Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles season 2 episode 5 review

One of the best US TV shows of the moment continues to soar, while under threat of the axe, staggeringly...

It’s with a sense of incredulity that I read this show is ‘on the bubble’. What is it that people watch in the USA, other than America’s Next Most Vacuous Person reality garbage?

This show has elevated itself from a by-the-numbers fugitive remake into something spectacular and highly enjoyable.

The fifth episode of the season splits the team up when the death of an innocent man signals to them that a Terminator is tracking down boys who’ll become a future asset to John in the future war. Reese and John go to find the real ‘Martin Bedell’, while Cameron and Sarah find the another kid with the same name, and a Terminator in close pursuit.

If there’s a theme this week it’s the nature of war, and how that impacts on those that live through it. Reese hasn’t been an especially interesting character so far, and this story aims to fix that by explaining more about his future role and relationship with John. Brian Austin Green is exceptionally good here as Reese, and actually so is David Cheaney, the younger Martin Bedell that Sarah ends up abducting.

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Cameron’s limited understanding of ‘children’ is the cause for some genuine hilarity, although her disturbing appearance at the end of the show underlines her unpredictable nature. What is she thinking?

Events ultimately lead the Terminator to the military school where John and Reese must protect Martin Bedell, and seal him into their respective futures. There’s an interesting analogy with The Wizard of Oz, which partly works but they don’t entirely pull off. Perhaps given the characters, that’s what the entire show is actually about? Sarah is Dorothy with the ‘tin man’ Cameron, scarecrow Reese and Cowardly Lion John alongside. If so it’s a cool idea, but it’s a little late in the proceedings to play that card now, I think. Perhaps she’ll wake up soon back in Kansas? Keep a close eye on her choice of shoe colour.

There’s also the pot boiler plot about Agent Ellison who’s solidly now part of Catherine Weaver Machiavellian plan. He investigates the Cedar Point nuclear facility that features in Ep2, and enables Weaver to terminate any future lines of inquiry in the events there.

I can’t say enough good things about this show. It’s smartly written, great performances and interesting plot development. Please, please, don’t let the suits stomp on what has the potential to be a truly excellent series.

The nightmare scenario for the show would be either unresolved Termination, or a horribly curtailed resolution episode, neither of which I’d be happy with.

Read a review of the episode 4 here.

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