This will have to be a quick one since I'm so busy right now that I barely have time towatchall my shows let alone comment on them. So please excuse the brevity and lack of pictures this time around.
Despite Cosima and Alison being relegated to subplots that feel as though they're part of a completely different show, this episode felt like a step forward, even as the threat of Dyad fades and the Proletheans return to take centre-stage.
There's a chance their involvement in the plot is drawing to an end what with Gracie's miscarriage (a traumatic experience for a teenage girl to go through, though given her age and the child's paternity, probably a blessing in the long run), but the introduction of Mr Appleyard (old blind dude with a whiff of paedophilia about him) and the existence of another "blessed child" with the exact same genes currently growing in Helena's womb (and therefore something a religious cult will surely be interested in) suggests that may not be the case.
A clear link was revealed between Ethan Duncan (Dyad) and Henrik Johansson (Proletheans), which in turn manages to link them to the Castor clones (military). Turns out the genetic material Johansson stole from Dyad was used to impregnate Bonnie, who gave birth to a boy who died while still in infancy. Sarah puts the pieces together and realizes that the baby's skeleton holds the genetic material of the original donor, and might therefore provide a cure to the Castor "glitching".
Like I said, this felt like a significant step forward, if not just because the scientific puzzle-pieces are being fitted together.
Over in suburbia, Donny is totally overcompensating for the whole monitor fiasco, but at least he's found his niche as Alison's wingman (despite his blather, he surely knows on some level that his wife is the one calling the shots). And why not namedrop Breaking Bad into the conversation since that's clearly what they're channelling here? I just hope that all this somehow ties back into the bigger conspiracy plotline, even if it's just Alison eventually calling in favours from her crime network in order to help her sisters.
Helena shows off her resourcefulness by preparing for the sedative and taking measures to slow its progression through her bloodstream, thereby finding a way to explore the compound undetected. (The bone key though? Seriously?)
Between Mark reminding Sarah how she shot Helena at the end of season one and Helena screaming "you're a shit mother!" at Virginia post-Parsons discovery, there was certainly some interesting parallels to ponder in this episode. If you recall that Helena's grievance with Amelia was that she abandoned Helena to the church as an infant (presumably making her another "shit mother" that deserved to die, which ended up providing the impetus for Sarah shooting Helena), plus take into account Helena's fascination with Kira and motherhood, it was a thematically dense choice to have Helena's mercy kill of Parsons interspersed with Sarah digging up a dead infant to save her newfound brothers and get Helena back.
Without even knowing Parsons was her genetic brother, Helena achieved a moment of grace in her treatment of him – even if it was carried out with her usual violent streak. Most telling was that she ignored her scorpion/inner voice in order to free him, presumably at the cost of her own escape. That she calls him "little one" before making the mercy kill was also pointedly maternal, and a far cry from her dismissive attitude toward the "ugly Marks" she so far demonstrated.
The real Mark lives to see another day; just as well since he was the only fleshed-out Castor clone. It begs the question though: did Bonnie deliberately wound him, or is she just a bad shot?
In the course of their adventures together, Sarah manages to establish a genuine rapport with Mark, though it's difficult to pinpoint how much is tactical and how much is sincere – perhaps it can be summed up by the fact that she abandons him once she gets the information she needs, but not before calling an ambulance to attend to his injuries (leading to a rather odd bait and switch when he turns up at the motel, after the audience is set up to believe that it's actually going to be Rudy). But it all comes down to Mark, Rudy and Sarah in a barn together with a single gun. The previews have pretty much given away the fact that they're going to take her back to the army base with them, but hopefully we'll at least get a chance to see Mark argue for her life.
Between the bullet in Mark's leg, the scalpel in Parsons's brain and the baby skeleton, this was certainly one of the show's grislier episodes.
Duncan's cypher in The Island of Doctor Moreau gets a name-check, but no substantial breakthroughs – and judging by the previews for next week, it doesn't look like we'll get it any time soon.
I'm enjoying these episodes, but it's certainly a very scattered storyline (though perhaps not so scattered as season two) and I doubt I'll ever stop missing the wonderful streamlining of the first season: the disorientation as Sarah tries to navigate her impersonation of Beth, leading to the mystery of who exactly was murdering the clones, and from there the looming threat of Dyad and the fact that anyone could be a potential monitor (at one point, they even had me doubting Felix).