All right, I think it’s time we talk about mommy dearest. At first I thought Rachel (aka Charlie’s mom) being held by Monroe was a nice, sick twist meant to make the audience go “ooh.” And it worked—the shock factor definitely caught me off guard at the end of episode two. Now, in light of episode four’s revelations, I’m wondering just what type of sick and twisted game Monroe, and possibly Miles, is playing.
Just a week after espousing how much I wanted Charlie (and the rest of us) to trust Miles, I know wonder if that wasn’t a foolish notion. While Miles appears turn a corner throughout the episode, it’s the last sixty seconds that bring doubt roaring to the surface. And what a sixty seconds it is.
We already knew Miles had a hand in Monroe’s militia; we even knew he and Monroe were friends. What we didn’t know until last night was that Miles knows Rachel isn’t dead and for some reason, she turned herself over to him and the militia only a few short years after the black-out (I’m judging the timing based on the ages of young Charlie and Danny in the flashbacks last night, so it might be off).
Since we know that Monroe, even now fifteen years later, is more interested in Ben and what he might have known about the power going out and coming back on, I’m utterly baffled as to why he or Miles would bother locking Rachel up instead. Using her as bait would make sense, but waiting fifteen years to do so? Methinks that’s a bit of a lag. Now, of course, there could be a completely plausible explanation, but I gotta admit, Kripke has got me guessing – it’s been a while since I could say that about a network primetime drama.
In general, I felt “The Plague Dogs” made a few too many missteps. Aside from the utter incongruity of Rachel’s captivity, the important emotional beats were heavy handed. Did we really need Maggie to explain, in painstaking detail, that if Miles can only trust his niece she might “save” him from himself? Out of all the scenes they’ve played so far, I can definitely say that one was my least favorite. One, I don’t think Miles would have stood around to listen to that whole speech and two, based on how his character has been portrayed to date, I don’t think such a plea would sway him.
What would get through to him though? Charlie’s tearful entreaty at the end of the episode for Maggie not to leave her “because everyone leaves her.” If Miles is the man we’re hoping for (or at least I am), than that moment should have done the trick and it did. We didn’t need Maggie force-feeding it to him, or us, first.
Another manipulative moment happened between Danny and Captain Neville (Giancarlo Esposito) while they waited out a tornado in a root cellar. When Neville finds himself trapped by debris after the roof collapses and dangerously close to getting clocked in the head by a stove, he asks Danny to help him. But instead of letting the young man make up his own mind, Neville goads him on so badly, going so far as to invoke the memory of his father, Danny has no choice but to help him. Really the worst part of this scene is that Danny is then surprised when Neville recaptures him. I mean, honestly, kid? You really thought he was just going to let you go? While I feel Danny’s character has grown the most in these few episodes, especially after last week, this felt like a step back for him.
Trying to decipher and uncover everyone’s motives—from Miles to Nora to Monroe to Rachel to Nate—is proving to be the most confounding part of Revolution. I’m hoping that Kripke starts giving us hints sooner rather than later. While it’s obvious Charlie is not going to waver from her mission, to find her brother, everyone around her seems a complete mystery, willing to waffle if a new position gets them closer to what they want. While that’s all well and good for some of the characters, at the moment, I’m a little wary of how many of them there appear to be. I for one would like at least one other person to root for … or maybe more importantly, I’d like at least one other character rooting for Charlie.