Tuesday, July 29, 2014

In Which I Review Under the Dome (2x5)

And then everything exploded...

No seriously, that is a note I took while watching this weeks episode, "Reconciliation." There was a sudden gigantic boom. At first I wasn't even sure if the explosion was really happening or if it was some sort of flash-forward or vision. But then no, there was fire and screaming and it was clearly a real boom-boom. What else was there this episode? A love triangle run amok; fighting and random killing; conspiracies; and gigantic underground tunnels that pop up out of nowhere. This last one, by the way, deserves extra special sarcastic attention. Overall, the thrust of this episode was about people both coming together again after fighting, and people remaining wary of each other. In other words, just another episode of Under the Dome. This won't come as a shock to anyone, but I think the show is spinning its wheels. Too many questions, not enough answers; too much internal drama and not enough mythological explanations (and of course the explanations of mythology we are getting are somewhat disjointed and random and overly cheesy). The show right now has a tendency to split up all the characters which makes this review hard, but here we go. Let's fall down the rabbit hole (or locker hole perhaps?) together. 

Ah, young love. So lovely! So enticing! So egregiously stupid! Norrie is now my favorite character on this show. Everyone else can die in the Dome, but Norrie has to live. She has attitude and spunk and flavor and she says great things. Unfortunately she is saddled with a sad boyfriend who is sad. Joey is on my last nerve. Either he's a wunderkind who can solve all the things, or, as of last night, he's out of his depth and wishes he had Science Teacher Pine because she'd have all the answers! Melanie is also sad. Her sadness makes Joey sad. Their combined sadness makes me sad. Or irritated. Probably irritated, right? Because Melanie's entire role in this show right now is to have sad brown eyes and provide our "what happens to us after we die" cliche, I find her exasperating. Joey finds her her sadness alluring. Joey has issues. The brilliant idea for reduction of said sadness is to take Melanie out to the edge of the Dome and have her touch it; when you touch the Dome it shocks you but then sometimes you get neat little visions. I'm sure this will solve all of Melanie's angst about being dead or alive or transported through time. But Melanie doesn't see anything when she touches the Dome (cue dramatic music). When Melanie becomes upset by this, Norrie steps in and tells her that she "needs to deal!" You tell her Norrie! Melanie is just so upset (groan) that she runs away. Joey is so inept that he tells his girlfriend, "sometimes you're a real bitch," and runs after Melanie. This is NOT the way to handle your romantic affairs, Joey! You do not fall for the semi-dead, semi-alive girl who has some sort of history with the magic fishbowl that is keeping you hostage! Have you learned nothing at all? Could you make matters any worse, Joey? Why yes. Yes you could. By making out with Melanie and having Norrie see. Brilliant! Love triangle! I love those. At least Norrie is tough-as-nails and decides to fight Melanie. Go Norrie! Show her what your anti-establishment take on life can do to a privileged pampered sissy! Oh what's that? Something about blood? We'll come back to that.

Meanwhile, the town has torn itself in two. Either you are team Big Jim or you are Team Julia. I swear, I wrote that exact sentence a year ago. Frankly, I am neither Team Big Jim nor Team Julia. I am Team Figure-A-Way-Out-Of-The-Dome-Before-You-All-Die. We have t-shirts and everything! Julia wants to put Big Jim and Science Teacher Pine on trial for trying to murder some of the town with their virus. Some members of Chester's Mill are okay with this. Some think it's a giant conspiracy on Julia's part to take power away from Big Jim. Some people also think this storyline is interesting and relevant. Sadly, the writers do not. Know how I know? Because deus ex machina in the form of a hoarder. We'll get to her. The beginnings of the trial do not go well. Jim and Rebecca are marched outside and while Julia is trying to explain the rules of how this will work (one boy, one girl, chosen at random to fight in an arena for the entertainment...no wait, that's the Hunger Games), a fight breaks out and someone is shot. Don't worry. No one important. Just some extra who will no longer be getting his $100/day to stand around, arms folded, looking concerned. Big Jim and Rebecca discuss the death and Jim decides that this man who died was simply the price to be paid so that he and Rebecca might live. Rebecca has done a 180 in terms of feelings to Jim. I think she understands now that he's a bit of a monster and a thug. Big Jim is not happy that his attempts at seduction have gone unnoticed and unappreciated. Speaking of doing 180s, do you remember Phil? The radio DJ who is now the acting sheriff for reasons that don't make any sense? Well he's on Team Big Jim and he decides to help Jim and Rebecca out...by pretty much dooming the rest of the town. What a moron. You do realize that by blowing up lots of food, you're screwed right? You're lucky that we have deus ex machina neighbor lady!

For context: Julia has started a food drive. Everyone in town is bringing all their food to one location so it can be dolled out every day. It's not a bad plan and certainly better than "let's kill people!" from Big Jim and Rebecca. However, using Phil as a scapegoat, Jim finds a way to get explosions into the food and everything goes BOOM! Phil, turning up in his official police capacity (oh please), declares that Julia was negligent and that the generator's wires were frayed, something Julia obviously didn't look for but something Big Jim would have noticed right away! Sure. Whatever you say DJ-Cop Phil. But don't worry. The writers have figured out a way to solve this tedious storyline about food. Meet Mrs. Neighbor. Mrs. Neighbor might have been seen once or twice in season one, but not since. However, now, when the plot calls for it, Mrs. Neighbor has taken over the cafe in town and is handing out food that she found in the basement. Or so she's telling everyone. Julia calls shenanigans, checks the basement, finds no food and confronts Mrs. Neighbor. And because the writers wrote themselves into a corner it has now become convenient for Mrs. Neighbor's husband, Mr. Neighbor, to have been a survivalist-hoarder. Mrs. Neighbor's house and basement are full of food, enough to feed everyone inside Chester's Mill for months. How wonderful! So it's a good thing Jim and Rebecca didn't kill people because all our problems are solved! We need something sane now after this madness. What's Junior up to this week?

 Oh you know, breaking into his uncle Sam's house, getting drunk, finding secret passageways. Like ya do. After being knocked out by Lyle, Junior breaks into Sam's cabin to try and find missing pages of his mother's journal. Sam isn't so happy about this, but his unease passes once Junior tells him that Pauline is actually alive. This is not something Sam knew, which I find shocking. I'm thinking Sam and Pauline had some sort of falling out and Pauline no longer trusts Sam; what caused the fall out? Probably that Sam killed Melanie that night back in 1988. Maybe Junior is actually the sane one in this family. Sam shows Junior some of Pauline's prophecies including one about four hands that will hold up the Dome and without them, the Dome will fall. Angie was one of the hands, but do all four hands need to die to make it fall? Time for more murder! Yes, Sam murdered Angie. Shocking, I know. After leaning that his sister is actually alive, Sam comes up with a brilliant plan of getting Junior drunk (in loco parentis, you're doing it wrong!) and then tries to smother him with a pillow. Now I'm all for Little Crazy Pants getting a smack upside his head, but this seems rather cold. Sam must really want out of that Dome. Sam is stopped however when Junior is not so drunk as we believe and suddenly has the bright idea to go back to the school and try and open the Locker-of-Doom. Rebecca is there too, looking at blood, by the way. Something about Melanie. When the locker is finally opened, it's bigger on the inside. Yes, you read that right. The Locker-of-Doom is the TARDIS. It makes so much sense! The Locker has to have been invented by the Time Lords, else how do you explain that it went from an ordinary high school locker to having a GIGANTIC UNDERGROUND TUNNEL BEHIND IT THAT APPARENTLY LEADS DOWN TO THE DEPTHS OF HELL. Unless Lyle has a massive amount of explosives, how the bloody hell did this tunnel get there? Did Lyle dig his way through the bedrock, with a spoon??? Is there a natural cave system down there that some idiot architect thought would be totally okay to build upon? I don't even know what to do about this TARDIS tunnel. I guess this means Melanie is the Doctor? She fell into the Time Vortex and now she's spiraling out of control? Oh, she's Clara, then. Whatever. I'll just wait for the Doctor to turn up and fix all the things.

Miscellaneous Notes of Reconciliation

--"This is crazy."
"This is just par for the course for Chester's Mill."

--"It's called Science!!!" We get it Rebecca, you really like science.

--"She's not who I love!" Then stop kissing Melanie, Joey.

--Barbie and Julia get back together. Oh good. I was so very worried about this incredibly healthy and totally normal relationship.

--Carolyn was in the episode. We haven't seen her in awhile. She got trotted out to do lawyer-type things.

--I swear if the Locker-of-Doom leads out of the stupid Dome...I may have fit.

1 comment:

  1. Where to begin this week on Dome of Our Lives…
    I'm glad that Julia was a responsible adult this time and spoke to Barbie, putting aside their petty squabble. Not so glad that Barbie took some of the blame for their issues…this was clearly a Julia issue.
    I agree; as long as Norrie lives I think I can walk away from this show without throwing my hands up in exasperation. I would also enjoy it if Carolyn could live. I feel like she has had it rough and I'd like for Norrie not to lose another parent.
    Joe is stupid, and that kiss was awkward and forced and those two do not have chemistry. I kinda wanted Norrie to punch Joe in his face, but good for her for showing restraint. She can do better than Joe.
    I'm really okay with Phil having shot that guy. I don't get why everyone was so upset. He had a gun and he was going to kill BJ. Yes Barbie disarmed him, but he was still charging. He is (was) a big guy and Phil is a giant toothpick, it was an extreme circumstance and Phil acted appropriately. For all we know, dude was charging Phil to get his gun. I don't think it was appropriate to sack Phil because he did the job he was appointed to do, and one that he had little to no training.
    Pine is bothering me; I felt for her this episode, and I didn't want to. She will have to do a lot of good to be redeemed in my eyes because I'm not sure I a) trust her and b) think she is reformed.
    Surprisingly, I am okay with Mrs. Neighbor having all of this food. Every town has at least one survivalist living in it and I'm glad that Mrs. Neighbor isn't the crazy-lady I had suspected for so long.
    They said that the locker had been kicked in. So the tunnel already existed or was dug out after the school was built? Isn't there a room behind these lockers, how steep of a drop is it? This TARDIS hole had better produce answers quickly before I demand more of PunkBunny87's theories. Which, of late, have been more sensible than the crap the writers are feeding us.