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S01.E07: Seeing Red/S01.E08 From Russia, With Love

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Two back-to-back episodes again ext time.

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“Seeing Red”– Grace and Darius slip off to Russia behind Harris’ back in an attempt to stop a potential nuclear conflict. Also, Liam seeks solace with Amanda.

“From Russia, With Love” – Framed for murder, Darius and Grace must try to escape from Russia, and Liam tries to convince Jillian to come back to Tanz.

 

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Rats!  My on-screen guide said that this was a repeat (even though it specifically indicated S1/E7), so my DVR didn't record the first one, but did record episode 8.  I'll have to catch the first one online before I watch the second.  I hate it when that happens.

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1 hour ago, shapeshifter said:

The Harris-Grace-Darius triangle is the black hole that sucks the life out of this show.

Agreed, and it had to be a double episodes thing as well.

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4 minutes ago, Swim mom said:

It looks like the triangle is over, do we can move on.  I'm really enjoying this show, I didn't expect to still be in at this point.

Yes, I'm enjoying the various scifi bits—how they're not making it all about one technical option, but also not spreading out the devices among too many characters to keep straight in my mind. If only the main focus (the doomsday asteroid) wasn't so implausibly not visible outside the US.

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1 hour ago, shapeshifter said:

The Harris-Grace-Darius triangle is the black hole that sucks the life out of this show.

That and the Liam/Jillian story. I was hoping she was gone but not only do they spend time on their great romance (they've known each other for what, less than two months), they spend all kinds of time on Jillian and her family. Who cares, tell people/don't tell people.

"Oh my God, we're the bad guys". I don't know what's worse, the writing or some of the acting. The actress who plays Claire only has one expression. That fancy teapot in Russia gave a better performance than she did.

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I haven't quite finished the 2nd episode yet, but I just wanted to say, the actress that plays Jillian, I kept thinking she looked so familiar but I couldn't place her, so I had to look it up it was bugging me-- she played, Bonnie of Bonnie & Clyde fame, on Timeless some months back. She had a much different hair style, I think that's it. I thought she looked great in that role, a lot better than real pictures I've seen of Bonnie, though. It always bugs me when I can't remember where I've seen someone and it happens a lot !

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I tend to hate when the scientists who the only people in the world that can finish something before a disaster happens spends all their time doing soldier/James Bond stuff instead of working on a solution. At least this show finished the sciencey solution before the scientists went all James Bond. Something tells me that something is going to go wrong and the real solution is going to be Tanz's 160 person rocketship. You think Tanz is ever going to tell Liam that Liam did not kill his professor. It would be hilarious if that government guy was killed because he was a member of the hacker group RE/SYST and not because he looked at the wrong file at work.

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5 hours ago, dangwoodchucks said:

"Oh my God, we're the bad guys". I don't know what's worse, the writing or some of the acting. The actress who plays Claire only has one expression. That fancy teapot in Russia gave a better performance than she did

Ha! Much better and more colorfully descriptive line than any in the show! And it points out that the props, camera work, and production values in general are totally outstripping the dialog.

 

5 hours ago, willco said:

the actress that plays Jillian, I kept thinking she looked so familiar but I couldn't place her, so I had to look it up it was bugging me-- she played, Bonnie of Bonnie & Clyde fame, on Timeless

I looked her up after the first episode because she had such a great screen presence, which she did on Timeless too, even though she looked different and had a different accent. I think most of the casting is good (just not feeling Grace's daughter as her daughter), but ugh, can they recruit another writer to create believable dialog/relationships? Or are there egos involved that are getting in the way of the storytelling? I seem to recall reading about that problem with the source material scifi author of the failed show, Flashforward. It's like: Which Harris do we see in this scene? Mr. Nice Guy, or his evil twin? And whose juvenile fantasy was fulfilled by using the plot device of Inhibition Removing Serum and an Ella Fitzgerald record to advance the Darius-Grace relationship? The parallel Louis Armstrong recording in the background at the wedding when the young lovebirds reunited worked better without the expository Captain Obvious lines.

Edited by shapeshifter · Reason: Ian Anthony Dale was in The Event, not Flashforward.
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1 hour ago, AnimeMania said:

I tend to hate when the scientists who the only people in the world that can finish something before a disaster happens spends all their time doing soldier/James Bond stuff instead of working on a solution. At least this show finished the sciencey solution before the scientists went all James Bond. Something tells me that something is going to go wrong and the real solution is going to be Tanz's 160 person rocketship. You think Tanz is ever going to tell Liam that Liam did not kill his professor. It would be hilarious if that government guy was killed because he was a member of the hacker group RE/SYST and not because he looked at the wrong file at work.

Probably later on since they're busy right now.

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The camera kept showing us Katia's body so much I was waiting for her to open her eyes and jump up.

 

So Jillian, a young college graduate who thinks she knows more than her boss, demands to be made the leader of a group tasked with choosing 160 individuals to carry on the human race all because her boyfriend Liam pissed her off and is now willing to do anything so she'll stay with him? I guess she just got her participation trophy. Ugh, she and her constantly puzzled expression bugs me, their one-night-stand-to-living-together-in-the-blink-of-an-eye-true-luv bugs me, this show bugs me. When I started thinking of Darius and Grace's Russian adventures as some sort of comic caper I found it much easier to enjoy.

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That scene with Darius and Grace doing their drug-induced pre-sex dancing/wooing/whatever the hell that was seemed to drag on forever. They've been beating us over the head with this potential romance since the beginning and I just don't get it. I don't see any chemistry whatsoever with those two characters. Harris and the random bartender had way more chemistry in one scene than those two have had all season. And Santiago Cabrera could have chemistry with an empty chair so I'm pretty sure the problem is her. I don't know if it's the actress with her constant sourpuss expression or if it's the way they wrote her character but I really wish they would drop the entire romance angle.  Nobody cares! (Not to mention that some of the cheesy lines are so cringe-worthy.) 

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Ever since I found out Charlie Rowe, who plays Liam, is actually British I keep listening for slips in his accent.    He's doing a really good job with it and I haven't heard anything but a generic American accent.

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7 hours ago, Tallis said:

Oh hey, and I was right about Prof Evil not being dead. Then.

Yet another fake out for the show.

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Well, I'm enjoying the show! It isn't perfect, to be sure - the writing isn't as sophisticated and clever as it wants to be, the dialogue can be clunky, there are plot holes...but I could say the same about a bunch of other shows, some of them quite highly acclaimed. I do think this particular show will improve on re-watch, once we actually know how the story plays out and how all the characters end up - while on the one hand all the twists and turns are fun, it does make it hard to get attached to some of the characters, when you are never quite sure if they are going to turn out to be a hero or a villain in the end. At the moment, Darius is looking a lot more heroic than company man Harris, who has reverted to form after his maverick escapades last week - and it helps, I think, that as Grace gets to know Darius better so do we, so we're actually getting to see behind his public face now.  He is quite the fatalist, yet Grace certainly seems to have a lot more fun with him than she does with Harris, despite all the danger! And I think Darius was bang on when he called Harris petty - going out and banging that barmaid because he was jealous of his girlfriend's close friendship with another man, instead of talking to her about it and asking what happened between them. He seems to have pretty much given up on Grace entirely, in fact - less, I suspect, because he thinks anything has happened with her and Darius, and more because he's too much of a company man to be able to cope with her embracing Darius's maverick style the way she has. And what was up with him having her arrested for conducting unofficial negotiations in Russia instead of going after her for stealing the uranium or withholding information about Atlas in her de-brief? Did he not tell his superiors about the uranium? Because it sounded like he did, when he told them his codes had been compromised? I'm a little confused there.

Another thing that struck me was at the end when Grace told Darius she didn't think she could go back to the Pentagon after being arrested - I was, like, girl, you are talking to a man who was tortured by his government for something he didn't do, who got back up and got right on with the business of cooperating for the greater good within minutes of that torture ending. If he can do that, you can go back to work. But it highlighted a key personality point for each of them - Darius's ability to compartmentalise and focus on logic over emotion, and Grace's tendency to follow her heart rather than her head.

The young people, Liam excepted, remain the weakest link of the show - Amanda, Jillian, Zoe, Dylan - but I am interested to see where their plot strands lead.

Also, I'm enjoying watching how the show is so far making no attempt whatsoever to conceal Jennifer Finnegan's pregnancy! She was 7 months by the time shooting wrapped, so I'm guessing they are going to have to start hiding it at some point! Thoroughly enjoyed Darius speaking Russian, as well - the advantage of hiring an actor with a facility for languages!

Edited by Llywela
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Trivia: In episode 7 Santiago Cabrera mentioned that Anna Karenina is a lot better in the native language and he talked about the ending of the book.  Cabrera played Vronsky in a TV adaptation of Anna Karenina.

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I’ve been lurking on this forum, but I must de-lurk ask: Where is the POTUS!? Isn’t collaborating with the Russians something she should orchestrate? What’s up with all this “We will tell the President when she needs to know” stuff?

I am enjoying the show despite the stunning lack of scientific rigor. For example, a ship large enough to take 160 people to Mars should be assembled in space. Or maybe it could be one of those cool inflatable ships prototyped by Bigelow Aerospace. Not a craft barely larger than a space shuttle.

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Well of course Darius can dance... His last name literally means "dance" in German! Didn't know that truth serum made one trip out like they'd licked the special toads.

Interesting that Harris would arrest Grace for violating the Logan Act, but not Darius. She at least works for the executive branch (although granted press secretaries are not normally delegated to handle international relations). Oh, and we're not gonna go after them for stealing uranium?

I totally see the EM drive plan failing, given that the name of the show is also the name of the ark that Darius has built. I'm a little worried that with Jillian in charge of choosing the 160 it's going to end up being her, Liam, and 158 cute puppies and kittens. Speaking of which, I know that the ship is supposed to save humanity, but what about the animals?

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12 minutes ago, AV8n said:

Well of course Darius can dance... His last name literally means "dance" in German! Didn't know that truth serum made one trip out like they'd licked the special toads.

Didn't the Russian guy say they'd added something else to it, to remove inhibitions?

I'm side-eyeing the Mars colony project myself, based on the detail we have currently, because Mars isn't actually habitable, so even if they sent 160 people there...how exactly are they supposed to survive? Does the technology exist in the Salvation universe to terraform a planet and give it a breathable atmosphere? We need more information! But at the moment, the colony ship is a backup plan, not the main plan, so we aren't being told much about the logistical details.

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Egads, within two episodes the show got derailed completely and is heading straight towards Zoo (my metaphors are as wonky as the show's logic). Let's see:

  • We get a love triangle that exactly nobody was asking for.
  • In addition to Liam and Jillian who already behave like teenagers we get two actual teenagers to provide us with more teenage angst (nobody was asking for that either).
  • Of course Harris' sourpuss kid is part of Everyone (they'd have at least a sense of humor) RE/SYST.
  • Darius learns Russian within two days because he's a god-damn genius who would even put Iron Man in his place.
  • Darius and Grace end up in an interrogation site that looks like Vogue Russia has put it up for their next photo shoot. Complete with Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong LPs because we all know Russians are romantics.
  • Stop fooling around with the Arc - it's not going to work with our current technological and biological knowledge. (But if you must: leave the Gutenberg Bible here, a digital copy should do).
  • Grace: "Our government developed a weapon of mass destruction designed to have no fingerprints, no accountability." Yet nobody thinks about removing that shiny Tanz label *headdesk*
Edited by MissLucas
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5 hours ago, MissLucas said:

Egads, within two episodes the show got derailed completely and his heading straight towards Zoo (my metaphors are as wonky as the show's logic). Let's see:

  • We get a love triangle that exactly nobody was asking for.
  • In addition to Liam and Jillian who already behave like teenagers we get two actual teenagers to provide us with more teenage angst (nobody was asking for that either).
  • Of course Harris' sourpuss kid is part of Everyone (they'd have at least a sense of humor) RE/SYST.
  • Darius learns Russian within two days because he's a god-damn genius who would even put Iron Man in his place.
  • Darius and Grace end up in an interrogation site that looks like Vogue Russia has put it up for their next photo shoot. Complete with Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong LPs because we all know Russians are romantics.
  • Stop fooling around with the Arc - it's not going to work with our current technological and biological knowledge. (But if you must: leave the Gutenberg Bible here, a digital copy should do).
  • Grace: "Our government developed a weapon of mass destruction designed to have no fingerprints, no accountability." Yet nobody thinks about removing that shiny Tanz label *headdesk*

Yep, this show is like the boring version of Zoo and Zoo has been heading deeper into Under the Dome territory.

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Ha!  It wasn't till I came to the Salvation forum that I realized I missed an episode.  I guess not much happened in 6 since the only thing I was confused about was that Jillian was suddenly pissed at Liam for some reason.  But since I don't care about her I wasn't too worried about wracking my brain trying to remember why.

16 hours ago, AV8n said:

I totally see the EM drive plan failing, given that the name of the show is also the name of the ark that Darius has built. I'm a little worried that with Jillian in charge of choosing the 160 it's going to end up being her, Liam, and 158 cute puppies and kittens.

Season 2.

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On 8/18/2017 at 3:51 AM, lora said:

Trivia: In episode 7 Santiago Cabrera mentioned that Anna Karenina is a lot better in the native language and he talked about the ending of the book.  Cabrera played Vronsky in a TV adaptation of Anna Karenina.

 

On 8/18/2017 at 4:16 PM, MissLucas said:
  • Darius learns Russian within two days because he's a god-damn genius who would even put Iron Man in his place.
  • Stop fooling around with the Arc - it's not going to work with our current technological and biological knowledge. (But if you must: leave the Gutenberg Bible here, a digital copy should do).

I really disliked the Darius instant Russia expert thing. Grace has character-based reasons to know a little Russian and know about getting around in Russia. But no, Tanz has to instantly speak the language and start leading her around because "man of action" emphasis on "man".

"Turns out they chucked part of our seed collection just to make room for this heavy book. Oops."

-- Martian Colony Log, Year 1.

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The actress playing Jillian reminds me very much of Courtney Thorne Smith  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Courtney_Thorne-Smith

It's the way she smiles with the dimples and the sharp chin.

Her speech pattern is very much the same also.

 

Did no one teach Grace's daughter to look through the peep hole/side glass when answering the door.  

Good lord woman. Your mother is in government service and you're alone in the house.  Do you just enjoy the surprise of who's on the other side?

Edited by kb3 · Reason: to add comment/argh autocorrect
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Finally got around this.  First things first, after making a crack in the premiere about how it would be cool to get one of Ian Anthony Dale's costars from The Event there, I love that actually did it, as Taylor Cole from that show is playing the barmaid/Harris' new fling.  Ha, that's great!  Now I'm really hoping they'll get Zeljko Ivanek to show up for an episode!  For what it's worth, Harris and the barmaid already have more chemistry then him and Grace, but I'm already waiting for another shoe to drop, since Cole usually tends to play badass type roles.

Besides that, it was basically just two long hours of Grace and Darius hanging around in Russia and getting the Russians to chill the fuck out, all while pissing of the Americans to the point that the Secretary of Defense was willing to let them die, and then when they do get back, Harris arrests Grace out of spite, only to drop it after Darius pretty much blackmails him.  Also, Jillian is already back after a pep talk from her grandfather and her realizing how much it must have eaten up Liam to not tell her, and he truly does care for her or whatever.  Although, now I'm waiting for her to find out about him kissing the reporter and she gets pissed about that, since Liam is probably dumb enough to not say "For your information, I did have to kiss you reporter friend but it was to get info from her phone.  Didn't mean anything.  Might want to know in case that tidbit slips out!"

So, now Harris' son is actually part of that hacker group that is giving reporter girl the info?  And may or may not be making a move on Grace's daughter? Man, for a show about an astroid getting ready to wipe out the entire fucking planet, there is a lot of silly relationship drama going on here.

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9 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

...Man, for a show about an astroid getting ready to wipe out the entire fucking planet, there is a lot of silly relationship drama going on here.

Seriously! IRL, news of the asteroid would be clogging social media thanks to amateur astronomers, and folks would likely be humping like bunnies without much thought for jealousy.

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17 hours ago, Latverian Diplomat said:

I really disliked the Darius instant Russia expert thing.

That part didn't bother me, but mostly, I suspect, because I know that irl Santiago Cabrera speaks about five languages fluently and has passing knowledge of at least a couple more, so a) I can't fault the show for making the most of an actor with a facility for languages, and b) there really are some people who can pick up new languages with ease, and Darius has been established as a genius, so it's not such a huge stretch. Mostly, though, they'd have needed him to be the one doing all the Russian speaking because Cabrera was always going to find it easier to pull off than Jennifer Finnegan!

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You might be able to pick up basic Russian in two days but not to the level of reading Anna Karenina - that requires savant skills. If the show wants to rely on Cabrera's linguistic skills it should find more fluid ways to do it. We already have to do massive amounts of handwaving to deal with hamfisted sci-fi elements here there is no need to add more to that pile when you could find smoother explanations (Russian grandma for example). Or you know - they could really give Grace a bit more to do than watching doe-eyed how magnificent Darius is at LIFE - even if that requires Finnegan to learn more than two sentences in Russian. Like others have said the gender politics of this show are not good.

Edited by MissLucas
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On 8/18/2017 at 4:20 AM, dangwoodchucks said:

So Jillian, a young college graduate who thinks she knows more than her boss, demands to be made the leader of a group tasked with choosing 160 individuals to carry on the human race all because her boyfriend Liam pissed her off and is now willing to do anything so she'll stay with him? I guess she just got her participation trophy. Ugh, she and her constantly puzzled expression bugs me, their one-night-stand-to-living-together-in-the-blink-of-an-eye-true-luv bugs me, this show bugs me. When I started thinking of Darius and Grace's Russian adventures as some sort of comic caper I found it much easier to enjoy.

Jillian is not qualified to lead anyone, let alone pick the people to populate the Space Ark, the fact that she's shacked up with the interim leader of the company? over arcing project? would undermine any credibility she would have, which considering her stupid speech about hope and the need for artists would be laughably non existent to begin with.

Jillian makes Liam worse. The Darius and Grace romance sucks all the drama about comets from the situation. 

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Using an asteroid as a weapon seems a bit convoluted when you have enough nuclear weapons to nuke humanity back into the stone age ten times over.

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On April 3, 2018 at 9:49 AM, Miles said:

Using an asteroid as a weapon seems a bit convoluted when you have enough nuclear weapons to nuke humanity back into the stone age ten times over.

Ah, but this was written before it was politically acceptable to threaten to nuke us back to before the Stone Age.  *Sigh* Fun times those were. At least we still likely have one more summer of mind numbing scifi TV.

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