Revolution, Season 2, Episode 14: “Fear and Loathing”
Written by Anne Cofell Saunders and Matt Pitts
Directed by Liz Friedlander
Airs Wednesdays at 8pm (ET) on NBC
Can we all just take a moment to consider New Vegas as the absolute finest location in Revolution? The meta pop culture jokes are fantastic. The tiny little seeds of David Schwimmer reduced to performing as a cabaret act or Justin Timberlake squaring off against Joey Fatone in a deathmatch are exactly what the show needs more of to really establish its place in a greater context and carve out some glorious black humour at the same time.
New Vegas is also the heart of the action this week as Monroe, Connor, and Charlie take centre stage. Our weekly gripes about characters in captivity aside, Monroe was never dying here, given the Chekhov’s gun of Monroe trying to track him down, and nor was he going to kill his son, so there is little tension to draw from in their battle. Still, it offers some good character beats as Connor finds out what happened to his mother, a revelation that might just drive a wedge between father and son now that they’re back in the free world.
Charlie gets a lot to do this time around. It seems as though the writers and Tracy Spiridakos have really nailed down the best version of the character — stone cold killer — and are comfortable enough to push her back to the forefront. Her relative lack of charisma when compared with Billy Burke (who has increasingly and sadly been sidelined this season) makes her a less obvious candidate as the show’s star, but if he continues to be bad ass and grows to become a leader of an army, who’s to say she won’t shift to the dark side and prove more successful than the Monroes or Nevilles in their quests for power?
Aaron and Priscilla are barely here this week. That is, until the ending. Aaron has Priscilla on one shoulder and Peter on the other, the proverbial angel and demon pulling at his conscience. It seems every time Aaron has a smaller role in an episode, he gets a closing scene that redefines how we see this world. If the last sequence is a new reality and not a dream, however, it makes no sense for the couple to reappear in their apartment in March 2014 when the blackout took place in 2012.
Miles, Rachel, Neville, et al. are also shunted off to the sidelines, the crowning glory of their plot on this outing coming from a pair of delicious line readings from Giancarlo Esposito, who gleefully mocks Miles’ dalliance with his sister-in-law.
This is by and large a strong outing for Revolution, but it’s more than a little disappointing that we’re again waving farewell to the hedonist mecca of New Vegas. With any luck, we’ll be back again before the end of the season, getting hints about whatever illusion show Britney Spears is running in the post-blackout world.