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After last week’s much ballyhooed “Kashmir,” in which viewers were promised copious amounts of Led Zeppelin and the first meeting between Miles and Monroe in years, it took until this week’s “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” for NBC to make good on one of those promises (sorry Led Zeppelin). And after the frenetic pace Revolution has set itself, burning through around 800 miles and multiple characters, the midseason finale accomplishes the goal of saving Danny. Now everyone, viewers and characters alike, are left in the nebulous world of what will happen next.
In this week’s episode the viewers finally get some much-needed back-story on the relationship between Miles and Monroe. The flashbacks span everything from their childhood to a couple years before the blackout and then finally during the “Trenton Campaign,” where Monroe refuses to leave Miles because he is injured as they are trying to destroy a lesser militia. These flashbacks might have been better suited in last week’s episode to give the viewer more time to connect with the relationship but perhaps that is a small nit to pick. One particular scene, where Miles consoles Monroe as he grieves at his dead immediate family’s graves (having died in a car crash with a drunk driver), was complete and got a fairly good sense of their relationship especially when Miles calls Monroe family. Of course when Miles immediately refutes this claim in the current day scene before they duke it out, the impact of the previous scene is lessened due to the viewer not being able enough time to connect but what can you do.
In fact, Monroe was far and away the best part of this episode. Instead of always having his creepy, vacant, insane, stare or attempting to act menacing (which he doesn’t do well), the aforementioned scene as well as the scene where he reunites with Miles gave Monroe emotional depth that was never there before. Particularly the subtlety in his need for his best friend to return to the militia when he asks was good. Unfortunately Miles remained Miles, which took away from a more intensely emotional scene. Their knock down, drag out fight afterwards was solid but ended a tad too quickly and Miles escape (therefore victory) seemed too easy as he came out completely unscathed.
As reuniting was the theme of the episode, not only does Charlie finally reunite with Danny but she also finds out that her mother, Rachel, is still alive and they all have a Kodak moment. Aside from the cookie cutter dialogue (Rachel mentioning how much Charlie has grown up comes to mind), Charlie’s initial distrust and surprise was solid and should have continued through the episode. Perhaps it will be a theme when the show’s second half starts back up but a little more doubt throughout this episode of her mom being alive and of what she is doing would seem more than justified and would create some interesting tension, especially if Danny was completely on her side. Charlie also showed some character growth, at least in the strategic side, as she faked out climbing through the air duct and instead just thrashed the guard with the vent to make her and Danny’s escape.
However, perhaps the biggest Catch-22 for future episodes of the show happened with Danny’s rescue. In adding Danny as a more focal character there is hope that his growth and maturation could be interesting, however Danny’s character as he stands now (and the acting) as he seems to portray a passive but whiny ditz, means that more scenes with his grating character are on the horizon. Perhaps he has some yet to be featured talents but as Danny is now he might be more annoying than anything.
The main game changer in “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” is clearly Monroe’s ability to now use electricity. Rachel ended up finishing the amplifier that the late Dr. Jaffee was working on because her children’s lives were threatened (again Charlie showing her growth by sacrificing herself as Rachel was being forced to choose one) which means that Monroe now has the capability to power some bigger machinery. What he plans to use this power for is revealed as he wants to take over the meddlesome Georgia Republic but it should be interesting to see if his plans change with Charlie and company’s escape. He does decide to go after them using a helicopter, which is left unresolved, but will that become Monroe’s focus?
It was also teased that Rachel knows the whereabouts of another power pendant, so it seems that at least part of the group will go after that. In fact it might be wiser to have the group split in two which would keep the show moving quicker and keep the potential for at least one storyline to be interesting every week. Will the group try to help one of the neighboring republics (Texas might make sense since Nora’s sister was headed there a few episodes ago) or just keep the pendant within the Monroe Republic and help the rebels or the Department of Defense guy? Grace and the DoD guy definitely need some more screen time as well, right now their storyline seems like it should be the most important simply because of their hinted capabilities, so hopefully the show will devote more than one teaser scene every two weeks to that particular storyline.
“Nobody’s Fault But Mine” opens up multiple possibilities for where the show is heading and that is a good thing as it was clear they were running out of obstacles for Charlie and the gang to run into on their quest to rescue Danny. The pace of the plot might also slow down, which would be of benefit to allow the relationships to form and the viewer to connect with the characters better. The midseason finale was probably the best episode since the pilot so hopefully Revolution will continue the improvement in the second half of the season.