Falling Skies: Welcome to Charleston

FALLING SKIES: 2.09 “The Price of Greatness”

Back to civilization? Could it be true?

Well, knowing the 2nd Mass, you knew it would be an adjustment. Sure, the food’s great and they’ve even got beds, but almost instantly, the group was separated into different units and their weapons were taken away. After months and months of constant stress and battles, taking away the only thing that makes you feel safe against the enemy is a big task. It’s no wonder that Weaver had to talk the soldiers down.

But what was most interesting about this episode is when the good guys went bad. No, I’m not talking about Pope’s gang (there were no surprises there), but Tom and his crew. We take for granted that we’ve seen all that the 2nd Mass has seen. We’ve gotten to know Ben as someone who no longer has a harness. And we’ve grown to trust Tom’s judgment.

But Manchester doesn’t know any of that. All he knows is how he and his survivors have made it so far. And he doesn’t want that to change.

So what do you do when the new group — the one whose reputation proceeds itself — wants to go fight a war instead of hunkering down in the shadows? Well, we’re about to find out. And in the meantime, it turns out that they start a coup. Honestly, I can’t think of a better way to end that episode to show the gravity of the situation than Pope’s line. Suddenly, you realize what they’ve done.

So what does marshall law look like in the new regime? I guess we’ll find out soon. I can’t believe the season finale is upon us, and I’m afraid to see what’s next.

Ok, so I have much more to add about this episode, but I don’t want to spoil any of you who might not be readers. So if you haven’t read the Hunger Games trilogy, don’t keep reading. If you have, feel free to read on.

Ok, so here goes:

There was one thing that bugged me about this episode, and for once, it was its originality. As a recent reader (and re-reader) of the Hunger Games trilogy, all I could think about in the first half of this episode was a certain book. That’s right. Falling Skies got Mockingjay-ed.

It would be one thing to just have them living in an underground commune where they grow their own food, hiding underneath a city that was destroyed by mass explosions. But when they said that the group was being separated and that their weapons would be in one place, to be checked out at approved times, then I started reacting. The rules, the series of set weapons training, the military ruling hand…it all just felt too District 13 to me. Sure, in the end we got a great twist where the 2nd Mass broke away from Katniss’ story (though I guess we still are fighting against the big bad that destroyed the city in the first place), but I do wish that we had gotten something a little different here.

Ok, so that’s my nitpick. What’d you think? Am I making a connection that isn’t there? And what do you think will happen next for the 2nd Mass?

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3 thoughts on “Falling Skies: Welcome to Charleston

  1. It wasn’t a connection I made, to be honest. It struck me as a relatively generic moment: the thing that got me about this episode was how clearly a sort of conservative viewpoint came to the fore. The instant they took away the guns and integrated people, I knew he was going to be presented as a bad guy, and I resented it because I don’t think those are necessarily unreasonable precautions to take when welcoming a huge group of people overstressed out into your civilian community.

  2. I agree with you. They presented Manchester in as a bad guy from the start, when, if you think about it, his argument to just try to survive and let the aliens work it out makes sense. Clearly, they’re doing something right living in their underground mall (and if I were him, I’d take the weapons away, too). I think that’s why Pope’s comment at the end stuck out to me so much. We all figured we were just following along and doing the right thing — until you realize you’ve just thrown a coup against the government.

    Thanks for your comment!

  3. I could be wrong but I feel like this is building towards one of the classic plot lines of post-apocalyptic fiction, namely that fellow human beings are just as dangerous to our each other as the aliens/zombies/whatever. The 2nd Mass has been on its own for so long that it’s interesting to see it come into conflict with a group of humans who hold different values. I hope the conflict continues in some degree into the next season.

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