Being Billy

Episode Report Card
Tippi Blevins: C- | 1 USERS: C
Game Over

After she's gone, Jeff sits down with Skye. She talks him through some of the tech fiddling she's done since their confrontation with Carey. "I pulled the audio track from Episode 12," she says, referring to the awful earring episode. The first words of the episode were "True or false," and the last were, "believed her." With some fiddling and combining, it sounds kind of like someone saying, "True... believer." She also pulled up the audio from the "man in the wall" scene, also included in Carey's video. She techno-babbles about the music being not just music. She plays it backwards and slows it down. She says it sounds like someone is saying "kill for us," but it sounds to me like... "kilt folders." Jeff is suddenly doubtful, where he'd previously been rather quick to leap onto the conspiracy train.

Somewhere outside the campus, Carey huddles in the dark. The music sounds conspicuously backwards here. If you were to run it through your computer, you could probably hear it saying, "Don't cancel us!" It's not long before a van pulls up. The door slides open and a man holds out his hand. His forearm bears a tattoo like Billy's from the show. Carey takes the offered hand and disappears into the van, saying, "I knew you'd find me." And that's how the episode ends.

That part of the show is interesting. Shifty seducing Roger is interesting, if a bit icky. But the Jeff and Skye part of the show...

It's like instead of watching The X-Files, we're watching a show about other people watching The X-Files. (Not that Inner Show appears to be as good as that, but I'm using it as an example.) Except it's not really even that. It's about people who are researching the people who are watching The X-Files. It's fine as a novelty, but it starts to collapse under itself pretty quickly. By making Jeff and Skye the focus of the story, we're too many levels removed from the mystery. Instead of feeling like proxies for the audience, they feel like impediments standing in the way of the story. They don't bring us into the mystery, but stand as another layer between the mystery and the audience. With this intermediate layer, it seems that to convey a sense of mystery and urgency -- characters are relied upon to talk about how mysterious and urgent everything is. There's just so much talking in the Jeff and Skye layer. I can't help but feel that the show would be more intense and immediate if we were mostly following the actor characters as they begin to realize something very strange is going on with their jobs, with the crazy fan aspect as the framing device. Whatever happens, I hope the gets a chance before it's too late. The actors are good in their roles and there's a kernel of a good idea in there.

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