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Dominion S01E02: "Godspeed"

As I wrote about last week, the first episode of Syfy's Dominion was so busy in its attempt to establish nearly a dozen stories (and re-establish its connection to a middling four-year old film) that it was both overwhelming to watch and somewhat challenging to project what the show would look like on a week-to-week basis. However, having seen a second episode, there's some good news and some maybe less good news about Dominion's future. 

The good news illustrated by "Godspeed" is that Dominion appears capable of telling its (still pretty silly) story at a weekly clip without diving into full nutso mode each time. Plus, there was a sense of propulsive moment plot-wise here; this wasn't a retread of the first episode, nor did it get bogged down in more episodic, standalone adventures. "Godspeed" carried right on from the pilot, provided some useful information, and established a more stable core than it had in week one. In my mind, those are all good things to see from a second episode, especially for a show that came out of the gate with a very messy pilot. 

The less good news? I'm wondering how enjoyable Dominion can actually be long-term if everything (and everyone in the cast) takes this so seriously. While I would posit that almost everyone in the cast was better in this episode than they were in the pilot and the story itself felt more streamlined, the lack of pure insanity was missing. "Godspeed" wasn't grossly dim or "gritty" (the worst descriptor), but I haven't yet decided if I prefer the kind of silly dumb we saw last week or the more professionally produced, slightly less dumb that this episode offered. 

Let's expand on the good though! Although the pilot made it clear that this is Alex's story—he of the mysterious, magical tattoos—it also struggled to get that story off the ground because of the array of other things happening in the episode. Tonight's effort parsed down some of the other stories just enough to let Alex's struggles with the tattoos, being The Chosen One, his relationship with Michael, his father's death, etc. breathe. Of course, this was all traditional hero's journey stuff—refusing the call to action and all that—but it gave Christopher Egan material to lead into and find more of the character. It probably helps when all of the other characters were speaking at Alex about his importance to all mankind, giving Egan the opportunity to brush it all away, or by the end of the episode, decide to leave the glorious city limits of Vega. 

Egan's Alex wasn't alone. Across the board, this episode gave characters and actors more—and perhaps more importantly, better—material that wasn't just exposition or empty tirades featuring lame buzzwords. Roxanne McKee's Claire was more assured and less of a naive religious drip, Luke Allen Gale's William had that fine moment where he passed out medical kit vouchers to the homeless, seemingly just because he wanted to, and Anthony Stewart Head's David brought energy to each scene without simply thundering through them with his loud voice (and still dumb accent). The world is still being defined, and that's okay. Nonetheless, these characters started to feel more like people in "Godspeed," which helps make their supporting roles in the macro-level hero's journey work much easier. 

The thing is that this episode still had quite a bit of exposition, particularly of the character variety. As I mentioned, multiple people explained Alex's importance to him and others throughout the hour, but we also saw Claire and General Risen describing the establishment of the V System, Vega's caste framework used "so everyone had a job to do" in the aftermath of God's departure, and David's brief explanation to Alex about his pre-apocalypse profession as a televangelist (which makes total sense, by the way). But I can be a bit more receptive to those types of scenes when they're relatively quick and efficient, especially if the show isn't too invested in Lost-style regular flashbacks. If you told me before tonight's episode that Head's David would deliver a monologue about being a televangelist, I would have groaned repeatedly, but with some restraint from the actor, it unspooled just fine. Not great, but certainly not awful. 

This episode also managed to use some of the weak spots in logic with the premise to its advantage. It's a little dumb that Michael can simply summon Gabriel—mid-orgy no less—for a chat, and yet all that it really led to was a couple of empty threats and some armchair analysis of the latter's daddy issues. I get that this can't be a full-stop war week in and week out, but that was a relatively chummy convo for two leaders of the opposing forces in a post-apocalyptic world. Context free though? Very solid. Tom Wisdom was also better here than he was in the first hour and there was a kind of comfort present in the scene with Carl Beukes' Gabriel. 

Similarly, the show wants us to think that these recent angel (or 8-ball) attacks are something exceptional and yet, we've now seen multiple infiltrations in just two episodes (and only a few days time for the characters). Here, it was Claire's hired hand Felicia that was revealed to be a deadly angel who happened to stumble across Alex's tattoos (better start wearing long sleeves bro) and subsequently trying to murder him. But hey, the fight sequence looked better than I expected it to and moved nicely through a couple of different locations, so I was willing to give it more than a pass.

There's absolutely no doubt in my mind that this second episode was an upgrade over the pilot. "Godspeed" gave me a much better indication of what Dominion could look like every week and created opportunities for the actors to rise above the exposition or the weak dialogue to develop some solid scenes. As I said up top though, I'm not entirely sure that makes Dominion a more entertaining or watchable show. There was charm in the insanity, and some of that has been sanded off for more coherent, but also sort of distilled stuff. I like this version of the show more, but I'm still curious to see where this goes over the next couple of episodes. 



REVEALED IN THE TATTOOS


– Well, I guess if you want to talk about the stuff that was nutty here, we could point to the final sequence, where it was revealed that General Risen has an angel lover outside of town. That rascal!

– I enjoyed Alex's drunken rants to Claire, particularly his line that he became a soldier not to help people but so he could "get three meals a day."

– Very little Bixby this week. That in itself makes this an upgrade. And what does Senator Thorn add to this show yet? 

– I'm not necessarily complaining, but I am fascinated by the increase in sex and nudity on Syfy programming like this and Defiance. It's like the network realized that it lost some of its core fans with the name change and rebrand that came with it, and probably lost even more viewers as networks like HBO and Starz started to embrace genre-y programming, and now it's desperate to catch back up. "Hey! We can show you bare butts and orgies with a lot of shadows! Come back!" 

– Gotta be honest: I'm not entirely sure what was happening with Arika and her cohort in the cell. She's trying to blackmail David into keeping her alive, but what was with all the scratching on the ground? Fill me in!


What'd you think of episode two? Are you still keeping with this one?

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 10/1/2015

Season 2 : Episode 13

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Cory,
The scratching on the ground was them getting the poison in their nail polish to give to themselves. I thought that it was pretty gross.

Danny
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This ep didn't make a lick of sense. Alex is revealed as the Chosen One to a small group of people and he's just allowed to go right back to his former low-level life duties, complete with communal living quarters and showers! What? Why didn't Michael immediately sequester him away in his love nest in the sky? They were just under a chaotic assault, nobody would have thought twice if they lied about Alex having died in the fray. Alex could have just as easily angsted in solitude and come to the conclusion that those closest to him were going to be the first to be slaughtered in this war once word got out that he was the supposed humanity savior and chose to skedaddle. The angel fight sparking this insight was dumb. All the fight did was clearly show that Alex should have DIED from a wing beheading!

Supernatural creatures using fisticuffs is lame! SPN levels lame. At least pull out a mindbogglingly aerodynamic feather and attempt to slice somebody up with it if you're going to move into close quarter fighting!

Ugh! I know Michael is one of Alex's pseudo-My Two Dads in this situation and Jeep luckily escaped these histrionics through the blessed bliss of death by shanking, but I hate Alex's childish behavior. Especially since Alex is ANCIENT. I don't mean that in some mythological cryptic foreshadowing way, but in the actor playing this young'un is too damn old looking!

I just don't care for Romeo and Juliet. The original or the constant regurgitation that pop up everywhere. Oh, they're star-crossed/belong to separate castes, isn't their "yearning" and whining just too presh?!! Don't you just want to root for their love?? No. Kill one of them. I don't care who. Maybe kill them both. Give the tats to the hot guard lady. I'd believe that more than her being jealous that that bland potato Alex isn't into her. Pffft. She would probably move into kicking ass mode immediately too.

They killed hot guard dude because he was both hotter and showed more personality than Alex in a third of the screen time!

I'm sorry, BUT people seriously believe in this Chosen One shit. I cannot believe they didn't string ASH's character up as a heretic straight a way!

MICHAEL: He's the one. My sweet baby boy...not literally
ASH: I don't believe it! Keep this hush hu--
ZEALOT: *bang bang*
Everyone bows to Alex and ignores ASH's dead body.
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Cory, is Dominion going to get its own community page here? Two episodes in, I don't think it's fantastic, but it's fun and silly and definitely discussion-worthy. I'm enjoying Dominion more than other shows like say, Under the Dome.
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The writing sucks. I'm in for the gorgeous wings and Michael's UST with Gabriel and Alex. And because SPN is on hiatus.
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I was excited to hear that there was going to be a show about Angels helping our embattled species ….. And then DOMINION aired …. sigh

Conclusion? The only saving grace I could find for this show was Actor Tom Wisdom as Archangel Michael. He is totally believable, enjoyable to watch and with fine acting miraculously manages to bring some class to the show ~ he belongs on PBS. Savior Egan is pleasantly okay but totally miscast.

And that is as good as it gets. Archangel Gabriel's crew is laughable. Armored angels look like they belong in an old Godzilla movie. Frantic crowd scenes and series wardrobe could be easily overshadowed by the 1996 hit “Mars Attacks” and the nude scenes are a cheap peep show nightmare.

In closing, and if we’re lucky, a future episode will produce an Archangel who will arise and use his talents to cleanse the network of their ineffective efforts thus far … and in doing so obtain and retain a good intelligent fan base … and then, just maybe, the Father will return and the series redeemed. But Archangel Michael “Tom Wisdom” may not want to be bothered …. And if he agrees to stick around to help with the major reparation needed ~ that would be a miracle indeed. We can only pray …

It is a nice concept .... hoping they can clean it up ~ but for now, I think the Father must be very disappointed ...

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Ok, i am still at the four episode thing i do with new series, so at this point i am still like ...ok...
Nothing more, nothing less..
The whole time i keep thinking, that he hopefully accept his "destiny" and kick some ass, the coming next two episodes or i am out....
Special effects are ok, storyline can be better, so lets see and wait.
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they were fileing their nails down to make some kind of poison to kill themselfs with
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OK, I'm starting to think this might be a decent show. Still a silly premise and plot holes big enough to have host of angels fly through but watchable.

Re Michael-Gabriel exchange. I think the point is that since they are both archangels they are quite alike. So even if they find themselves on opposing sides they are still kindred spirits who see other one as merely misguided and capable of seeing error of his ways, come to his senses and do the right thing. Which is why they are prepared to talk to each other rather than try to kill each other.

Would like to know how society changed so drastically in a generation, why each city state seems to be so different than others and why do people just accept that as perfectly natural.
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Dam!! Arika is one deadly and sexay badass! and the general is into some kinky stuff!!
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Warning: Beware of those closest to you.

So, Alex interprets that as MICHAEL? WHAAA? I'm thinking Michael would be considered one of the most non-close people of any.

How about Claire? His fellow soldiers -- esp the female one who has a crush on him? Bixbie. They are all closer to Alex than Michael.

I hate stupid protagonists.

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Also, I agree it was a meaningless conversation between Michael and Gabriel -- especially after a summons. Weird.

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First, Alex WAS wearing long sleeves, but it slid up. Careless of him (and Michael) to not realize that would easily happen. Also, he has communal showers. How's he supposed to hide them there?

Second, Arika tricked her cohorts into scraping off poison (which is apparently in or under their finger nails by telling them she'd be using it to kill David. But, she actually used it to kill them so she could blackmail David.

Third, you LIKED that fight between Alex and the angel? I thought it was terrible. He barely looked like a trained fighter, there. And, then the angel goes and says he's stronger than expected? Sheesh!

I do agree it seems rather silly how many angels seems to be able to get into Vega undetected. I guess the reason she was able to get out is because the reactor reduced their defense capability?

I can't tell if I'll like this or not, but I'm willing to give it more time.
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So does every character's name have to have some kind of second significance. Riesen (Rising), Whele (Wheel), Thorn, Romero, Robert Frost...

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So if Gabriel had no idea that Alex was the Chosen One, why did one angel specifically go after Alex in the flashback? If it had gone with its comrade to attack Jeep, it would most likely have killed him and then had a free shot at Alex. Going after Alex suggsets that they knew even then that Alex was someone important.
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I think that was just part of angels attacking any humans they came across.
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But the angel didn't come across Alex. Instead of attacking Jeep, it deliberately went to the door, impersonated Jeep's voice, and convinced Alex to unlock the door after the boy went into hiding.
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The angel only did that after a long fight. But, you're right. The angel did know Alex's name AND Jeep's voice. Why is that if they weren't targeted?
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What it looks like onscreen via the editing makes it look like the first two angels went after Jeep, while the third angel slipped around while Jeep was distracted, impersonated Jeep's voice, and convinced Alex to open the door.
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Maybe the angels believed that any child with Jeep would be the chosen one.

It's just strange that no one else in Vega thought that. It could be that that's the reason for the story that not even Michael knew where he was hidden. I just would've thought that any son of Jeep would've had a higher status.
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They haven't really said yet what part Jeep played in the foundation of Vega. The head council members recognized him on sight and seemed to hold him in some esteem. But why isn't clear.
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Over all a solid episode. I'm very intrigued in this show and will keep watching. I'm interested in Arika she coned her "sisters" into killing themselfs with the poison from their nails and backed David into a corner, I like this woman and it seems she has no problem starting an all out war just so she can save her own ass hats off to her. I'm glad Clair wasn't so dull this week she showed some personality and that's a good thing. I'm glad that Michael and Gabriel's chat wasn't too hostile those to are always meant to have difference in opinion but they are still brothers, so I'm glad they can be sivil for the moment anyway. Looking forward to next week.
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Overall a good episode, whereas Alex bitchin' the whole time about everything was a little too tiresome for my taste. Funny how the chosen one thought God to be a fraud when he tried to rub the tattoos away, lol.
Also funny: Alex's different reactions to Bixby getting her belly ripped open and Claire getting thrown to the ground, lol, see:


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I liked this episode even more than the pilot and feel more sure that the series may avoid falling into the rabbit hole I was worried about last week.

First, the storyline slowed down quite a bit, and concentrated on the repercussions of the big reveal, while not getting mired in a philosophical or religious treatise. Instead of trying to figure out what being the chosen one means, Alex goes into some serious denial and tries to move on. The "big Wheel" (for the life of me, I can't remember his name) tries to erase the evidence and feed his pet at the same time, and Michael tries a detente with a psychopathic angel. Good start.

Second, William manages to "prove" himself to Alex in spite of the supernatural warning Alex received. But instead of the story following the standard cliche of the hero staying to follow his destiny while being duped, Alex gets up and leaves. That was a refreshing change. I'm really not sure where the story is headed, but I'll continue to follow.

I'm impressed by Arika's plan, and am very intrigued by just how cold-blooded she appears to be. I'd love to see just what sort of society inhabits Delphia(sp?).
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The pilot was better but I still enjoyed this episode.

LOL--@ "[the pilot] its attempt to establish nearly a dozen stories... was both overwhelming to watch". It really wasn't that complex.

Maybe I am misinterpreting but does "challenging to project what the show would look like on a week-to-week basis" mean you want a predictable show? Also why such focus on "look" rather than substance? Rhetorical questions

"(still pretty silly) story"~ I guess you could say that about any supernatural show. Why is this more silly than Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, Helix, etc… Wow, such disdain for a show and I can't tell if it is for the genre or something specific about this show's plot.

I'm sorry, is this supposed to be a comedy? I thought it was a sci-fi drama. Phrases like "takes this so seriously….the lack of pure insanity was missing. "Godspeed" wasn't grossly dim or… [the] silly dumb we saw last week or the...slightly less dumb that this episode…" are why I stopped the reading the review after that paragraph. It sounds like serious is bad (wtf?) and apparently the "reviewer" thinks it has reached Helix level bad so that it needs to make fun of itself, wtf? Wow, you thought the pilot was "pure insanity". I thought the pilot was great but not as awesome as "pure insanity" would indicate and since you, the reviewer of the pilot, trashed the show's pilot then why would you miss the insanity? Whatever… lol--& "grossly dim" coming from someone who though the pilot was complex yet at the same time thought it was silly dumb…. No wonder you are confused.
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I think it was also obvious that the Helenians(?) scratched the floor in the cell in order to get to the poison in the nail lacquer or in the nails themselves...
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Totally obvious! I also knew that Arika had a plan and would outsmart David (she seemed ruthless enough to kill her cellmates and I saw that coming). Her prior ruthlessness was what made David respect her in the first place.
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I love syfy bur what is up with all these religious based movies like dominion and I am recording monster ark dealing with giants from angels and humans having monster babies trying to destroy mankind and stuff lol
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I also would say that there was poison in the nailpolish. But as Cory's question was already answered in great detail by someone else I have a question of my own: in the recap for the last episode when Gabriel said "my son" - did he refer to William (in a way of like a priest says "my son" to everybody male?) or did he say Alex was his son? [SPOILER for "Legion" ahead: I just watched it an in this movie Jeep wasn't Alex' real father. So could it be that Alex is the savious because he's half angel?]
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Yes, I think William is Gabriel's biological son.

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I forgot: Alex could be his son too, but William looks and acts like he could be Gabriel's son. Maybe Alex is Michael's?
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I was thinking the same question we know it's defiantly not Michael as he said something about angle babies in the pilot after is foursm, but it could have been Gabriel or even another angel that was already on earth.
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Alex's mother didn't even remember sleeping with anyone in particular before she realized she was pregnant, so Alex definitely has a supernatural origin.
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Wow that is good question since from movie "legion" waitress was having someone else baby ....was it angel ? Lol
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This is too silly for me. I might watch another episode or two out of curiosity, but I don't think I will follow this show. I'm not a fan of the design of the Angels, and the new world order doesn't make much sense to me. The only air force is controlled by a large cult who started worshiping the divine feminine and dressing ridiculously after the angels showed up and proved the existence of the Judeo-Christian God? I know that religion isn't really about logic, but come on.

The angel fight was terrible. She could easily kill that other guy with her wing, but used her fists on the chosen one!?

I don't think I like the main actor. Even if I disregard the fact that they chose a 30-year-old who looks 35 to play a 25-year-old, he doesn't seem right to me. He's too dull to have a leading role.

It's also super weird to hear Giles speaking American English. I'm not sure how much of it is because I know him only as Giles, but everything he says sounds wrong to me.
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Even if I disregard the fact that they chose a 30-year-old who looks 35 to play a 25-year-old, he doesn't seem right to me. He's too dull to have a leading role.

LMAO! Agreed.
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I agree about the main actor and "Giles".
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What I find... distracting is that it feels like we're watching the Supernatural spinoff we should have gotten instead of Tribes.

Demons replacing "eight-ball" angels, Crowley replacing Gabriel, Castiel replacing Michael. Have Bobby survive somehow and replace Jeep, and have Dean's son Ben as Alex.

It just seems like the whole "angels with daddy issues" thing is very familiar from Supernatural.
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That is a good observation. They do seem to be Supernaturalesqe in their depiction of angels.

But Tribes just sounded horrible from the get go.
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Well, sort of. But they're taking the demonic aspects of Supernatural and transferring them onto angels in Dominion.

Yeah, angels on Supernatural possess people as well, but they don't do the black-eyed schtick.
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""Godspeed" carried right on from the pilot, provided some useful information, and established a more stable core than it had in week one."

In a typical case of post-pilot blues, they added several new show crew people. People that are currently working on Defiance, oddly enough. Bryan Q. Miller, Darren Swimmer, Todd Slavkin.
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Since we are talking about naked butts, Claire is simply gorgeous. This show probably do not make much sense but it really quite enjoyable.
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I'm not convinced that was Claire's (actress) butt we saw, there.
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I really am enjoying this show. Reminds me a lot of Dune.
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I know it is nitpicking but they are in the middle of the freaking desert. They are 400 miles (and those are angel filled apocalypse miles) from the nearest port in San Pedro. There is no way in hell they are going to have fresh fruit. I know, I need to accept that they are magic and this is just the universe that they listen to. But come on.

Anyway, it was all right. It is pretty standard fare really. Nothing groundbreaking kind of contrived and trite. But it works on a certain level if you can get over Alex being a moron that won the christian mythology lottery. But when the tattoo said don't trust those that are close to you. That also means Claire big guy and the Wheels and Claire's daddy. Pretty much the only one to trust would be Michael and Alex is being a petulant child about it all.

I am glad that David (Head) explained that he was one of those tv ministers. It explains the voice a lot.

The rest was all right.

Oh and Cory, Senator Thorn brings that dress from the pilot. That really is all she needs to bring.
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I agree. Alex is acting like a petulant child towards Michael, though I can't really blame him. All this time Michael's known his true identity, but he had to join the army just so that he could eat? I'd be hacked off too. But Alex needs to grow up and start acting like a "chosen one" soon, the war is about to get hot again.
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They said last episode that they had hydroponic gardens.
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Yea I got that. But there is no way they have that much water for a whole city. Plus they had bananas, that would take an impressive amount of space and water for a field of hydroponic banana plants. But admittedly I am nit picking.
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Sticking with the show for now (Head makes a pretty good Machiavelli, the fact that the general has an angel lover means that the show is at least willing to deviate from standard plot patterns); but I am going to need Michael killing things with his two blades on an episodic basis if my viewing is going to be a certainty. It's mostly what got me through the pilot - I need something awesome to balance that pitiful look that Egan makes whenever his character is sad/troubled/angry.
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Yeah, the two swords are cool. BTW, it really bugged me that he had his two blades right at the neck of that other angel but he stopped? Whaa? So, he got away. Stupid.
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Yes I didn't understand that. If Michael had at least asked him something, made it clear that he wanted him alive for information/questioning or such. It seemed like he just stopped himself because he didn't want to kill the other angel (and why not? he was clearly a dangerous enemy). Oh well. No sword-killing in the second episode, here's hoping for the third will unleash Michael in angelic, blade-crossing glory.
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Well, in this episode they told us to stick with the series because there ^will^ be pleasureful sexual adventures and sightings here. I know it is not much big of an issue and perhaps not all the viewers will draw to the show just for that, but they are trying to live up with the reputation of sin-city.

I enjoyed this episode and find it a small step toward improvement.

There were some questionable moments. For example assassin angel lady unwind her wings when she was tensed? I think it was unnecessary to show that. Her expression was good enough to tell what's in her mind. On the attack time showing her wings would be better. Then, she killed two people with her wings but to kill the ^target^ she rely on her fist-skills.

That all fight sequence will only make sense if she is there to judge the Chosen one's strength. Maybe they don't want him dead at all.
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That's what I was thinking, that Gabriel wanted Alex's strength tested. Gabriel did say that Alex was headed to him at the end of the episode. That's actually what I thought was so intriguing, that Gabriel expected Alex to come for him. I would've thought that Gabriel would've expected Alex to stay in Vega with Michael.
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Let's see how this will play out.
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Really good show, but boys and girls in the shower together! My dream come true. I can show you girls my towel hanger trick...
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Yeah, it was quite obvious we were pulling back and slowing the show down, but in terms of typical superhero stuff, I thought it was slightly different (where I felt Alex was a little more in denial as opposed to trying to shake off the responsibility) and honestly the "I have to get away to protect everyone" thing is usually a mid season finale type story. So, in a way, while the show itself slowed down, the typical story jumped ahead a bit. But I still really liked it.

I do think we have to spend an even quieter episode (and it looks like next week could be it) where we get to know Alex a bit more. Right now, he kind of is just a nice guy. I feel like I know Clare better (though, was she doing a total 180 from what she was suggesting to her father last week about the government structure of Vega?) William is seriously going to be a very intriguing figure. I honestly believe he is a believer in the Chosen One prophecy, but I guess maybe they are taking advantage of one of those paths that Alex could take and have convinced William that Alex and Gabriel are the way to save humanity. So, it will be very sad when he finds out he has been lied to. I really didn't see Resin (crap, what is first name, I know we heard it several times last night) and the angel lover thing which leads me first to conspiracy thoughts, is she maybe making him sick? Sort of dragging something out? Is he who we really needed to be worried about and William is just a misguided zealot? Or does she promise him some sort of cure?

I thought the conversation between Michael and Gabriel probably was a little reliant on some basic knowledge of angel hierarchy (which I am guessing is detailed to some character at some point). Like while Gabriel is the voice of God (appearing to Joesph), Michael is basically God's sword and most powerful warrior. He defeated Lucifer, highest of the angels, and is basically top of the heap. Gabriel is like the next level down, usually with some variation of Uriel as the angel of death, both still Arch Angels but...sorry, my catechism rearing its ugly head.

Oh, and technically, Felicia wasn't an "8 ball" she was a higher level of angel that can "change their shape." When Alex returned from his excursion outside the wall last week, he implied that the ability to alter shape is different than the usual 8 ball they typically see who are just the lower level angels who took over bodies.

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Holey crap, it's not the show that's long-winded its your reviews. Unlike the show I had to gloss over it.
Still very much liking this show, I'm enjoying that there's a lot of drama firing off in many directions it's rather fun. It's still finding it's feet but its getting there, it is after all only episode 2...
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I think the setup and back story is at just the right pace. Lot's of cast and story line to introduce.
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Staff
thanks!
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Gotta be honest: I'm not entirely sure what was happening with Arika and her cohort in the cell. She's trying to blackmail David into keeping her alive, but what was with all the scratching on the ground? Fill me in!

My understanding was they laced their green nail polish with poison: to either use as a weapon or for suicide. Since they travel the scorched earth and act as emissaries, a suicide pill/option might be preferable to what might happen to them out there.

So they all scraped it off to use as a poison to kill themselves, as Arika assured them that they would die a horrible and tortured death anyway. It's unknown if that was really what was going to go down or if she was manipulating them. This way it would be quick and painless, and serve as a big F U to David.

So when David found they were all dead Arika forced his hand: either let her live and they can claim her servants were working for Gabriel. Without that, her boss-lady would assume he declared war and bomb Vega to rubble.

Either that... or she also tricked the servants into thinking she would use the poison on David and instead used it on them.
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Staff
Appreciate it! That...makes sense, I guess.
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Felicia that was revealed to be a deadly angel who happened to stumble across Alex's tattoos

My understanding was that Alicia already knew / assumed Alex had the tattoos... she was just confirming it. At least based on her conversations with Gabriel at the end of the p.

Alex was betrayed to Gabriels minions at the end of the pilot. So Felicia "checked" so she was sure before she attacked him and blew his cover. Hence the "accident"
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Good point. Her reaction looked SURPRISED, not like, "Oh, he IS the chosen one".
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This show is so stupid. Just on scene to scene basis...what is so special about angels on this show? They took human bodies(derp),all they can do is throw hissy fit and jump around(derp) and show wings,so they remind us they are...angel(derp).

So Michael and Gabriel...OMG(pun here)...how stupid was that scene...one fights to destroy humans,other to save them,but they just talk(derp). Then they flash their swords(derp) even though they are "top dogs" of angels(derp).

I love Anthony,but wow does he like to get in shitty stuff. I gave this show a shot,because of Anthony,but I can't take it anymore.
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GABRIEL: I see you're still loving humans, you wanker.
MICHAEL:
*horny guilt face* I see you still have...copious amounts of Daddy issues and a GOT cosplay inspired wardrobe

MICHAEL:
I just summoned you here to let you know that I know that you're restarting the war. You still haven't got cell service in your Popsicle Palace?
GABRIEL: Have you seen my big sword? *unsheathes* I know that you know that the war can't stop, won't stop, bro. Also, I know about your savior coming out party. Didn't get an e-vite.
MICHAEL: *no poker face* Let me show you my swords! Yep, double penetration. Dad liked me better.
GABRIEL: This reminds me of our last Thanksgiving together as a family
MICHAEL: Good times
GABRIEL: K, see you on the battlefield!
MICHAEL: Later, Gabe.

I don't get the angels' motivations...at all. Gabe just like Lucifer (where is Lucifer by the way, I'm not familiar with this franchise's mythos?) is super bitter about the the new baby and decides to murder it. All this in some kind of misguided bid to get Daddy to come home so they can...go back to being body-less sycophants? The angels seem to really, really enjoy fucking. And probably other corporeal sensations, that probably doesn't come with the angel packaging. Gabe was talking about the Earth being made into a pit, but I don't see him planting any fucking trees sitting up in his icicle castle!

I'm not clear as to why Michael is protecting humanity other than he has his orders, complete with fated child, inspite of a probably vactioning God.
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"Let's expand on the good though!"

I could actually hear you in Barney Stinson voice saying, "Challange ACCEPTED!"

It is far from perfect, but you pointed out some of the things that show promise. I enjoyed it - 2 for 2 so far which isn't easy in TV these days. If its a 4-episode test, it is half way home.
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That was just for you, ed.
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LOL.

Thanks for letting me believe that Cory! The sky is a strange color in my world.
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I liked this one!
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That would actually make a good story. What pilot did you dislike, yet ended up enjoying the series?

Although it is too early to say you enjoy the series, it is a good sign you thought it improved.
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I like the show, but it started out really quite a mess. Too many characters and trying to squeeze too much development into one episode. I know it is not the series fault, it is just the way things happen these days. Shorter seasons and episodes force everyone to try to squeeze a lot into the first episode and the last two episodes and put a few fillers in the middle. When Jeep died, I thought of Bambi. Alex was already an orphan though, so it wasn't so much like he really had a chance to bond with his father and Michael it seems has been a distant god-father, saving the boy and watching over him, putting him under his command yet, still remaining distant. But true to form, the hero has to be orphaned and lose his family so he can latch on to a cause and run with it and of course he has to be a reluctant hero too.

I am glad this episode pared down the number of story arcs and focused on Alex's struggle with accepting his change in status in life from being one of the lowest caste to being the chosen one imprinted with a lot of tattoos only he can understand, but doesn't quite want to believe yet.
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My understanding of all the scratching on the ground was that their nail polish was dried poison, and she was having them scrape it off all the way to the nail bed (possibly to hide the evidence and maybe to appear as though they were also tortured). I never actually suspected they'd use the poison on themselves, but then, I'm not the only one to underestimate Arika's resourcefulness or the blind fanaticism of her followers in this instance.
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