One If By Land

Episode Report Card
Keckler: B- | Grade It Now!
Weekend At New Bernie

I'm sort of wondering why Hawkins hasn't loped back to Jericho to give Mayor Dad the 411 on New Bern. Maybe he knows that he can take all of New Bern down without any help. Because he's Hawkins. Jake is yanked back to his cell, where Eric sits coughing pathetically through a mussed and bloody beard. Now, they originally gave Eric a beard to doppelgang him as a total Daddy's boy, but now, with the growth, the strategic mussing, and the ever-present bloodstains, I think it's a vehicle to make him look tuff. (If The Outsiders took place in Missoula, Montana.) Once in the cell -- I guess Constantino is being uncharacteristically nice and letting the brothers hang together, which doesn't seem like the best strategy, given that it doesn't break down their morale and also gives them time to collude, but was probably a production decision more than anything -- Jake gives Eric a worried look. Eric is clutching one of his arms. "Looks like they went easy on you," Eric notes. "Yeah, for now. They haven't found Hawkins yet," Jake admits. They're going easy on Jake because they know that more scars will just make Jake look really tough and then they'll all be too scared of him to lay a hand on him. Wallowing in the depths of self-pity, Eric wonders rhetorically, "How many people have to die before you don't care any more?" Oh, god -- get OVER it already! You aren't going to break out of prison with that sort of attitude, Eric. What am I saying? You aren't going to break out of prison at all -- it will be Jake and Hawkins who do the breaking.

Jake forces Eric to look him in the eye and insists that April's death wasn't Eric's fault. "We can't even be sure Heather's dead with the lies they're spreading," Jake adds, giving me more and more hope. "I've seen, Jake," Eric says morosely. "I don't think I can go back." Just what have you seen, dude? Munitions, yes. Poverty, okay. Starving people, definitely. I mean, unless we're supposed to believe that Eric is holding back some horrible story about New Bern -- which, way to be stupid and not confide in your brother -- I don't really know what Eric has "seen" that is so terrible. I think he's making it up. I think he knows that his brother has led a far more dangerous and interesting life, and he's just trying to infuse himself with some battle-toughened darkness. He TOO has seen atrocities. He TOO put the pregnant fiancée of his murdered best friend who saved his life in Iraq on a train just before the country went kablooey. He TOO maybe possibly killed a little girl by accident and then made his dad and the viewing public sniffle into lotion-soaked Puffs as he cried about it. But he's not going to talk about it, because it is just that bad. I guess what I'm trying to say is: shut up, Eric. Jake reasons that staying in New Bern and getting himself killed isn't going to make Eric feel any better. You know, it probably won't, but it will make me feel grand. And that's really all that matters, right?

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