By: Rikki McKernan, Contributor
Barbie wakes up startled, after a nightmare about Sam jumping to his death. And we’re off to the races on this episode of UNDER THE DOME. He and Julia discuss how they’ll break the news to Junior. Meanwhile, Junior and Melanie are snuggling near Joe and Norrie. Ok, so not snuggling, I guess, just sleeping. Julia and Barbie show up and Captain Obvious, Joe, says, “You made it out of the cave-in and you’re alright.” No shit, Sherlock. Well, I guess Julia’s a “rip the bandaid off” kind of person because she just blurts out the bad news. When they add insult to injury, saying that Sam killed Angie, Junior gets all up in Barbie’s grill and storms off. Barbie then decides that they need to find Sam’s body to convince Junior and the town that he’s the killer.
Barbie gathers up some convenient climbing gear that’s just lying around when Big Jim walks in, essentially interrogating him, wanting to know whatever he finds. At the school, Barbie rappels down the cliffside (it’s Mining Barbie!) and you’ll never believe what happens – he gets pulled from below and his anchor slips. Julia and Rebecca grab the rope but aren’t strong enough. When it looks like they’ll all go over the edge, Barbie cuts himself loose, leaving Julia and Rebecca screaming and holding the rope.
At the diner, Big Jim overhears Junior and Melanie talking about Sam and how he’s the killer. Of course, Big Jim takes this opportunity to remind Junior how special they both are and that the dome chose Big Jim to do its bidding. This guy really needs to get over himself. All he does these days is talk about how important he is to the dome. If you have to say it so often, dude, it’s probably not true. Well, soon enough, all knowing Big Jim checks out the school and finds Julia and Rebecca there, clearly upset. They lie and say that Barbie is bringing up Sam’s body but they’re bad liars so Big Jim doesn’t fall for it.
So we all knew Barbie wasn’t a goner, right? I mean, this isn’t “Game of Thrones.” Turns out, Barbie has landed himself outside the dome in the town of Zenith. Again, not very surprising to anyone…except Barbie. Of course that means Sam is there, too, which we see, although the pair don’t cross paths – yet. Sam’s on his way into a psychiatric hospital to find his sister, Pauline.
Inside the dome, Julia tells the kiddos that Barbie’s gone while Joe asserts that the dome wouldn’t let anything bad happen to Barbie. He also suggests that the dome dug the tunnel because it wasn’t there three weeks ago. He wants to take a look over the ledge using a robot with a camera attached. While they’re busy raiding the robotics club, Rebecca has gone home and is ambushed by Big Jim. He puts on his best Walter White face and is actually pretty terrifying as he threatens Rebecca. He wants to know what happened to Barbie and after a bit of crying, Rebecca spills the beans.
Outside the dome, Barbie goes back to his old apartment and is immediately ambushed by a group of guys with guns. Turns out that they’re upset with him for disappearing for 17 days. 17 days? Really? Feels like they’ve been stuck under the dome for at least 6 months…and not in a good way. Anyway, after some threats and light torture, Barbie agrees to do the shady deed for half of his usual cost. Did we forget that Barbie’s not always a good guy? Yeah, kinda.
Meanwhile, Sam confronts Pauline about why she never told him she was still alive. She says, again, that she thought the dome would follow her and spare Chester’s Mill but she needed to stay in touch with someone, and that someone was Lyle. Coincidentally, Lyle made it out the other side, too, except there’s something not quite right with him. He’s in the mental hospital, too, but all he can say is “Melanie” and he doesn’t seem to recognize anyone around him. They conclude that something happened during his “crossover” and Sam has to admit to Pauline that Melanie is back from the dead…kinda.
At the cliffside, Julia and the kids drop the robot drone thing down and everything’s working fine until, about 20 feet down, they lose the picture. When Joe tries to bring the drone back up, he can’t and they lose it. He does rewind the footage, though, and sees a park and the most recognizable obelisk on the planet, apparently.
Barbie gets back into his shady ways and attempts to break into a house with a gun and a sidekick…or does he? Turns out that he intentionally set off an alarm, which gets rid of the sidekick and brings the owner of the house outside – his dad (Brett Cullen)! This one did surprise me a bit, I’ll admit to that. The two have been estranged for a while, partially due to Barbie’s wild youth, but good old dad knows why he’s there – for a favor. He’s right, of course, Barbie wants him to pull some strings and get him near the dome which has been cordoned off for 10 miles around. After a bit of push back, and an admission on Barbie’s part that it’s for a woman, his dad relents and agrees to pull the necessary strings.
In town, Big Jim is scheming again. This time he sets up a candlelight vigil in memory of Barbie who meant so much to the town. He pretends with Rebecca, unconvincingly, that he’s sad Barbie’s gone but she knows it’s all a ploy to get the town to rally around him for comfort and support. While he’s doing his scheming, Julia and the kids bring the egg to the edge of the cliff. It shoots out a pink spark, lighting up the darkness with the town of Zenith and that damn obelisk again. Now Julia and the kids have hope that Barbie might be alive and well after all and that he may find a way back to them. I’d be more concerned with getting out rather than in, but that’s just me. It’s a little “Lost”-esque to finally get out of purgatory and still want to find a way back in.
Our parting scenes are of Sam and Pauline talking in her art studio next to a painting of a red door. We then see Barbie and his dad walking in the woods, fairly close to a similar red door that’s nearly grown over. Looks like we found the way back in.
Next week, Barbie’s still trying to get back inside the dome, presumably because he sick of staring at that ugly obelisk. We get more Julia screaming and someone finally knocks Big Jim on the back of the head with a blunt object.
In Rikki’s perfect world, she’s Queen of Westeros, best friends with Mindy Kaling, and her other car is a TARDIS…a girl can dream, right?