Airtime: Thursdays at 10PM on USA
Tweetable Takeaway: Things heat up between the LA bloc and the Greenzone on @ColonyUSA.
Things are heating up in the Los Angeles bloc and the Green Zone alike, as questions about Phyllis’s brutal murder cause Will to take a close look at his own wife, Katie. Last episode, Phyllis (Will’s boss) and her debilitated husband were shot in cold blood by resistance member (and Red Hat soldier) Broussard. This episode we see that he left an unsettling signature at the scene of the crime–an impeccably arted “Geronimo”, the resistance poster boy (literally as we’ll see later) on the wall.
How did Geronimo get to one of the Transitional Authority’s key players? Well, to Will and to his coworker Jennifer, it sounds like they have a rat amongst them. When Will accuses Jennifer of selling out, she turns the tables on him and suggests he look a little closer to his own family. As he should, since his own wife WAS the one ultimately responsible for Phyllis’ death, and his son is sneaking outside the bloc walls and aiding in hanging Geronimo posters around the city in defiance of the Visitors rules, among other things.
Though we’re halfway through the season, it still feels early for Will to start to suspect Katie. We knew it had to happen at some point, but we’ve barely gotten a sense of their relationship, and we’ve rarely seen the entire Bowman family together. When the eventual butting of heads comes, and it will come, the emotional strings the creators will want to pull from the audience just aren’t attached to anything to pull. The show has by and large been the story of two operatives each working on a mission
of the week, which leaves very little time for heart or family.
Luckily, the butting of heads is delayed as when Will subtly interrogates Katie he seems satisfied with her answers, and when he starts looking through her things at her bar The Yonk, all he finds is some family photos, a baseball, and a Joseph Conrad book (Lost fans will know that Carlton Cuse loves to drop literature clues in his shows).
We also get to spend a little more time with Proxy Snyder this episode, and meet a new character in Helena (Ally Walker) who serves as a kind of in between for the Transitional Authority and the Visitors who are occupying Los Angeles (and maybe the world?). Snyder is an interesting character to me. He could be the Ben Linus (Lost’s Miachel Emerson) of this world–someone you hate at first but come to if not love, begrudgingly respect and have sympathy for. And we do see small glimpses of humanity in Snyder this episode–when they discover Geronimo isn’t an actual PERSON as much as an IDEA, Will demands Snyder make good on his promise to help retrieve Will’s son from the Santa Monica bloc after Geronimo has been defeated. Snyder at first balks but then, seeing Will’s desperation as a father, says he will do what he can. And later, with the man Will captured last week who claims to be Geronimo, Snyder cuts a deal with him–admit he is the one and only Geronimo, and Snyder will let him go. However, if you believed for a second this would happen, you are not watching the same show as I am. Snyder, ever looking to please Helena and the Visitors to keep himself out of hot water, needs a figurehead to destroy to please his masters, even if it’s not going to solve any long-term problems. In the end, the actor playing Geronimo (Snyder even reads his resume of roles off a headshot to him) hangs while the people watch. But I have a feeling all he’s done is made a martyr for the resistance to rally to.
In a third plotline, we get a peak of beyond the walls when Bram continues to sneak outside with Pia. They find a warehouse conveniently stocked with stuff like coffee and markers. Bram is also looking for a piece for a telescope so that his high school teacher can (illegally) look up into the night sky. I hope he finds it soon because I’m very curious to see what is up there. Mostly because this is supposedly a sci-fi show and the most sci-fi we get is shots of a gleaming iron wall surrounding different parts of Los Angeles. Let’s see some lasers or something already! But I digress. I feel like Bram and his girlfriend (they make out in the abandoned warehouse) are playing with fire here, as the Authority surely is aware of this large building stacked with precious goods. It’s only a matter of time before Bram is brought in before Will and father will have to make a choice between two sons–saving Bram or getting back the younger one he left in the Santa Monica bloc.
The episode felt strong for mid-season, with hints of great drama to come in clashes between principal characters. I’m glad they didn’t completely jump the gun on Will/Katie, and we also spent time getting to love and hate Proxy Snyder a little more. All in all, it was an hour of television that built character and laid foundation for great storytelling ahead. Now, in the back half of the season, they just need to nail the landing.
Paul co-created and writes for SHOWoff, a game that lets players predict what happens next on their favorite TV shows, earn points for what they get right, and see where they stack up against friends and the world (free in the iOS App store). Check out the SHOWoff app at playSHOWoff.com
Paul Gulyas | Contributor