Last week’s episode of Revolution really showed us some interesting stuff! Although I wasn’t particularly happy about the continued set up to have Monroe completely alone, or how Rachel has become Sydney Bristow in a bad way...but I digress....there was a lot about the episode that I found interesting. Initially after viewing, I really wanted to write a sonnet about Mark Pellegrino’s character, Captain Jeremy Baker...because I usually write a poem of some sort about Mark’s characters, but then I went for a run and I was listening to Marilyn Manson, and this came out. I was going to actually video me reading the letter, for a change of pace. I even picked the background song, “Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You” (yes, you should read between the lines there). But after a couple attempts, I realized watching me read from a piece of paper lacked pizazz, and I wasn’t going to be memorizing almost six minutes of dialogue, so here you go...Another installment in the continuing “Letters to Kripke” saga...
Oh my God! They killed Tommy! You bastards! Did not see that coming at all. I so love being unspoiled, but at the same time my heart is broken.
“Sacrifice” was definitely about, well, sacrifice. Practically everyone in the cast made one. Oliver sacrifices himself and his well being every day for the city, as do Digg and Felicity. Ollie’s dad sacrificed himself in that raft so Oliver could live. Moira sacrificed her reputation and freedom to save The Glades. Roy sacrificed his chance to leave The Glades to save others. Quentin sacrificed his career so he could protect citizens that he swore to serve when he became a cop, even though his source was a guy he’s been trying to hunt. Malcolm sacrificed the citizens of The Glades, because they’re heartless dicks who left his wife on the pavement bleeding to die. Hey, I never said sacrifice had to be noble.
But the ultimate sacrifice, the one that trumped all, came from a guy who for most of this season I considered to be a total waste of screen time. That is until episode 16 and beyond. Tommy Merlyn sacrificed his life so he could save Laurel. Oliver couldn’t be in two parts of the city at once, and Tommy ignored Oliver as The Hood’s warning to get to safety. He knew that Laurel would go back to C.N.R.Y, which was right in the blast zone. Oliver did find Tommy just in time to lie to him before he died, and I cried like a baby over the whole thing.
It is a brave new world, PoI fans! Where we go from here is anybody’s guess.
“…we conceived this finale – unlike last season’s finale which was a straight cliffhanger, this year’s finale is the end of one chapter and the beginning of a new one.” (Greg Plageman)
Plageman and Nolan appear to fully comprehend what Eric Kripke said years back in regards to Supernatural – (paraphrased): Great care must be taken with shows involving an overarching storyline. String it out too long, too far and it becomes crushed under its own weight.
This, the penultimate, episode of Arrow showcases what has gone so very well with Arrow in Season 1; at the same time it shows what has gone not so very well with Arrow in Season 1. Arrow seems to get the overall big picture stories done well: island flashbacks and build to the Undertaking. Also, the development of the ‘Hood’ team has been well done. The romantic relationships, however, muck things up. I’ll get the bad out of the way and then on to the good.
You may or may have not gleaned that I am from Western Massachusetts. Here, as far as sports are concerned, it’s the Bruins, the Pats, the Celtics and the Red Sox...Unless you are a Yankees fan, but we don’t generally talk about them. After thinking long and hard over the issue, I have decided that I am going to go against local custom and stop rooting for the Sox. I have instead decided to become a Cubs fan. It seems the only reasonable thing to do, since I hear Cubs fans are hearty and used to rejection, managing to maintain what appears to be an endless supply of hope that their loyalty will eventually be rewarded. I have this kind of love for Sebastian Monroe.
Now that’s how you do a penultimate episode for a season: Root, Shaw, Special Counsel, Greer, HR, Elias – by proxy – Finch calling the police on Reese, Reese tracking Finch, the Machine creating an avatar, a proposal, a friendship destroyed…and one sweet stunt blowing up a car…thank you, Amanda Segel, David Slack, and Jeffrey Hunt for Zero Day!
Secrets are revealed, new ones emerge, alliances shift, and I have to wonder…why, Finch, did you call 911 on Reese? Sure, I get the obvious: you wanted to meet with Root and didn’t want John to know. But really? After all your efforts in Prisoner’s Dilemma and you go and turn him in? Then again, Finch always seems several moves ahead, so in all likelihood he knew Shaw was in town and tracking the same ‘ghost’ they were. Yeah, I’ll go with that.
Each of our main four was ‘in extremis’ to some degree or another; whether observers (Finch and Reese with Dr. Nelson), or participators such as Fusco as all of his past deeds were coming to light and Carter as she had to make some decisions: Who is she as a cop? Where do her allegiances lie? How far will she go over whatever line is left to stand behind or step over? Then there’s Dr. Nelson – he certainly was ‘in extremis’. Finally the Machine was/is most certainly in extremis.
This was the Fusco flashback story Plageman and Nolan bantered about during the December conference call. Gentlemen, this was worth the wait. Thank you for the backstory on Fusco and how he fell in with HR. Kevin Chapman, you surpassed yourself yet again. My favorite moment of Season 1 was the scene at the end of Blue Code as Fusco faced his imminent death. Well, this episode was a spectacular feat from beginning to end for this character. Well done!
We are now into the fourth episode of the “course correct” and I continue to find myself underwhelmed. I am still hoping for a turn around. I am invested in the Miles and Bass storyline and I really hope that the writer’s room doesn’t take the easy way through this with just killing Bass off. The day after the episode aired I took off and I spent the morning writing up another “Letter to Kripke” regarding my disappointment over the episode. I posted it on my blog, and it appears more than the usual number read, so I wanted to post it up here so everyone could comment. Here is the letter:
Since I’ve been doing features on this year’s pilot crop, it’s only natural that I do a review on a pilot we actually got to see before upfronts, “The Originals.” Sure, it’s a backdoor pilot that took a week from the regular scheming and backstabbing of The Vampire Diaries
, but it’s still a pilot. The outcome of this episode will determine if this goes to series our not. No pressure!
The story itself was okay for me, but then again I don’t think the story was what was supposed to win us over. It’s getting used to the idea of Klaus, Elijah, and to a lesser extent Rebekah in this setting. Can you buy Joseph Morgan as a lead in his own series? Does Daniel Gilles’ Elijah provide the adequate balance to be his ally/foil, much like the Salvatore brothers? The answer I got out of this pilot was an unequivocal, “Yes.” There’s definitely something here.
Aww Tommy, you’re killing me! You and your self-destructive tendencies. I get that self esteem issues probably comes with the territory when you’re a rich kid growing up with an absent father and dead mother, but so far he’s two for two in the “Throwing the precious things in your life away” category. And Oliver is to blame for both times. Sounds like something that happens to a good man before he becomes a villain, no?
I liked “Home Invasion” and didn’t mind the imploding of the relationships in Oliver’s life, even if it was totally unfair. After all, the mishaps were each based on no win situations. There was also this bit about a couple of cool assassins ruining people’s day, but they proved to be the catalyst needed to throw a season’s worth of relationship building into the bit bucket (Felicity would get that reference). Oliver really hasn’t built a lot of confidence in those close to him, has he? It’s like watching a deck of cards fall.
Let’s start with the junior Merlyn, just because I think Colin Donnell is finally easing into this role and delivering caliber performances every week he should have been doing from day one. Sure, his character is still inconsistently written, but his actions aren’t inconsistent at least with the prior episode, “Unfinished Business.” In that episode if you recall (a few weeks is a long time) he put himself in hot water at the club for bribing an official so he wouldn’t inspect the Arrow cave. He was able to cover Oliver’s tracks nicely when Detective Lance came a snooping, but Tommy realized pretty quickly he couldn’t stomach doing this for Oliver all of the time. So he left the club and took a job with the senior Merlyn, aka the evil bastard that’s going to inflict terrible harm on the city (we think). Out of the frying pan and into the fire.