The 4400

Season 3 Episode 6

Graduation Day

Aired Unknown Jul 09, 2006 on USA

Episode Fan Reviews (18)

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out of 10
298 votes
  • Graduation Day

    Graduation Day was a perfect episode of The 4400 because it blended suspensful drama, intrigue, and action with great characters and interesting story lines. It was very cool to finally see Isabelle stand up to Matthew once and for all, as well as using her powers to turn the nova groups abilities on themselves. This is a defining episode for Isabelle. I enjoyed watching her scenes with Tom, especially where she challenges him to use the syringe. This episode is also where Shawn really starts to fear Isabelle's capabilities as does Richard. Isabelle has become a complex and complicated character and I enjoy watching her develop. I look forward to watching the next episode of The 4400!!!!!!!
  • Isabelle defends Shawn, who's under attack from the Nova Group.

    Interesting storyline.

    A member of the Nova Group attacks Shawn and Richard calls NTAC for help. Isabelle is not convinced that is sufficient and decides to go after the Nova Group herself.

    It's shown again that Isabelle seems to have no regard for human life, she turns the abilities of the 4400 against themselves and she kills Matthew as well as cause the death of a few other members of the Nova Group.

    I really liked the Alana storyline, it finally made her more than just Tom's wife/girlfried, it fleshed out her past and made her into an interesting character, one that you could care about.
  • Surprisingly good

    Isabelle: Here I am. The Angel of Death.

    When I read what happened in this happened in this episode, I approached it expecting a filler story. But it's much better than that. Alana gets a proper story that explains more about her character, and Shawn is given schizophrenia by a Nova Group member, brilliantly portayed by Patrick Flueger. That, and the continuing "kill Isobelle" plotline makes this gritty and tense episode a welcome addition to The 4400 series.
  • I can\'t believe Shawn would be that forgiving.

    Shawn\'s reaction to what Isabelle had done was unreal. He was driven insane by Daniel Armand. During that insanity he hurt Maia while trying to heal her. He is placed in a mental institution where if not for Isabelle he would have remained forever. the pain of having your very sanity ripped away from you would be terribly frighting. However Shawn response is don\'t kill this man? I\'m sorry but I don\'t buy it.

    If a man tortured you for say 3 days straight. he was brutal and unfeeling in his treatment of you. And in the end broke you so utterly that you were crying like an infant. If someone rescued you from this man. Tells that you will never be safe from him. He can come back at anytime and proceed to torture you again. Would you honestly prevent anyone from killing this man? What\'s a night\'s good sleep worth to you. Would you prefer always looking over your shoulder? Never knowning if your world would crumble again?

    For this is what Shawn was saying to Isabelle. She told him that Daniel Armand could attack him again. Yet he just wanted to let him go? Armand could zap Shawn again from a prison cell. Tom and Diane are so critical of Isabelle. Yet if it was Maia or Kyle that had been Daniel Armand victim they would have done the same thing or worse. Since without powers their methods would have to be more brutal.

    The writers of this show want to make the heroes of the show so above evil or misdeeds that they come off as unbelievable. And like Surface and Invasion this show will probably not see a conclusion.
  • Isabel A savior or a villian?

    Wow. I like where there going with Isabel. She
    is in the body of a grown woman but with the
    mindset of the terrible twos.

    Shw could either be a great help or the end
    of the 4400. I guessed the death though, and it proved
    that Matthew Ross was an emmisarry if you will
    of the other faction of the future But her ability
    able to turn the 4400\'s power against them
    is one of the most powerfull of them all.

    I feel sorry for Shawn because he is in an unintennible
    situation. He doesn;t really love her but he might
    be the only thing that can keep her from
    continuing to go off the deep end.

    It should be an interesting season
  • A really great episode with some defining character moments.

    This was a really great episode; it's also the first episode from season three that I've seen. I wasn't disappointed.

    A man from the NOVA Group, which I'm a bit unclear about, attacked Shawn with his ability and gave Shawn schizophrenia. Patrick Flueger did a really great job with that; it's hard to pull that off. Shawn sliced his arms and then ended up hurting Maia thinking he was healing her. Richard and NTAC agreed to put him in a psychiatric hospital; Isabelle broke him out and went after a lot of members from the NOVA Group until she found the man; she made him stop hurting Shawn and then she killed the man. Creepy. And Shawn thought so too. Isabelle apparently would do ANYTHING for him, and that's a bit too much for him. He's a nice person and she's really not. Also worth mentioning is that Isabelle killed Matthew when he tried to stop her from going to Shawn.

    What I loved most about this episode was the concern that Tom had for Shawn, and the moment they had together after Shawn was better. Excellent. That relationship has been there since the beginning and I'm glad it got recognized. I was really really happy about that.

    It would have been nice to have Susan and/or Danny in this episode; shouldn't they have known what happened to Shawn? They're his mother and brother, you'd think Tom would tell them.

    Hopefully the rest of season three will be this good!
  • God or Evil

    This episode Isabelle gets out of Mathew control and manipulation.
    Isabelle can’t see the difference between god and evil. She reveals another new power and a strong will of revenge due her feelings for Shawn and the fact he’s sick.

    Tom has the mission to kill her, but in the last moment he has doubts, steps away and give more time to see if she’s a danger or nor.
    I still have the question how Mathew know Isabelle “destiny” ?

    In the end of episode we still don’t know if Isabelle is a savior or is she the angel of death.

  • Isabelle needs to take some ethics and psychology classes

    Isabelle takes control of her life, about time. But can somebody please get her a book on morals and basic psychology? She can swim, drive a car, play the piano and have sex but still does not gasp that giving your father a heart attack because you don't like what he says is wrong. She does not understand emotions.

    It is really starting to look like the writers have forgotten some side storylines and are going to focus more on Isabelle, Shawn and Tom from now on. While we do not have the cute-kid or as some people call it the cousin Oliver effect just yet, we do have the cute girl (Isabelle) thing going on.

    The NOVA group storyline needs to come to a head quickly. We keep getting hints about the future and the end of the world but without something big and revealing, the show will become more soap-operaish.
  • I think I saw Jordan Collier on this chapter...

    I think I saw Jordan Collier on the AA group driven by Driscoll, just when Alana gets into the AA group first time, the camera goes to some guys standing on the first row, a guy who looked a lot with Collier (bearded and with grown hair) is in the middle camera focus for some secs. anyone got that impression too?
    Anyway, I think that episode very "creepy" in a sense. Everyone with a deadwish, Isabele, Alana, Tom... Well, all of them had their motivations and such.
    By the way, the history is getting deeper and deeper, I hope 4400 do not have a end like Reunion because of a "too deep and complex" history line.
    Well, I just believe the plot still have a lot to give due to the misteries it have. Lets hope they develop this as well as it is going by now!
  • I\\\'m very curious to see what happens to Isabelle next.

    They are taking her character in a slightly obvious direction. It seems very Anakin Skywalker to me but hey, whatever. The scenes with Sean going crazy were hard to watch but Isabelle\\\'s revenge on Daneil Armand was SUPREME! \\\"What is it you do again?\\\" I\\\'m just hoping that they don\\\'t go in an overly obvious direction with her character because that\\\'s what I like about this show:the level of originality. On the other hand the story with Alana and Keane Driscoll was very well thought out. It was interesting to see her reaction to his little righteous speech about being a changed man and not thinking about who he had been previously. The consequences for what she did intrigue me. Can\\\'t wait for next week. (I\'m also glad they finally killed Matthew. I hated him!)
  • Interesting, Nova Group, Isabelle's fate

    I loved this eppy ... it was really great to see Isabelle shift up into high gear. That girl doesn't let anything take her down. It'll be interesting to see where her character goes. I can't tell whether she's good or bad, it seems to me like Matthew was the "evil" that was put on the earth. I wonder if it will come to the point that Tom will have to 'off' her. Interesting Interesting.

    I'm looking forward to the time when we see Jordan Collier's face again. I have a feeling he has something to do with the Nova Group though. I'm not sure why he would want to harm the 4400's when he's tried so hard to put them on the map.

    Tom has an incredible journey ahead of him, since he's been charged with killing Isabelle. I like the fact that he's giving her the benefit of the doubt and is allowing himself time to see if she's really a danger. I think it's interesting that Matthew told her that she was expected to kill the 4400, however, she chose to take her own path. It'll be enlightening to see where she goes from here.

    All in all an excellent episode, well written and fast-paced.
  • I rated this one as average but on average this show is amazing so it still gets big points

    This is the first time I wasn't enterely satiesfied with an eps from the third season. I was eager to find out who would die, but I hoped it would be a more important then Matthew, who was killed by Isabelle, maybe to cover herself, since she is an evil who has to destroy the 4400. Although we're not sure of that.
    So the eps throws up another list of ideas and questions, but nothing really get answered, and aren't answers what we all want ?
    All in all, I find this eps less intresting then the others from season 3, but it's pretty logic they can't keep producing master pieces.
    An average 4400 is as good as an amazing eps from another series so i still urge you to see it ;-)
  • Storyline dives deeper into dark territory.

    Poor Shawn (Great acting by Patrick)! Wish we got to see more of him.

    I was a little annoyed that they kept killing (or threatening to kill) characters off (i.e. Lily, Maia, Matthew) for no real reason and getting NBC-ish promos (not a good thing!) but last nights episode was amazing. Matthew and Lily's death all seemed to make sense for the storyline and the future of the 4400 and the world. I was beginning to have doubts with the first couple episodes of the season. Many good things happened:

    One: Tom actually acts like an uncle. (Though where are Shawn's mom and bro?)

    Two: Richard finally realizes that Isabelle isn't that innocent and that Shawn's job isn't that easy.

    Three: Alana, though albeit creepy, finally becomes more than Tom's dream puppet. We got more of her character, which was good.

    But, Diana's hatred of Isabelle was a bit random-she disliked her before she even did anything. Still, no chemistry with Marco yet. Hopefully soon because I like him. And I hope Maia doesn't dislike Shawn now, I liked how the two of them were pretty close.

    I'm going to miss the more character driven episodes but I like that the writers are taking the big storylines and making them so interesting! Most shows would wait and drag it out but the producers put it out right in front!

  • Big diversion to let the action slip past un detected

    When your hungry you eat but like with chines food just when you feel you have eaten a filling meal your hungry an hour later. This encompasses my feeling for this episode. I knew, you knew, we all knew Isabelle would not be killed. We also know that or they want you to think that Isabelle is the main point of the series referring to saving the future. I think that it's just a diversionary tack tick and we will find out later that Isabelle is just a mid player. The bigger story is what was done by Alana. It's the small things that matter most and I see that playing out to hit us a lot harder later down the road. Over all Good episode which helps us to understand Isabelle powers, pushing her down a potential dark road and setting up a nice little side story that may have a bigger impact than we think at this point.
  • The strongest season yet continues to impress!

    The third season has been ripping along at a fast pace, and I couldn’t be happier. The producers are keeping their promise by focusing on the big picture, and I think it makes for a more interesting and layered story. For some shows, it might have taken the rest of the season for Tom and Isabelle to have a confrontation, but the writers seem to have a far more interesting agenda.

    If “Gone” started the process of showing Isabelle sliding into darkness, then this episode is the logical next step. As per the visual cues, Isabelle is mostly in darker colors (though not a ravishing red, sad to say), but there’s still that hint of green in her wardrobe. Sure, it may be reading into things a little bit, but I see that as a sign that Isabelle has a choice. She may have been engineered for destructive purpose, but she has the ability to choose her own path.

    Eliminating Matthew (who wasted little time in showing his true colors) was a step long-foreshadowed, and it came at just the right time. Now there’s a different question to consider in the whole “time paradox” debate: was the introduction of Isabelle by the “evil” faction of the “future humanity” the cause of the catastrophe that the 4400 was sent back to prevent? Time travel is such a tricky business in storytelling, because it should all fit together like a puzzle, with cause and effect being somewhat relative.

    The recent revelations make sense of a short scene in “The New World”, where Matthew seems to be plotting the death of Jordan Collier, who remains in hiding. I thought I misunderstood the scene, but in fact, it seems that Isabelle was meant to kill Jordan and leave the 4400 in disarray, thus explaining why Matthew stepped in when he did. It all hangs together very well, even though some elements were clearly worked out after the fact.

    Isabelle was being manipulated into her role as the destroyer of the 4400 by Matthew and her creators, but her feelings for Shawn overrode the programming. Shawn could be the one person to change Isabelle in a positive way, which may be one reason that Tom was willing to postpone the execution. But now that Shawn has seen Isabelle’s true colors, will he still be willing to stay with her? If not, it could be the final straw towards something very, very bad. (And Isabelle’s decision to meet with Ryland is equally troubling, since she could be forging an alliance against the 4400 and their allies within NTAC.)

    Tom’s decision to let Isabelle live could be one of those moments destined for future regret. I have a feeling the audience will be thinking back to the moment when Tom could have taken action, before Isabelle become too powerful. Tom’s decision comes very close to the mid-point of the season (which is technically halfway through the next episode), so this could be seen as a turning point.

    Alana’s subplot is a nice bit of counterpoint. For all that Isabelle decides to act on information without consideration of consequences, Alana seeks a measure of revenge without thinking of what might follow. The audience is left to consider whether or not Isabelle is programmed to do evil, or whether that capacity exists within every human being. Of course, the difference is that Isabelle had no moral development, which could simply make Alana’s choices more damning.

    (As a sidenote: I also have a podcast associated with my various reviews called “Dispatches from Tuzenor”. Recent episodes cover the “The 4400”, so it might be something of interest. Go to if you want to listen!)
  • Very unexpected side story. Main story was riviting.

    I think that the secondary story was almost as dark as the main story. There was a lot of hinted at violence, and lots of retribution. I orginally liked the idea of Alana as a school counselor, helping kids imagine the missing years. I did not like her going down that dark road.
    Isabelle's search for the Nova group was darkly exciting. She would make a good bounty hunter, or at least a very scaring interogator. I like that fact that Tom was not willing to blindly kill Isabelle. All in all it was a good episode, if not a happy one.
  • I expected more The high score goes to Patrick's acting (Shawn) amazing!

    With the previews we saw all week long i expected a lot more! I wish Tom had killed Isabelle off, but i no that would take away from weeks worth of plots! Also if he killed Isabelle now would Jordan Coluer come back still? Will he still come back? that was a big plot put in last seasons final... why isnt there more being said excpet what matthew (now dead) said "I'll keep Jordan away from Isabelle" Now that he's dead what will happen? Who was Matthew?

    i expected a lot from this episode
    Patricks acting was amazing (Shawn)! He made the episode alive! he made it interesting! I think they should have played up Tom and Shawns family relationship more... i think thats important at this point... Shawn is going through a lot and i would be happy to see him and Tom interact in a positive way! For Shawn to go to Tom for help and guidance, for someone he can trust!

    Though i doubt this will happen i have hope!
  • The Nova Group takes a blow while Isabelle's road grows darker.

    A very powerful episode with Shawn in the bullseye. He did well showing his madness and how he was being pushed. Of course this led to Isabelle going over the top, killing Ross (a move I didn't see coming so soon) and attacking the Nova Group. I liked the twist of her using their powers against them (I'm assuming that lady was the one who had a guy killed by his dog in the premire) and wonder how the Nova Group will get along now.

    I guess the plot of Alana's was inevitable but it was well handled, especially her reaction at the end. It's interesting how it mirrored Isabelle's situation, that revenge isn't sweet after all.

    Richard was great too with his refusal to see his daughter as a killer and wanting to do everything possible to keep the one reminder of Lily with him. The confrontation between Isabelle and Tom was very charged but it's likely Tom will regret letting her go in the future.

    Overall, a great episode that added to Isabelle's "Dark Phoenix" arc and ended with the very nice twist of her going to see Ryland (and I still don't get why he's not in jail). This may be the turning point of the season and not a bright one either.
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