“This is a small town,” characters are told repeatedly in the third episode of Under the Dome, generally in the revelation that someone knows someone else's secret. Everybody in Chester's Mill has them, with some of them darker than others, and the darker ones, by and large, haven't bubbled up to the surface yet.
The town deals with the aftermath of the accidental shooting of Policeman Freddy, and the lynch mob that surrounds the town jail is the most excitable the residents have been since the dome came down. It's Big Jim who calms them down and urges them to let the law do its job. Not too well, presumably, given the headaches that would likely cause for him. And the residents get back to normal, which is being largely unconcerned about being trapped inside an invisible dome.
Paul seems to be remorseful about accidentally shooting Fred, but then tricks Linda by faking some sort of asthma attack or panic attack, and when she enters his cell to help, he jumps her and locks her in before stealing a rifle and fleeing, leading to the "Manhunt" title. Big Jim enlists some of the menfolk, urging them to take a break from being homophobic towards Carolyn so they can smoke Paul out of the woods. Barbie comes along too, although Big Jim and Julia are becoming increasingly suspicious of him; Junior has told both of them that Barbie beat him up for no reason, but Junior always kinda looks like he serves a punch in the face, so neither Big Jim nor Julia ask Barbie about it. Julia, becoming increasingly convinced that Barbie was in Chester's Mill for a reason, snoops in his stuff before finding a map of the area with a location on it. Big Jim, meanwhile, is becoming more concerned with being in charge, and — more important — being seen to be in charge. He's boring Barbie to death with football stories from his school when Randolph manages to get the drop on him, only to be felled by Linda, that hardest working cop under the dome or outside it. Randolph may have been helped by the fact that somehow Phil Bushey is narrating the manhunt over the radio in real-time somehow, despite phones not working under the dome. Good job giving away where the search party was over the radio, Phil!
Meanwhile, Norrie has snuck out to Joe's house, because she heard he has a generator, and she's hoping to avail herself of it, because without her tunes she's apparently not the ray of sunshine we've already come to know and love. She neglects to tell her moms where she's going, though, which seems pretty shitty of her. But Carolyn does arrive in time to see Norrie and Joe engage in some synchronized seizuring.
Elsewhere, Angie plays up to Junior and encourages him to check the cement factory where they used to have sex for a way out. Julia — puffing herself up mightily as the one, as a journalist, with the responsibility of finding answers about the dome — follows him, and then they get lost on their way out, giving Julia the chance to explain why she, clearly an awesome journalist, is in a backwater like Chester's Mill. The reason does not make her more sympathetic — in her zeal to take down a politician, she published damning documents that were fake, which she suspected they were. And she doesn't appear to have learned enough as a reporter to use a notebook or some kind of recorder when interviewing someone. Oh, and her news reports on the radio include such great muck-raking dirt as, "Presumably, [the authorities] will keep at it until they get some answers." Nothing makes for good journalism like making assumptions and placing unmitigated faith in authorities! Or maybe she was talking about the audience?
Daniel is a writer in Newfoundland with a wife and a daughter. It's not that hard to portray journalists accurately on television. Not that Aaron Sorkin has figured it out either. Follow him on Twitter (@DanMacEachern) or email him at email@example.com.
So this tiny backwater town manages to have a rather large skate park, which of course has part of the dome running through it -- so I guess it's on the outskirts? I suspect the producers of the television show haven't really mapped out the dome's placement as meticulously as Stephen King did for the book, and this is more so Joe's idiot friend Ben can skate up the wall and other idiot teenagers yell things like, "Ride that dome!" and "That dome ride was sick, bro!" during a late-night skateboard party.
Joe's too busy watching and rewatching the video he shot of Paul Randolph firing at the dome and killing Fred Denton, and Barbie taking Paul down. He wonders if Barbie is "black ops" or something, and a couple of airheads wander over to gaze longingly at Joe's phone and marvel that its battery still works -- "I miss texting!" one moans, even though it's been a day and a half. Then they speculate about what's going to happen to Randolph, Ben saying that a killer cop cop-killer (not redundant) is as bad as it gets.
Elsewhere, Julia's driving, Ben's riding and she's going too fast for his liking. "I don't do caution," explains Julia, and Barbie calls her a "run towards the fire" kinda girl. Julia: "I'm a journalist. I've got to find out all I can about this dome so me and you can get out as soon as possible." That's hilarious! She's so funny -- oh, hold on, she's deadly serious. OK, Julia, top investigative reporter of Chester's Mill. You get on that. Plus she's got a husband out there she wants to get back to and Barbie's face is all, "Yeah, he's totally out there and not dead in here, that's for sure." She says she wants to get to the police station before they take Paul inside.
So they arrive at the jail, where Linda is leading a handcuffed Paul, and despite needing to get there before Paul is taken inside, apparently Julia wanted to question Linda, who isn't under arrested and won't be unavailable to her later. And Julia is such an awesome journalist that she works without a recorder or even a notebook when she asks questions like, "Can you handle this alone until we get out?" Linda largely ignores her and it's Big Jim who steps out and says they'll be fine as long as everybody looks out for each other. That is when the mini-lynch mob, which has been politely waiting for its cue, starts yelling "Murderer!" and throwing things at Paul, who yells that 'twas the Dome that killed Freddy, not him. Big Jim orders Linda to take Paul inside, and Julia is all, "Oh, so you're in charge now?" because she's an awesome journalist doing her journalist thing, also evidenced by the way she rolls her eyes and stomps away while Big Jim warns people about "frontier justice" and urges them to go home, join hands, and "pray for Freddy Denton's soul."