Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles

Season 2 Episode 15

Desert Cantos

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Feb 20, 2009 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (15)

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out of 10
377 votes
  • Slow but steady

    Much like the previous episode, this installment takes its time getting to its point. That's good for fans of the show, who by now understand that the pacing is going to be measured if nothing else. That's not particularly good in any other sense, because it doesn't even try to give new viewers a hook to bring them to the table. This is reflected in the ratings, which will probably lead to a cancellation after this season is over.

    This episode is a slow boil, focusing heavily on the theme of coping with loss. After Sarah's ordeal in the previous episode, this makes a certain amount of sense. But in a way, it's an interesting smokescreen for the true purpose. It's not just how people cope with loss, but how revealing it is when they don't. Zoe's behavior doesn't fit, and it leads the Connor Gang to the truth about the "heating and cooling" company.

    More importantly, it vindicates Sarah and her decision to pursue the drones as a possible explanation for those mysterious three dots. The drone turns out to be a prototype to the hunter-killer drones that have been seen during the future war. It makes sense that SkyNet would run its development through the model of government black projects. The implication is that ZeiraCorp, run by Weaver, was the one running that show, and Weaver eliminated the human work force to protect SkyNet interests.

    This would appear to verify that Weaver is working to build the foundation for Judgment Day, which has not always been clear in the past. This still leaves open the question of why Weaver would bring in Ellison to teach John Henry human ethics. This may be explained by Weaver's own use of Ellison to better understand human emotional responses. Previous episodes mentioned that selected humans (Greys) were selected to teach terminators how to understand and mimic human behavior. Ellison seems to have been recruited for the same purpose.

    Where the previous episode seemed to touch on many ongoing plot threads, however lightly, this was focused on the mystery of what happened at the factory and the truth about what Sarah saw. While that continues to place the focus of the show on Sarah, as one would expect, it may have been a little too sedate. There is a vague sense that all of this is building to something substantial, but right now, it's not quite in focus.