So it's come to this, Revolution's mid-season finale
and as expected they put on the high production values and sense that the show is going somewhere, packing in so much stuff in a similar vein to "Enemy at the Gate
". It'd be ironic
if the title refereed to the show itself but since it doesn't...
There's a sense of accomplishment in that they finally managed to make it to Philly, finally! They're getting Danny back and showing what's what to Monroe! I can understand that some fans would go gilly for this, especially
since the show itself has been laying around with plot after plot of them getting into a situation, escaping from it, fighting militia and only 3-4 episodes this season has had some meaningful growth; the show is finally getting somewhere, Monroe has all of the power, it's going to become interesting but it takes a long time for it to get there...
Yes there is some finely shot action to help keep you excited and there are tons of scenes which have sort of a "we're not going to take it
" attitude; it's clear and concise without being too energetic and it definately establishes the stakes plus some of the shots resulting from it are beautiful; the settings have long been one of Revolutions pros but inbetween that action lies dialog that is foreboding in it's obviousness that this is a big event, hinting in the form of questioning ("what will you do if you kill Miles?
") and character moments that are seemingly obvious in their intentions. (such as getting Aaron to man up.) It would be nice if there was anything that grew the characters but it's as if they were going through the action checklist without action to justify
it; we learn nothing
new about Monroe, Rachel or even Miles, we do get exploration into their stakes and intentions but this is very minute in terms of the overall big picture.
Looking towards the future...
That doesn't mean there aren't any
good moments here. Nevil manages to seem menacing and warm at the same time elevating his weak material to an unseen level; it didn't matter if he was ruling over Aaron talking about the Google exec stuff. The way that he said and presented it is all
the character that he needs, it tells you that he's ruthless but deep down, he's doing this to have a good lifestyle and speaking of Nevil; Miles kidnapping her wife in a hostage situation provided a good setting for both characters to show themselves. It showed Miles determination in getting his friends back and it showed just how much Nevil cares for her wife, even managing to present himself to benefit in the second half of the season and Monroe manages to perform the best scene when he faces Miles and begs for his mercy; the type of compassion that he shows, the way he stumbles with his words, the charisma he presents, it's something that finally
justifies his character and justifies the relationship that they had.
But it's severely weighed down by the bad moments such as Charlie who's weak acting is taken to new highs as she achieves several feats; providing an unconvincing performance when being reunited with her mother, Charlie being schmaltzy when with Danny and Charlie providing the most silly
look when in a situation of acting. This is supposed to be what the show had been working up to at this point and yet she can't understand the stakes, she can't act as if this was her mother that had left her for years and she can't act as if there was a connection with Danny. Emotion is a big part of everything, it's the core
that makes these shows and it's something that makes these shows what they are. They provide the weight, they provide the investment, the soul, the plots in Revolution may of been weak but at least they had some
emotion to them with Rachel manages to show by seeming legitimate with her looks, voice and moments. Alas, Charlie ruined the few magical moments this episode had. She really needs to step up.
Cool but boring.
Adding to that is Monroe v. Miles. The entire thing relies on us assuming that they've been friends and now they're enemies which I think is kind of a cheap
way to characterize things mainly because of flashbacks shown. The insistence continues with questions like "What makes Monroe like this, why does he want to take over the world?
" and "Why did Miles leave the militia, what did cause them to break up in the first place?
" remaining unanswered, which really muddles the plot for me. There wasn't much purpose
to their confrontation other than to serve the common good vs. evil fight these shows have, even complete with one of those flashy sword fights that felt like it came straight out of Star Wars Episode III. Having flashbacks which show them together just seems like a potential mindtrick rather than something substantial though the flashbacks were 50/50 for me. To keep forcing this notion is just going to weaken the show because it limits the direction, there is only so much that can be done with the whole former friends thing and "Monroe is evil
" thing especially with the direction it's taking. It's fans may like this stuff but really... Wouldn't you rather have Miles explain
rather than make a nice family statement that really didn't do anything substantial for his character?
There is certainly some promise for round 2 but there's nothing
in this episode that actually serves any other purpose 2; barely anything
interesting is shown about the characters, much of the episode is sterile and few questions are answered; what's worse is that the shows magical moments are zapped by some pretty poor
decisions, it should be exciting but we have to put up with mainly the poor acting of Charlie who's really becoming a problem
now. People will be excited for the future but I really wished there was a better
episode that set it up.