UNDER THE DOME Recap: “Speak of the Devil”

     September 2, 2013


Under the Dome has two lessons.  One, guns and murder make it easy to get rid of people who annoy you.  Two, we should learn to have patience in the face of supreme incompetence.  Because let’s be serious, those people under the dome are some of the dumbest motherfuckers I have ever laid eyes on.  The problem is, they aren’t even good people, so this isn’t a “well bless their hearts” situation.  No, they are the worst combination of stupid and arrogant.  Not the mention trigger happy.  The dome, it turns out, is really bitchy, too.  Is there anyone who can rise above?  Hit the jump for more.

Under the Dome has fallen into a pattern of a decent episode followed by something atrocious, and every time I fall for it.  I want the show to be better, and just when it seems to turn a corner (like almost developing Junior has a character last week), it just crashes the next.  Have you ever seen video of a newborn foal trying to stand?  Its spindly legs quiver as it struggles to get its bearings, and just as it thinks “hey … I got this!” it falls forward on its nose.

under the dome britt robertsonBut unlike a newborn animal, Under the Dome has fully formed humans writing its scripts and running its action (one presumes).  And yet … there are paint splatter constellations, a town forgetting everything they know about a person because they are all highly suggestible lemmings, and Linda being not only the worst investigator ever, but her idiocy actually made me cheer for a violent act against a woman.  Barbie knocking Linda out was not only a great moment because Linda is so utterly useless, but he didn’t go far enough.  He could have done the town and viewers a favor by keeping her unconscious as long as possible.

In the more palatable part of the episode, Joe, the only person with half a brain in Chester’s Mill, figures out that Barbie’s savior habit could mean he has a purpose, just like Julia’s miraculous recovery might also be part of the Dome’s plans (it seems to trust her, anyway).  But Angie has other ideas, feeding Junior’s ego by suggesting the Dome was mad at him for abandoning the quartet (which is probably true).  However, the idea that Junior, who has finally reconciled with his remaining parent, might have to have a hand in killing him is good drama.  Unfortunately, I just can’t trust the show to handle it well.

Thinking back on “Speak of the Devil,” how much of it was relevant at all to the overall plot?  The posturing with Max was largely irrelevant except to stack more bodies on Barbie (and where exactly is he running off to?)  What’s terrifying is the prospect of being a hunted man inside of a dome, but the show didn’t touch much on that.  Next week, Big Jim starts his reign of terror while Barbie is on the lam, and whether or not that turns out to be interesting or not remains to be seen.  The dome has its own ideas.  Let’s see where that leads.

Episode Rating: D-

Musings and Miscellanea:

under the dome speak of the devil dean norris— The dome is really bossy.

— Occasionally the show has great visual moments, like the vision of Big Jim.  Sadly, almost nothing else measures up.

— I thought for a moment that Julia might die, and as careful readers will note that would get rid of 50% of the reason I have stuck with this trainwreck.

— Seriously, Linda is so entirely useless.  Way to not show any hustle when a shooting is called in and you have a car.  How deadpan was her tone to Phil when saying “Julia’s been shot, can I use your car?”  Did she even trot over to the passenger seat?  Then of course she shows up after the whole thing is over with, and pieces together Barbie’s relationship with Peter Shumway, something Julia (the only person really affected by this information) found out last week and didn’t seem to give much of a shit about.  And she only trusts cops, kicking Phil out of the car?  Great idea, since most of the cops have turned out to be crooked or batshit insane.  Junior, I think, is the only official one left.  I mean, seriously?  And, Linda is also a really poor shot.

— Dodee is a very close second for Most Clueless/Useless Character, but she doesn’t get as much screen time as Linda.

— Barbie’s triage stats improve to 1-1.

— If Angie is owning and running the diner now, who is actually running it while she’s with the mini dome?

— How about the Prius product placement, eh?

— So the power is still on even though it’s a nuclear wasteland outside of the dome?  Or is that just on one side of it?  Because it seemed pretty lush on the north side in this episode.

— Regarding people without proper emotions, Max was really calm about finding her drowned mother, wasn’t she?  And how did she know Big Jim was the perp?

— I’m assuming this show is going to end like that final montage in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels where there is a massive shootout and everyone dies except the four main characters.