Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles

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Daniel: B+ | Grade It Now!
Wave of Complication
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Oh, god. Why do we have dream sequences? Why do television shows think dream sequences are any more interesting on TV than they are when the office basketcase bends your ear by telling you about the "crazy" dream she had last night? Why?

In this case, Sarah's the one having the dream, in which there's an open grave, and she's watching herself next to Cameron, both of them in pink dresses, and Cameron's watering the ground. It's like Little House on the Fucked-Up Prairie. Cameron's watering a cactus, and then three cacti are sprouting and growing as fast as anything in Super Mario Bros., and then suddenly John is standing there, and the cacti, now fully grown, turn to metal, and one wraps its arms around John.

Sarah jerks awake in the back of a truck. She tells John, who's driving, that she's going to be sick, which is probably due to all the bouncing and jouncing they're doing, all the better to show off the handling and suspension on the gleaming specimen of a vehicle from a company that pays a lot of money to this show.

John stops the truck, and Sarah hurtles from the back to hurl her cookies all over the ground. John and Cameron get out as well. "What's wrong with her?" asks Cameron, looking awfully disgusted. She asks if Sarah's pregnant. "Why in hell would you even ask that?" snaps John, and Cameron explains that Kacy vomited in the morning when she was pregnant. "Was"? Please tell me she's finally squeezed that thing out. Sarah says it's just a bug, or stomach flu. Luckily, for exposition's sake, they've stopped near a sign that says "Tijuana 39," and John says they'll be home soon. He goes to help his mom get back in the truck, but she's spotted an upended turtle near a wheel on the truck, and she rights it, moving it to a safer spot. Cameron watches.

Later, back at the Connor Compound (is this the same place? shouldn't they move?), Sarah's asleep in bed. She wakes as John comes in with some medicine, and he asks how she feels. "How do I look?" she asks, and he says, "Like crap," like way to cheer your mother up, and she jokes that she wishes she felt that good. And in comes Cameron with a tray of "rehydration fluid," which Sarah should check to make sure isn't Pennzoil. Cameron tells her to drink one cup every half-hour or right after she vomits.

Sarah tries to sit up, and John won't let her, even though she wants to go back to Mexico with the thermite to dispose of Chrome Artie once and for all. John points out that the body is buried in a hole in the Mexican desert and the chip has been obliterated. He's about to say he thinks that they're safe, when Cameron interrupts to say that they're not. John says she's starting to sound just like Sarah. "She's right," says Sarah.

Meanwhile, Derek's tooling around town when his cellphone rings. It's Jesse, standing all artfully posed, holding a gun. She says she needs to see him, and tells him to bring a gun, as if Derek goes anywhere without one. When he shows up, at some kind of shipping container storage warehouse, she launches into some story about eating lunch at the mall, and rattles off some nearly unintelligible aside about being unable to stop eating bad Chinese food, when she looked up and saw him. "Who?" asks Derek. He doesn't ask if she's always had this suddenly prominent accent. "Fisher. Fisher!" says Jesse. Derek doesn't know who that is. "Charles Fisher," says Jesse, and Derek still doesn't know what she's talking about, like COULD WE MOVE THIS ALONG, PLEASE, and she opens one of the containers to show him some poor guy duct-taped to a chair, gagged, and says he was sent from the future and is working with the machines. "And he's gonna die," she says. Derek just stares at the guy.

Elsewhere, John and Cameron are driving around, because that's all anyone does on this show anymore, is drive around and wait to get shot at, and Cameron is somehow royally pissing John off by sticking her foot out the window. She says she's learning how it feels to "get away from it all," and he goes off on her about how she doesn't have any emotions, and can't feel the wind through her hair, or toes. Looking somewhat hurt, Cameron says John doesn't understand how they work. "I have sensation. I feel. I wouldn't be worth much if I couldn't feel," she says.

Back in the shipping container, Derek's going over Jesse's story, about hitting this guy with a brick. We should have seen that instead of the dream sequence! She says this guy is a grey, and asks if Derek remembers the greys, and if he can do so succinctly for the viewers, and Derek explains that greys were traitors who worked for Skynet, helping the T-888s act more human. Jesse says this guy is one of them, at the top of the list. They talk off the duct tape over his mouth, and he frantically tells Derek that his name is Paul Stewart, and that he's not who she says he is. And if you thought he looked familiar before, you've probably recognized him after the duct tape came off as ... well, that guy from The West Wing. I never watched the show, but I remember him from commercials. "For your sake, brother, I hope you're right," says Derek.

After the commercial break, Derek's studying the guy's license, which does indeed say Paul Stewart, and he says he repairs watches in Pasadena. "What are you doing here, Fischer?" snaps Jesse. While the poor guy protests that he's just Paul Stewart off Blackburn Avenue, Jesse gets angrier and angrier, and smacks him one, and has to be restrained by Derek to keep from doing more damage to him. Derek sits in front of the guy (Richard Schiff! Thank you, opening credits!) and asks if he knows him. "No! I don't know you, I don't know her!" says Paul. Derek heads outside with Jesse so she can be all cranky about how Derek doesn't believe her. He says he knows the greys, because they caught four of them, but they're not going to do anything to this guy until they're sure of who or what he is. "He is who I say he is," says Jesse, quietly. "I want to hear him say it," says Derek. Jesse says he will, and grabs her jacket. "I'll show you," she says, stomping off.

Sarah wakes up in bed to the crackling hiss of a baby monitor on the night stand. She gets up and slowly starts walking through the house. Oh, great. Another dream sequence. She's got on her Laura Ingalls Wilder dress again, and slowly makes her way into the Connor Compound's maternity ward, with row upon row of bassinets, each filled with blankets wrapped around a couple of turtles. Well, except for one, which is empty.

She turns and sees Cameron sitting in a rocking chair, nursing. Then Cameron's staring adoringly at the turtle in her palm, and it seems like she's going to give it to Sarah, and then walks past her to give it to Chrome Artie instead. Yet another reason I hate dream sequences. They make it easy to make misleading promos.

Sarah raises her gun, but suddenly it's real life again (or is it?) and she's outside, pointing the gun at her own reflection in the window. Now she's in the kitchen, pondering, looking at a picture with three dots drawn in a triangular pattern on a notepad. God, I hope we're done with the dream sequence now.

Cameron and John are in Mexico, digging up Chrome Artie, except all they find is a boot. "Where's the rest of him?" asks Cameron, and John says he's gone. Cameron, for some reason, thinks it's impossible for the body to be gone, because they destroyed his chip. John heads back to the truck, planning to go after the only other person who knew Chrome Artie was there (which would be Ellison), who he says is the only person "crazy enough" to dig him up. "Crazy enough"? We are talking about Ellison, right?

Back at the shipping container, Derek's brought Paul some food, which he says he's not going to eat. "You a vegetarian?" asks Derek, and Paul points out that he doesn't know what's in that. Derek takes it back, takes a chomp out of it, and gives it back. "Cheeseburger's in that," he says. Yes, and Derek germs, now.

Paul asks where Derek's "friend" is, and Derek grunts "out

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Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles




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