TV review: ‘Falling Skies’ S3 EP5 “Search and Recover”

This review contains SPOILERS

Starring:  Noah Wylie as Tom Mason, Moon Bloodgood as Anne Glass, Will Patton as Captain Daniel Weaver, Colin Cunnigham as Pope, Drew Roy as Hal Mason, Connor Jessup as Ben Mason, Maxim Night as Matt Mason, Sarah Sanguin Carter as Margaret, Seychelle Gabriel as Lourdes, Doug Jones as Cochise.

Series created by:  Robert Rodat

Episode Directed by:  Sergio Mimica-Gezzan / Written by:  Jordan Rosenberg / aired in the UK:  13/08/13

What’s this episode about?

Mason and Pope, having survived the plane crash, must work together and evade the Espheni.  Meanwhile, back at Charleston Anne and Alexis are reported missing…

In review

Not the all-out action follow up you might have expected after last week’s cliffhanger, “Search and Recover” is a non-the-less important character piece (and perhaps a relative calm before the proverbial storm?) as tensions between Mason and Pope come to a necessary head.  Whilst the two don’t emerge from their fight for survival as best buddies they reach an understanding of sorts and maybe that mutiny that the writer’s appeared to be alluding to won’t come after all?

There’s always been an enjoyable yin and yang sort of situation between the two characters (which Wylie and Cunningham have gotten plenty of mileage out of) and we learn that Mason’s upbringing was less than rosy with a drunk and uninvolved father and the incident that lead to Pope’s imprisonment prior to the invasion (and the anger and pain of that being the last he saw of his son and daughter).  Despite the bonding, the tension is ramped up again as an injured Mason provokes Pope into leaving him behind.

Unfortunately Bressler was killed in the plane crash so it’s exit stage left for Matt Frewer and there’s no sign of President Hathaway or Cochise.

Anyway, back at Charleston there’s news that Anne and Alexis are missing (and indeed they are, along with Doug Jones’ Cochise, absent from this episode) prompting a demand from Weaver that he be allowed to lead a search which Marina (Gloria Rueben) reluctantly agrees to – It would seem that only ‘Hal’ knows of their whereabouts.

Accompanied by Hal, Ben, Matt, Maggie and Jean, Weaver and his search party discover the body of a woman – allowing for some reflection between Ben and Matt about their mother – some nice interplay between Connor Jessup and Maxim Knight – whilst Drew Roy hangs back as Hal’s behaviour becomes increasingly strange, something Maggie seems to becoming aware of.

Gloria Rueben gets more to do this episode (with a little more from Seychelle Gabriel as Lourdes) and it’s also good to see another appearance by Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. Kadar.  Kadar reveals the truth about Alexis and her alien DNA and Marina approaches Kadar with doubts about the Volm’s intentions.  They’re concerns that Kadar echoes when he examines photographs of the device they’re constructing – purportedly to allow the Volm reinforcements to enter Earth’s atmosphere – as he believes that the power the device will draw/generate would be well in excess of what is actually required, “overkill” as he puts it.  As I’ve said previously could a deception by the Volm be all too obvious or will it be simply a case of blurring the lines between good and evil?  It surely won’t be long until we find out the truth.

The episode concludes with Mason and Pope successfully returning to Charleston and Weaver’s uneasy revelation to Tom that Anne and Alexis have disappeared…

The bottom line:  “Search and Recover” allows for further exploration of the characters of Falling Skies and some small, yet tantalising threads as we build towards the end of the season.  If previous seasons are anything to go by, it’s advised that you stay tuned!

Falling Skies Season 3 airs Tuesdays at 9pm on Fox (UK).  Seasons 1 and 2 are currently available on Blu-ray and DVD.

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