Helix finally hits on the right combination of melodrama, fun, action, and insanity with “Bloodline.” And it’s about time, too.
Sure it’s only just over a week of actual story time, but when you’ve only got thirteen episodes to get in and get out, week eight is a little late in the game to start getting your act together. This isn’t like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., where the same sort of cat and mouse game was played with quality. They had another stretch of episodes to keep building on what had worked so far.
Helix Season One, on the other hand, is almost over and we don’t know yet if there’s going to be more. So they’ve got to get focused and decide what kind of show they want to be. And since they clearly don’t want to be the serious science fiction they touted before the premiere, they need to embrace their crazy and drive these final six episodes home.
And while I was ready to check out after last week, this week brought me back into the fold.
For one thing, they move on and pretend that inappropriately aged doctors humping never happened. This week there are no lingering shots of characters giving longing looks unseen by others. This week we get down to the business of dealing with a hostile takeover of the base by Sutton (Jeri Ryan) and the Ilaria Corporation. And that means alliances are made and deals are struck that expose certain secrets that Hatake (Hiroyuki Sanada) has been keeping from everyone.
The most obvious one being that the Vectors aren’t exactly mindless — they try to infect the food supply in a coordinated attack!! — and he may have some level of control over them — which we see when they drop out of the ductwork and steal Peter (Neil Napier), who is still comatose and in his hazmat suit filled with cooling fluid. When the others show concern, Hatake deflects it, saying they won’t harm him.
But seeing as how the Peter-snatch (heh heh) was orchestrated alongside Dr. Sarah’s (Jordan Hayes) sonic cannon attack (you win, Syfy marketing — WTF?) and Dr. Alan’s (Billy Campbell) escape, it should be clear to everyone that something deeper is going on.
The biggest things to happen this week are all tied to Sutton and Hatake. After a few more suggestive exchanges between the two of them, we learn that they used to be an item back before he developed morals and opted out of the whole let’s cull most of the planet’s inhabitants so we can rule them as a master race idea. Sutton’s reference to Julia (Kyra Zagorsky) as an abomination — after revealing that Julia is Hatake’s daughter (kinda saw that coming) — leads me to believe that we’re actually going to be dealing with an alien invasion, rather than straight corporate takeover of the world.
She’s a little too adamant about their genetic purity for that.
Boxing up Julia in a crate to be sent off for study was a nice touch there, too.
I guess I need to walk back on that whole “Sutton is the Big Bad” thing I harped on last time, seeing as how her head is now in a jar alongside Hvit’s in the White Room. Which makes me think that Hvit was also one of them. The question now becomes, is this the only way to kill them? Or even better, are those heads still alive, just in stasis out in the cold?
Now that’s the sort of question that makes me want to come back and find out more.
And kudos to the “Julia pretends she has an alien bursting from her chest during dinner” bit. That was pretty awesome, if you ask me. Especially her hand-mime of a little alien scurrying around. I think we’ve all done that before.
Well played, Helix. I’m back on board.
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Paul Brian McCoy is the Editor-in-Chief of Psycho Drive-In, writer of Mondo Marvel, and a regular contributor/editor for Comics Bulletin. His first novel, The Unraveling: Damaged Inc. Book One is available atAmazon US & UK, along with his collection of short stories, Coffee, Sex, & Creation (US & UK). He recently contributed the 1989 chapter to The American Comic Book Chronicles: The 1980s (US & UK) and has kicked off Comics Bulletin Books with Mondo Marvel Volumes One (US & UK) and Two (US & UK). Paul is unnaturally preoccupied with zombie films, Asian cult cinema, and sci-fi television. He can also be found babbling on Twitter at @PBMcCoy.