Cult "Get With the Program" Review: If It Quacks Like a Cult...

Cult S01E04: “Get With the Program”

In between interrogating that True Believer hacker who looked unnervingly like a young, punkass PeeWee Herman and keeping up with the fake Cult—which currently is infinitely more interesting than the real one, IMO—I made an observation about our doofus hero, Jeff. In addition to being a dumdum, he’s also kind of, well, I don’t want to say useless, but he just doesn’t seem to DO anything other than watch Cult reruns and sleep and hang out at the creepy fandom dive waiting for someone to jump-start the case-of-the-week with a conveniently timed IM.

I get it. He’s doing research and it’s not like there have been too many great leads to more actively work with. But this week he got an AWESOME lead and it was all hand-wringing and agonizing over morals and pretty much just standing around while that deprogrammer, Ross, did all the work. I like Ross. He’s pragmatic. He’s also funny in a serial killer kind of way. I would like to trade in my current hero model for an upgrade, please. No offense, Alaric. It’s not you. It’s what you do. Or rather, DON’T do. Which is anything.

Jeff might be on the path toward being a little more proactive about things after his little adventure in the ultraviolet glow stick graffiti room. Ultraviolet. Glow stick. Grafitti. He told Skye that he was willing to do whatever he had to do to get Nate back, even if it meant using truth serum responsibly before releasing punkass PeeWee back into the wild where, mark my words, I’m willing to bet Detective Sakelik will be less generous. I’m actually surprised he made it to the end of the episode. The True Believers just don’t seem like the type of people who would be really understanding about the specifics of what might have led someone to betray them, if they are anything like their fake Cult counterparts.

So let’s talk about fake Cult. Fake Cult was fun this week, no? Kelly is starting to come off as kind of sketchy in her own right. Billy terrorized the professor who was writing an unauthorized biography of him because he didn’t like what the guy wrote, which wasn’t actually as petty and frivolous as it sounds once we heard Billy’s side of the argument. We found out that the box associated with his followers—both in the fake fake universe and in the real fake universe—symbolizes the earth. That’ll probably be on the exam. In the end, Billy and his would-be biographer reached an amicable arrangement: The professor would stop working on his book and Billy would pull the nails out of the dude’s hands, give him a Band-Aid or five, and promise not to slaughter his family. I think that’s fair. I also think I would rather watch this show than Jeff and Skye doing their thing. Whatever that is.

Last week, I mentioned how blatantly obvious Skye’s subversive activities at the Cult studios were and how I couldn’t believe no one had started to question her yet. This week, one of Skye’s co-workers let on that Skye isn’t nearly as sneaky as she thinks she is. Sure, the makeup artist was of the opinion that Jeff and Skye were harmlessly sexting, but the exchange was enough to give us confirmation that Skye hasn’t been flitting about unobserved, and it’ll be interesting to see just how much her peers know, regardless of what they’re CLAIMING they know.

Alona Tal, of course, even artfully splattered with fake blood, was nothing short of flawless. I want more Marti action, specifically Marti and Skye being awesome sneaky ladies bringing down the bad guys from inside. I think Jessica Lucas and Alona Tal had more chemistry in that four-minute scene than Matthew Davis and Jessica Lucas have had in the last four episodes. Davis is a solid actor, writers. How’s about giving him some material that actually, you know, requires acting?

What did you think of this week’s Cult?


– “There’s a TV in every home.” I see what you’re trying to do and remain unconcerned. Try again, Cult.

– I’m not sure why Skye had to explain hacker hostels to Jeff. The man’s a journalist. I think it’s pretty self-explanatory as long as you know what a hacker is and what a hostel is. I suspect her line was meant to enlighten us, but again, “hacker hostel” is pretty much exactly what it says it is.

– On that note, I’m still genuinely liking the story. I've been waffling, but “Get with the Program” clarified a lot of things that needed to be clarified, particularly with regard to how the True Believers operate. Plus, I really enjoyed Ross and I hope we run into him again. But it would be great if Cult's dialogue could be less awful. I’m still laughing over “poser.”

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