End of Line, or End of Caprica’s Road?March 28, 2010
A lot of things actually happened in the mid-season finale of Caprica. Some plot lines appear to have wrapped up, and some new ones appeared. It was an exciting cliffhanger, designed to hook the fans firmly enough that they will tune in whenever the show returns in several months. Did they succeed? Well, they certainly gave themselves options.
What follows is a recap and review of End of Line and as such, contains spoilers.
The episode began by showing us how it would end…with an exciting car chase as the U-87 races a Graystone Industries van down a lonely highway, pursued by Serenity-like flying vehicles, complete with primitive DRADIS consoles and a voice saying the Cylon prototype is not to be engaged.
Twenty hours earlier, the pace is back to slow burn as we see what led up to that moment. Daniel is increasingly agitated. Under pressure from all sides, he finds the courage to make the one choice he didn’t want to make, sell the C-Bucks to rival Tomas Vergis. It just might buy him enough time to save his company.
STO-ers Barnabus and Keon wait in an industrial zone, suddenly and unexpectedly visited by Sister Clarice and a few gun-toting guards. The confrontation between these two is one we’ve been waiting for since we heard Marsters joined the cast. The scene is nicely done by both, and clearly sets up an exciting tension for the second half of the season, particularly in light of how the episode ends.
Amanda is at home, researching news articles about the theft of the MCP, while a TV in the background shows us one of Caprica City’s oldest and grandest bridges (Vancouver’s Burrard Street bridge) and the announcer declares the structure has attracted its share of jumpers who have relied on its 100m height and turbulent waters below to end their lives. It’s one of those blatant foreshadowing moments that everyone I was watching with took notice of. The rest of Amanda’s storyline for the episode was clearly headed in that direction, and we didn’t need the flashbacks to a bloody razor blade to tell us that.
Then we get another glimpse into the STO as Barnabus leads his little group of terrorists in a prayer. “In the name of the one, we cast out the many. So say we all.” And then they all touch the centre of their foreheads, in a gesture now eerily reminiscent of the U-87’s one red eye. He kicks the followers out, but asks Lacy to stay. They flirt with creepiness, but it turns out what he really wants is to show her he’s done what she asked, got her a packing crate ready to go, but he wants a favour. Replace the keyfob on Clarice Willow’s keychain with a duplicate he has created. Smart Lacy figures out she shouldn’t ask why. She does what is asked of her.
Philomon was front and centre this week. We get another scene where Philo and Zoe!Rachel snuggle on a four-poster bed in the middle of a lake and he tells her he really doesn’t care about what she looks like in the real world. And he means it. Rare find that one. Hold on to him, just not too tight.
Colonel Sasha Patel of Military Procurement comes to see Daniel. He proudly shows off his prototype results, but she isn’t impressed. She knows exactly where he got the MCP. She moves up his deadline to a week away. Selling the C-Bucks may not have been enough, after all.
In New Cap City in V-World, Emmanuelle, Joseph’s guide, has found his daughter, and has a request to make of Tamara. The search is ruining Joseph, and she wants Tamara to help her father let go. “Billy’s real, I’m a ghost.”
Daniel barges in on Philo working with Zoe!Cylon and announces they are to irradiate the chip to remove its flaws. That would mean the end of the Zoe avatar, so naturally, Zoe demands Lacy move up the transport schedule. She doesn’t give Lacy even a chance to complain.
Daniel takes his frustrations out on some yellow peppers while Amanda wallows in self-pity, and a strangely prominent operatic score begins. Please, we don’t need to be hammered over the head with what’s going to happen. Amanda asks Daniel outright if he stole the chip, he deflects and she walks. He does not follow. Can’t he hear the opera music?
I think Bear McCreary is a brilliant composer, and I love the fact that he brought in Alessandro Juliani (Gaeta on BSG) to sign on this operatic track, but here the music felt heavy-handed, and so unlike his usual touch. Here’s a link to his blog entry about the episode, in which he explains his process.
In New Cap City, Joseph goes to the last place we saw Tamara. He amps up, and finally, father and daughter reunite. It doesn’t go as well as planned. She kills herself (only for his benefit, we know) and then she boots him out of the game. She rises, and we learn the true identity of Emmanuelle. We should have known all along, it’s Evelyn, Joseph’s assistant. It’s her task to help him move on now, and she seems to be eager to do just that. Let’s hope the second half of the season finds Joseph Adama with more purpose. Will we see Tamara again? Hard to figure out how, with Joseph now permanently kicked out of the game. She’s an interesting character even if she’s stuck in a clichéd environment.
Philo is with the U-87, and Zoe reveals herself as both Rachel and Zoe the avatar. She orders him around just as she has been doing to Lacy, but this time with disastrous results, as the robot’s strength smashes the life out of Philomon. End of the line for him. Kudos to Alex Arsenault for giving the character such intelligence and sincerity.
Zoe!Cylon escapes, stealing the van. The robot must be driving, since inside Zoe is reminiscing and the memories are all about conflict and yelling.
The Colonel meets with Vergis, and promises “You get the company, you get the contract, guaranteed.” That sounds an awful lot like Daniel’s company is what Vergis is really after and the military are happy to have this happen.
Yep, Amanda is at the bridge, contemplating her wedding ring and so much more.
Lacy bursts in on the plot to murder Sister Clarice. And there she learns how dangerous Barnabus truly is. The keyfob is the key to a bomb. Her boyfriend Keon built it, but of course, Lacy still kinda likes him, so when she is forced to choose between killing Clarice or Keon, she chooses Clarice and pushes the button.
Amanda takes off the ring and her shoes, and jumps off the bridge. Will she survive? My guess is no. And really, they’ve written this poor character into a hole that even such a talented actress cannot pull her out of.
Clarice is looking up at the now empty ledge on the bridge when the explosion happens behind her. The car was moving at the time it blew up, so presumably her cute husband Nestor is now gone. With the STO thinking Clarice is gone, she now has an opportunity to change her path. Interesting. After all, we did find out Clarice’s trip to Gemeonon was all about getting the right to kill Barnabus, so she is hardly as innocent as Lacy thinks she was.
And then there is Zoe. She drove into a circle of light. Seriously. Could there be any more obvious metaphor for suicide? It wasn’t just a JJ Abrams lens flare. The spark-filled explosion that resulted from the van crash was eerily reminiscent of Starbuck’s viper explosion in BSG’s “Maelstrom.” I think there is a strong possibility that Zoe is gone. I think that would be a good thing for the show. Her character is annoying. Constantly whining and bullying those around her, I no longer care if she is brilliant or chosen by the one true God.
The character I care about most now is Daniel Graystone. He appears to have lost his wife, his daughter, his lab assistant, his sports team and possibly his company. He’s a grade-A jerk, but I don’t count him out by a long shot. He did his best work as a young man when he had nothing to lose, so I’ll bet that will drive him again. A close second is Lacy. How will the weight of thinking she has murdered Clarice sit on her shoulders? Will it drive her further into Barnabus’ hands, or will it give Clarice the chance to snatch her up in her own claws?
So what did you think? Was this episode enough to guarantee that you’ll tune back in to Caprica in October, or whenever, the series returns?