Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Falling Skies - A Reaping


Saturday Night Massacre


If you listened to the last  Falling Skies Podcast I referred to the previous entry of this series (Door Number Three) as a "Bottle" episode.  A bottle episode is an episode where money is saved.  Sets are minimized, special effects are cut back and the cast is trimmed.  You save money because you have something big planned.  Think Game of Thrones and the episodes they scrimped on in order to give us "Blackwater."

I think Falling Skies gave us their Blackwater this past episode with "Saturday Night Massacre."

Did they succeed?  Maybe yes, maybe no.

Both episodes were massive battles where effects were not scrimped on.  And both episodes had major turns for characters where not everyone survived.

One of the famous lines from "Apocalypse Now" was the post victory speech from Col. Kilgore when he said, "I love the smell of napalm in the morning.... smells like victory."  You know what the smell was after this last Falling Skies episode?

Reboot.

Before I get to my suspicions let's look at the roll call of the dead from "Saturday Night Massacre", their legacy and their end.

Lourdes


Remember when Lourdes was one of the sweetest characters on this show?  She was the spiritual touchstone for a group of wayward souls.  She never lost her faith and remained unshaken in the face of adversity.  She was an innocent that had sweetheart crushes.  The girl next door.

She evolved.  She became a healer.  She found a mentor in Anne and her faith seemed to morph into a higher calling.  One of healer.   Someone that salved your soul and your wounds.

But it had to change.

Falling Skies dropped the ultimate dramatic twist on us when she became "The Mole."

I didn't see it coming and as a device it worked.

And it ruined her as a character.

Now what do they do with her as a character?  How about zealot?  She became spacey and driven.  She was at peace but deeply troubled.  None of her old friends trusted her anymore and the only person she looked up to killed her.

A fitting end?  Not by a long shot.  I lamented her change.  It felt undeserving.  A betrayal of sorts.  But as I said she was a convenient plot device.  It changed her and left her with nothing left to do on the show.

She lost her soul.  She had to die.

Tector


 
Tector was the good soldier.  He was the common man.  He was one of us.

If either you and I were on Falling Skies we'd be Tector.  Not a star, but a good character.  Useful, loyal, important.

There is only so much to be had from such a character.  Think Dai.  We all identified with Tector and that is why it was so difficult to see him go.  He went from untamed berserker to a modern day Minuteman.

Did he die a good death?

Not really.

His heart was in the right place.  (As usual.) He took Tom's place as sniper to take out "Crispy" the Overlord.  He tricked Tom because he knew Tom was more important to the cause and frankly, he knew he was a better man for the job than Tom.

The only thing was when it came to the job, he missed.  As did the writers.

Seriously, the good guys never miss on TV and the bad guys go through hundreds of rounds without hitting the broad side of a barn.

Not Tector!  The one thing he was good at he failed in.  To add insult to injury when the Volm saved his bacon by downing the Espheni craft that was about to nuke him it ended up crashing into poor Tector.

How inglorious.  Death by friendly fire.  Tector deserved better.

Dr. Kadar

 
The Ultimate shrinking violet.  The loner.  The misanthrope.  Our doubting Thomas.

"Tell Lexi I love her and I believe in her."

Whaaaaat? 

Those were Kadar's dying words.   Okay, I'm taking a few liberties but I'm not that far off.  Just a few episodes ago he was the outcast shunned by Lexie.  If she only knew!  

Another undeserved ending.  Do I detect a pattern here?

Napalm in the morning isn't the only thing I smell here, I smell salary dump.  (Maybe I've been following the Red Sox too closely.)

Kadar was another one of us.  The Geek us.  Misunderstood, laughed at, shunned.

Also indispensable.  Too bad he was treated as a Cassandra.  

Alas, the Geek's curse.  Nobody listens!

Did he die a valiant death?  Hmmm, a little.  Always working.  Always thinking.  

Bye geek prophet, we shall miss thee!

The 2nd Mass.


Yep, they're dead.  At least that's my call.  (Awesome 2nd Mass illustration thanks to Michael Offutt's blog.)

Remember that little thing of the gas leak and the subsequent explosion that took out everyone this side of the barrier?  They're gone.  All that's left are those that were in the shelter.  Well, except Maggie.  If you watched the teaser she is getting a new storyline.  (Can't wait!)

So, that other smell you detect after this episode is reboot.  This is what I alluded to before.  Not only did we get a bottle episode with, "Door Number Three" we got a salary dump with "Saturday Night Massacre."

I think Falling Skies is going all in with their concept of "Evolution versus Extinction."  I think they see a brave new world and they are cashing their chips in with it.  No more wandering, no more set piece battles no more cellar dwelling.

The Masons will be the hope for humanity or they will become the new version of it.

Do I like it?

Do you?


 
 Did you detect a little snark, a little bitterness in this blog post?  Yes it true.  I confess.

Who says I have to be happy with change?  It is a big one.   If I'm right with this show's new direction, it won't resemble the one we first started watching.  

It's always been about the Mason's though right?  We're back where we started?  Is anyone else going to die?

Lexie?  A good chance.

One of the Mason's?  I'd pick Hal.  He's a leader now and he knows where his father has made mistakes.  Therefore he'll take the chance his father wouldn't.  I'd say next season though although I'm not positive.

Want to end the season with a major death and set up the final season of Falling Skies?

 
As TNT would say, "Boom." 

You read it here first.



 

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