Under the Dome
Under the Dome is a new show that airs on CBS this summer. It is based on the book by Stephen King. It has been picked up for a second season to air next summer.
Please be advised that this post contains spoilers.
So far the premise has been interesting and the story engaging. A mysterious dome suddenly appeared completely encasing the town of Chester's Mill and cutting them off from the rest of the world. There's no television, no radio (from outside the dome), no power save for what the back-up generators can provide.
My problem is with some of the characters and their actions for example in episode 3 "Manhunt" one of the protagonists, Julia finds herself in a maze of underground tunnels with the town's resident psycho "Junior". They're on their last match and instead of continuing to walk to see if they can find their way out, they stop to have a little chat !
Now if you're unfamiliar with the show you won't know what I called Junior a psycho. Essentially, this is because he has been keeping another main character (his former girlfriend) Angie locked in his father bunker since the day the dome came down. Surprisingly no one has missed her - sure her disappearance was mentioned once flippantly by her employer but other than that - nothing. Not even her brother has enquired as to her whereabouts.
Of course he has more important things on his mind . . . like the possibility of his first girlfriend and the mysterious seizures they're both having where they talk about "pink stars falling from the sky". This is another side effect of the dome along with the fact that anything battery operated tends to explode around it. The military have been unable to figure out what's going on and where the Dome came from and at the beginning of
And beyond all that there is even more mystery surrounding the town, questionable drug supplies, a reverend who doesn't act like a reverend at all and copious amounts of propane which are all linked to the town's very own puppet master "Big Jim" Rennie. It is obvious that he craves power and he shows most of the town one face (his political face) when really he is much more sinister than he lets on.
Another character of note is "Barbie" - the mysterious stranger who appeared in town on the day the Dome appeared supposedly connected with the drug deals that were previously mention as was Julia's husband one of the town doctors. This is relevant because Barbie was taken in by Julia since her husband is missing. Her husband is missing because he was killed after finding himself in a fight with Barbie. She assumes he is somewhere possibly having an affair.
The "New Sheriff in town" as she was christened by Big Jim is Linda and she is the new sheriff because every other deputy as well as the old sheriff are dead. The sheriff himself was killed when he got a little too close to the dome (and a little too close to exposing the town's secrets) and his pacemaker exploded. The other deputy was killed when the third deputy lost his cool and his mind and started shooting at the dome. The bullets ricochet and sadly one pierced Linda's main ally Deputy Paul (her soon to be brother in law). After the manhunt in episode 3 Linda killed the crazed deputy herself and thus the town had it's new sheriff.
Episode 4 "Outbreak"
Angie's brother, Joe finally makes some enquiries as to the whereabouts of his sister. Of course, he chooses to ask Junior so he doesn't really get very far. Angie herself, gets a little too enthusiastic about trying to scream for help and unfortunately knocks herself out while silumtaneously causing the bunker to start flooding.
By the way - side note . . . where has she been going to the toilet this whole time that she's been chained to the bed ?
Meanwhile, in the rest of the town, the masses are coming down with migraines and fevers and they fill up the hospital that's unfortunately all out of doctors. Enter one of the visitors to save the day - a psychiatrist by trade but thankfully she did her residency in medicine (incidentally, she also happens to be one of the moms of young Joe's potential love interest) but she's on the case (with out a mask or gloves) to try and figure out what's making everyone sick.
Head aches, neck pain, photophobia = meningitis and we have our culprit (potentially) Sadly - the town's reverand is now burning all the town's medicines / antibiotics that he stole from the pharmacy *sigh*
In other news, Julia escapes the hospital's rustic quarentine (Junior standing at the front door with a shotgun) to go chase down a lead about her husband with her meningitis still untreated. Of course she collapses and starts hallucinating and then it's Barbie to the rescue ! (Cue their heart to heart when she comes back to her right mind).
Speaking of people not in their right mind - the sheriff and Big Jim start looking at Junior like he's made of exactly the right stuff to be a deputy. Perhaps someone should try to see this idea to his kidnap victim first...Now across town, in a bunker somewhere, poor Angie is looking like she's just about to become hypothermic in all that water.
Barbie and Julia : The music gets louder, it looks like he's about to maybe tell her that he killed her husband but . . .. then he thinks the better of it and tells her he skipped town. She tells hims to gets out of her house and there you have it. Their potential romance cools down for now.
Linda and Junior : All of a sudden Linda's hair is down and it's curly and she's talking to junior about how he has a good heart and suddly she hands him a badge (cue my very unimpressed face).
Nori and Joe : Have another seizure - planned this time and Joe creepily gets up in the middle of it so shhh the camera. He's now under the impression that the dome doesn't want them telling anyone about these pink stars and then he invites Nori and her moms to come and live at his house since . . . he has no family . . . Angie anyone ? No ? Ok then . . . but she screams and screams and bangs on the pipes and finally Big Jim hears and goes to investigate. He sees her sitting there chained to the bed and doesn't make a move to help her making me think he's just going to shut the door and pretend he didn't see anything . . . . but that's a scene for another episode . . .
Episode 5 "Blue on Blue"
So this episode starts as I predicted with "Big Jim" leaving Angie locked in the bunker.
It now seems as though the military is allowing visitation rights to the prisoners inside the dome by bringing in families from the other side on coaches. Linda is talking about brining in new deputies and it startles me that no one has thought to ask Barbie - seems to me like he would be a prime candidate - especially since he's the first person Linda turns to for help regarding crowd control. . . and then she disregards her own advice not to get too close to the dome when she sees her fiance (Rusty) and promptly runs to kiss it (or him) - how's that for setting a good example ? Let's just disregard the rules that apply to every one else . . . right in front of them !
Meanwhile the revrand continues his journey down loopy lane...He believes that God has spoken to him and said "Moab". In addition he would like to get absolution for his sins by confessing to them thereby causing a little problem for Big Jim... he gives him one day to come clean to the people of Chester's Mill which to me translates as 1 day to figure out how to get rid of the revrand. As it turns out it wasn't God who was speaking to him - he was just picking up a transmission from the army standing for M.O.A.B. - the mother of all bombs ! So they're going to nuke the place. I knew the fact that they were allowing visitors didn't bode well for them! As Barbie so aptly summed it up; "Visitors day was not about saying hello to your families, it was about saying goodbye"
Nori's father comes to the dome to visit her causing a number of problems : 1. Apparently she didn't in fact come from an anonymous doner so why is he showing up now after like 15 years and 2. How on earth was he that up to date with their whereabouts that he knew she was stuck in the dome... ?
So no family meet up for Joe ? Really ? And then before you know it . . . visiting hours are over.
Turns out Barbie has some juice with the army because his old unit the "Jackrabbits" was famous for something. The young army guy looked quite impressed. This leads to a heart to heart between Barbie and Julia about his time in the war. . . it's really a shame he killed her husband because that's just a ahuge problem looming over their heads right now!
Joe steps up his search for Angie and Big Jim suddenly has a change of heart and lets her go ! Sadly though she has no idea that the town is about to be hit with weapons of mass destruction and runs around a deserted town / deserted house calling out for Joe. Junior of course finds out that his father let her go and speeds off in his police cruiser undoubtedly to the exact location where she is right now. Yup - and he beats her to it. And he has a gun - police issue. Turns out he doesn't need it since Angie has some kind of Stockholm syndrome and embraces him (and her fate).
Turns out they had nothing to worry about though - because the revrand repented and so he saved Chester's Mill - or so he belived right up until the moment where Big Jim swats him like a fly and lets the dome take him out with the healp of his hearing aid.
Episode 6 : The Endless Thirst
Linda finally decides to hand Barbie a badge but he doesn't want it. He'll still continue to help though.
Nori's mom forgot to take her insulin and started hallucinating right out into the middle of the road in the way of a big truck that had to swerve so it didn't hit her. Unfortunately what it did hit was the town's water supply.
Meanwhile there's a screeching noise that's cutting in to all the communications around town - meaning poliece walkies as well as the radio station - the radio engineer rigs a device that will allow them to track the source and they get the idea that this may be what's powering the dome - so if they can track it . . . they can shut it off (although I would caution against this right now because there would still be some residual radiation from the missile in that area so they might want to wait a while . . . )
Linda has a heart to heart with Barbie about Julia saying that they should be an item.
The clinic's out of insulin and the town is out of water. I knew they should have stolen that insulin when they had the chance ! Now what ? There are apparently 23 diabetics in the town - I'm guessing that number is going to go down . . . fast. As for the water supply - the main lake they get their water from is not a souce I would want to drink from due to all those dead fish showing up on the river bank! Turns out the water is polluted with Methane.
Meanwhile Angie's managed to escape Junior but her plight is becoming exhausting for me - she's running though the woods with no shoes on and Junior will soon be after he again. Thankfully she found her way to her employer because I was starting to lose interest in that storyline. Now we know that employer (owner of the cafe) has a . . . connection? to Big Jim so we'll see how this all works out...
I figured it would only be a matter of time before the riots broke out and it's that time. Sadly Angie's safe haven didn't last for long. Some looter's break in and mess everything up. One of them kills Rose and Angie gets knocked out fighting - poor kid can't catch a break !
The deputies and Barbie are running around like headless chickens trying to stop the riots without and riot gear and with outdated tear gas - fighting a losing battle but just as Angie was about to get raped Barbie comes to the rescue (yay!) and takes out her attacker. Rose is dead. (Maybe ? - I don't know he didn't really check) and the Police car tires have been slashed. And then just as Linda is about to resort to Rule number two . . . it rains and the riots stop. It can rain inside the dome and Big Jim waltzes in as though he can take the credit for himself at this point though my one worry is that he's a little too close to the unconscious Angie and may offer to "take her to the clinic" . . . yup confirmed - that's what's happening. But not all is lost - Angie wakes up in Big Jim's den with him giving her his word that "Junior Rennie" (which by the way is a medication for indigestion) will never lay a hand on her again so long as she "forgets" about this little kidnapping ordeal - she wants to know that both her and her brother will be taken care of and really it's the smart play because as she said before - Big Jim is a council man and Junior is a deputy now so it'll be her word against theirs. . . she'll have to think about it. . .
But anyway - here's the great thing about the rain - it's water evaporated from the lake and basically filtered so that it is now drinkable again . . . ta-da !!
So Julia and her side kick (Dody) for the day figure out that Joe and Nori are somehow connected to the dome and that they were the ones causing the strange feedback sound - like the dome is using them somehow - side kick Dody wants to tell Big Jim but then in come Julia with the voice of reason ! If they tell anyone about the kids' connection to the dome the whole town will be after them in no time.
So Nori and Joe head back to the clinic with the one vial of insulin they stole from a little boy but umm - how long is that going to last exactly ?
So then Julia finds Barbie in the rain and well . . . all that sexual tension melts in to a kiss and they walk off together hand in hand . . .
Episode 7 : Imperfect Circles
Barbie and Julia wake up together and for a moment before she opens her eyes he has a look that says "I'm sorry I killed your husband but he wasn't good for you anyway and look how quickly you forgot about him so good riddance!" . . . and then she sees her ring I guess and remembers Peter or Paul or whatever his name was . . .and things get awkward for a second and just as Barbie is about to leave Julia asks him to stay and they're about to get their feak on again when there's a knock on the door. It's Harriet the pregnant neighbour who want youghurt because it's "the only thing she can keep down" (side note - with one month left to go she's waaay past the first trimester after which morning sickness tends to go away for the vast majority of pregnancies) but ok . . . Barbie uses it as an excuse to make a hasty exit.
Nori wants to go back to the Dome to figure out if she and Joe have powers now.
Harriet thinks she sees her husband greg but really it's the dome - she touches it and her water breaks. She thinks the dome did something to her baby (which at this point could not look more like a pillow if it tried). Julia comes to get her, points out her water broke and then takes her inside the house *raised eyebrow* perhaps it would be best to go to the clinic unless she plans on delivering the baby herself !
Big Jim is having some trouble with an old "friend" - Ollie. He's paying him with Propane in order for him to supply the town with water from his well. Ollie hints that perhaps that propane doesn't really belong to Jim anymore and off the big guy goes to investigate. He finds the propane has indeed been taken over by Ollie who's found himsef the biggest possible henchman this side of the dome to deploy a good beating on Big Jim who suddenly doesn't seem so big anymore !
Earlier that day Jim showed Angie that he was true to his word by keeping Junior away from her as he'd promised and kicking him out of the house. He also let her leave to go visit Rose's body at the diner to say goodbye. She recruits Ben (Joe's friend) to help her bury Rose and clean up the place.
On their way to the hospital Julia and Harriet have the unfortunate pleasure of running in to the fugitive brothers that are on the run after the murder of Rose and the attempted rape of Angie. They hold a gun to Julia's head and begin to siphen the gas from the car. Barbie comes to the rescue but the brothers get away. Now they have to get Harriet to Alice (Nori's biological mom) because she's a doctor (and actually my understand is that she's the only doctor!) but 2 problems - 1. She's a psychiatrist and 2. She's a type 1 diabetic with no insulin so . . . we'll see how it goes !
Nori's moms have a moment and of course it's broken up by the arival of Hariet and her potectors (Barbie and Julia). Harriet has some trouble "bringing someone into a world like this" and the whole thing is going down without pain meds so they give her pep talks instead and Barbie holds her hand.
Nori and Joe's investigation starts to get creepy when th dog runs away and they go towards the "nucleus" of the dome which at first glance looks like a pile of leaves but once they're cleared away it's actually another dome . . . with an egg inside ! Joe thinks it may be what created the whole dome and tries to give it commands like, "end program". So they touch the mini dome together and talk to it nicely - a hollogram (?) of Nori's mother Alice shows up and then disappears when they let go. What does it mean ? Joe and Nori don't know - Nori just knows that she needs to find her mom. Maybe it shows people in danger of dying? Who are about to die or almost dead ?
Sure enough back at baby HQ there's a problem - Harriet's fine but Alice doesn't look so good maybe Joe and Nori can use their powers to blast away her diabetes ! The baby's cord is wrapped around it's neck - Barbie and Julia with a shoe lace in the den - to the rescue ! Then a rapidly weakening Alice asks to hold the baby *skeptical eyebrow* Really ? She could collapse at any moment ! but it's ok - her partner's holding on to her and Hariet decides to call the baby Alice in a touching, "Alice meet Alice" moment *aww*. On the other hand though there's a sense of foreboding because there's new life which means a life could be taken away and now that the baby has her name as well . . . it's not looking good for Mama Alice !
Come to find out Nori's name is actually Elanor (makes sense) and that Alice's partner's name is Carolin (maybe they said that before and I just didn't remember it). Mama Alice had a heart attack but is still hanging on (barely). Angie and Ben have their reunion finally ! (cute) and Alice and Nori have their final heart to heart - meanwhile I'm just waiting for Nori to use some of that Dome energy to bring her mother back to life but it's not looking good... and with a final whispered "I love you" the original Alice fades away :(
Nori runs off to the edge of the dome to ask it to bring her mother back leaving Caroline to grieve alone, Hariet to play with Alice 2.0 and Julia and Barbie to cuddle on the couch. As for right now . . . it doesn't look like mama Alice will be coming back as anything more than a hallucination.
Meanwhile Big Jim drowns his sorrows with some alcohol and Ollie comes to rub his face in it and kick him while he's down. Ollie seems to have acquired himself a monopoly - he's got the crops, he's got the well, he's got the propane. . . I'm just left questioning what it is he wants now. Turns out he wants Big Jim to "toe the line".
Linda and Junior take out the fugitive brothers - Linda's was a clean kill but Junior chases down an unarmed Clint who's begging him not to shoot him and pops him twice in the chest. Now Linda's regretting giving him a badge and a gun. There were moment's before when she would just look at him quizically thinking that maybe she'd made a wrong choice like in the car when she told him what the brothers had tried to do to Angie but now I'm guessing she might be seeing him clearly for the first time.
Back to where all the propane is and it's night time now - we see Giant Henchman trying to flee which a whole bunch of small propane tanks and all of a sudden he hears something - it's Big Jim with his bottle of Whiskey and a rifle who shoots up his truck and blows his up with the help of all those stolen bottles of propane. Seems like Junior's a chip off the old block indeed !