Roswell
Graduation

Episode Report Card
Djb: D+ | 3 USERS: B+
YOU GRADE IT
Actually, it was pretty stupid

Max and Liz embark on their inexcusable "Saving The World Through Handjobs" crusade as they make with the nookie once more. That is, until there's a flash of a bald man, who watches the same four shots of the dying Alien Three plus one Liz thrown in for luck and bonus death. Liz comes out of it and runs to her bookshelf, showing Max a book written by a "Bryce McCain," who Max automatically knows will be "the guest of honor at the UFO Convention. We die June 12." Liz: "That's in two weeks!" Max: "We have twelve days." Jesus, people. Put away the sundial. We believe you know what day it is.

Out on The Scoping Fjords Of Sandy Land, no one can come up with a plan. Much morose silence ensues, and Max tells the assemblage, "I won't make this decision for everyone. I'm giving up the throne." For the uninitiated viewer of this show, I can't even imagine how stupid that line sounds. Because for the lifers, I can say with great authority…it sounded pretty dumb. Michael is the only pragmatist in the group, suggesting, "Why don't we get out of Dodge before they land on us? We leave." They know who they are, so he assumes that "it's over." He also speeches that if they go, they have to go separately. Why? "Right now we're safer as individuals than we are as a group. I mean, what are we going to do if we go together, get a van?" Meh. It didn't work on Dead Last. Porno asks if they all have to go, and Michael reminds them of the only four who are in danger, which is clearly ridiculous, because if the government has a camera inside of an exploding garden gnome (which it appeared they did, considering the number of angles from which we saw that thing explode), they know who the aliens are hanging with and could inflict a similar level of, uh, picture-taking on them as well. Maria freaks out that they're just leaving her here, bellowing the most important line in series history, which should have been on the posters at bus stops from Season One: "This is just a perfect way to end this entire stupid thing." She storms off. Max steps back in to glitch up the plan, advising, "If we're gonna go, we shouldn't hesitate. We should start leaving right after graduation." Or maybe, um, now? Meanwhile, Liz chases Maria down and is all "snap out of it, bitch." Maria's falling apart. Liz wants to know if Maria wants in or out. They hug. Porno tells Kyle that he got him a job at the sheriff's office. Isabel tells Jesse they'll go to Boston together. Max and Michael are the only ones left, Michael telling Max, "Well, I'm not graduating, so I guess I'll be the first to leave." Max knows things between them haven't been the best. Perhaps a five-minute hug will clear things up. No? What if we add an aerial view of it? Ah…that's better.

A disembodied voice informs a woman whom I think we've seen before, "The sooner you help us, Mrs. Mills, the sooner you can return home." This so-called Mrs. Mills is the woman from the opening sequence (remember way back then? Yeah, me neither) who was not killed by a man with a gun. She stares down at the Roswell press kit, glossy 8x10s of the cast trying to do the stage direction "curiously suspicious, though not so much so that they won't be marketable for Neutrogena commercials in the very, very near future" the appropriate justice. She pauses for a moment before mumbling, "They helped me. They saved my life." But no matter. Monotone men in suits hate foiled muggings. Or so we seem to be learning. Another man threatens Mrs. Mills: "I'm sure your two children would be very happy to see you. It's getting late." Mrs. Mills cracks just then under the pressure of being not-that-threatened and trapped in a totally well-lit room for at least eleven whole minutes of hell! She hasn't even removed the little purple coat of her little purple sweater set. She eyes the press kit. She considers them all. She points to a photo of Max and a photo of Liz. God, I hope Mrs. Mills isn't a casting agent. She asks if she can leave, and is told, "You were never here. You never saw us." Because we've seen how keeping things on the ol' hush-hush ranks so highly as one of Mrs. Mills's strong points. She's gone, out a door with a small sign reading "Glorified Extras Parking This Way," into the night of permanent non-memorability. The two remaining Military Men start moving the photos around into fun shapes and patterns, like those long nights in the foxhole together have forced them to make up a card game based on their Doomed Alien Trading Cards. One moves four photos of Max, Michael, Isabel, and Liz all next to each other, and keeps himself from yelling "Uno!" out of only the sheerest force of will. Military Man #1 indicates them and speaks his brilliant plan to the world: "These four. This is everyone. Now we can move. Someplace where they're all together indoors. A facility we can lock down. Someplace they won't expect it to happen." If only the episode title would come and clear up this maddening mystery. Somewhere…but where? Incidentally, I love that they've figured out who the aliens are, and just decided to tack Liz on the list of the doomed because they can. It feels very much like an idea they might have taken from us.

I think we're at the front of Maria's house. Maria has a house? She walks across the front lawn to find Michael Michael sitting atop his motorcycle motorcycle. Gee, she thought he'd be gone by now. He bares his soul: "I wanted to say that this whole thing has been screwed up since the beginning. The whole stupid story." Once again, another character nails just what kind of story this has been all along. But Maria takes it personally, even though it isn't entirely her fault. But Michael isn't done, telling her, "I wouldn't trade it for anything. From day one, the moment that I kidnapped you and stole your car." Yes. I wouldn't trade it for anything either. Except for maybe being able to watch The West Wing during its first season, or Smallville this year. Or Undeclared ever. Or maintain a sense of integrity in the whole television-watching process, which I used to feel until one dark hour in October of 1999 came along and changed my sensibilities forever. Okay. I guess I'd trade it for something. I'd trade it for a small stack of pennies. But Michael wouldn't. And he's still talking! "Wherever I'm going, whatever I'm doing, I'll always love you." He rides off into the distant sunset, hopefully out of the jurisdiction of the government branch with a thirst for alien blood. I'd also trade it for cheese.

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Roswell

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