Roswell, New Mexico Episode 13 Review: Recovering the Satellites

Roswell ends season 1 on a high note that is both satisfying and surprising

This Roswell, New Mexico review contains spoilers.

Roswell, New Mexico Episode 13 Review

Season 1 of Cowboys and Aliens goes out with a bang. It’s been a wild ride, and I don’t think anyone predicted what this show would be and just how much heart and humor it would bring to our screens every Tuesday night.

Roswell still struggles to fit every member of its captivating ensemble into its story, and this episode is no exception. Alex and Maria are barely included, though Maria’s beats are more satisfying than Alex’s. Once again, someone else gets to pick up Alex’s crusade, with Kyle Valenti taking down the elder Manes in a way that allows him to maintain some version of his father’s code.

It was good to finally see Maria and Liz (allegedly best friends) touch base and catch up on some major developments. All signs continue to point toward Maria and her mother actually being psychic, and the elder Deluca knowing about aliens, something to look forward to if the CW greenlights a season 2. Hopefully Maria will finally figure it out soon, since she noticed Michael’s heeled hand while he played guitar for her.

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Speaking of that hand: Max had no business healing it. It was a profound violation for him to ignore Michael’s repeated wishes. Part of having powers is learning their limitations, including when to limit yourself. I saw no real sign of Max’s troublesome control issues abetting. (Yes, he appeared to have died at the end of the episode, but it’s unlikely that will stick. And even if it did, we had an entire episode to analyze before it.) During Max and Michael’s confrontation, Max yet again insisted Michael should be fine by bringing up his own positive family experience. Easy for you to say, Max. You grew up with a Stepford mom; he grew up with abuse as he was bounced throughout the system.

Sadly for Malex shippers, it seems Michael is choosing (for now) to look forward and to stop being in so much pain. Michael and Alex are still earth-shattering, electric, and it’s no surprise that Michael put it that he will probably always love Alex, but that it hurts too much right now. With everything he’s been through with being rejected by the world and never having a family, perhaps Alex’s love and acceptance was a little too real, a little scary, and a little too tied to the pain of the past. I’m sure Alex is Michael’s soul mate, his end game, but I’m fascinated by what dynamics will be drawn out with his pairing with Maria.

Isobel may have been lying to Noah, but it felt good to see her get her triumphant moment nonetheless. It felt deeply cathartic, like something she’ll grow into. It might not be true now – she thinks she loves him and that he’s her person, and she’s of course very much in pain – but with time she will likely come to realize how right she was about the fact that there’s a reason she never trusted Noah with her secret. With Rosa back in play, I’m curious to see what her and Isobel’s relationship might be like. It was fraught when Rosa was alive, and Noah used Isobel’s body to kill Rosa, but maybe they can both find some peace there.

I was a bit confused by Liz’s shock that Rosa is a Valenti. Didn’t she know already? Didn’t she and Kyle talk just last episode about going to the cemetery together? Having Noah confirm it could be upsetting, to be sure, but she reacted as though she had no idea and didn’t know that Kyle knew, either. Didn’t Kyle tell her, back when he thought it was a hookup?

Noah imparted a fair amount of information before his death. The aliens have more than one skillset, as Isobel proved. Max is capable of more than he knows, as he showed by calling down two lightning bolts and wielding them in his hands. The victors in the war on their home planet will one day come for them in The Alighting, as they three are special – Max especially so, it seems. Noah seems to think they’re who humans mistake for gods, and that Max is a savior even among aliens. He’s certainly a savior to Rosa.

Rosa’s resurrection, apparently in exchange for Max’s life, was meant to be a major reveal. Given Rosa’s immense presence on the show and how frequently it was predicted by fans, the wind was taken out of those sails a bit. The sheer surprise of it isn’t all that powerful, but Jeanine Mason has done such an excellent job showing as a grieving sister this season that seeing her reunite with Rosa was compelling nonetheless. But what will Roswell become if it’s not a portrait of grief? 

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The alien siblings, however, need to learn that secrets and making decisions for other people are not a good first instinct. Liz needed to be told right away about Rosa in the pod, regardless of whether she was as dead as a doornail. I hope Roswell is renewed, and in season 2 (among other things) I’d like to see more of the core group of characters coalescing into various alliances and factions who work together or won’t, who agree or disagree based on their values and loyalties, as opposed to the current setup, where it’s based on ignorance versus who’s in on which secrets.

This fantastic first season ends with more questions than answers. How will they explain Noah’s disappearance and Rosa being alive? How will the town of Roswell handle the resurrection of the girl they see as a drug-using killer, while two white girls remain dead? Why couldn’t Max’s siblings feel him when he was in pain? How will Maria handle Michael’s secret and the fact that he is who her necklace is meant to protect her from? How will her and Alex’s friendship endure?

Other notes:

“Isobel can’t come to the phone right now,” T Swift reference from Noah.

Not only can Kyle Valenti buy a gun immediately with no background check and in a terrifying and obvious state of emotional distress, but he gets a friends and family discount.

Keep up with all our Roswell, New Mexico news and reviews here.

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4 out of 5