Greetings and salutations, Humans and Cyborgs! I am your merry recapper, Dawn, and I am here because, in the immortal words of (former) FBI Agent James Ellison, “Sarah Connor is a deluded, dangerous, grade-a whack-a-mole who killed a man because she believes that in the future he’ll invent a computer system that declares war on the world.” She is also an overprotective bad-ass and occasionally very dangerous behind the wheel of a car, but I’m sure we’ll get to all of that in time.
To get you ready for season two’s “back-nine,” and because I have to wait until February 13th for new episodes, I’m doing a little time travel on everyone’s behalf and giving you the scoop from episodes past. Beginning from episode eight, entitled, “Mr. Ferguson is Ill Today.” To further enable the truly obsessed (which I dearly love to to), if and when I make references to major events that have happened in past episodes not recapped, I will provide the appropriate title and episode number for your own reference. Who knows, I may go nuts in the months coming and get all caught up, or I may crash and burn here, but if there’s ever something that just doesn’t make sense, I’ll be on the forums so you can hit me up there. Now, on with the show.
The previously reel would like you to know the following: The T-888 Terminator, Cromartie, is closing in on the Connor Clan, having tracked them all the way to their home. John’s girlfriend Riley was there at the time and managed to wave him off for the time being, but John and Sarah are currently butting heads over the relationship.
We open on a title card which simply reads: Sarah’s Story
Like many TV shows before, it appears that Terminator is dipping it’s mechanical toes into the well of pseudo-Rashomon-style story-telling. This may or may not be a successful venture, but one will hope that a show that’s becoming quite adept at intercutting time-travel shenanigans into everyday plots will manage to pull it off. …or not.
Sarah’s in the garage, working off some stress by banging on a something. It looks like a shelf, but with the Connor family DIY-WMD streak it could be a Terminator trebuchet, for all we know. She casually listens in on the conversation happening between John and Riley as he walks her to her bike and even manages to (badly) fake a smile when Riley turns back to thank her for the lovely evening. You can tell that Riley’s not on Sarah’s Happy List, but John doesn’t care. His general disdain is expressed when he joins his mother for a bit of post dinner, I’m-an-angry-teenager, repartee.
John opens up the festivities by mentioning that he bought Riley the helmet she was just wearing, and while Sarah admits that it was very responsible of him, she can’t resist wondering if it will stop a bullet. When John asks if Sarah’s planning on taking a shot at her, Sarah’s response…isn’t exactly in the negative. “A lot of bullets fly around here, someone will.” John goes to leave but Sara asks him if he actually cares for Riley. When he answers simply, “Yes,” she tells him he should leave her alone, then. Considering what happens to people around the Connors, I can’t say that’s a necessarily a bad idea.
But John either doesn’t get it, or more likely, doesn’t care, so he stalks off like the petulant teenager he is. On the way, he glances back at Cameron who is now walking up to Sarah with that slick saunter only a Terminator can manage. Cameron takes a quick glance back at him as he walks away. She stays with Sarah long enough to offer to talk to John, but Sarah doubts her irritated offspring will listen. Before sliding off again Cameron offers a hopeful, “He’s always listening.” Which is different from “paying attention,” but Cameron doesn’t understand that yet. Sarah watches the family’s guardian Terminator leave, presumably to have her own talk with John…or maybe punch a hole in a brick wall. With Cameron, it’s hard to tell sometimes.
After an apparent all-nighter, Sarah’s inside the house with the completed mystery craft project. Cameron enters the room and helpfully identifies the item by mentioning that she was going to suggest the family get a safe. Like me, Sarah thinks it would have been nicer if Cameron had made the suggestion before they got robbed last episode. (“Brothers of Nablus” 2.7) Meanwhile, Cameron’s on her way out the door to restock a supply dump since they’ve been going through so much ammunition lately. “Business has been booming,” Sarah sighs right before she asks everyone’s favorite question ever, “Where’s John?”
She seems surprised when Cameron tells her that he’s not up yet. Misreading the look on Sarah’s face as a request for more of her quirky Terminator banter, she offers up that it’s nothing to be concerned about; John needs more sleep than Sarah does because a teenager’s circadian rhythm is abnormal. Sarah’s used to this behavior so she moves past it, asking how late they were up talking. Cameron claims it wasn’t that late, and adds matter-of-factly that John won’t be seeing Riley anymore. Sarah (and your recapper) are unconvinced, but Cameron reminds her that “John’s not stupid.” As Sarah seems to ponder that, she mentions (and not for the first time) that she doesn’t like the way John relates to Cameron. On that note, Cameron leaves and Sarah keeps installing the floor safe.
Sarah has her head down under the floorboards for an absurdly long time, which is our first clue that the khaki-covered legs that suddenly walk into the shot probably don’t belong to anyone good. We would be right, as Sarah is grabbed by the back of her shirt and thrown across the room by Cromartie. For once, furniture isn’t broken in the process. Cromartie follows, and before Sarah can get back on her feet, he grabs her by the ankle and begins dragging her across the room over to the stairs. For Sarah’s sake, I’m thankful the floors are hardwood, and not carpet. The clanking and groaning Terminator theme plays as Sarah is dragged up the stairs and deposited in front of John’s room. From the floor she watches Cromartie break down the door, enter the room…and come right back out. Dragging Sarah (again, some more) into the room, he puts a gun to her head and asks his variation on everyone’s favorite question, “Where’s John?” Sarah attempts some snark but Cromartie quickly realizes that she really doesn’t know. He squeezes her neck until she’s unconscious and stands.
Title card: Cameron’s Story
There’s a close-up of Cameron’s eyes before we cut to a POV shot looking down on John and Riley standing by her bike. It’s the same flirty banter about her always being available and how he should call, you know, with his voice instead of sending dinner invitations via text-message. He admits the possibility, and sees her off, reminding her to “Be safe.” He does know what show he’s on, right? At any rate, it’s all cute and teenager-like and Cameron just stands above the pair, on the patio, like the artificial voyeur she is. Riley leaves and Cameron makes her trip down to see Sarah, complete with the before and after glances at John. Only from this camera angle, we can see that before Cameron fully turns her head to look back at John, they actually make eye contact briefly as they pass each other, John looks away guiltily. That’s…not a good sign.
After an abbreviated replay of Sarah and Cameron’s earlier conversation, we cut to Cameron walking down the upstairs hallway. It’s filmed from a long distance so as to give the audience the full effect of Cameron’s sexy boots, long legs, and short shorts. I swear, I think Summer Glau even added some extra swing to her hips. She turns to face John’s door, shrugging out of her jacket and dropping it on the floor. There’s another long shot, just in case we missed the fact that this Terminator’s got a smoking hot body, and she knocks on the door a few times before entering. She asks if John’s busy.
The answer, of course, is no.
Cameron enters the room, closing the door behind her, and thirteen-year-old inner monologue’s everywhere start playing wakka-wakka porn music. Considering the way the beginning of this scene was filmed, it’s more than appropriate. As Cameron crosses the room toward where John’s lying in bed, he notes she’s changed her clothes. She crosses to the bed and she and John arrange themselves as comfortably as they can on the narrow twin mattress. John idly wonders if she’s hoping Riley will see them in bed and be scarred for the rest of her life.
But Cameron watched Riley leave until she was gone, so there’s no chance of that. John snits about his mother some more before Cameron reiterates that being around John is dangerous for Riley. Conceding the point, he provides the line that Cameron will parrot back to Sarah, “I’m not stupid.” Cameron, bless her, points out that sometimes he does stupid things and she wants to understand why. They back and forth about humanity’s general stupidity and Cameron, in her own mechanical way, offers that she may not understand humanity, but she understands John. He thinks that means that she understands that he’s going to keep seeing Riley even though everyone’s opposed, but no. She understands that being John Connor is lonely. John wonders how she can possibly understand that and Cameron tells him that they talk about it a lot, or more accurately, they will. Since all references to his future make him uncomfortable, John not-so-subtly tells Cameron that he needs sleep. She gets up to leave, and asks, “And Riley?” The best John can do is reply, “I know.”
Morning. After another mini-replay, Cameron walks out the door, gets in the family SUV and drives off. Her destination is a nondescript storage door with an ominous-looking open lock hanging from the latch. Pulling a gun, she rounds into the room…where Derek pulls a shotgun on her. I’m half-surprised he doesn’t take a shot at her just for the hell of it. Cameron dismisses him as she continues on into what can best be described as an armory. It’s lined with shelves, and all the shelves are packed with guns and things that go, “BOOM!” It’s nice for the show to occasionally acknowledge exactly how much hardware these people have to keep on-hand in order to stay in weaponry for more than three episodes.
Aside from Derek’s usual disdain for Cameron, he’s not happy she’s there. Apparently, as this isn’t so much a family Weapons Depot, but his personal stash. Specifically, the one he built with, and for, the soldiers he came back with (“Dungeons and Dragons” Episode 1.6). But Cameron’s looking to blow something up, so here she is, Derek’s personal boundary issues be damned. Cameron notes that John was supposed to ask him permission before she got there, but adds that perhaps that was difficult as Derek hasn’t spent much time at the house. There’s some more hostile back and forth bickering, more to establish the pair’s continuing animosity rather than get any points across, when Derek’s phone rings. He checks the number but he ignores her questions. The phone rings a few more times and Derek exits the Depot, presumably to take the call, or check his messages if he didn’t answer in time. Cameron pulls out her own cell and dials the numbers she saw on the screen, getting only a Spanish-speaking answering machine for her troubles.
Derek rushes back in with his phone in hand. John’s in trouble (must be Monday).
Title card: John’s Story
Replay: John’s dismissing Cameron from his room. He waits until she leaves and with a “Yeah, right,” he makes his escape, calling Riley to tell her he’ll be “there” in a few minutes. He seems to have a well-packed bag with him as he climbs out a window. Yeah, that’s gonna end well.
The show’s main title card and metallic theme crash across the screen. Da-da-dum-da-dum!
There’s a bus going somewhere and John and Riley are on it. It’s daytime and Riley wants John to stop looking at her. There’s some cutesy banter as John tells her that he’s taking her to a little village he used to live it. Riley’s touched but she feels she has to ask, did John clear this trip with his mother? “Sometimes I get the impression that she doesn’t like surprises.” Sweetheart, you have NO. IDEA.
John claims not to care, but Riley acts like she does, going so far as to call this little last-minute get-away a revenge fantasy to get back as Sarah. So far as spats go it’s minor and over easily with a joke about booking honeymoon suites and a rapid cut to the pair walking through your stereotypical Mexican village. It’s the Day of the Dead as the market is filled with flowers, skeletons, and plenty of costumed extras. For random exposition’s sake, Riley reminds the audience John’s issues about space and how she used to watch him at school acting alone in a crowd. Wow, stalker much? They continue through the plaza. It’s about as exciting as it sounds.
It looks like John really did book the honeymoon suite, sneaky guy. That, or every room in the place has a jacuzzi. While the two prepare for a non-skinny dip, there’s more reminiscing on John’s part about the nice home he and Sarah had, far away from people. Since it’s her turn, Riley begins her own monologue about meeting people she didn’t intend to like and how she doesn’t like to get attached. It’s more than she meant to say, so she turns the spotlight back on John who tries to lie. Riley calls him on it, claiming he has a tell and she ends up splashing playfully in jacuzzi.
The next scene opens at the local cantina, where they are still having the same conversation. John wants his space, Riley’s pushing his boundaries. John deflects, asking about his tell. He wants to know what it is, but before Riley can spill, a camera flashes. A older gentleman with a digital camera slides up to the pair and begins re-creating the final scene from the first Terminator movie. Both Riley and John freeze. Riley makes an excuse about something in her teeth, and when the photographer insists he can take a better one, she ducks. I’d normally think she’s shy, but she’s going a bit over the top, so I’m beginning to wonder. John offers to pay the guy five bucks to just delete the pictures (can’t have those on the internet can we?), and just as he’s about to pay up the man recognizes him….
…as John Connor! From the old days! You know, Sarah Connor’s son. Oops. And apparently, the man’s heard some wild stories about those wacky Connors since then.
John ushers the man into the next room so he can be properly blackmailed without Riley overhearing more than she already has. But before the deal’s done, Riley follows. She jumps the guy, snagging the camera and trying to delete the photos. There’s a struggle, people start shouting and John tells Riley to run. But as he makes it out the door, Riley’s grabbed by the convenient policemen at the bar. Dumbfounded, John just stands there, eyes locked with Riley’s, watching as we cut to commercials.
When we get back, John’s at the local police station. Heh. John, remember what Cameron said about you and doing stupid things? Add this to the list, OK? For the sake of the audience, the cop is nicely fluent in English. He’s about to take John’s statement when the Supervisor (equally fluent) arrives. After John tries to sell his fake story the Supervisor begins peppering John with the usual questions. Age? 16. Drinking? No. You have family? A mother and an uncle. They know you’re here?
The Supervisor makes John a deal, if they come get him, he’ll get off with a warning.
John calls Derek and gets his voice mail (guess he didn’t catch that call then). He presses a number twice and hangs up. The cops tell him to call his Mother. Reluctantly, he does, and when Sarah picks up, he hits the same button twice. Sarah swiftly replies, “John? Thank God, where are you?” A worried John pushes the button twice more. But Sarah’s still talking, and since that wasn’t the all-clear signal John now knows that the voice on the phone isn’t his mother’s. Since John can’t very well tell the cops that there was a homicidal killing machine on the other line, they toss him in a cell with Riley, after telling him they’re running his name through INTERPOL. Oh, joy.
It’s morning, and Riley starts calling for the guard. Predictably, she spins a story good enough for the idiot to come close enough to their cell for the “sleeping” John to clobber. Apologizing to the prone figure, John handcuffs him to the cell as chaos and gunfire erupts down below. John tells a panicky Riley that if she sees daylight, run. Don’t wait for him, just run. They head out.
Title card: Sarah’s Story
…Again? What? Doesn’t Derek get a story tonight?
We open on Sarah, duct-taped up in the backseat of a sweet, bright-blue, classic Mustang (I think) convertible. They trade the usual pleasantries, “The first time we met you tried to kill yourself.” (“Pilot” 1.1) “Well, this time I’m gonna kill you.” You know, the usual captor/hostage thing. With the top down, the papers in the backseat blow around until Sarah gets a look at the picture of Cameron that led Cromartie to them. He sees her looking and randomly deduces that Cameron’s recent mistakes and carelessness must mean her CPU has damage. Sarah’s awkward silence confirms it. To keep the Terminator distracted from her thrashing about and cutting her legs free, Sarah asks him how he found them. (Aside from Cameron’s carelessness one must assume.) He confirms that it was the bowling alley kid Sarah kept Cameron from killing last week. (“Brothers of Nablus” 2.7)
Because Sarah Connor is a Bad Ass, she’s managed to free her legs so she can push herself up, and leap up and over the open top of the speeding vehicle. (This is why we don’t get Derek’s story. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a Bad Ass, but he’s just not this cool about it.) Sarah’s stunt double hits the ground rolling, but Cromartie slams on the brakes. In a passing nod to reality, Sarah’s still too stunned from the fall to do more than just lie there as Cromartie walks over, picks her up and tosses her in the trunk so a) he doesn’t have to put the top up (so uncool) and b) so he can finally stop expositing for awhile. Everything goes black and when Sarah wakes up, there’s Spanish music on the radio and a convenient soda can she can rip apart and use to cut her hands free. The car stops, there’s a pause, and then the familiar sounds of gunshots and screaming begin. Desperately wanting to get out and play with the rest of the kids, Sarah grabs the can and…tries to jimmy the lock with it? What is this, a Swiss Army can?
Suddenly, the car begins moving again and the unexpected movement causes the can to slip, embedding itself into Sarah’s palm. Ouch. The gunfire and shouting follow the car, and a few shots penetrate the trunk. It’s daylight. The gunfire is eventually left behind and the car stops. Sarah hears the familiar clack-clack of a shotgun pump as footsteps head toward the trunk. It flips open and I dissolve into helpless giggles as Sarah brandishes the SODA CAN as a weapon. I would KILL to see that fight. Instead, I get Sarah, blinking in the sudden sunlight as she recognizes…
…James. Freaking. Ellison. Hell, yeah! He politely introduces himself and as John walks up to join him, he holds out his hand to Sarah and says, “I need you to come with me.” It’s not the traditional “Come with me if you want to live,” but I’ll take it. It’s Ellison, and I like the poor guy.
Speaking of, title card: Ellison’s Story
There’s daylight and Ellison is jogging. His phone rings and he answers, completely out of breath. It’s an old friend from the FBI, calling to tell him what boils down to this: the Mexican police ran the name of some kid named John Connor through the computer, it was flagged and Ellison’s buddy knew he’d be interested, but Ellison’s going to have to look into it on his own since the Connor case has been inactive since ’99 (“Pilot” 1.1). His friend conveniently e-mails Ellison a picture, presumably the mug shot taken in Mexico, and Ellison lies through his teeth about it, only “looking,” like Connor.
The next thing we know, Ellison’s in Mexico claiming he’s still an FBI agent and chatting up that Supervisor from the night before. The Supervisor’s not convinced, after all on paper John Connor is 24, not 16, but Ellison still wants a visual confirmation, “for closure.” The Supervisor thinks on that and notes that Ellison’s come a long way for simple closure. Ellison agrees that yes, he has come a very long way. And that, my friends, is quite the understatement when it comes to the journey of James Ellison. The Supervisor appears about ready to cave to Ellison’s request when an underling comes to the door. Excusing himself, the Supervisor leaves Ellison alone.
The former FBI agent’s eyes wander to the window behind him, looking out into the reception area. As he watches the Supervisor cross to a waiting visitor, we have barely enough time to recognize Cromartie before he reaches into his bag, pulls out a gun and starts shooting everyone. Having lived through this once before (“What He Beheld” 1.9), Ellison hits the floor and begins scrambling through desk drawers for a weapon. You’d think Ellison’s been around long enough to know that if you’re chasing the Connors, you should be armed, heavily, AT ALL TIMES, but no. His search comes up empty, but there’s a dying police officer conveniently right outside the office door. Maybe he has a gun?
We never find out, for around the corner, John and Riley come a runnin’. John barely has time to shout, “Daylight – RUN!” before Ellison tackles him. He pushes John up against the wall and tells him he’s here to help. Being oh-so familiar with this scenario, John accepts this at face value and they exit the building. Riley, wonder of wonders did exactly what she was told. She ran and she didn’t wait for John. But she’s gotten so far ahead, John has to scream several times before she (and we) can make out what he’s saying.
“Get in the car!”
What car? Oh, you mean the sweet, bright-blue, classic Mustang (I think) convertible that she just ran past. Awesome! Riley, John and Ellison dive into the car and speed off just as Cromartie exits the jailhouse. He sees the group and begins shooting, pistol in one hand, semi-automatic in the other. The good guys drive and Cromartie follows on foot. John clambers into the front seat where it appears a shotgun was handily left behind. It’s empty and he calls back to Riley to start searching the back for shells as Cromartie falls further and further behind. Riley finds the box of ammo but as she hands them over, she realizes there’s something in the trunk. John tells Ellison to stop the car. Everyone piles out, John pumps the now-loaded shotgun, and Ellison opens the trunk.
We know the next part, but this time we get to see Sarah get out of the trunk. John manages to gasp out a strangled, “Mom..?” but before he begins apologizing (again) for getting the family in trouble (again) Sarah sees Cromartie in a police SUV through the nearby fence. Our intrepid heroes take off. They leave the car behind. It kind of makes me sad.
After the break, the group’s taken refuge in what appears to be a hotel room. Riley and John are in a distant bedroom while Sarah and Ellison are in the front area strategizing, or trying to. Ellison suggests an escape route that Sarah shoots down as too obvious. He offers to help bandage her hand, but she insists she has to be able to use it, so she won’t let him help with that, either. Now that Sarah’s marked her territory, she asks Ellison why he’s there. He long-story-shorts John’s picture being flagged and sent to him, and since Cromartie was watching him, it was possible it had been intercepted. Sarah points out, and rightly so, that if Cromartie had been watching Ellison, picture or no picture, he would have followed him to Mexico.
“Wasn’t me in the trunk.” Point – Ellison.
But Sarah still doesn’t buy it, she can’t believe that Ellison would come all the way down to Mexico just to let John walk free so Ellison reminds her, and the audience, that he owes her one from saving him from the fire at Silverman’s. (“The Demon Hand” 1.7) She asks him how he feels about the debt now, but he doesn’t answer.
We cut to John and Riley, who’s beginning to look a little shell-shocked. John’s trying to get her to leave, and Sarah joins them, helpfully providing directions to the point of mentioning the local bus route, but Riley’s not having it. She’s tired of running away from John. (You can add the “physically or emotionally,” part of the line yourselves. The writers, bless them, didn’t take the cheese that far.) Sarah’s done with this and she tells John to get rid of Riley. Re-joining Ellison, Sarah asks for his phone. He wants to know if she has a plan, she counters that she has a weapon. “Cameron? The girl from the bank vault?” (“Pilot” 1.1) Sarah’s not amused that Ellison knows that and she makes her call.
Derek answers and Sarah hits the familiar safe keys. There’s the faint sound of reply tones and Sarah tells him that she and John are in trouble.
“Wait? John’s with you? We’re-we’re here already, we’re at the jail.” A shocked Sarah gasps, “What?” as the scene fades out to….
Title card: Derek’s Story
The scene opens on a close-up shot of Derek’s pretty eyes. As the camera pans out, we see the general chaos of a post-Terminator shoot-’em-up as people are running, bleeding, or any combination thereof away from the police station. Derek says they should try to stay under cover, but Cameron just walks calmly across the plaza toward the chaos, ignoring his pleas to wait. Guns in hands, they enter the police building where various officers, including the Supervisor, are in multiple stages of dying. However, none of them are coherent enough to tell Cameron where John is. Still trying to convince Cameron that they’re not any good to John if they get killed in here, Derek continues to follow Cameron as she insists that she “…can’t let anything happen to [John].” There’s a pause as Derek probably wonders, not for the first time, exactly how damaged Cameron really is because she’s coming closer and closer to sounding like she’s actually emotionally invested.
The pair trace John’s escape route back to his cell, where the idiot guard is still cuffed to the bars. Derek takes one look at the scene and asks, “Escaped or dead?” The guard replies, “Escaped,” and as he pleads with Derek for help, Derek just walks away assuring the poor dolt that the killer won’t be back. Derek? Not so much for the helping of innocents.
Derek’s phone rings as he enters a hallway. He answers, there’s a familiar sounding tone to which he replies, “Yeah,” and adds a pair of keystrokes. Sarah’s voice tells him that she and John are in trouble and they need his help. “Wait? John’s with you? We’re-we’re here already, we’re at the jail.” Sarah, makes her exclamation of surprise and Derek cuts her off, “Wait-wait-wait, Sarah. Then where the hell’s Cromartie?”
Title card: “Cromartie’s Story”
Nice transition, show.
The jail Supervisor is telling Cromartie that he will have to leave, but Cromartie insists, “I have to see John Connor.” To make his point, he reaches into his bag for a hand gun with which he shoots the Supervisor and the other policeman standing by. Other officers appear as Cromartie casually strolls back toward the holding cells, shooting nonchalantly as he goes. The camera angles are all crazy as the T-888 keeps moving back until he, too, reaches the idiot guard who quickly confirms John’s escape and escape route. Moving back toward the front of the jail, Cromartie is just in time to see Ellison race out the door behind John. As he retrieves his semi-automatic, we can hear John yelling at Riley to get in the car. Just in case we weren’t sure, we get a brief, red POV shot that confirms the order to terminate John Connor. The car drives off and Cromartie begins his pursuit into the commercial break.
Coming back, it’s post-chase and Cromartie’s on foot. He’s looking down the street as Ellison appears. Cromartie stops, not even trying to hide himself as he watches as Ellison take a deliberately casual look around the area as he opens the trunk of a product-placed sedan, retrieving a first aid kit. He is still seemingly oblivious as he begins walking towards a church. Bad things tend to happen to Terminators in churches on this show, just in case you were interested.
Cromartie begins to stalk Ellison silently and swiftly as the Latin guitar theme crescendos. It’s a scene right out of a Sergio Leone standoff with the empty street and and the tumbling papers and street detritus blowing across the way to destiny. Inside the church, Ellison, our beloved man of faith, is praying. Cromartie’s long shadow precedes him into the nave and he approaches Ellison. Without turning, Ellison asks if Cromartie has come to repent. Again, Cromartie tells us he’s looking for John Connor.
“All things are possible to him who believes.”
This is not helping, but before Cromartie can do more than process, “WTF,” Sarah and Derek open fire from the widows on top the transept walls. Cromartie returns fire as we flip to slo-mo and the sound of some probably not-so random mariachi ballad fills the soundtrack.
Sarah and Derek continue to pour bullets into Cromartie as he fires back. There’s a glory shot looking up at him, arms splayed out like he’s, well, Jesus. (It’s not exactly subtle and since Skynet is a God in this strange little universe it kinda tracks.) Sarah and Derek either run out of ammo, or their part of the ambush just ends. Turning, Cromartie and his wounded face see Cameron moving up from behind, shotgun in hand. The soundtrack cries for mourners (or just crying, my Spanish isn’t great), as Cromartie falls from several well-placed shotgun shots to the head.
As his vision begins to flicker, Ellison, Sarah, Derek and Cameron stand over him, looking down. Since he’s not dead yet, you have to wonder about the sanity of just, you know, standing there, but as oft happens with this show we sacrifice a little bit of rationality and logic for some really pretty camera shots. John arrives to join the group and with a look of disgust on his face, he administers the coup de grace, al la Kill Bill. (Leone to Jesus to Tarantino in a the same scene, huh, that was interesting.) Cromartie goes offline with an abrupt bump to black.
There’s no more title cards as everyone’s together and dropping Cromartie into a hole in the ground. Sarah and John share a not-so-friendly look. He is SO grounded!
Ellison approaches and Sarah tells him with little preamble that it’s safer if they’re not all traveling in a herd. Ellison realizes he’s being dismissed, but for this entire season he’s been searching for direction, for purpose, for destiny, and he thinks he needs Sarah to tell him what that is. She doesn’t give him the answer he’s looking for. No matter how he presses, about getting rid of the body, about going back into hiding she won’t give him what he’s looking for. Even when pressed about the FBI alert on John she calmly answers, “John has other names.”
So far as Sarah’s concerned, Ellison can go back to believing she’s dead, despite what it cost him the last time: family, career, and faith. Everything he lost, she’s lost and more, and yet he still presses at her. Sarah pushes back – this is it, this is all we are, it’s all we can do and we can’t get you back what you’ve lost. We’re not the saviors you’re looking for – not yet. She walks away and Ellison stands, hopeless, before turning to leave.
Sarah retrieves Cromartie’s chip from Cameron and begins crushing it with the butt of the rifle. Everything from the last few days comes crashing down on her, and in her fury at this thing that’s been chasing her family for two seasons, she begins crying and gasping and sobbing; all the while, pounding and pounding and pounding until John finally comes over and takes her in his arms. She holds onto him, her son and her anchor, and from a distance Ellison watches for a time before finally walking away.
Next episode: 2.09 “Complications” (You need you some.)