The Tomorrow People Season 1 Episode 3 – TV Review
Huh, I feel like I need to somewhat retract my blind apathy about The Tomorrow People from last episode.
I’m still going to stick to my 5 episode allowance, but this one gives me some semblance of hope.
There might be more to stick around for than just Robbie Amell’s bare chest.
TL;DR We learn Cara’s tragic backstory; Stephen convinces the Rebels to help out a suicidal school friend; Astrid catches onto what Stephen can do; Stephen ingratiates himself to Ultra.
By using time stopping powers.
Stephen is a busy boy this episode. He risks getting found out by Ultra when the Rebels task him with planting a bug in their computer system, which would give their British super computer full access to their tracking system. But not to worry, because Jed totally finds the bug about 5 seconds later because the Rebels’ plan was threadbare and hinged on Cara not coming down with a brain fart. But it ends up okay, because Ultra just captures Cara and forces Stephen to inject her with the cure. Time stopping powers create a nice trick, though, and their relationship is stronger than ever. The reason Cara brain farted was because it’s the anniversary of her traumatic Tomorrow Person awakening. Flashbacks to her 5 years ago show that she was a deaf mute. Her powers awakened when she was sexually assaulted by a classmate and she accidentally killed him. She uses her powers to escape police custody and go on the run. She uses this pain to help Stephen’s classmate Emily, who wants to commit suicide. They save her just in time, but Stephen is seen teleporting away by Astrid.
That’s what you get for soap operatic lingering at the scene, Stephen.
What was bothering me about The Tomorrow People (and is symptomatic of any new show, really) was how empty the world felt. All we’d gotten was some whingey, daddy issues stuff from Stephen, and not much else.
It’s amazing how getting just a single other character’s backstory can improve the world so much. Hopefully they don’t make us wait too long before getting to the others.
Why I hate this episode:
Getting seen by Astrid is just an idiot move on Stephen’s part. Not only could Emily herself reasonably have seen Stephen in her rearview mirror, but you’re out in the fuckin’ open, dude. At least have a quick glance up the goddamn road you’re on before zip-zapping away.
Astrid’s reaction is pretty bizarre, too. She goes straight for the throat, attacking Stephen the next time she sees him and vowing she’ll figure out what he’s up to. Bitch, you saw someone bloody teleport. At least pretend to be impressed.
Metro Station’s Shake It plays at the 5 years ago school dance. Oh god, why.
The bugging plan was not great. The Rebels had access to a 3D map of the facility, but Stephen apparently wasn’t allowed to view it, because when Cara is unable to respond, he has no idea what his escape route needs to be. Winging it doesn’t always work.
Jed and Darcy (Stephen’s new partner, and the debriefer from last episode) watch Stephen supposedly administer the cure to Cara. Stephen moved around a lot during the time-out (Cara a bit, too). Unless he positioned himself exactly the same as when he stopped time, they would have noticed. The show tries to work around this by focusing on a tray Stephen purposely flips over to distract them. But the tray is on the far side of Cara from where Jed and Darcy are viewing, so that doesn’t make much sense.
Oh, and I don’t know if I missed this earlier, but The Rebels have a vicious anti-human stance. Simply rude.
But it’s not all bad:
Cara’s backstory truly opens things up. And I thought it was sufficiently moving. The boy she killed’s father is apparently a powerful man, so Cara’s dad encourages her to run away instead of trying to fight the charges (it might be hard to explain away those telekinetic supermoves). I was on board with his tearful farewell, but then she reads his thoughts, and he thinks about how things will be easier for himself if Cara fucks off. Rough. Just what you need for a tragic backstory.
Cara also has a sister who is, conversely, not keen to see her go. Impending character?
Jed makes a surprisingly decent point when Stephen asks him whether or not he should help Emily. He says helping one girl who maybe might be thinking of doing something rash is not worth outing and destroying yourself (and potentially all other Tomorrow People). “You can’t save everyone.” Very true.
Jed also earns best line when he references a popular line, but with a twist: “What was it that Stalin said? When one man dies, it’s a tragedy. When millions die, it’s a statistic. Well, obviously he was a monster.” A necessary qualifier.
Interestingly, the Rebels’ position on the Emily situation is the same as Jed’s. Not so different after all, are you?
Stephen gets his obligatory shirtless scene. No complaints here.
The very first tipoff the Rebels reap from their infiltration of Ultra’s system is a trap. Because Ultra figured their ploy out immediately. I lol’d.
Time stopping is always fun.
Oh, and Jed’s insistence that Stephen perform Cara’s depowering is adorably nasty. What an uncle.