Welcome back Falling Skies freedom fighters!
Episode four opens on the battle that was anticipated in episode three. Instead of everyone assuming this could be their end, they, instead, have a brief meeting with President Tom Mason (Noah Wyle), General Bressler (Matt Frewer), Colonel Weaver (Will Patton) and another officer we have not seen yet in Season 3, Colonley. Porter (Dale Dye).
He is identified only as Porter, in this episode, so we do not know if he has also received a field promotion. It is nice to see him back, though.
Lt. Fisher (Luvia Petersen), their prisoner from episode three, is brought before everyone in the command room. It seems that Tom has something to show her. Tom, Weaver and Anthony (Mpho Koaho) take her “topside” to witness a “miracle”. Without much fuss, two Volm weapons are brought to bear, dispatching five alien, “beemers” with two shots. When Fisher, completely taken aback asks how, Cochise (Doug Jones) shows up to even further confuse her.
Hours later, when daylight has returned, Tom and Weaver head out across the compound. Hal (Drew Roy) stops his dad, “I need to talk to you about something”, he begins. His dad has some work to do, so asks if it can wait until later. Maggie (Sarah Carter) quickly agrees that they can talk later on. She tells Hal that she is stopping him from doing something stupid. Hal feels guilty. He is sure that he must be the spy. Maggie assures him that he is not.
Still very concerned about the baby, Anne (Moon Bloodgood) swabs the baby’s mouth. She gets interrupted by Lourdes (Seychelle Gabriel), who stops in to see if she needs anything, but Anne hides what she is doing until Lourdes leaves. Once the swab is put away, Anne picks up her daughter, whom we now find out is named Alexa, or Lexie, and tells her that she loves her. The baby replies, “I love you too”. If it was not so creepy, it would be charming.
As Tom and Weaver talk about the soldiers they have lost, Lt. Fisher insists on seeing Tom. She apologizes for doubting them, then tells them that she needs to report their success to the President, through a short wave radio. The interesting thing about this scene is that, Tom and Weaver drink to their dead comrade. If there are more than a few deaths, Tom and Weaver could get quite sloshed…
Another interesting aspect of this contacting of another group of humans is Lt. Fisher uses code words calling her home base, Keystone. I assume it is mere coincidence that the producers/writers of the series use the term Keystone, which is so controversial right now with American environmentalists opposing oil transport trough a pipeline of the same name. Or maybe, at the time of writing, it just sounded like a cool name.
Tom gets the opportunity to talk to “Big Dog” or the real President (Stephen Collins). Naturally, he is surprised by Tom’s claims. Next up, go see the President.
Meanwhile, Lourdes is explaining to all the harnessed kids that the Volm have very courteously provided a way for the rest of the Harness – the spike part, to be removed. As Lourdes explains in her medical teck-talk, Ben (Connor Jessup) gets the opportunity to dumb it down for us by stating, “sort of like pulling a radish out of the ground”. For once, the comparing the technobabble to an everyday concept makes sense coming from a teenager.
Well, who would have guessed that Pope (Colin Cunningham) would have a plane. And, he also is running a bar. Wow, he sure is doing well. It must have been even more surprising that he gets a visit from Tom, Weaver and Gen. Bressler. I bet he did not see that coming. He also finds out that Tom, et al., want his plane. That’s what you get for not being a team player, Pope. Since he cannot fly the plane, Bressler tells him he can fly it. Pope insists on coming along. So this is how you negotiate – see how far you can push things before you accept a compromise. It looks like it also involves annoying the other guy as much as possible as well.
It is time to board the plane. Somehow, even though the trip is supposed to be top secret, Anne knows about it. She and Tom exchange the usual pleasantries, kiss and say goodbye. In some ways, this sounds like a permanent goodbye, like the two will not see each other again. Hopefully, I am just being overly analytic.
So, everyone needs to talk, Hal about his concern and Anne about hers. Will everything fall apart with Tom Mason gone? Of course it will. That is the nature of drama in sci-fi. We are left, at this point, to wonder how, and, will it be Popes fault?
As boarding commences, Pope, of course, opposes the idea of Cochise being a member of the group. Once his arguments are addressed, Cochise has a concern of his own; will this rust bucket of a plane actually fly? When you are used to a limo, it is hard to go back to the Model – T car.
Ben and his friend Deni (Megan Danso) discuss all the cool things they will miss when they lose their spikes. The only advantage the two of them seem to see is that they will not be freaks any more. They will be normal, but they will not be needed.
Anne has come to see the hermit-like Dr. Roger Kadder (Robert Sean Leonard) about doing some DNA tests. Kadder is a little weird, but also, he seems to still have that attitude of wonder when he talks to Anne about her baby, “the eyes of a newborn are portals of wonder”.
At Keystone, Tom, Gen. Bressler, Pope, Lt. Fisher and Cochise land and climb out to meet the President and his entourage. It does not go well. General Donovan (Michael Hogan) does not appreciate that an alien has disembarked. When President Hathaway shows up, Cochise is taken to a holding area while Tom and Bressler talk to the President.
Naturally, the president and Gen. Donovan have the same concerns expressed by Tom Mason’s own people; that the Volm cannot be trusted and have their own agenda after the invading enemy aliens are defeated. “You expect us to take your word for that?” demands Donovan. “No”, replies, Tom, “his, that’s why I brought him”. It seems it is time for a visit to the holding area.
Hathaway wants to know what the Volm are fighting the enemy aliens for. Cochise tells him it is for a flower; one he has never seen from his home world. He also states that he has never seen his home world and he believes he never will. If they win the war, however, maybe his children will see the real flower that he will not ever see.
Meanwhile, back in Charleston, Hal is looking for his dad. He has no idea that Tom has left town. When he finds out his dad is not available, he returns to his quarters, only to be met with a creepy version of himself in the mirror. As he continues to talk to himself, Creepy Hal tells him, “you seem stressed. I’ll tell you what, how about I take over for a little while”.
Later, Hal convinces a very willing Maggie that all is well and he has come around to her point of view. Everything seems to be going his way.
Anne discovers from Kadder that all of the DNA samples are fine, except one. Sample number five has alien DNA intertwined with human DNA, “like a parasitic jungle vine wrapped around a tree and slowly strangling it. Anne lets Kadder know that the sample is her daughter. He tells her that they have to tell Tom. That’s when Anne finds something big and heavy, a wrench, and hits him over the head with it. Glass, with a wrench, in the lab.
Ben comes to find Deni after surgery for her spikes, only to discover that she, too, has changed her mind. Yo prove she is serious, she breaks the glasses she would need if she had the spikes removed.
Anne arrives home where Lourdes has been babysitting. She offers her a drink that she has drugged. I am not sure why she does this. All she needed to do was to wait for Lourdes to leave and then run off herself. I suppose this solidifies that Anne will do anything to protect her baby from those nasty humans that might have a problem with an alien baby.
At Keystone, it looks like Tom Mason will be staying with the President for a good long while. That is, until Gen. Donovan brings the bad news. There are aliens inbound. Tom is perplexed at how they knew where to go. Donovan thinks he knows, looking right at Tom. It is obviously time to evacuate the base. They each run to their respective planes, but the President and Donovan, who had been so concerned at Cochise being close to Hathaway earlier, take him with them on board the President’s plane.
Meanwhile, Anne has made good her escape. She does not seem to have thought things through since she runs across a harnessed kid and a skitter. Turning around to flee, she runs into Creepy Hal. Anne, this is so unlike you, attempting to protect your child and ending up with the enemy. I am beginning to think that the writers were not sure what to do with the Anne Glass character and they are looking for a way to write her out.
With “Beemers” shooting at them, it is only a matter of time before the President’s plane and Pope’s plane get hit. Both go down in flames. The episode ends leaving us wondering who has survived and who has not.
It was great to see some really impressive talent in this episode. Michael Hogan as General Donovan, the crusty general, was all too brief, Matt Frewer as General Bressler makes acting look easy, and Robert Sean Leonard as Roger Kadder does a good job at seeming very eccentric. These three heavy hitters really added to this episode.
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