Hey The Event Fans,
Welcome to my review of season one, episode thirteen “Turnabout”. This was an excellent episode that brought back an old familiar friend, and introduced a new villain, of sorts. We received a few more answers, and were left with a lot of new questions.
1. President Martinez and Sterling
Turnabout begins with a disturbing dream sequence which reveals to us the state of President Elias Martinez’s (Blair Underwood) mind. In his dream, his Chief of Staff, Richard Peel, (Roger Bart) tells him that he cannot stop Thomas because he is too weak and soft, and The Army General (Blue Deckart) agrees with him, adding that he is afraid to take bold action and that he has trusted the wrong people.
And then Sophia is revealed sitting in his chair behind his desk. She tells him that they gave him a chance, but that he blew it, and then he suddenly finds he has been chained to a chair. Sophia explains that now they have no other choice but to execute him. Thomas suddenly appears to do the job.
When the president awakes from his dream he calls a meeting with his Chief of Staff, and The Army General, the two people who were just yelling at him in his dream. Simon Lee (Ian Anthony Dale) is there as well, and so is the wonderful, Incredible Director Blake Sterling (Zeljko Ivanek).?
Director ?Blake Sterling did not like being in the hospital, even though he had not completely healed from his three bullet wounds and torture marks. He was being such a pain in the rear that the hospital staff kicked him out of the hospital, and sent him back to work.
I have heard complaints and comments from many folks about how unrealistic his being back to work was, however, I felt very glad that they did do this because Sterling is one of my three favorite characters and I would have missed him a lot had he been absent for the sake of credibility.
Martinez is harsh with his people about what happened at Inostranka. He calls the General incompetent, or at least he calls the army incompetent for having lousy security, but then Sterling responds that Thomas took an officer’s family hostage, so no one should be blamed for what happened. Martinez is not impressed with this excuse, and he orders The General to clean up his house or their next conversation would be about his resignation.
Then he gets a call from Sophia Maguire, (Laura Innes) who informs him that Thomas (Clifton Collins Jr) is planning to steal uranium rods from a facility in San Diego for use in his portal array. Martinez does not want to believe her. He trusted her in the past and had regretted it, so now he is choosing to not trust her and to think of her as an enemy.
But then, good old Sterling, who has grown much since the show began, tells Martinez how Maya (Clea Duvall), a good Inostrankan, had given her life for his, not because she liked him, but because she wanted him to stop Thomas. Sterling says that he believes Sophia only wants to stop Thomas just like she says.
Martinez does trust Sterling, so he reluctantly decides to give Sophia one more chance even though in his mind she has backed him into a corner once again leaving him only one alternative – hers. President Martinez and his advisors are afraid that if they do not move the rods that Thomas will cause nuclear fallout when he tries to portal them out.
So he reluctantly orders that the rods be moved to a research facility which is protected by a high electromagnetic field. If the rods are protected by electromagnetism then Thomas cannot portal inside. (This was why he could not portal anyone in or out of Inostranka).
Flash forward to later on in the episode, and the convoy carrying the rods is hijacked by Thomas, and robbed. They only used three trucks for the mission, one to carry the rods, and two to accompany it. No air patrol or anything. I have heard a lot of criticism for why the government would not assign more resources to this very important mission.
The only plausible answer that I can give is that the government thought that by assigning air support and fifty zillion trucks to follow this one hazardous waste truck that it would draw a lot of suspicion. They may as well as have put up a large banner proclaiming, “Uranium rods in here. Come and get them.” *giggles* besides if Thomas had not been setting a trap I doubt he would have found them. But at that point no knew it was a trap.
Simon was leading the convoy, and is thankfully not injured when the bullets start flying through his windshield. Thomas blew up a trick in front of them forcing them to stop, and when they do sharpshooters climb out of the drainage ditches guns blazing.
He gets in a few good shots, but unfortunately misses hitting Thomas. He does make an “amazing Houdini” like escape from the rod truck just before Thomas men storm it intent on killing him.
Sophia calls to let him know what happened, in case he did not know. He did already know and he reads her the riot act, accusing her of planning the whole thing and being in cahoots with Thomas. He is quite angry and embarrassed by this latest incident. His pride is hurt, and he feels weak again for trusting Sophia, which is why he refuses to believe her protestations of innocence or her explanation of being tricked.
He says that the only way he would believe her now is if she turned herself back in. Of course if she did she would likely be brutally tortured like the old Sterling suggested in an earlier episode. The weaker Martinez would not allow it, but I think this new stronger Martinez would.
They are able to trace Sophia’s phone call this time to the San Francisco area, and Martinez is told that the next time she calls they should be able to nab her exact whereabouts. He is gives the order to bring her in and says that it is okay to use deadly force if they need too.
When questioned about this change of heart by Sterling, who seems rather reluctant to relay it, Martinez replies that Sophia has played him for the fool for the last time. Meaning this is not just the end of the world as we know it – this is personal.
2. Leila and Samantha
Sean Walker (Jason Ritter) left Leila Buchanan (Sarah Roemer) in last week’s episode so that she would not have to choose between him and her father. I did not agree with his decision, but I think he was just trying to do the right thing.
Leila wanted to stay with her father, so that he could give her answers to all of the questions that she and we viewers have. Unfortunately Michael had to help Sophia with an important mission, and he did not want to risk Leila and Samantha Buchanan (Anna Clark) getting hurt, so left them with old friends.
These friends were Diane Geller (Gabrielle Carteris) and Diane’s husband, Carlos Gellar (Jose Zuniga). Diane is apparently a clean freak, as well as a sleeper because she ordered both girls to go upstairs to wash the road off themselves the minute they stepped in the door. She did not seem glad to see them at all, and I kind of feel sorry for the girls for having to stay there.
Diane and Carlos argued a lot because Diane sides with Sophia and Carlos sides with Thomas, and they mention something about how working with Michael Buchanan (Scott Patterson) is vulnerability for Sophia. They do not explain why this would be, but I am sure that there is much more to the story of Michael and Sophia. I will speculate more about this in their section of the review.
Carlos also asks Diane if she is aware of what will happen to the native population when Thomas brings all of their people down from the home planet, and when Leila, who overheard, asked what would happen Carlos said he would not tell her she would have to ask her dad.
I want to know this too! Is it simply an evolutionary thing? Could it be that our planet cannot handle both our people and theirs? Is extinction of one species or the other going to be the event? Although with their remarkable similarity to us I think they too evolved on earth. Perhaps something happened a long time ago that would have meant the extinction of everyone, but with half of them leaving the rest of us survived.
I am also wondering if the Inostrankan sleepers are having trouble reproducing. So far the only children that I have seen have been hybrids like Samantha. And in episode nine one of the sleepers mentioned one of the reasons why they wanted to stay was that they were finally settling down, finding love, and having children. I am excited to continue watching to see if these questions will be answered.
3. Sean and Vicky
After leaving Leila, Sean goes somewhere and enters a tavern. He sits down next to a girl (Megan Paul) to have a drink when her date arrives and makes a big deal out of her having spoken to Sean. He tells her it is time to leave, she resists him. This guy called Mark, (Erik Aude) is obviously a bully, and I hope this girl dumps him soon.
Sean does not even try to intervene on her behalf. He does not want any trouble. He simply gets up to leave and Mark the bully, who is embarrassed that his girlfriend stood up to him in public starts shoving poor Sean around, taking out his anger and aggression on a more acceptable target.
Sean had been through so much over the past few weeks, and was likely feeling quite awful about breaking up with the love of his life (finding out that she was half alien did not help, I am sure.) So after getting thrashed around by the big bully , Sean goes all ape and starts whaling back on the guy until the bar owner (Jaime Alvarez) kicks him out.
Sean next decides to go and visit his sister (Shay Astar). The door is locked and rather than knocking like a normal person he takes off a screen and crawls through a window into the kitchen. He raids the refrigerator because fighting makes you hungry, and his sister comes after him with a baseball bat.
She makes him a sandwich, but tells him that he cannot stay because he is still wanted by the FBI. Jimmy, her husband/boyfriend is on parole, and the rule is only one criminal is allowed to stay in the house at one time. (giggles)
Sean says he does not want to stay there he wants to go to Mexico and asks if boyfriend/husband can secure him a fake ID. His sister is relieved, but confused. Sean explains that he has been framed by some people who tried to assassinate the president that he did not murder anyone and that these same evil people out there experimenting on little girls and making them old. He does not mention aliens
His sister does not really believe his story, but she says that if it is true then he should not run away. He should stay and fight. That the Sean Walker she used to know would never run away. Sean is so inspired by his sister’s speech that he leaves her house and instead of going to Mexico he goes to Texas to break into Vicky Robert’s home.
Vicky Roberts (Taylor Cole) had gone shopping, and she was a nervous wreck, jumping at every shadow, just waiting for one of Doctor James Dempsey’s (Hal Holbrook) assassins to jump out at her to finish her off since she did not kill Vice President Jarvis (Bill Smitrovich) like she was told to do. An attractive male stranger (Jed Bernard) flirts with her over the cantaloupe, but instead of being flattered she is freaked out.
A little later she is taking her groceries out to her car and he sneaks up behind her, Vicky does not hesitate to take the guy to the ground. She feels a little silly when he tells her he was only trying to return a slip of paper that had fallen from her purse.
Her paranoia is rewarded somewhat when she returns home to find Sean hiding in the corner with a gun demanding that she help him find Dempsey, to demand answers, and I suppose to also get revenge for kidnapping his ex-girlfriend and framing him for murder.
We do not see Vicky’s mother or son. I wonder if they were out for the day. I do not think that Sean would harm them, but as mad as he is right now you never know. I think that if he were to ask nicely Vicky would agree to help him.
After all she does not like what Dempsey is doing any more, and she already asked Jarvis to spill the beans to the president. I am sure she was only helping him for the sake of her son, anyway. Are we going to discover one day that her son is one of them, or could he be another hybrid?
I am looking forward to seeing if Sean and Vicky can put aside their differences and troubled history to work together for the good of all humanity and for the good Inostrankans, too. Personally I think they make a hotter couple than do Leila and Sean, and I am hoping for them to get it on eventually.
4. Thomas, Hanson, Michael, and Sophia
Simon calls Sophia to inform her that Thomas murdered all forty-four of the Inostrankans who refused to follow him. Sophia is very sad to hear this, and she says now they need to kill him. That could not have been an easy order for Sophia to give, but she appears to be a very pragmatic leader.
I wonder what kind of a mother she was to Thomas? From the rain story she told in episode nine I get the feeling that she was pretty hard on him. I also get the feeling that Thomas was the alien version of a wimpy kid. Does Sophia have any other children or is Thomas it?
Thomas bought land and built a neighborhood where all of the Inostrankans he had rescued, fifty-one in total, could live safely, and work on finishing the portal array. I imagine that some of the sleepers who had joined his efforts lived there too.
We meet a man named Hanson (Jack Stehlin) who burned his face pretty badly at Chernobyl, Ukraine, when Thomas tried portalling uranium. Hanson is working for Thomas, helping him collect the materials he needs for his portal array by laundering money in San Francisco.
Sophia knows Hanson too, and she and Michael kidnap him. They want to know where Thomas is and what he is planning to do next. After being roughed up a fair bit by Thomas Hanson admits that Thomas is collecting fuel for the portal. I guess the portal works on uranium because Hanson says that Thomas is going to steal a lot of uranium rods from a nuclear reactor station.
Sophia replies that the security at a place like that would be impossible to get through, but Hanson convinces her that Thomas is going to portal into the facility and steals the rods that way. Sophia then does the responsible thing and calls the president to warn him.
She tells him about the portal and how it was what Thomas used to move the plane. I think she told him this hoping to try to rebuild his trust. Sophia came to like and trust President Martinez before the plane incident. I believe that he liked her too
A little later, Hanson is chained to a pipe in a back room of the house Sophia and Michael are keeping him in. No one is watching him, so he somehow manages to pull out a tiny communications devise out of his neck. It is red and it looks like a board game piece. Hanson stuffs it into his ear. It was sooo gross, but in a cool way.
Hanson uses it to call Thomas to tell him that Sophia took the bait, and the uranium rods are being moved. Thomas then orders Hanson to kill his mother, since we all know the coward could not do it himself. He has all these ambitions to be a leader, but in the end I know that he will fail because he does not have what it takes to truly lead.
His plan to trick his mother and to further alienate her from the president’s affections did work well for him. I suppose he is clever, if he is not strong. But if I was an Inostrankan I would choose to follow Sophia and not Thomas. If I was still a detainee I would have pretended to follow Thomas and then I would have acted as a spy for Sophia
Hanson is able to loose himself, and then he attacks Sophia, who is alone in the kitchen. He strangles her with a cord. Sophia does her best to fight him, but she is a politician, after all, not a ninja. If Michael did not arrive just in time to save her she would have died.
Michael shoots Hanson, killing him. While she is on the floor recovering she notices something in Hanson’s ear – the communications device – which tips her off that this was all a trap engineered by Thomas. Hanson trying to kill her may have also given her a clue, as well as his passing along Thomas regards. I consider the ear piece the icing on the guilt confirmation cake.
I never truly appreciated Michael’s character until this scene, but now I love him because he saved my Sophia. *giggles* It seems Sophia also took him for granted because earlier in the episode she thanks him and says that without him they would have never made it this far.
Was she only talking about their mission in finding Thomas or does she mean the plan in general? I wonder what is their true relationship to each other? Sophia felt quite betrayed by his actions with the plane. Did she feel that way simply because he is one of hers or did she feel that way because he was once much closer to her?
She was angry when Isabel betrayed her, but she did not act hurt like she did with Michael. She did not even want to go to him for help. Not to mention how snippy she was about his daughters. I am not sure that I see anything romantic in their actions with one another, but this is The Event, so anything is possible.
After Sophia learns that Thomas stole the rods she calls President Martinez. I thought she handled the call quite well. She tells Martinez that she will earn back his trust one day, but first she has to deal with Thomas. I have to admit feeling bad for her when the president was so mean to her. With so many characters it seems out to get her when all she is trying to do is keep everybody safe it makes me glad that has a few loyal friends like Simon and now Michael.
That is the end of this review, thank you for reading. The Event returns to NBC this Monday, March 21, 2011 with episode fourteen “A Message Back”. Be sure to tune in live if you are in the United States. If the title is any indication it is going to be a good one. In the meantime we include the complete episode “Turnabout” courtesy on NBC. Enjoy!
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