Welcome back Alphas!
Doctor Rosen (David Strathairn) certainly has his hands full with the likes of murderous yet motivated Alphas antagonist Stanton Parish (John Pyper-Ferguson) and his apparent minion Dani Rosen (Kathleen Munroe), Doctor Rosens’ misguided daughter!
Perhaps Dani had an unhappy childhood? Could it be that Rosen was too strict when Dani was growing up, not letting Dani have fun? Or is it something else?
Last week in “Gaslight” our team of Alphas heroes were able to save Rachel (Azita Ghanizada) from a maniacal crazed Alpha during her stay in a hospital.
The team nearly lost touch with reality as the malevolent Stanton Parish used a device that drove the young person to madness. Parish’s Alphas seem determined to strike again soon!
“Alphaville” begins with Doctor Rosen and Bill Harken (Malik Yoba) observed in the Alphas lab examining a device that appears to be related to the efforts of Stanton Parish to amplify Alpha abilities for his evil purposes. In the background, Doctor Rosen and Bill are viewing old United States Department of Defense films documenting studies into enhancing human abilities that were conducted after the Second World War.
The reason for their interest is the mechanism is the one that “enhanced” the youngster in last week’s episode during the near mayhem in the hospital. The research confirms that Stanton Parish had made efforts to get the device approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) so it can be readily available for his utilization.
Doctor Rosen knows there is one person who may be able to help, Skyler Adams (Summer Glau) in her second appearance in the series.
Doctor Rosen recalls that Skylar Adams had given a special cell phone to Gary (Ryan Cartwright) to be able to contact Skylar if needed. Gary calls Skylar who hangs up on him, but not before Gary triangulates her approximate location.
The scene segues to Rachel with her friend John Bennett (Steve Byers) eating lunch. Rachel uses her ability to scan the food from force of habit.
Next are more fun moments of Gary Bell humor as he fights with Doctor Rosen about having to leave the city where all the signals he monitors are.
For security, Rosen informs the Alphas he wants them all to go on the trip to visit Skyler, including Nina Theroux (Laura Mennell). Members of the Alphas still have doubts about Nina, however Doctor Rosen is adamant. Regardless of the misgivings about Nina, he knows he needs her special Alphas ability.
The next such sequence is Cameron Hicks calling his lover and Alphas double agent Dani Rosen. Viewers know she is using him for her own purposes, but the Alphas team is as yet clueless to this fact.
Subsequent to the call with Cameron, we witness Dani her transmitting a text message. Is the message being sent to Skylar to warn her, or is the text message a heads up to forewarn the evil, yet determined Stanton Parish?
As the Alphas head out to locate the whereabouts of Skylar Adams, more Gary humor delightfully ensues when Gary shouts “stop the car!” Concerned something is has gone terribly awry, Doctor Rosen quickly stops the mini-van.
Gary jumps out of the vehicle in a state of sheer panic because all the “Wi-fi and 4G” signals have stopped in the “boonies”, as they are described by Cameron Hicks.
When Gary says “I do not like the boonies”, it brought a smile to my face recalling many camping trips with friends and family in “real life”. Some people are simply uncomfortable away from the modern conveniences just as poor Gary apparently is. Hold on folks, Gary may well change his mind once in “Alphaville”!
We see brief glimpses of fast moving people in the trees. Gary wonders what their abilities are and more humorous fun occurs when Gary says “He opens doors!” As the Alphas continue, suddenly they are confronted by what we learn are two Alphas who order them to leave.
The beginning sequences conclude when Skyler Adams appears, not pleased to see Doctor Rosen and the other Alphas stating “Go home”.
After the intro video, Skylar indicates she is not interested is associating with them. Doctor Rosen reminds Skylar that he saved her previously in having visitors. Skylar retorts “So you are going to play that card”. Skylar reluctantly allows them to proceed to their encampment, not without gratitude for the efforts by Doctor Rosen to hide her from the National Security Agency (NSA) in the first season of Alphas.
The encampment is some kind of Alphas refuge colony with Skyler is one of the respected members.
However, it will soon becomes clear that each person is autonomous with their own agenda. They want to stay away from civilization, including any agency that would be interested in using their Alpha abilities or becoming “guinea pigs”.
Doctor Rosen asks Skyler to examine the enhancement device. She states what Rosen already knows, it is a “Photic Stimulator”. We do not learn more about the device at this time when Skyler’s daughter, Zoe Adams (Skyler Wexler), is an Alpha in her own right, comes through the door of the cabin, Viewers may recall that Zoe’s Alpha ability includes mathematics.
Viewers once again witness the softer side of Doctor Rosen when he teaches Zoe how to blow huge soap bubbles “that never pop” without them exploding.
The imaginary bubbles divert Zoe’s attention from pestering her mother producing a smile from Skylar as well as all the viewers and Alphas fans. It was a wonderful scene that any family can enjoy.
Doctor Rosen continues to entertainment the little tyke, able to convince Zoe to draw a picture of a stuffed animal Monkey toy creature by appealing to her creative instincts. The significance of the monkey toy will play a role later in the episode being a time honored technique by writers to perform a pivot in the arc of the story.
Skylar is impressed by Rosen asking him how he was able to do that since Zoe wakes her mom up at 4:00 AM to share that she has discovered “a new prime number”!
This scene is critical to the story arc because it relates to unknown, yet to be revealed instances when Doctor Rosen had to raise spirited Dani Rosen himself. This reviewer is certain we will learn more about the Dani / Dad Rosen episodes in the future as related to raising an Alpha.
Viewers are then introduced to Claude (Conrad Coates), the founder of the Alphas refuge who can “speak bee”. Claude uses his “bee speaking ability” to make the swarm dissipate.
Up to this point in the story arc Gary has not been happy by the lack of “civilized” electromagnetic communication signals. However, Gary becomes intrigued when Claude shares that there are signals to be found in the beauty of nature itself.
This reviewer giggled when Gary accused Claude, the colony founder of being responsible for the lack of communications signals as well as “speaking bee”.
Bill Harken inquires about security arrangements at the Alpha refuge. Setting the stage for what is about to happen, Claude indicates they have never needed to be concerned in the past as Gary and Bill enjoy the beauty of the area. Based upon Claude’s advice that there are (natures) signals Gary is fascinated that evening when gazing upon by a star in the night sky.
We then learn that Dani Rosen was not calling Skylar, but had tipped off Stanton Parish as suspected at the episode beginning. Suddenly while watching the stars, a man appears behind them with a switchblade knife. The man, obviously an Alpha, has been spying on the Alpha refuge colony, no doubt to report back to Stanton Parish about the status and whereabouts of the Alpha enhancing device of which he is seeking to obtain.
The switchblade man is observed in the woods with two other “observers” including Trisha (Tiio Horn). Lead by fire starter Cornell Scipio (Elias Toufexis), who convince the switchblade guy to wait until Rosen figures out the details of the Alpha enhancing device.
During the next sequence during communal dinner, Skyler is observed talking to Nina about trying to a good mother as well as learning to have fun in life herself. Skylar says “I’m only at the colony for Zoe” which earns Nina a contemplative look from Skylar.
During dinner Claude informs Doctor tells Rosen why he does not care for him. Nor does Claude think that Rosen should have spoken on their behalf, the self appointed “leader” of the Alphas.
Rosen asks Claude an important question about saving a colony of bees threatened no matter where they are hidden. What would he (Claude) do to save the threatened bee colony? Claude seems to carefully consider Rosen likening the Alpha colony refuge to the analogy of the bees.
We segue to Rosen walking alone with the device when he is attacked by the Alpha with the ability to affect electrical devices, including the human electromagnetic system that allows our bodies to function. Using his Alpha ability, he apparently damages the device after kicking it from Rosen’s hand and threatens Rosen’s life in the process. Cameron Hicks uses his ability to throw a stone at the Alpha knocking him to the ground.
Fortunately Alphas from the colony arrive completing the act of saving Doctor Rosen. Claude chastised the refugee Alphas that violence is not the answer. He also informs our Alpha heroes to leave the following day. Naturally trouble is to follow.
The next day morning, we observe Rachel working on the Alpha enhancing device with Skyler discovering a miniature circuit board inside the device. Skyler wants more time to look at it, but Rosen says they need to leave when suddenly the repaired device emits a signal knocking Rachel out. Bill Harken carries Rachel to the car as the team prepares to leave, but circumstances intervene.
Doctor Rosen discovers by observing Rachel that the device has enhanced her acute Alpha abilities. This comes in handy as Zoe overhears Skyler saying that things were “so much easier when I was alone” prompting little Zoe to run away.
More enjoyable Gary Bell humor erupts when Gary informs Skyler he wants to stay at the colony and have a cabin of his own, but with carpets since it is “squishy between his toes”. Skylar glances at poor Gary, but says she “does not have time for this” frantically searching for the runaway Zoe in the woods surrounding the Alpha refuge colony. Skyler encounters Stanton Parish’s henchmen who state they have Zoe and will trade her for the device.
Doctor Rosen is observed in to Skyler’s cabin. The Alphas enhancing device is gone as we see that one of Zoe’s toys is sitting on the table. Meanwhile Skyler has a confrontation with Scipio in a barn. Doctor Rosen arrives in the nick of time using the device to knock Scipio to the ground, allowing them to escape. Scipio is pissed, however his Alpha abilities have also been increased. His anger starts a fire burning the barn to the ground also causing a wildfire mentioned later at the episode conclusion when he sets the entire colony on fire.
Zoe is saved when Bill Harkin breaks through a wall. In the confusion that ensues, Zoe and Skylar escape the colony only to be confronted by Stanton Parish in a local dinner. Parish offers Skylar the safety of his organization for the benefit of young Zoe. In a mini cliff hanger of sorts, we observe Skylar with a device of her own in her lap. As the scene switches, we are uncertain what the device is, but is is clear that Skylar plans to use it to incapacitate Parish.
One of the net results of Alphaville is that Rachel’s alphas powers have been permanently increased by the Alpha enhancing device. We find her with John Bennett who comforts Rachel with an origami bird. The romance between the two comes to life when Rachel says “you get me”. The two young Alphas lovers kiss.
In the final moments of the episode, Bill Harken and Doctor Roses ponder how Stanton Parish knew they were visiting Skyler at the Alpha refuge colony. They have yet to put two and two together regarding the intentions of the duplicitous Dani Rosen.
Finally, we observe Dani Rosen with Cameron Hicks. Dani apologizes to Hicks for what has happened to him making it appear that she feels guilty. This reviewer thinks not! As do the viewers who known that Dani Rosen is an Alphas double agent!
To add to the mystery of when Doctor Rosen will discover the that own daughter is the double agent, the voice over continues as the camera pans to Dani as the episode ends with Rosen stating “Just find him!”
My grade for this episode is a solid “A”. The creators have built upon the mystery of Dani Rosen and her alliance with antagonist Stanton Parish in a brilliant fashion, all of which is setting the series up for an exciting season finale coming in a few weeks time.
Of major credit is the chemistry of the main cast and supporting guest stars. The addition to Alphas of talented Kathleen Munroe, a brilliant actress and the always enigmatic John Pyper-Ferguson have both added to the series story arc, threatening to thwart Doctor Rosen’s beneficent actions to protect humans with Alphas abilities!
Well done Alphas!
Lastly, we (this reviewer) missed performing an analysis leading up to “Alphaville”. As mentioned, and for those who do not know, a family situation has precluded that possibility for the time being. We will try before season’s end to fill in the “Gaslight” review tucking it in chronologically if possible. Thanks for understanding!
Thank you for visiting WormholeRiders News Agency and reading our Alpha analysis, series back story and significance of the human interest of Alphas imparted for our pleasure by the creators!
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