The Event S1E2 review
|REVIEWS - TV|
Here's one show where a recap definitely isn't superfluous...
"To Keep Us Safe"
"The intensity is already starting to wane, and it's only the second episode"
So we get to find out what happened to the plane last week, the one that was going to assassinate the president but disappeared in a blinding flash of light. It reappears in the desert, and Sean Weirdbeard Walker saves everyone on board and runs off into the desert. He's hospitalized for exposure then arrested by the FBI. We also get to find out what happened to his girlfriend Leila, who was supposed to be his fiancée but disappeared in a blinding flash of kidnapping. She's alive! And being held prisoner by a group including Treacherous Vicky, their friend from the cruise.
The President has decided, on the basis of the Mount Inostraka prisoners being involved in the assassination attempt, that he will not in fact close the facility and will instead return Sophia and all the prisoners to Alaska until they are ready to talk some more. Apparently the prisoners are aliens (no!) whose spacecraft crashed in 1944; the government thought they had imprisoned all of the aliens but did not realize that the ones unharmed by the craft had escaped and assimilated into human society! They could be anywhere! Including the CIA.
In fact, Simon Lee could be one. In fact, he is. Simon is put in charge of the investigation into finding the aliens who assimilated, and goes to investigate the crash site in the desert, where the passengers and crew - all of whom survived the crash - are lying dead in the desert. The leader of the Assimilated Aliens and new Chief Baddie is Thomas, and I'm pretty sure he's in luuuuuuuuurve with Sophia. And I'm pretty sure he's a psycho killer. Qu'est-ce que c'est?
They are still doing the temporal cuts, not as much as in the first episode - and now that the story is developing, it's less annoying. It's still pretty f'ing annoying, though.
So the story opens with a blinding white light, and the airplane emerges over the desert with a scary crash landing. Everyone seems okay - then the back of the plane catches on fire and it's up to Sean Weirdbeard Walker to save everyone. Seriously, he alone saves the passengers, and the crew, and goes back into the fiery plane to save the air marshal (just in case you were confused about who the hero is, here. Because it's Sean. Just to be clear.)
4 days earlier, we see Pilot Michael Buchanan in a warehouse with a bag over his head. He insists to the bad guys that he won't do it, and seems to have been able to withstand an incredible amount of torture (in the makeup chair, at the very least). Michael refuses until they open a peephole to the next room where he sees Leila with a gun to her head yelling at Vicky. Vicky? The other person that Sean rescued, back on the cruise ship, where she was drowning. ('Cause he's the hero, see.) The baddies remind Michael that they killed his wife and won't hesitate to kill Leila.
Back to the desert! Michael has escaped the plane crash as well, finds Sean, and tells him that Leila knew at least one of her captors and that it's Vicky. Helicopters appear over the horizon and everyone cheers - help has arrived! Michael tells Sean that they're not help, they're the bad guys, and that Sean needs to run! Help us, Obi-Wan Weirdbeard, you are our only hope. Sean runs.
President Martinez and creepy Director Sterling go over the cover story for the plane disappearance and confirm that they do not know where the plane has reappeared. Director Sterling gives some history on the Mount Inostraka prisoners - that they are the product of a space craft that crashed in 1944, and that while there are some differences (mainly in circulation and slower aging) they share 99% DNA with humans. The President questions why they are being held at all and creepy Sterling says that they won't talk about who they are, or why they are on earth. They have a hidden agenda, he can feel it in his creepy bones.
Sean Walker collapses in the desert. Darn it, I thought those crazy kids were going to make it, despite all their differences and kidnappings and disappearances and all. Live and learn, I guess.
7 days earlier, Leila and Sean are on the cruise ship. Leila is too sick to go snorkeling with Sean and Vicky, and stays behind while they go. Vicky says Greg is going on a nature walk or something .. but why doesn't she just remind us that he can't go in the water because he has a cast on his arm?
Anyway, a second after they leave Greg is knocking on Leila's door. He comes into the room even though she's obviously uncomfortable, gives her a mega-dose of Vitamin C and offers her a foot rub. (Didn't Greg see Pulp Fiction? I do believe that giving someone's woman a foot massage could get you in trouble with Marcellus Wallace.) Leila refuses and is trying to get Greg to leave when Ship Security interrupts. Ship Security tries to get Greg to leave too, and for a second you think yay! And then Ship Security stabs Greg in the Ship Stomach. Leila runs, is captured between two security uniforms and gets a shot, which I'm assuming does not contain a mega dose of Vitamin C.
Sean Walker wakes up in a hospital, where a doctor expositions that a couple brought him in from his desert collapse and that he's in St. Francis hospital, just outside Yuma, Arizona. Sean asks her to call the police and starts babbling about the plane, Leila disappearing from the cruise ship, etc. The doctor decides to humor Sean and place a call to the sheriff in Yuma, who notifies her that Sean is wanted on a federal murder warrant, for killing Greg; and the doctor is instructed to keep Sean there.
The President and Director Sterling are on their way to Sophia's holding cell, cruising underground in an awesome golf cart. There is a quick flashback to 1944, to the crash site in Alaska, where we see Sophia instruct Thomas to gather those uninjured aliens and run while she stays with those who need medical attention. Thomas resists, but Sophia promises they'll be together soon. Well, depends on what your definition of 'is', is; and speaking of my favorite presidential quote, we're back with President Martinez in Sophia's cell. He confirms that he was going to set everyone free, and allow them to integrate with the general population; but then someone tried to kill him, and that made him very cranky. When Sophia protests that the aliens saved him he questions whether they didn't save Sophia instead. The President says the deal is off, that he's shipping everyone back to Mount Inostraka. Sophia finally cracks, just a bit, and says that imprisoning them is a terrible idea - her people have been waiting 66 years and their patience is running out.
Back at the hospital the doctor is very nervous and Sean is picking up on it. Notice that Sean is in his hospital gown when he notices the police cars pulling up, and milliseconds later, he's dressed and running away! Seriously. Is this Heroes? I would totally have that superpower, and never be late for anything ever again.
Anyway, after a brief flashback to Sean and Leila meeting at the pool in college we see Sean Walker getting caught by the FBI. He's informed that he's under arrest for the murder of Creepy Greg!
Director Sterling puts Simon Lee in charge of hunting down the aliens who have assimilated into our society. Who knows how far we've been infiltrated? Well as soon as he says that, it comes as no surprise that in a flashback to Simon Lee's interview for the CIA they have a hard time finding a vein. (didn't they say that aliens had a different circulatory system? but that would mean ...) Yep, Simon Lee gets approved to join the CIA, runs to the bathroom and removes a fake vein. Ew. He's a slowly-aging, society-infiltrating, potentially evil alien.
Simon Lee joins Thomas in an empty loft, where they hug and call each other brother. Simon Lee updates Thomas, and says that since they know about the alien offshoot group, the deal is off. Where is the plane? Thomas smiles evilly (good one! Another Creepy Guy!) and says that as long as they have 200 people, they may as well use them.
Sean Walker is in the back of an FBI vehicle, telling the agents about the kidnapping and the plane crash, basically sounding like a weirdly bearded crazy person. But when Sean is talking about Leila the female agent almost softens ... then they pull up to a roadblock and Sean goes all crazy homeless shouting vagrant again talking about how the plane crashed right behind that hill! And the road block is a setup. The FBI agrees to the detour and turns around. Over the hill you see plane parts and Hummers, and dust. And Simon Lee! With a bunch of army guys. He finds Michael Buchanan's body ... then all of the bodies, of all of the survivors of the plane crash. Laid out in a weird, Jonestowny pattern on the desert floor.
Well it's getting better! The creepy characters are starting to resonate, and the moral ambiguity of, well, everyone, is starting to tell. Isn't it interesting, that the post 9-11 serial drama was 24, with the government goodies and the 'other' baddies and it was all clear cut, and the only moral ambiguity was how far Jack Bauer would go to achieve his ends. And in The Event, it's all spun out and twisted and except for Sean Walker, the hero, don't you know, and they seem to be trying to convey some complexity in motivations and actions, at least for the aliens? I guess that's what most of a decade will do for you. On the other hand, the intensity is already starting to wane, and it's only the second episode. This bodes ill and in many ways reeks of FlashForward. Wherefore art thou, Joseph Fiennes?