Saturday, October 3, 2009

FlashForward: White to Play

The second episode of FlashForward and I'm still not convinced that I'm "hooked". Well, fanatically hooked, like I am with Lost and was with Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Instead, I'm mildly hooked, curious to see what the mystery of the flash forward is.

This episode opened up to a scene so disturbing that I thought it might be a dream. Charlie is in the playground observing her class mates as they lie prone on the ground. One of the kids rises and announces that the flash is over. All the children pop up, eager to tell each other what they saw. The children are reenacting the black out as a game. Charlie, however, won't play, and the children start picking on her. A shoving match ensues, and one of the teachers tries to discipline Charlie. She runs away into the street. In front of tanks. L.A. appears to be under martial law.

I've tried to recap this episode, but, like Lost, this is a dense show to encapsulate into a short post. Instead, I'll share my thoughts.

I'm guessing that Lloyd Simcoe, the father of Dylan and the future lover of Olivia, is probably not the guy seen standing during the flash forward at a Cleveland base ball game. Simcoe appears to be an absent father to the autistic Dylan. Dylan's mother died in flash forward, and now Simcoe will have to raise him. I think he may end up being on the heroes of the show.

I was excited to see Lynn Whitfield as a Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security who wants to know why the L.A. branch has decided to take upon itself the investigation into what she assumes is a natural phenomenon. She changes her tune after seeing the evidence gathered so far.

Mark is not dealing well with the news that his wife may have an affair in the future. Olivia tells him that she has no intention of cheating on her husband. Then she meets Lloyd Simcoe, who seems to have no memory of her from his own flash forward. She reasons that in the flash forward, he never looked at her, so he has no memory of the event. Olivia tries to avoid Simcoe, but their paths cross several times, and she is clearly sympathetic to his situation. Olivia makes the right decision - she tells Mark that she met Simcoe. However, Mark doesn't seem mollified, and he never tells Olivia that he starts drinking again in the future.

Demetri, who had no flash forward, spends the episode questioning every step Mark is taking, even accusing Mark of trying to make the future happen. While investigating "D. Gibbons", Demetri and Mark meet a sheriff who, like Demetri, saw nothing in her flash forward. Demetri's not alone! Unfortunately, she is later shot to death. Demetri refuses to talk with Mark about it. Later, Demetri is encouraged to write about his flash forward on the agency-built Mosaic. He then receives a phone call from a mysterious woman, who knows from her own flash forward that Demetri will be murdered in March 15, 2010. Beware the Ides of March.

"D. Gibbons" is the name given to someone who cloned a credit card from the real D. Gibbons. He is found in a doll factory in Pigeon, Utah, but the factory is rigged up with lots of explosives, and honestly, it is surprising that Mark and Demetri survive. The agents find a cell phone, and learn from it that "Gibbons" had a conversation during the flash forward with someone that was probably at the Cleveland base ball game. So two people who were awake during the black out.

I think that Wedeck is the funniest character on the show. He took some cupcakes given to the agency by a witness, saying he was going to "put them into evidence". But the story he finally shared with Mark about the events he remembered in his own flash forward and immediately following the black out was hilarious. If I were his wife or girlfriend, I could never kiss him again. Yikes.

Neither Mark nor Olivia have asked Charlie what she saw in her "dream". They've decided to take the "we'll let her tell us on her own time" approach. They clearly stick to the approach even when Charlie's teacher suggests they rethink it. I suspect that both parents feel guilty that their future behavior has such a negative affect on their daughter. Olivia even resorts to surreptitiously seeing if Charlie recognizes Simcoe. Charlie didn't, but became upset on seeing the injured Dylan, someone Charlie apparently knows. In a "shocker" moment, Charlie reveals to her father that she knows that D. Gibbons is a bad man, based on what she saw in her "dream."

A lot of little clears here and there, sprinkled throughout the episode. No clear picture. Of course. We'll see what happens next week.

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