Every now and then, we have a show that frustrates us, then gives us hope, and then frustrates us anew — and for the time being, “Falling Skies” is that very show. Every time that we start to come around to its slow-moving character development, we have an episode like this that feels like the folks running the show are in no hurry at all to actually get the 2nd Mass. to make any sort of tangible progress.
While this show is technically serialized in structure, we really don’t have a feeling that much of Sunday night’s episode was necessary at all. Was it cool to meet the daughter of Weaver for the first time? Sure, especially when it came in the cool concept of her living with a group of kids who were really just trying to survive the Skitter invasion while being holed up together. It was a bizarre little ragtag society, but they had found a way to make it work for them. Unfortunately, the problem here was that this story never really ended up mattering in the grand scheme of things. Weaver’s daughter decided against staying with the 2nd Mass. and with her new boyfriend Diego, and the unit simply moved about its way as they inched closer to Charleston.
Meanwhile, everything with Tom felt fairly repetitive. Matt tried to once again prove that he was older than his age showed, and Noah Wyle’s fantastically-bearded character ended up having to rescue him. Ben at least finally admitted to someone that his hardness is not exactly working properly anymore, but it’s hard to really see (if anything) what Hal is going to be able to do about it — especially since Ben wants him to keep quiet about it so that everyone doesn’t start treating him like there is some sort of alien trapped in his body.
We want to love “Falling Skies” more than we do at times — we love aliens and survival stories, but this is one that feels stuck in first gear too often. We need to see more than just missions every week where they rescue a few people from the Skitters and find out a few tiny details (including this week the disgusting parasites that constitute the harnesses). If Tom and the 2nd Mass. are going to survive the invasion, they need to make big moves — and we’re simply not there yet.
Did Sunday night’s new episode frustrate you, or did you enjoy the self-contained portion of the story?