This week, Dr. Rosen and the team infiltrate a remote refugee camp filled with Alphas in order to find out some answers about Stanton Parrish.
In my recent travails through the world of ‘Alphas’, there was one things I had yet to come across: Not everyone likes Lee Rosen. It’s easy to forget that the show was based upon Rosen’s choice to reveal Alphas to the world, turning them into an often-hated species. And this week, we got to meet some folks who weren’t such big fans of the Doc’s decision, and, given the way he and his team slowly destroy what is supposed to be an Alpha safe haven over the course of the episode, maybe they have something there.
Dr. Rosen and the rest of the team are trying to track down Skyler, an Alpha who can read the ins and out of almost any piece of machinery, so she can look at some tech that they believed was tampered with by Stanton Parrish. They drive out of the city into the country, where Gary is going crazy because once they get out into the sticks, there are no signals whatsoever. However, once they get fr enough into the woods, they are accosted by men who say they’re trespassing on private property. It turns out that Skyler and her daughter Zoe have taken refuge in a converted summer camp with other Alphas, trying to just live their lives away from society. Skyler is hesitant to trust Dr. Rosen, and basically just wants to be left alone to tackle motherhood. Her daughter is also a highly advanced Alpha. He hands the photic sensor off to Skyler, who, at first, can’t seem to find anything out of the ordinary about it.
‘Alphaville’ is run by a man named Claude, who, as Gary puts it, can “speak bee.” Like Ant-Man, without the other useful technology. He doesn’t seem to care much for the team, especially Dr. Rosen, and doesn’t want to see life in his colony disrupted. But on the fringes of the colony are spies sent by Parrish to retrieve the machines from Rosen. Gary, at first dismayed that he had to just see “the normal world” suddenly finds that even out of civilization, he can see radio and electric signals sent out by things like pulsars and the aurora borealis. But the focus of the episode, aside from playing keep-away from Parrish’s spies, who have some eerie powers, is focused on the irony of Rosen bringing chaos to this peaceful community. This isn’t like some creepy cult or anything, for the most part, Claude really just want to help these outcast people. His power, talking to bees, isn’t even that powerful as to be controlling. Rosen obviously doesn’t see himself as the lord and savior of the Alphas , but is defensive of his decision, because he believes in the greater good, and that the two species can work together. Others, like the man who initially disabled the team’s van, lost his wife and kid when his identity was revealed. This episode mostly revolves around the Alphas trying to find a sense of normality: Skyler just wants to raise her daughter among other Alphas, Rachel and Jon are trying to balance some kind of dating life around Rachel’s hypersensitive powers, and Rosen tries to stay one step ahead in the war brewing between him and Parrish.
Turns out the photic sensors they retrieved don’t just treat epilepsy. Stanton had them wired to dramatically enhance an Alpha’s powers, as they find out when it misfires and gives Rachel a seizure due to sensory overload. They theorize Parrish is using them to buld an army of unstoppable Alphas. Later, Skyler’s daughter Zoe is captured in order to retrieve the sensors and in the ensuing fight, Rosen uses one of them to subdue one of the spies, who can burn things with his hand. The sensor turns him into a firestarter, the sweat dripping from his hands starting blazes in the woods. These fires basically threaten the existence of the camp and they’re forced to evacuate. Because of Dr. Rosen. Great job, Doc.
In the end, the machines are saved from Parrish’s people, but Alphaville is destroyed. Skyler escapes with her daughter and is approached by Stanton Parrish at a diner, who offers her a job. One which we can only really assume she takes. An interesting episode, especially since it took a sharper focus on the fallout of Dr. Rosen’s decisions, and what he’s done to both aid and harm the Alpha community.
- Dani is totally giving info from Hicks to Parrish. I like this “keep your enemies closer” Cold War kind of feel to this whole showdown. Also, poor Hicks got shot in the leg tracking down one of Parrish’s spies. Bad week for Hicks.
- Nina got to go on the doomed field trip, but mostly kind of fades into the background here.
- Best Gary Lines this week: When Claude’s Alphas accost the van. “What’s his power?” A beat later, as they’re dragged from the car. “It’s opening doors.”
- Skyler has a nifty device to hide her tattoos, for mom mode. Even though Summer Glau is a sci-fi TV regular, she fits very organically into the show, and I hope she comes back soon.
- The shoes on the spy that could walk around without being heard were a nice touch. FYI, they’re called Vibram FiveFingers.
- I managed to go a whole recap without making an X-Men comparison, but Parrish’s team of evil Alphas, some of whom can start fires, totally wasn’t helping.
Did you miss an episode? Check out our recap of last week’s ‘Gaslight‘.