Revolution1.10 “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” TV REVIEW
Episode 1.10 Writer: Monica Owusu-Breen, Matt Pitts Director: Frederick EO Toye
THE ONE WHERE The gang’s all here, Danny is saved and it’s face off time for Matheson versus Monroe in the mid-season finale.
VERDICT With Charlie wounded from last week, the gang hole up in the house of an old friend of Miles’s, but it’s not long before they’re found. Mere moments after Miles heads out onto the street of Philadelphia to locate Danny, the house is swarming with Tom Neville’s militia men and everyone is dragged off to be interrogated, prodded and talked at by the various mad eyed generals.
It’s bad news for the Matheson gang, but does mean that the family is finally reunited. Shoved in a cell, Charlie finally catches up with her mum, Rachel, who she’s not seen in years. But it’s not all forgive and forget. Charlie rightly has every reason to be a bit peeved at her mum for leaving without explanation, and while she gives her mum a jolly good telling off, it’s not the emotionally charged scene it could have been.
Mark Pellegrino returns as Jeremy Baker, bringing news to Sebastian Monroe that Miles has finally arrived in town, and not a moment too soon. Miles has realised there was a good chance of the gang getting stuffed the second they got into Philly and is already being proactive. Breaking into Tom Neville’s house he waits for him to come home after a hard day at the office, then threatens to cut his wife’s throat… or her head off… he’s wielding such a big sword it’s hard to tell. In exchange for his wife’s live, Tom releases Aaron and Nora, but as we find out, Charlie is being held closer to Monroe’s base in a nearby power plant.
Monroe arrives all sweaty and intense with psycho general Strouser in tow, threatening to kill Charlie or Danny or both if Rachel doesn’t finish the other electrical amplifier. The other electrical amplifier? What? Apparently bit-part scientist Brad (tortured and stabbed to death last week) was also working on an electrical amplifier, as well as Rachel. It’s mildly tenuous but I suppose you could put it down to Monroe’s irrational behaviour. But why has it taken until Charlie arrived on the scene for Monroe to blackmail Rachel into finishing the device? He already had her son Danny hostage. Oh dear. It would appear no one cares enough about Danny. Not me, and not even his own mother. After ten episodes of doing relatively little, Danny is now being rescued and does… very little. Ten episodes of waiting only to find out you’re nothing more than a Maguffin – poor Danny Maguffin.
The climax of the mid-season finale is a stand-off between Miles Matheson and Sebastian Monroe. It’s told partly in flashback to when they were kids growing up, and later as best buddies sticking by each other through drunken depression and war wounds. It’s well played and pans out like a messy divorce with guns and swords. Bass is willing to take back Miles, and even realises himself he’s having a bit of a nervous breakdown – “It was simpler with you around” – but it’s all too late. Miles is wearing the trousers of tough love; he has a new family now and it’s too late for counselling, from bro-mance to no-mance, in a few short words. Miles escapes out of of a window while Sebastian has a good cry.
It is satisfying to see all of the gang together finally, but it’s a bit of a slow burner for a mid-season finale. Rachel completing the electricity amplifier provides a great opportunity for all the machines on the base to switch on, but this doesn’t exactly lead to fireworks. I would have expected a little bit of extra budgetary “umph” in the mid-season finale, but sadly no. We do get to see a helicopter, but it doesn’t really do much other than provide a cliffhanger.
The first half season run of Revolution has been good, and sometimes great. So far it’s often favoured melodrama over narrative, and there’s a bit of overlap among the bad guys, but they’re never less than fun to watch. Of the last ten episodes, I’ve found the strengths to be in those that not only spend time developing the characters, but also exploring them in relation to the post-electrical world they live in, fleshing out the swashbuckling new frontier of resourcefulness and allegiances.
UNFORTUNATE VICTIM OF THE WEEK After employing a particularly dirty metaphor about “eating peaches all day” in reference to a captured Charlie, bonkers deviant Strouser get a well-deserved comeuppance at the hands of Rachel.
BEST LINES: Tom Neville: “I recognised you the minute I laid eyes, Aaron Pitman, the wizard of Google. You’ve been on the cover of Wiredmagazine more time than I can count. You were high and mighty when the lights were on. I bet you bossed around those poor bastards in their tiny cubicles, I was one of those poor bastard myself, but now look at you… Then look at me.