This review contains spoilers.
1.10 What Storm Is This That Blows So
Who knew that, for all of its significant problems, a Star-Crossed episode with all of the characters self-contained in one place could be as entertaining as What Storm is This That Blows So? We had a natural disaster, shady scientists, a couple of breakups, and couple of new romances, Roman on drugs and the rise of the new Red Hawks all in the space of an hour, which is more excitement than the show has managed to cram in the previous nine weeks and romantic pondering and weak threats of violence.
For all of the talk of war and integration, this was the first episode of the show that felt like it mattered. Featuring only the high schoolers on lockdown, the events of the episode showed us a microcosm of this future world we’ve been exploring for the past few weeks, with Roman and Emery’s newly public romance providing the catalyst for lots of drama. People generally don’t know how to feel about this human/Atrian alliance but, as we would expect from teenagers, it’s mostly sly giggles from the corner and jokes about what their children might look like.
Slightly put out about not being the trendsetter on this particular issue, Taylor decided pretty quickly that Emery and Roman’s coming out meant that she and Drake could pretty much do whatever they want. Of course, with Drake mixed up with Grayson and the Red Hawks, the first order of business is to end things with her but, as the previews for next week told us, this is definitely not the end of their romance. That’s one of the most frustrating things about Star-Crossed as, for a show so reliant on our interest in the couples, it sure has played it safe with most prospective pairings.
The exception to that is Sophia, who might actually be the most interesting character on the show. Despite being totally likeable, sweet and functional as Roman’s level-headed sister, she also provides two pretty compelling chances at romance. The first is with Lukas, who feels a little too obvious, but the other is with Taylor. Maybe we were supposed to be swooning over the many Emery/Romance scenes in the episode, but the most romantic moment had to be their sweet, subtle kiss after Sophia came up with the perfect words to snap Taylor out of her post-Drake sadness.
Aside from the teen partner-swapping, there was a lot of scene-setting in this episode that will be important for the remaining three episodes. The storm that put the school into lockdown in the first place was revealed by Sophia and Lukas to be a terrorist plot but, with the integration program at risk and relations between humans and Atrians already fraught, they decide to keep quiet until they can learn more. On the other side of things, however, is Grayson. There’s been a question mark hanging over the character since the beginning, with his Red Hawk roots and interest in Emery placing him in direct opposition to Roman.
So I predicted a few weeks ago that Grayson would turn against the Atrians eventually, even if he thinks he’s doing things in a better way than his parents, and here he is. Targeting the Trags rather than everyone in the Sector, things could go either way when he chooses to strike. Grayson has been set up as a potential good guy so far, as well as a slightly unconvincing third point to the Emery love triangle, but maybe Star-Crossed will surprise me and make him the season’s big bad? We’ll have to wait and see but, by using Drake as an informant and attempting to recruit Eric, it’s only a matter of time before his plans are revealed.
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