Note: Episode review contains minor spoilers.
Charleston here we come!
The 2nd Mass had to throw their roughest Hail Mary to date and scramble to make it to the promise land of Charleston. Tom (Noah Wyle) took more of a backseat in the action and we got to the Mason kids run quite a bit of the show. Of course things couldn’t be all hunky dory for the Masons and they had to stick the fly in the ointment Pope (Colin Cunningham) in the same car with Hal (Drew Roy) and his sweetheart Maggie (Sarah Carter). We even had Matt (Maxim Knight) reach out to yet another forsaken harnessed child and shed some light on the intriguing details regarding their enslavement. Unfortunately, “Death March” really could have been one of the most well rounded episodes to date if it were not for it’s uneven final half.
To start with some positives, the romance leaned toward nuanced and palatable again. For once we didn’t have Maggie and Hal fall into a painful exchange throwing around the words “jazz pants” again. The writers finally exposed us to a Maggie that wasn’t just the generic and attractive “bad girl.” It would aggravate me to no end how they wouldn’t even hint at her having a past. She was just this attractive vixen with a wild side that Hal fell for. I was ready to hug Pope when he said it’s about time to cough up the truth.
Another highlight was the frank and honest chat between Tector (Ryan Robbins) and Captain Weaver (Will Patton). It irks me when stock characters are just thrown into sci-fi productions just to fill in the ever important role of saying “woo doggy look at that biggun’!” I often felt this was the direction they were going with Tector and his pals. His military background caused me to look at him in a different light. This exchange embodied the classic saying of, “don’t judge a book by it’s cover.”
There were a few other minor touches that I appreciated but they weren’t enough to overshadow my complete disappointment with how the episode came to a close. For once it felt like 2nd Mass was going to have to show true adversity and not have a big whopping plate of luck handed to them. As I’ve said time and time again, the formula has boiled down to a few secondary characters getting eviscerated until 2nd Mass gets its expected Deus ex Machina. Who knew all it was going to take was Weaver firing off a single bullet in the air merely to draw the attention of the crowd.
The rebuild effort in Charleston is the biggest hope for this season to end on a high note. Let’s hope we get treated to lobster next time rather than a pack of fish sticks.