Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Falling Skies 5.03: "Hatchlings"

“No, Mason. For once, my family comes first.”
- Pope

The 2nd Mass is having a mixed bag on the war front this week. They manage to crop dust a whole mess of the new Skitters but unfortunately, on patrol, Hal spots that more have appeared. That’s the bad news. There is a little bit of good news though. Tom’s message has gotten out to the militias around the world and they have taken out over half of the Espheni technology. Of course they still have the Skitters to deal with. And there are some blind spots in the Volm surveillance, including Fayetteville and DC. That’s definitely not good.

Maggie also has some drama going on what with the Skitterized human and his sister she and the gang brought back from the food run. Obviously the girl knows that Maggie lied about being able to save her brother. Maggie still wants to find a way to help and it seems maybe the Skitter does too because he reaches out through Maggie’s spikes and basically says he’s terrified of hurting his sister. It’s a fair thing to be concerned about given he goes after Anthony and absconds with his sister. I have to say I’m liking Anthony less this season. He’s really starting to get jumpy and kind of annoying, even when Anne is just trying to patch him up. I mean, come on, dude. She’s just doing her job. You’d be dead a billion times over without her.

Anyway, Tom thinks they need to focus on finding the place where the Skitters are being made. Anne surmises that since the Espheni don’t have any tech, they’re relying on their bio weapons. Pope and Sarah agree to go off and follow the Skitters to their origin point (which leads to a plot reference I’d nearly forgotten about regarding Pope). As they track the nasty buggers, Pope mentions his kids and Sarah is kind of surprised. She admits she tried to adopt once but her drug history precluded her. So Pope basically offers to be a sperm donor for her once the war is over. And it seems Matt and Evelyn are continuing to bond as well. And because last week felt very filler, this week has a lot of little subplots. This includes Tom getting Ben to draw the alien he keeps seeing in his visions. Their Volm ally (I know his name but for the life of me I can’t spell it) points out that what he saw is called a Dornia but they are extinct. In fact, they were what the original Skitters were made from! Who knew!

As I mentioned earlier, Brian absconds with his sister and Maggie takes it upon herself to go after him. Hal tags along for good measure and we get a little heart to heart where she explains that she felt connected to Brian due to the spikes and she never felt the love that he had for his sister, even when he was a giant alien monstrosity, he didn’t want to hurt his big sister. They find Brian and his sister talking with an Espheni Overlord and Hal jumps in to take down the fish face which lets Maggie go. Unfortunately, Brian shoots his sister and then shoots himself out of remorse for what he did. Sure it kind of sucked (granted they were only in two episodes) but hey it allowed Hal and Maggie to bag an Overlord so that’s a positive.

Ben and Maggie end up teaming up to question the Overlord. Ben has the idea that before he donated some of his spikes, he was very close to invading the Overlord’s mind. So the tag team him and with a little physical distraction from Tom, they end up getting the information they end. They now have a location of where the Skitters are being made and it sounds like there’s an imminent attack planned against the 2nd Mass as well.

At the same time, Pope and Sarah are cutting across some different parts of the forest when Sarah gets stuck in some Espheni fog stuff (that was used to Skitterize people. Pope is understandably freaking out about all of this and promises to get her out. He goes back to camp to get the truck and a flame thrower but encounters Tom and company commandeering the truck to blow up the Skitter factory. I don’t think Tom made the right call here because he drives off and leaves Pope to fend for himself. They manage to blow up the factory and kill all the remaining Skitters in their way to Fayetteville but Anthony is exhibiting clear PTSD symptoms. He froze up when he needed to set off a third bomb at the factory. And he’s a bit shell-shocked afterward. He also ends up going down to the holding cell of the Overlord and finds him about to use one of the rock communication devices they can create out of dirt and shoots the Overlord. Normally that wouldn’t be an issue but they wanted the Overlord alive. This invariably leads Weaver to relieve Anthony of his command. It was probably the best choice in the long run for Anthony’s mental health and the well-being of the 2nd Mass but it doesn’t make the situation any less awkward. And Tom is now going to have to contend with Pope’s vendetta against him for Sarah’s death (you had to see that coming).

Overall, I enjoyed this episode a lot more. I know said at the beginning that there were a lot of little subplots in this episode but it moved things along. I’m interested to see how Tom can be getting helpful messages from a supposedly extinct alien race. I liked that Ben and Maggie managed to work together to break through the Overlord’s mind. And I’m even interested to see what happens with Pope. This definitely moved the plot along in a way I don’t think the second episode did. And it did well to remind us that no one is safe as this war comes to a bloody end.

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