The Dead Zone

Season 6 Episode 10


Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Aug 19, 2007 on USA
out of 10
User Rating
62 votes

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Episode Summary

While on a trip to visit Bruce, Johnny views a racehorse being stolen in a vision. He also realizes that he may have lost the chance to reunite with Sarah and J.J. thanks to Stilson's efforts.

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  • What the heck? Why did i just waste an hour of my life?

    This episode was absolutely ridiculous!!! Stupid idea! I mean, I was really excited to see Bruce coming back, and I had high expectations! But what in the world is this? Have all the good writers left? This is utter crap!!

    First of all, why are all the people more concerned about winning the race then the missing woman? They just continue on with their preparations and don't even care that people have this lady and have threatened to kill her!! Second, since when can Johnny get visions off of animals? Seriously, he can touch the horse and have a vision from the horse's eyes? The black and white was pretty funny. But this is so stupid!!

    Third, I feel like I just watched an hour-long commercial for the Visa check card. Seriously. This is stupid. Who says, "Yeah, with this Visa check card I can make any transaction - and fast!" Not those exact words, but come on?! And then they proceed to zoom in on the logo and hold there for about 10 seconds. TWICE. What the crap?!

    Fourth, what was with all the corny lines? do we really need a bunch of crap like, "i knew they were meant to be together when they first met. They talked for hours, and i missed my appointment." what in the world??? and why don't they actually let us see Bruce propose to her? it's much better than the corny shot they had of the ring on her finger. I mean, that could've worked instead of a proposal, actually in a myriad of ways, but they way they played it out, it came at a point when the audience sort of needed that relief!! and we didn't get it!

    Fifth, since when is Stillson a flaming environmentalist? huh? So, i'm pretty sure this show has never been too focused on political leanings. Especially since it could be insinuating that a particular political party could result in the apocalypse. So, this was just dumb. Do we really need a ten minute focus on planting trees, and a little kid crying? and some weird story about Stillson's twisted dad killing a dog? what the heck?

    This episode was STUPID! and absolutely painful to watch!!!moreless
  • Another good idea hampered by nagging production issues

    This is an episode with very specific strengths and weaknesses, and it's interesting to consider how the balance of each factors into the final product. In a sense, this is representative of the season as a whole, specifically the struggle to revamp the status quo and overcome the challenges of the previous production run.

    The most positive development is the return, however fleeting, of Bruce. Bruce was critical to Johnny's character evolution from the beginning of the story, and his absence has been palpable throughout the sixth season. Much of this episode seems to function as an epilogue to Bruce's involvement in Johnny's life. Johnny, intended or not, is helping to pay Bruce back for everything he's done to keep him sane.

    We also have the return of Greg Stillson to the forefront, following up on his unusual turn in "Re-Entry". That episode presented a new Stillson, free of the damaging influence of Janus and no longer destined to bring about Armageddon (for now). This is the same character, but even more benign. Part of the fun in the Sarah/Stillson subplot was searching for the moment when he would reveal some sinister ulterior motive. That never happened, and it does much to support the notion that Stillson could, in the right circumstances, be a good man.

    The goal, of course, was to present Bruce as a man finding love and contentment, his place in the world beyond his friendship with Johnny, so Johnny could realize that he wanted the same with Sarah, despite the current issues. As expected, this comes just a bit too late, since Stillson's purpose in this episode is to begin a relationship with Sarah, pushing Johnny into the proper state of regret and semi-justified resentment.

    One could predict that Sarah (and JJ, for that matter) will continue to get closer to Stillson, and Johnny will learn that Stillson has an ulterior motive. Johnny's bitterness would be established as a reason for dismissing his concerns. This would help to overlap the character and plot arcs within the context of the mythology.

    Despite all of the promising character and plot elements, this episode struggled. While it's great to see Bruce happy in his new life, the mystery at the heart of the episode never seemed to strike a chord. Perhaps Bruce's distance from the status quo left his current troubles too detached from the rest of the story. The horse race element also reminded me of stock 1980s detective shows, which is not a good association.

    One would wonder why Sarah would be so open with Stillson when she was there, even tangentially, during some of his less savory activities in the past. Even if nothing was ever pinned on Stillson, he was knee-deep in enough of it. Very little past history came into their discussions, and that was a little disappointing. That said, Stillson avoided any shots at Johnny and respected Walt, so he may have scored enough points to overcome her concerns.

    None of that would have hurt the episode overmuch. Instead, two other issues undercut the strengths of the episode. Throughout the episode, the editing was very rough, and particularly in the first half of the episode, the scene transitions were abrupt and the flow was ragged. It felt like the episode had been running long and needed drastic cuts to get under time. Far worse, however, was the extreme and jarring Visa product placement. It couldn't have been worse if Johnny turned to the camera and launched into a commercial. Product placement is a necessary evil, but when it's this intrusive, it hurts the overall production.moreless
Lita Tresierra

Lita Tresierra

Maria Toro

Guest Star

Conrad Dunn

Conrad Dunn

Frankie Toro

Guest Star

James A. Woods

James A. Woods

Tommy Rasmussen

Guest Star

Sean Patrick Flanery

Sean Patrick Flanery

Greg Stillson

Recurring Role

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Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Johnny's vision about Frankie saying that Drift just pulled away from him is never explained or clarified. Drift only panics when Johnny is around but there's no reason Johnny would be near Drift in the middle of the race. The implication is that the person who kidnapped Maria somehow drugged Drift, but this is never born out.

  • QUOTES (10)

    • Johnny: How much did Bruce tell you? (Maria smiles) That much, huh?
      Maria: We don't have any secrets.
      Johnny: I think I kept one too many.
      Maria: Bruce blames himself.
      Johnny: What the hell for?
      Maria: For talking you out of telling Sarah the truth.
      Johnny: No, he shouldn't. I wanted to tell her, Maria. I just couldn't. (sighs) Sometimes I regret that more than anything.
      Maria: Have you told her that?
      Johnny: : No, I tried to, I—
      Maria: You should try again.
      Johnny: It's a little too late for that.
      Maria: Funny. A minute ago, you were telling me not to give up.

    • Johnny: Nice wedding present, man.
      Bruce: No, actually, the best gift I got was you bringing Maria back to me safe and sound.
      Johnny: So does this mean I'm off the hook for my wedding gift now?
      Bruce: Hell no!

    • Bruce: By the way, what are you gonna do about you and Sarah?
      Johnny: I think I'm gonna take someone's advice and give it another shot. Before it's too late.
      Bruce: Really? Who told you that?
      Johnny: One very lucky gal.

    • Bruce: I don't wanna worry her if it's nothing. Although usually with you nothing is something.
      Johnny: Let's hope not.

    • Loud Coat: (about Johnny's wallet) I was gonna use it for fake IDs, but… "John Smith"? Pal, you gotta come up with something better then that.

    • Johnny: Don't give up yet.
      Maria: Bruce always says if your basement floods at 3:00 a.m., Johnny Smith would be the first one over with a couple of buckets. Won't leave until the job's finished.
      Johnny: Lucky for me, Bruce doesn't have a basement. Lucky for him, he has you.

    • Maria: You were supposed to talk to Bruce about Sarah, not be locked up with me.
      Johnny: Nah, I'm used to detours.

    • Sarah: Can I get you something for the road? A drink, coffee, whatever it is one offers to the Vice President.

    • Stillson: You'd be surprised how often I get something when I want it.
      Sarah: Actually that doesn't surprise me at all.

    • Johnny: Man, the longer I'm here the less this place makes sense.
      Bruce: That means you're getting the hang of it.

  • NOTES (3)