You only hurt the one you love.
The above image is Cassie's reaction to the stinging indictment thrown at her by her erstwhile temporal teammate, James Cole.
Last week I had wondered how deep the fissures ran between the principles of Team Splinter. Apparently they ran pretty deep as we had widespread disaffection, upheaval and a plethora of hurt feelings.
I can only wonder how Team Witness is doing with their own problems.
Cole had hurled his verbal daggers at Cassie because he was tired of her acting in opposition to him. She was acting out of fear and driven by revenge. She had been violated but she wasn't working to solve the problem.
I suppose he was a little tired of having a gun pointed at him too.
I'm not sure how much we should credit Cole with a little pop psychology but something had to be done to shake Cassie out of her malaise. That verbal slap seemed to do the trick as we learned by the end of the episode.
As an aside, I've been thinking about the demands put on Amanda Schull's acting repertoire of late. Most of what they've asked of her is to be morose, angry or just plain depressed. This all sits on the negative end of the scale and doesn't allow for much range. Then I began to think how this must effect Ms. Schull in the real world. It must be depressing to act depressed all the time.
If so, then Schull managed to channel all that and turn it into that look I chose to lead off this post. Well done Amanda Schull.
Therapy at the barrel of a gun didn't quite have the same effect between Cole and Ramse. I've lost count how many time these two have drawn against each other. I think I cringed inwardly wondering if this was the time one of them was going to pull the trigger.
If anyone needed couples therapy it was Cole and Ramse. I can imagine an exasperated therapist telling the two, "Maybe a little time apart is what you need."
Sage advice Doctor Gun.
However, therapy of the .45 caliber type doesn't always work.
Deacon's downward spiral led him to try a little buck-naked boozing. That little adventure into self-actualization only led him to a more regressive state. Cole did his best to pull Deacon out of his infantile state and into a more manageable adolescent one.
With disastrous results.
Or maybe it was just a memory of tomorrow. Either way, Dr. Gun's methods didn't work out too well this time. With all that steel being flashed about someone was bound to get hurt. Jennifer doubles over in pain and is whisked away to be worked on.
All the efforts to save Jennifer are in vain but all is not lost. Jennifer plants a seed in Cole's memory and the next thing you know he is traveling back to a time when Jennifer was a Hyena. 12 Monkeys does a neat little pirouette to the time when Cole disappeared before Jennifer In "Hyena" only to reappear at her door. Now we know it was to grab the younger Jennifer so she can once again lead The Daughters.
And to think at that time, Jennifer was in the throes of depression because she had labeled herself "A woman who's failed everyone." All she needed was a little love.
One last trip to the therapists's couch.
As older Jennifer told her younger self that she loved her I thought to myself, "I wonder if I would ever say that to myself?" Don't giggle, this is actually a very important step. (We can discuss my fractured psyche at another time.)
For someone that has struggled with their sanity or trapped in the depths of a deep depression the concept of "Self Love" is crucial to rebuilding one's sense of self and following the path to wellness. (Even if that path is a yellow brick road.)
Here's what noted humanist and social-psychologist, Erich Fromm said about self-love, "In order to be able to truly love another person, a person needs first to love oneself, in the way of respecting oneself, and knowing oneself (e.g. being realistic about knowing one's strengths and weaknesses.)"
Jennifer took this important lesson and found the inner strength to lead The Daughters into battle against The Witness. The Elder version just didn't have the strength or resolve to risk them. Jennifer the younger is now able to confront her inner demons in a way that wasn't self destructive and turned into a strength instead.
I wonder who else could benefit from that?
As Cassie and Ramse headed out west for their climatic battle with The Witness they shared a knowing look. That look of resignation on Ramse's face was all she needed.
Cassie belonged with Cole.
It was pretty heroic actually. She left the path she was trapped on. The one that was paved with fear and lined with revenge. She wouldn't feel violated anymore.
She wouldn't be afraid.
That's not to say hugs don't help too!
Katarina and Cole had a nice moment before he left for 1957. "Thanks for believing in me."
Not everyone did!
What a shocker to see Marcus lose faith. (Jones really could have used a David hug then.)
It was bad enough for Adler to turn his back on her and elucidate all her failings but Whitely too? Good thing Cole had Deacon as his ace in the hole. Cole may have not seen "Die Hard" but maybe he's familiar with "The Naked Gun." (See what I did there?)
This is The End?
What did Katerina say to Cole before he left? Something about not having a machine to bring him back if he doesn't succeed? Well, there's one in 2016!
Yes, I am still harping on that. I know it's in mothballs and all but that doesn't mean it's been disassembled. Is the Pallid Man having it watched? We know the other Dr. Jones isn't there. He's off to his Titan endeavor.
Here's a thought, we haven't checked in with Olivia in a bit I wonder what she is up to? Possibly thwarting the plans of her brother and The Witness to reform her own cycle with the 2016 Splinter Machine? Cole and Cassie will be pretty busy in 1957 and the fight for Titan happens in the next episode so I am hoping a coup against The Witness happens in the final episode with The Striking Woman striking back.
Should I double down on that crackpot theory? Sure, why not? Let's say Cole fails in his 1957 mission and the future is lost. But Olivia is successful against The Witness and the future is remade. Cole gets word to the future (newspaper clipping etc.) and Jones brings him back. Time may have changed but they haven't.
Would this stop the Splinter coup of 2044? Maybe, but if it doesn't and it takes on a different form, Ramse and company may have killed The Witness at Titan in their first try only to see him resurrected in a new timeline.
Damn you causality loops and time cycles!
Odds and Ends
I bet all you "shippers" out there thought Cassie was going to run into Cole's arms when they saw each other in 1957. Not quite. Maybe next episode.
Nice entrance by Hannah during the Cole's counter coup. She reminded me of Spidernan swinging into action. No, not Spider-man, Spider-Gwen! Good to see she was more than a plot device in this episode. She even called Katerina,"Mother."
Katerina prevailed upon her to escape as the Splinter facility evaporated into a red mist. So where is she off to? To join the others in their assault on Titan? Is Deacon going to be there? That should create a little tension in the team. She did give him the Tyrion Lannister treatment.
To start the show we saw the elder Jennifer burning all her belongings. (And I thought I saved everything.) But why burn everything? So younger Jennifer would be free of those memories that may have held elder Jennifer back?
Sure why not?
Or it could be the new Jennifer rising out of the ashes of the past like the Phoenix.