife Germaine is about to have their first baby and he’s still sleeping with a squad of women. Laurel is paranoid the baby might be a bug baby and gets Germaine all stressed about the baby’s health. Laurel isn’t completely nuts; there are clues that something isn’t right in Germaine’s womb. Meanwhile, Luke goes around town breaking off his extracurricular liaisons. The most difficult is long time lover aliant Scarlett. He hasn’t been seeing her romantically, but she still works in his office. This week he takes a bold step and ends her employment in his office, he promises he’ll find her work some place else, but she doesn’t take the news well.

Meanwhile, Germaine takes her healthy little girl home. Baby “Grace” has a crib with a music mobile to help her sleep. Of course the tune is the aliant anthem, “You Might Think.” The whole aliant baby gag is a huge tonal bump for me, but I think the show did turn in the right direction.

"The Path to War Part Two: The Impact of Propaganda on Congressional War Votes" -- Laurel must work alongside an old boyfriend, Ben Valderrama (Michael Zegen), when Luke enlists her help in putting together a political documentary to support his anti-war initiative. Also, Laurel worries about the health of Luke and Germaine's baby, on BRAINDEAD, Sunday, August 28 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Paige Patterson as Scarlett PiercePhoto: Michael Parmelee/CBS ©2016 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

With congress falling under the influence of Ben and Laurel’s propaganda documentary, Red has to find another way to fuel war between the humans. At least a dozen come to mind immediately from the arena of comfort technology alone. The aliants may have to get more aggressive. These bugs a weird sort when it comes to aggression. We’ve seen them resort to violence, but typically, they have the operational tempo of a lounge lizard. It’s possible the King and Queen ants have am army of bugs that would rather lounge around and get high than conquer another planet. Earth-born ants come in some extremely aggressive armies. They might also be a natural enemy to the tiny alien invaders. We have our natural order and circle of life that doesn’t like to be disturbed.

BrainDead only has a few episodes left to leave a good impression. So far, it hasn’t proven to be must-see tv. There is plenty of talent to lean on. Characters like Rochelle and Gus could add compelling energy to the aliant war. Scarlett is a wildcard and Gareth and Laurel still offer a lot in the love arc. I know this is a show about politics, but the more they stick to the people relationships, the better.


Season 1, Episode 10 (S01E010)
Braindead airs Sundays at 10PM on CBS

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Eric lives in a world where the television is great, the smiles are warm, the pizza is hot, the puppies are playful, and the zombies are slow and meander while he reloads.
Twitter: @Etom2012

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