Television: Revolution, "Kashmir"

Charlie's endearing faith in her uncle Miles puts pressure on him to live up to her expectations. Somehow, despite all she's seen and lived through, Charlie continues to have a utopian sensibility of the world and believes it will all turn out right in the end. Or maybe she's simply aware she's one of the chief protagonists on the side of the good guys and therefore cannot die. Even stepping onto a mine is not a problem, though we the audience were still treated to a fun (if delayed) explosion.

And once again Nora is the person to ask when you need exposition and backstory that cannot be handled in flashback form. This time Nora explains Miles' and Bass' friendship-turned-falling out. Something that would have been waaaay more compelling as a flashback.

On the other side, Rachel is also filled with explanatory dialogue about how the pendant works. Thanks for that!

"Kashmir" eventually devolves into a series of hallucinations and a Led Zeppelin tribute. (Which might be redundant.) But this was probably the only way to get Miles and Bass in a room together without it being a flashback or a fight to the death. And of everyone on this show, they have the most chemistry. Still, Bass' saying that Miles might consider rejoining the Militia was far from convincing given all we've seen of Miles' character. The writers have worked hard to make him "conflicted" but nothing really sticks. It becomes difficult to imagine Miles as a ruthless general; we really need to see those flashbacks to make it believable. And even then it might not be.

I think, on the whole, it's tricky to write a hero who has a compelling dark side. Viewers (or readers, if it's a book) want to trust their heros and feel betrayed if there's any real chance of them slipping into the shadows. So the usual thing is to give the hero a past, either tragic or evil, and introduce them as reformed in some way. But it takes really great writing and/or acting to pull off that kind of complex character, and while I think Billy Burke is the best thing about Revolution, Miles is still pretty rote.

Also, the almost dead character (Charlie) seeing a dead character (her dad) but then returning to the land of the living? So overdone. (Remember that episode of MacGyver? "Passages" or whatever it was? Yeah. That.)

If we were supposed to be shocked at Rachel's willingness to commit murder, well, we weren't. I really want this show to surprise me in some way, and I'm giving it until the holiday break to do something amazing, but if it doesn't, that's one less night I have to stay up late for a TV program.

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