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S04.E09: Till Death Do Us Part

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Episode Synopsis:

While members of the 2nd Mass attempt to dig out a shot-down Beamer, Tom and a small team follow the Volm to a supply cache in search of equipment to expedite the process. Along the way, they encounter a friend, and must decide whether or not to trust her. Back at camp, Maggie and Ben grow closer as he teaches her to hone her new skills, while Pope and Sara continue to clash, resulting in a fight from which they may never recover.

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Oh, what's going to happen with Ben and Maggie? I wonder how Hal feels about all this?! I never imagined a love triangle would happen! How surprising.

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Along the way, they encounter a friend, and must decide whether or not to trust her.

 

My curiosity is piqued -- who do they encounter ?  Did they previously think that she was dead ?

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Along the way, they encounter a friend, and must decide whether or not to trust her.

 

My curiosity is piqued -- who do they encounter ?  Did they previously think that she was dead ?

 

 

On the spoilers thread, there is a link to some promotional photos for this episode - they appear to provide the answer.

 

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Finally Tom is going to consider that not every human stranger he meets is trustworthy.

 

Sara and Pope have been clashing? I thought they were doing quite nicely in their own odd way.

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A Beamer?  On top of all their other grotesque characteristics, the Espheni  are status-conscious yuppies?  For shame. 

Can someone please explain where the 2d Mass gets all its ammunition?  I'll buy that some comes from cut down scavengers like the prep school toughs, but when Maggie started going all Matrix on us, I had to holler out "Wait a minute, for Pete's sake!" 

So Hal has just found out that, in spite of the fate of the world hanging in the balance, there are still rules.

Did anyone NOT see the betrayal coming?  Other than the merry band, that is. 

Poor ol' Pope.  Time to break out the BB King CD and turn it up loud.

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Ben now says that the spikes increase his emotions?  Seems rather odd since the harnessed kids were like robots when they were under the skitters care.  First it has been mentioned.  Rather convenient that he mentions it as part of the triangle.   Also don't remember the spikes making Ben a crack shot... is that just a female power?

Do the writers watch their own show?

 

It was nice to see a wedding in the middle of this.  I think it is the first one in the show?

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Much of the episode was devoted to setting up the big action mission climax of the season, but the Tom/Ann interaction was very nicely done. Lexi's hoodoo is wearing off. 

 

Unfortunately way too much was devoted to Maggie's superpowers. Ben never had superpowers but then the show isn't about the "Masons." I must say that so far the triangle and the superpowers are being handled so badly that I'm already longing for Lexi's return. 

 

But maybe that's just me.

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I must say that so far the triangle and the superpowers are being handled so badly that I'm already longing for Lexi's return.

 

But maybe that's just me.

 

 It's just you (smiley face).  Ben had some superpowers (jumping/hearing (the radio frequencies), but not the ones they highlighted tonight.  Given that Maggie has 3 of Ben's spikes, wouldn't she just have a small superpower, and wouldn't Ben's be diminished. 

 

Really liking the Shaq Volm.    

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No Lexi automatically bumps this up a letter grade!

 

I knew it!  Matt's little camp buddy was going to come back and totally be a traitor!  I was impressed that Tom and the rest at least were rightfully suspicious and didn't just take her word on it.  But, of course, Matt had to fuck things up.  He was really lucky that Cochise and Weaver were able to bail him out from getting recaptured.  And that Tom and Anne didn't die for his mistake.  I don't blame Tom for showing some sympathy for him at the end, but I do hope he gives him a serious talk about that screw-up.

 

And, so the love triangle begins!  Maggie is having problems adjusting to her spikes, Ben is training her, and now these spikes are suddenly making her hot for him.  Of course, Hal finds out and get pissed.  Yippee!  Oh, and the spikes apparently make Maggie a Badass Terminator now.

 

Am I supposed to care about Pope and Sara?  Because, I don't.  I already get it: Pope is a self-destructive tool, that pushes back against anything that can make him a normal human being.

 

Tom and Anne are officially married now.  Surprised it took them this long.  Was really annoyed over how Anne was practically blaming Tom for the Lexi shit, so I'm glad he didn't let that slide, and she finally wised up.  But this season really has made her unlikable.

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Shaq needs to do the prairie-dog "Y'all forgot about me again?" thing more often.  Somehow.

 

Off the top of my head I can't recall this show recently being as humorous (if in a black way) as it was at the beginning of this episode.  Maybe it was necessary, in a way, after the past couple of episodes--but it was still odd at first.  I did find it interesting that, at its heart, this ep was basically about love (Tom and Anne patching things up over the Lexi-angst, and--unfortunately--the Triangle of Doom) and love lost (Pope and Sara and Matt and his fifty-foot-wide, plot-mandated, blind spot about Mira).  Kind of a breather, minus Espheni Youth Guy pulling a Zombie Karen on his way out, before the big end run to the moon...?

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but the Tom/Ann interaction was very nicely done.

 

Those two and the Volm are the best parts of the episode.  I'm surprised at how much I like the Volm.  They seem actually real to me and not just aliens with ridges which is common in scifi.

 

I don't mind Lexi though, it seem like they are using her to fill the Karen void.  The main problem though is we never got to know Lexi as a person at all, before she went all Espheni-fied.  While we got to know Karen as a person for several episodes before she was captured.  So it meant more to see her transformed into the enemy.

 

I know there's only one more season left, but I think Lexi would have been better served if the let us know her for this season first.

Edited by Shimmergloom

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The best part of this episode was the absence of Lexi, although

unfortunately, she returns in Episode 11 and apparently plays a big part in Episode 12, the final episode of this season

.  This episode is all about Convenient Coincidences. 

 

First, Tom wants to fly an alien ship, the underground beamer (anything else think BMW every time someone said "beamer"? - also noted by Dowel Jones), to the Espheni moon base where they'll upload a computer virus and infect the mother ship, thereby downing all baby ships on earth - oh, wait, that's Independence Day - no, Tom wants to shut down the lunar power source on the moon, thereby shutting down all Espheni tech on earth.   But how to get the beamer above ground?  Luckily, Cochise is conveniently there to explain that there just happens to be a Volm supply cache nearby which will have exactly the sound-wave technology tool they need.  It would've been nice if he had told Tom about these caches at the beginning - even if they couldn't get to them before, it still would've been nice to know about them.  Tom, Anne, Weaver and Matt(!) go to the cache. 

 

Second, Tom brings Matt along because Matt is now 13 years old (apparently in post-apocalyptic TV worlds, 13-year-old boys become men who fight, while 13-year-old girls remain defenseless and turn into zombies, literally or figuratively).  Luckily, Matt did come because he carried convenient gas masks in his duffel and also because they run into his little camp girlfriend Mira - of all people - at the cache.  The adults recognize her as a convenient plant, but let Matt go check on Mira.  Of course, she manipulates Matt's feelings for her and suckers him into untying her hands, whereupon she blows her whistle to summon a beamer and their old camp team leaders who were apparently hovering nearby (so who's running the camp?).  Why Mira didn't blow that whistle as soon as she saw them, or why Tom didn't take the whistle away from her, is beyond me.  Tom, Anne and Weaver somehow don't hear that whistle blowing.  They escape without the tool they came for.  But, luckily, Tom managed to bring along the whistle that calls beamers, which Shaq is able to configure in order to raise the underground beamer.  (Now, I guess, that's closure on the youth camp story line and Tom won't need to go back and rescue the other camp kids like he promised.)

 

On the soap opera front, Maggie is ambivalent about her new spikes, but after Ben shows her how to leap off tall buildings in a single bound, she's hooked.  She and Ben go running about camp like super twins - or Edward and vampire Bella.  With Ben's encouragement, she flips and shoots guns like Black Widow, even though she's wasting valuable ammunition (as Dowel Jones noted) and making enough noise to alert any nearby Espheni that there are human survivors of the explosion.  Apparently, the magical spikes not only give them super powers and try to control them, but also amplify their emotions - which seems inconsistent with the harnessed kids who walked around like emotionless zombies (as mythoughtis pointed out).  Maggie kisses Ben - but she has an excuse for cheating on Hal - "it wasn't me, it was the spikes".  Hal conveniently sees them kissing.  Instead of confronting Maggie, he confronts Ben and tells Ben to stay away from Maggie (because, you know, it's the guys in a love triangle that control the woman's actions).  I'm all for some badass female, so if they want to go with Super Maggie, then have her lose interest in both brothers.

 

On the other soap opera front, Pope and Sara have a Misunderstanding.  He jumps to conclusions, she calls him on it, and runs off by herself to a nearby farm (perhaps Herschel's old farm...) where she'll probably put herself in danger and be rescued by Pope or die dramatically in Pope's arms - I'm hoping for the latter.

 

Side note: Dingaan and Shaq playing around inside the underground beamer was reminiscent of Starbuck trying to figure out how to fly the living alien ship in BSG.

 

Oh - and Tom & Anne got married (Shaq couldn't wait 2 minutes, but had to interrupt?).  So going to the moon... jumping the shark or logical progression?

Edited by tv echo
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I didn't hate this episode:

- Finally, the show ties back to Tom's history knowledge, and does it in a way that is in context.

- The Tom/Ann wedding was quick with no build up.

- They didn't go the "Matt gets kidnapped, Tom has to damn the torpedoes to find yet another lost Mason" route.

 

However:

 

- The "Tom is a crazy genius" stuff was stupid. If the entire espheni war machine is powered from the moon, then of course they have to go there. And the Volm are a space faring species. This shouldn't be such a surprising or "crazy" idea. It should have immediately been about, hmm, what can we fly there?

- The traitorous friend was no surprise.

- The humans don't question how the Volm, their allies, keep all manner of information from them. I've complained about this before and I still don't get it. Every episode Cochise and company show up with new technology or knowledge that would have - and should have - been offered before.

 

What was the idea behind Nazi Youth Leader saying he turned in his mom just as he died, and prefacing it with "Tom"? Seconds before that he was still ranting propaganda.

Edited by Ottis
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The "Tom is a crazy genius" stuff was stupid. If the entire espheni war machine is powered from the moon, then of course they have to go there. And the Volm are a space faring species. This shouldn't be such a surprising or "crazy" idea. It should have immediately been about, hmm, what can we fly there?

 

The one big problem with the whole 'Espheni power source on the moon' idea -- that moon base (will they call it Moonbase Alpha -- I just had to sneak a Space: 1999 reference in there) would only be directly visible to 1/2 the surface of the earth at a time.  Unless the Espheni have Mr. Fusions or giant batteries strapped to the back of all their equipment, that's not a good way to power your 24/7 war machine on Earth.

 

Maggie seemed to have magically appearing/disappearing wounds on her forehead and left cheek.  sure, now she has magical healing abilities but the wounds appeared out of nowhere as well (is that an ability ?)

 

Tom, Cochise, Capt. Weaver, Anne -- all A-Team quality terrible shots.  There were 5 Team leaders walking in a row and they couldn't hit any of them.  And what was with Anne claiming that she was hit, only she didn't seem to have any bullet wounds ?

Edited by ottoDbusdriver
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The moon is the platform, safe from attack. Satellites can relay signals to the other side of the planet and that would include beamed power. 

 

But no, the Volm will not share anything ahead of time. In particular they are not going to reveal the locations of any caches to people who might be able to get to them before the Volm need to. The Volm are essentially benevolent but this is not a partnership of equals. The humans no more tell the Volm what to do or have them report to Tom or Dan than Washington could tell the French what to do or have them report from Paris.

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What is with this show and all the angsty relationship crap?  I don't mind Tom and Anne so much (although, to be honest, I thought they already were married), but on top of that we've got this dumb Hal/Ben/Maggie triangle, which is something right out of a soap opera, and even little Matt has a little girlfriend. What the hell am I watching, Falling Skies or The Young and the Restless? Worse still, I think, is this new love interest for Pope. I about died from eyeball rolling when she came up to him and started lecturing him about looking inside before really knowing. Well that was a subtle metaphor wasn't it?

 

If everyone on this show has to have some kind of love interest, where's Weaver's main squeeze?

 

I don't get how these Nazi youth camp leaders brainwash these kids into turning against humanity if it's not chemically induced somehow.

 

 

Can someone please explain where the 2d Mass gets all its ammunition?  I'll buy that some comes from cut down scavengers like the prep school toughs, but when Maggie started going all Matrix on us, I had to holler out "Wait a minute, for Pete's sake!"

 

I know, right? They cannot possibly have so much spare ammo laying around that people can just randomly target practice whenever they want.

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I thought Maggie's "feelings" for Ben were his feelings being projected on to her via the spikes.  Unintentional, but still why she suddenly wanted to kiss him even though she's in love with Hal.

 

We really need more good female characters on this show.  If Ben had someone else to talk to that wasn't Maggie or Anne, it would be better.  Not that I want this to devolve into all romantic relationships all the time.  It would just be a way to get Maggie out of the picture.  Or to have never been the one for Ben to fall for in the first place.

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The Volm are essentially benevolent but this is not a partnership of equals. The humans no more tell the Volm what to do or have them report to Tom or Dan than Washington could tell the French what to do or have them report from Paris.

 

 

I don't think it is a question of telling the Volm what to do. It is more about they share a common enemy, and each side has something to offer, so why aren't they working more transparently? It doesn't mean you tell the humans where a cache is. It means you say there are caches, and we will go after them as we need them. If the partnership is that one sided, there would be no reason for the Volm to provide the back story of how they studied Native Americans to understand the concept of caching weapons and then put it into place. They would simply say, "We have some weapons at this location, let's go get them."

 

Of course, the follow up would be the humans asking if they had more caches. And then we are back where we started.

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I realize your miles may vary but:

 

I've always found Maggie unlikeable 

I've always found Lexie unlikeable

I found Lourdes unlikeable

I now find Anne unlikeable

I don't even care about Sarah enough to find her unlikeable

 

And I want the name of Maggie's post apocalyptic hairdresser, because damn that ombre dye job has lasted forever! 

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I'll buy that some comes from cut down scavengers like the prep school toughs, but when Maggie started going all Matrix on us, I had to holler out "Wait a minute, for Pete's sake!"

 

That was so stupid. There's no way bullets should be wasted like that. 

 

Unless the Espheni have Mr. Fusions or giant batteries strapped to the back of all their equipment, that's not a good way to power your 24/7 war machine on Earth.

 

I was thinking their might be satellites too. It could be like a massive battery charger too. I actually don't mind since it's at least an attempt at at scifi. Why couldn't this season have just been Tom in the ghetto, learns about the moon base, breaks out, meets up with the others, figure out how to get to the moon. What's wrong with that? That's a decent season arc. Ok, throw in Maggie and the spikes, but there's really no need for Lexi. 

 

I don't think it is a question of telling the Volm what to do. It is more about they share a common enemy, and each side has something to offer, so why aren't they working more transparently?

 

I'm surprised Tom didn't bust out the "enemy of my enemy is my friend." I mean, really, they're so half assed. At this point, Cochese knows that the 2nd Mass keeps finding a way to fight through. 

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Oh, what's going to happen with Ben and Maggie? I wonder how Hal feels about all this?! I never imagined a love triangle would happen! How surprising.

So does this mean we're supposed to start saying things like Team Haggie or Team Baggie ? Maggie is like younger Mason catnip, soon Matt and his unfortunate hair will start hitting on her.

 

As far as the spikes/feelings thing goes didn't Ben say that was something new ?

Edited by Gudzilla
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I wasn't too sure about the power source being on the moon, but if you really think about it:  If you're an alien race trying to take over a planet, and the humans you are fighting have no way to get to the moon, and they keep destroying stuff you bring to earth, I think I would put my power source on the moon too.  Sounds logical to me.  As for Tom's plan, yeah it's crazy, but he's also right that they don't have the time or resources to go from Espheni ghetto to Skitter farm and free pockets of humans.  They need to take out the whole thing in one run.  In addition, the 2nd Mass DOES have access to a beamer AND the Volm, who are quite accustom to interstellar travel.  So that actually works for me.  I mean I'd rather throw everything into one crazy plan with the help of a superior alien ally then try and keep fighting my way from skirmish to skirmish.  The 2nd Mass is now down to a handful of people, and even Tom and Anne mentioned that they don't know how much time they have left - ultimately.  So why not go all in with a crazy but-it-just-might-work, kind of plan.

 

I agree that the Tom and Anne parts were the best, and I like that both actually had good arguments.  I always found Tom and Anne's relationship to be the most credible and adult on Falling Skies.  They act the way I expect adults to act, and their arguments and reconciliations are organic to me.  I am glad that they finally got married.  It was time.

 

I actually like the Ben/Maggie relationship.  I feel bad for Ben because he's been an outcast for so long, and he can't help it if he's attracted to Maggie.  He didn't act on his feelings for her at all or go behind Hal's back.  Even last night, Maggie kissed him, but I'm proud of him for not pursuing her further when he realized her new found attraction for him was all based on the new alien transplant in her spikes.  He immediately shut her down.  Good for him.  

 

Yeah, the Matt and Mira thing was a set up that we saw a mile away, but I was happy to see Tom, Weaver, and Anne recognize the lie immediately.  I get why Matt didn't see it.  He's 13, and he wants to believe his friend wasn't changed.  I was a bit surprised to see Tom shoot and kill a kid, but hey, they were shooting at him.  I also enjoyed how Tom and Anne joked at the end about how crazy it was for her to just go out there with a target on her back, no weapon, in order to save Tom.  Yeah, sometimes you'll risk everything to save the person you love.  I bought it.  I also enjoyed Cochise and Shaq in this episode, and hope they survive.

 

Sunday is my favorite night of television:  The Last Ship, then Falling Skies, then the Strain.  Great night of summer television for me.

Edited by Bishop
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So does this mean we're supposed to start saying things like Team Haggie or Team Baggie ?

 

Team I Just Threw Up In My Mouth

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Luckily, Cochise is conveniently there to explain that there just happens to be a Volm supply cache nearby which will have exactly the sound-wave technology tool they need.  It would've been nice if he had told Tom about these caches at the beginning - even if they couldn't get to them before, it still would've been nice to know about them. 

 

Cochise's speech about learning to set up caches from Native Americans bothered me.  No one among the Volm or other races ever thought that it might be a good idea to stockpile things?

I wasn't too sure about the power source being on the moon, but if you really think about it:  If you're an alien race trying to take over a planet, and the humans you are fighting have no way to get to the moon, and they keep destroying stuff you bring to earth, I think I would put my power source on the moon too.  Sounds logical to me. 

 

Except that the moon isn't always available.  It circles around the Earth so you'd have to plan on having it zap you energy as it passed by.

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Given that the moon is there though and you have a predictable, monthly orbit, it's not a stretch to want to use that strategically. It's not that bad a scifi concept. For a show about alien invasion, the show is sorely lacking much scifi.

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What was the idea behind Nazi Youth Leader saying he turned in his mom just as he died, and prefacing it with "Tom"? Seconds before that he was still ranting propaganda.

 

I think it simply showed why he was ranting propaganda. He turned in his mom, so to live with that, he HAD to believe the propaganda hard-core and that he did the right thing. When he was dying, he "confessed" to Tom almost like one would confess to a priest. It wasn't a necessary touch, but it showed the tragedy of how those kids had been effed up.

 

I know it makes sense in hind-sight, but all I could do at the time was think, "The MOON?? They're going to the MOON?? Are you KIDDING me??"

Edited by Souris

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I know it makes sense in hind-sight, but all I could do at the time was think, "The MOON?? They're going to the MOON?? Are you KIDDING me??"

 

 

I thought it made sense from the moment they said it. They were standing right next to an at least partly operational alien spacecraft at that moment, with a member of another, spacefaring alien race in the group. What annoyed me was how nutty they made the idea seem, in order to frame Tom as the can-do visionary. It was basic logic.

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I know. It's not like they had to build the space shuttle from a junkyard, and the moon isn't that far away. They made it sound like he was telling them to blow up Pluto. Especially with that piece of intel, the Volm might be more inclined to lend resources. They probably have a ship hidden somewhere. 

 

Good JFK impression though!

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Cochise's speech about learning to set up caches from Native Americans bothered me.  No one among the Volm or other races ever thought that it might be a good idea to stockpile things?

 

Except that the moon isn't always available.  It circles around the Earth so you'd have to plan on having it zap you energy as it passed by.

Yeah, on the Volm cache idea, there was no previous indication that the Volm commanders had anything but contempt for human warmaking skills, with Cochise the only exception, but he says "we". Regardless, I think the Volm should have studied a little more...surrounding your secret cache with a chlorine death zone kind of gives away its location.

 

And shout-out to Tesla aside, wireless power using an electromagnetic field at a distance of anything more than a few inches is incredibly inefficient and wasteful. That's why we don't have it. Of course the Espheni might have some other super-science technology that doesn't have the problems an EM field would. Who knows it might even pass through or curve around the Earth with no problems. It's as magical as it needs to be, I guess.

 

It's always been heavily implied that the Volm (and probably the Espheni) have faster-than-light travel, but I always held out hope that they wouldn't go there, because you don't need either side to have that tech to tell this story. Tonight, however, we got absolute confirmation that they have FTL communication too.

Edited by Latverian Diplomat
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The toxic dump and its chlorine was there first. Good place to cache. 

The power beams only need to be relayed by satellites. Putting the power plant on the moon was a defensive measure. 

It was the humans who thought that the all the Earth, instead of just half, which could be covered by the moon location. 

 

The result is a Matrix Problem, where the dialogue says something completely stupid and we must decide whether it's the characters being stupid or the whole movie/series.

 

How humanity has a chance against someone with starships has never been thought through and will create increasingly grave difficulties in story logic which can only be resolved by the power of script, such as the crashed beamer and the lucky advent of Mira's whistle, Lexi's return, etc. If you can't stand nonsense rescuing the heroes, probably best to quit the show, the fictional science is only going to get worse. 

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 It's just you (smiley face).  Ben had some superpowers (jumping/hearing (the radio frequencies), but not the ones they highlighted tonight.  Given that Maggie has 3 of Ben's spikes, wouldn't she just have a small superpower, and wouldn't Ben's be diminished. 

I seem to recall that there was an attraction/connection at one point between Karen and Ben, and she kissed him.  So the spike technology with the emotions and the super powers has been shown in previous episodes.  I tend to agree that I don't see why the story has to make Maggie a part alien character, but maybe it's an effort to not isolate Ben so much.  He is definitely the outsider of the brothers.  I'm beginning to wonder if Hal is going to be the Mason to die this or next season.  I don't mind the triangle right now because it hasn't interfered with the storytelling.  After Hal caught them kissing, he punched his brother, and the two were back to working together to dig out the beamer - and neither wanted to discuss it with Tom.  Typical brother reactions.

 

Except that the moon isn't always available.  It circles around the Earth so you'd have to plan on having it zap you energy as it passed by.

I'm sure the Espheni and the Volm have/will compensate for a moon that circles the Earth.  If they can accomplish space travel and sophisticated weaponry, a revolving moon won't stymie them.

 

I thought it made sense from the moment they said it. They were standing right next to an at least partly operational alien spacecraft at that moment, with a member of another, spacefaring alien race in the group. What annoyed me was how nutty they made the idea seem, in order to frame Tom as the can-do visionary. It was basic logic.

Well it is kind of nutty from the human perspective.  I thought the scene played out well because none of the 2nd Mass are astronauts nor have they ever traveled beyond the confines of the planet.  So even though they are being invaded by aliens, it is a bit crazy to think that they can go to the moon and battle the aliens there.  At the same time, as you clearly stated, Tom and the 2nd Mass are standing amongst a partly operational spacecraft that DOES move in and out of orbit, and they are among space allies that landed a big ass spaceship just a few months earlier.  I guess at some point, the show would have to move to expand the fight to beyond Earth's boundaries, and if it's just to the moon, I'm okay with that.

 

How humanity has a chance against someone with starships has never been thought through and will create increasingly grave difficulties in story logic which can only be resolved by the power of script, such as the crashed beamer and the lucky advent of Mira's whistle, Lexi's return, etc. If you can't stand nonsense rescuing the heroes, probably best to quit the show, the fictional science is only going to get worse. 

Sci-fi shows have always had this problem.  No show has ever been able to survive it completely because logic and science has to be stretched at times to make the stories work, and I'm okay with that.  I don't watch these shows because they are so realistic in every aspect.  I watch them for the human element, frankly.  Is this something that could happen, and if it did happen, would the characters react (mostly) in a similar way.  I think Falling Skies has done it fairly well.  I believe these characters and their motivations.  The 2nd Mass does come across as a scrappy, bite and claw kind of resistance movement rather than a super efficient, polished fighting military machine, and I think the former makes them much more interesting.

 

SOURIS SAID:  I think it simply showed why he was ranting propaganda. He turned in his mom, so to live with that, he HAD to believe the propaganda hard-core and that he did the right thing. When he was dying, he "confessed" to Tom almost like one would confess to a priest. It wasn't a necessary touch, but it showed the tragedy of how those kids had been effed up.

 

 

Well said.  That's how I took the scene as well.  Tom asked him how he could betray his people the way he did, and as you stated, I think he had to believe the propaganda because he knows he turned in his own mother.  At the end, I think he knew that he had done wrong because his final moments were like a confession.  I hadn't taken it that way until you said it, but that's exactly what he was doing.  He confessed his sin to Tom, and it seemed like he wanted forgiveness for it.  It made the character go from a cliche villain into a sad human being that I felt empathy for, and it was reflected in Tom's reaction as well.

Edited by Bishop
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The toxic dump and its chlorine was there first. Good place to cache. 

 

Ah, I missed that, thanks.

 

Another problem with the moon location is that it is presumably outside the defensive grid the Espheni spent so long building. Maybe it was an interim measure for when the humans were the only foe, and eventually power generation inside the grid would take over. If so, haven't the Espheni reached that point by now? Either way, it seems like a soft target the Volm main force should have taken out while they were here (thanks guys).

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As ridiculous as this show is, the moon power source is probably the least thing that bothers me. It's something space! 

 

Cochese was pissed off in this episode when they discovered the moon source. This implied that the Volm missed it, which is silly, but I suppose that they were more worried about herding the humans, then blowing up the defensive grid, etc.

 

This is the problem with no show bible. Things like this need be to developed logically. I'm fully aware that this was just pulled out of nowhere, as has this season. Seekrit Moon base >> Love Triangle. amirite?!

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How long has it been since Matt was rescued from the Ephreni Youth Camp?  It just seemed an awfully short time to indoctrinate Mira.  Part of me wondered if she wasn't a plant to begin with, to get Matt on her side from the beginning so she would help him escape and lead them to Tom.  Someone ratted on the youth camp group (or at least that one guy) and that was after she appeared too.  And yes, it was stupid to send Matt back alone to check on her when the adults all knew Matt trusted her.

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I thought wrecking the nuke plant was a huge deal in messing up the Espheni operation. So after that, putting the replacement plant on the moon was like putting the cheese on a hanger to keep it away from the rats.

 

I also thought I remembered some dialogue to the effect that the main task for the recon force left behind was looking for the new power source.

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I'm glad that reading the comments here is enough to tell me what the episode was about.  I don't want to watch this show anymore, but I do want to see the disastrous ending they have planned.  I finally turned it on for background noise while I was doing housework and paying bills.  Ugh.

 

Falling Skies does not have the seriousness needed to tackle a sibling love triangle with one party underage.  Yes, this is the alien apocalypse and legal rules barely even apply, let alone state lines where ages of consent differ.  Still, the show hasn't adequately explored the break down of the rules of society to reach the point where a 16 year old and a 30 year old can explore a relationship together.  This is something new for the group.  The show should be a lot more sensitive to this.  This is manufactured drama that didn't need to exist since Denny the Spike Girl is around.  The worst part of this is that they are almost making it appear as though the kid (Ben) is controlling the adult (Maggie).  There's just something so disturbing about all of this as the writer's don't even seem aware that they are dealing with highly sensitive situations and use dialogue like "stay away from her, she's mine" rather than "jesus christ, ben, you're only 16 and she's 30."  

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How long has it been since Matt was rescued from the Ephreni Youth Camp?  It just seemed an awfully short time to indoctrinate Mira.  Part of me wondered if she wasn't a plant to begin with, to get Matt on her side from the beginning so she would help him escape and lead them to Tom.  Someone ratted on the youth camp group (or at least that one guy) and that was after she appeared too.  And yes, it was stupid to send Matt back alone to check on her when the adults all knew Matt trusted her.

I think it's been a week or two, maybe longer.  My guess is that they may have figured out that Mira helped them escape and amped up her indoctrination process (ala torture).  I agree that she was indoctrinated quickly, but she's young, and when faced with torture, sleep deprivation or whatever else they may have done to her, she would submit.  Matt may have eventually too, if his father had not gotten to him.

 

I thought wrecking the nuke plant was a huge deal in messing up the Espheni operation. So after that, putting the replacement plant on the moon was like putting the cheese on a hanger to keep it away from the rats.

 

I also thought I remembered some dialogue to the effect that the main task for the recon force left behind was looking for the new power source.

That's correct.  That's why Cochise was so mad at himself for not realizing it was the moon.  I think it was a smart move by the Espheni.  Like you said, it is like hanging cheese on a hanger over a mouse because they can see it, but they can't get to it.  They lucked out with the beamer, and with the Volm helping, it's a plan that could work.  I agree with Tom that going from camp to camp, country to country, to liberate humanity is not going to work.  I'd go for this plan as well.  It's crazy, but it could work.  Heck, they could drive the beamer right into the power source like a kamikaze pilot.  The problem is how to eradicate the Espheni afterwards.  I'm guessing that's the plan for next season, and it will involve the Volm coming back and working with the humans to fight them as well.  

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Whether you go by years or mileage, Maggie is supposed to be considerably older than Hal, who was supposedly eighteen when the series began if I remember correctly. (Sarah Carter is almost ten years older than Drew Roy.) Ben was supposed to be about sixteen, so now he's supposed to be of legal age. (She is about fourteen yeasrs older than Connor Jessup.)

 

Re the effectiveness of indoctrination, I'm not sure that people noticed that they were using hunger in the school. That can be very effective. I'm also not certain people have taken into account the hostage aspect. The students were encourage to get relatives, someone they would try to find no matter what. But once both child and relative are in the power of the Espheni, they essentially serve as hostages for each other so long as they are kept separate. Historically this has been powerfully convincing in winning false confessions and informants and so on. That guy who said he turned in his mother may have been asking that they rescue her since his service no longer protects her. 

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If everyone on this show has to have some kind of love interest, where's Weaver's main squeeze?

 

 

 

 

I know, right?? Last season, Gloria Reuben's character was flirting with him but TPTB killed her off.

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As to the school:   Think about this:  The students had been raised in war zones for the last few years, hungry, dirty, ill, etc.   The school was using the fact that the children had a roof, bed, food, clean clothes, baths, etc.  Young minds can easily be manipulated like that.

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I'm glad that reading the comments here is enough to tell me what the episode was about.  I don't want to watch this show anymore, but I do want to see the disastrous ending they have planned.  ...

 

Ditto. 

 

As to starship tech being defeated by locals with slingshots?  George Lucas had it right originally with the Ewoks which he even said were based on the Vietnam locals defeating the Americans back in the day.  Which was a page out of guerrilla warfare period from Mao back to George Washington and Francis Marion. 

 

You make the cost effectiveness of the bigger guy too great and sting them enough once they are forced to get down in the bushes for their last "stage" of total conquest with you that they give up eventually.  It's easy to roll tanks into a city, much harder to hold it down the years in the back alleys when you as a soldier don't even want to be in that alien place and would rather be at home yourself.  

 

The willpower of the people who actually live in a land and have nowhere else to go and no other option but to fight and win or die trying always outlasts the "visiting empires" of history.  Whether it is the same generation of generations later, they will still be there and the "conquerors" will be long gone.  There will always be a resistance to an alien invader no matter from another country and culture or another planet.

 

Doesn't matter whether the rule is bad or good either by these Goliath states/empires/planets.  To semi-quote Gandhi (from poor memory):  "People will always prefer the bad rule on their own people over the rule of an alien party."

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But the Ewoks break the Hollywood rule of the cool guy wins. Ewoks are cute, but storm troopers are bad ass.

 

The problem with Falling Skies is that it's brought up the genocide angle. It's not just a matter of outlasting the Espheni who can go somewhere else. They have to be defeated before they annihilate humanity with their tech. 

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This one was better than the previous episodes, especially Anne and Tom. I agree with most of what was said, and want to add that I find it silly that they don't remove Maggie's spikes, now that she has healed. I wonder why she doesn't request it herself. They still have the gadget! Of course, now she likes the super powers, though the romantic complications should be reason enough to want them gone again. For sane people anyway.

Oh, and one thing that bugged me more than usual: Why don't the women put their long, well cut, dyed, styled hair in a ponytail or something? Maybe even cut it? I had as long hair as them and I definitely wouldn't want to have it in my face all the time in a post apocalyptic and dangerous world, only to get it tangled in the guns and blown about by the wind, blocking my sight, getting me killed.

I understand that it's not real and only TV, but this time it was too much to suspend my disbelief.

 

Well, and then I remembered that at least Weaver is allowed to wear a cute little ponytail.

There is still hope.

 

 If we further assume Weaver is one of the most bad-ass and clever people in the series, and take his useful hairstyle as a measure for bad-assery (at least in men), then Pope is somewhere on the other end of the spectrum, even if he likes to think of himself as the greatest and most awesome person left on earth.

Quick now, Cochise! Reveal the secret Volm-stash of hair ties so they will beat the Espheni in no time!

 

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The way the Volm keep bringing up information that the humans could have used a long time ago, I think the season's going to end with the Volm saying "You know, we've got this Big Red Button that will instantly annihilate the Espheni.  You want we should press it?".  This, of course, will be after the moon mission fails because, as mentioned earlier, no one in the 2nd Mass is a friggin' astronaut!

To me, Shaq stole the episode with his wedding interruption.  He was all like, considering the way y'all argue and that you have a baby together, I assumed you were already married - now come see some neat shizz!  Bonus points if he had been playing Flo-Rida's Whistle song while he did his demo.

The Haggie-Baggie Love Triangle is pretty lame.  Granted, there are probably only 20-25 women left on the face of the earth that Ben or Hal could hook up with.  And the spikes are creating a special connection between Ben and Maggie.  I suspect the story is that if they removed her spikes, she'd go back to being paralyzed.  Seems like Ben would have had to go back to glasses if they had removed his, and there isn't a Lenscrafters anywhere to be found.

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Shaq was even like, "Yeah, you can get back to your little ritual after I share this major intel on how to blow up the moon base. Or is this more important?"

 

I don't think you have to be an astronaut to get to the moon, when you've got a workable transport and another space faring species to help you out. Not every one who is in the space station is actually an "astronaunt;" they're scientists. Similarly, the teachers who went on space shuttle missions weren't "astronauts" either. Per se. 

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We really need more good female characters on this show.  If Ben had someone else to talk to that wasn't Maggie or Anne, it would be better.  Not that I want this to devolve into all romantic relationships all the time.  It would just be a way to get Maggie out of the picture.  Or to have never been the one for Ben to fall for in the first place.

 

There's Denny, but I guess now her role has been reduced to lab rat for Anne.

 

I was kind of disappointed when I realized they were talking about using alien tech to get to the moon. I was hoping that they were going to march to Houston or Florida and fire up one of those big ol' museum display Saturn Vs. 

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