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Born to Fail - part 2

As you know, I wasn't happy with the season finale of TSCC (see Born to Fail part 1), but I think I could still talk about it and analyze it and speculate about it for months (which I absolutely will if the show gets renewed and maybe even if it doesn't). "Born to Run" circled back to the start of the series and hit on so many episodes in its wrap up that I could spend hours talking about that alone. Maybe that's why it felt so series finale-ish. But in that, I do digress.

God I love this show. Even when it lets me down, it never does.



Well, I think I got all the heavy stuff out of the way already, so even though this is a really long post, it's a bit lighter. And I've got sections labeled, so you can just skip around to whatever might grab your interest.



Dreaming of failure

Looking back at Sarah's dreams from "Complications," they all pointed directly to the end of "Born to Run" and Sarah's failure to protect John from the metal. That fever she picked up in Mexico apparently made her a bit psychic. If only she'd realized it, maybe she could have headed off John's time jump.

Dream #1
Cameron waters some baby cactuses that grow quickly into big metal cactuses, one of which wraps itself around John. I now think that John-hugging cactus represents Cameron and the other two represent John Henry and Catherine Weaver. He's been embraced by the metal and he makes no attempt to get away.

Dream #2
Sarah is awakened by weird sounds on a baby monitor. When she wanders into the living room of the old house, Cameron is caring for turtle!John. But instead of handing him back to Sarah, she passes him off to who we now know as John Henry and he takes John away.

Dream #3
Sarah climbs down into a grave alone and finds Dr. Sherman's office at the bottom of it. She realizes it's pointless talking to him and that she needs to get back to work. She did get back to work, searching for the 3 dots. That led her to Zeira, where Sherman had worked, where John told her about her weight loss, and where the new and improved 3-dot!Turk was residing.



It's my loop

We'd already gotten the reveal of the 3 lights on The Turk when John Henry faced a cyber attack in "To the Lighthouse", so the big 3-dots moment in the finale was just that Sarah finally got to see them. I can pretend that those 3 lights were actually on The Turk originally (they weren't) and I can believe they stuck with her subconsciously. But I feel really let down that the whole thing amounted to nothing more than one massive coincidence:

Sarah sees The Turk and the 3 lights on it subconsciously stick with her ---> Sarah sees 3 bullet hole/beams of light in Cromarties trunk in Mexico ---> Sarah gets sick and has 3 dreams about groups of 3 ---> Sarah realizes the 3 dots are on the blood wall ---> Sarah looks for tech companies using a 3-dot logo and gets conned by Dakara ---> Sarah finds UFO brochure with 3 dots from drone sightings ---> Sarah learns about drones being seen that have 3-dot markings on their hull --> Sarah meets Allan Park and learns about strange metal factory ---> Sarah sees drone with 3 beams of sunlight shining through it ---> Sarah gets kidnapped, learns about Kaliba and gets implanted with tracking device ---> Kaliba attacks, leaving cell phone behind with Savannah's picture on it ---> Connors save Savannah and learn about Zeira and John Henry ---> Visit with Weaver gets interrupted by the drone ---> Sarah sees 3 lights on The Turk.

It was an interesting path for sure, but in the end it was just dumb luck that Sarah's obsession led back to The Turk. There's also the problem of the 3 lights on The Turk having nothing to do with the drone so far, which makes the connection from one to the other even thinner (unless we're eventually going to find out that the drone was specifically designed to have 3 holes to let 3 beams of light shine through in homage to the almighty Turk, which would be silly). So as much as I enjoyed the 3-dots journey, I was terribly unsatisfied with its conclusion.



Terminator bitch!

Sarah knew Weaver was liquid metal and thought she was building Skynet. Yet standing there, unarmed in front of her, she decides to yell at her. Yeah that makes sense. Smart, Sarah, real smart. That was the first time anyone's used the word "terminator" in the series, by the way. I didn't like that. It felt gimmicky and pulled me right out of the moment.

The reactions to Weaver being liquid metal were vastly underplayed all around. I know she'd just saved their lives from the drone and I know everyone was rushed, but still... kind of a big deal to see liquid metal. The only prior experience Sarah and John had with liquid metal was the nightmare and a half that was the T-1000. The only clue Ellison even had about the existence of liquid metal was the vague ramblings of crazy Silberman. I would've liked more from all of them on the reveal. We waited all season for it.



Kamikaze drone

We've been under the impression that there's only one drone (or at least I have). I thought the purpose of Kaliba's secret metal alloy factory was to develop the drone prototype and, once perfected, it would presumably build a whole bunch of them. Maybe the intention was to start judgment day, not by controlling the US's nuclear arsenal, but by simply launching drones as missiles against US targets, igniting a world war. But unless they've already got more in development, it would seem that all the intrigue about the drone ended with it being basically a missile to try to take out Catherine Weaver. Lame! Or am I missing something?



Oh pretty terminator, why did you waste my time?

There was too much time spent on the water cooler terminator in this episode. We watched him patch up his wounds and we watched him go to a gun store in search of silencers. Cool. He must have some awesome plan in the works! Nope. The second he actually heads out for some action, he makes an easy security guard kill and is almost immediately destroyed by Catherine. I wish they'd cut all of that except his encounter with Catherine and then added more time to the last couple scenes at Zeira Corp (which were too rushed).

I think his real purpose in the story was just to have his chip end up in John Henry's hands. We'd already seen that kind of chip with pretzel girl terminator, but we didn't know why the chip burned up. So the phosphorous coating was new info that I assume will be important later. The bigger point of the chip, I think, was in John Henry attempting to recover data from it. He said he didn't think he could, but that he'd try. I'm guessing he did recover some data from it about Kaliba and since that chip must still be sitting in that room, maybe Sarah will take it and eventually get some info from it too.

The machines with these chips seemed to be after the Weavers. I think we all assumed at the time that the one Cameron fought outside of Dr. Sherman's office was after Dr. Sherman, but it's looking different in hindsight. Given that the water cooler terminator was going after Savannah and Catherine, I think pretzel girl terminator was doing the same. And now I've got a wacky theory...



Kid swap

We know that in our current future, John Connor doesn't lead the resistance. In fact, no one's even heard of him. I believe Kaliba only went after the Connors because Sarah had gone after Kaliba. Savannah and Catherine, however, were actual targets. I think they're sort of the bizarro Sarah and John of this timeline.

While Sarah has fretted over John's bond with Cameron, Catherine has has been rather pleased about Savannah bonding with John Henry. Sarah told John that machines don't feel things and they don't know love. She's told him people are all that matter. But John's experiences aren't so black and white because in addition to being chased down by killer robots, he's also been protected by reprogrammed killer robots. And along the way, he's allowed himself to get attached to them — first to "Uncle Bob" because of his desire for a father figure and now to Cameron because of his desire for companionship. Savannah's positive experiences with John Henry mirror that. She sees him both as a father figure and a playmate.

So while John is off in the future with Savannah's "mother", Savannah is left with John's mother. It could be that their combined influences over the girl make her essentially the new John Connor. I don't expect to find her running the resistance; she's too young for that. But if the "will you join us" plan is to set up a human-metal faction to win the war against Skynet and it's just getting started around 2027, Savannah could very well be its leader.

That could explain why Skynet came after the Weavers and also why they might know who Sarah Connor is without knowing John Connor. I think we got a hint of that with the water cooler terminator. He was in the crowd when Sarah got arrested and even with Savannah in plain sight, his focus shifted to Sarah. While he was repairing himself, he heard the name "Sarah Connor" on the news and immediately turned toward the TV. I'm thinking Sarah is a secondary target now because of the time she'll be spending with Savannah.

Now I'm fully expecting the next machine Sarah encounters to grab her by the throat and tell to her to "call to Savannah" ;)



Sarah got left with Ellison?!

Believe it or not, I used to like Ellison. He was a great character in season one, but I turned against him in a big way this season. Aside from finding him rather dull, his excessive arrogance and stupidity made me just flat out hate him. So my one fear going into this finale was that Sarah would get stuck with Ellison when she and John split up. And she did. Augh. Someone kill me now.

Even with John gone and Sarah alone, I can not imagine that she'd even consider teaming up with that lying backstabber. If she was willing to ditch Cameron and Derek because she didn't trust them, it would be ridiculous to think she'd work with Ellison. There's a problem, though. While Sarah Connor doesn't necessarily need a partner, she does need someone to play off of for our benefit. And the way her story got left, it points to Ellison as her goddamn partner. Um, something's got to be done about that situation right away.

Never fear! I have a wacky solution...

The trio of Kyle, John and Allison make for a great bizarro version of Sarah, John and Cameron. John doesnt need to be hanging out with uncle Derek anyway, right? They've already had plenty of time together. So Derek and a red shirt team will get sent to 2009 to fight Kaliba. When his team is dead, he and Sarah will run into each other. He won't know her. She won't trust him. She'll think he's metal and take a shot at him. He'll tell her "cyborgs don't feel pain, I do". Hilarity ensues. Then we won't need Ellison anymore. As a bonus, Derek can shoot him.



Prelude to a Chip

Hey, what do you know, it's Allison! Meanwhile, the real Cameron is inside John Henry's head. The possibilities are amusing, to say the least. I doubt we're going to get a Prelude to a Kiss kind of story, but I'll feel cheated if we don't at least get one scene where John talks to JH!Cameron. Won't you?

While some of Allison's memories are the basis for how Cameron acted, Cameron isn't simply a cyborg version of Allison. She has programming and experiences with John; she's learned things and has glitches, all of which make up who she is. But I'm sure John's going to get know Allison on his way to find John Henry and it's going to mess with his head. It's a very peculiar situation and I have to wonder if John will end up falling for Allison or staying true to Cameron.

There's no easy answer to that one, nor should there be. Now that we've gone down this path of human/cyborg love, it needs to play out the hard way. Meeting and falling for the human that Cameron was based on right after her body was damaged and left in the past would be entirely too convenient... almost as convenient as jumping 18 years through time and landing in the very tunnel that your uncle, father and the human basis for your cyborg girlfriend happen to be walking through :P



Dynamic cyborg duo

There seems to be a few schools of thought about Cameron and John Henry's whereabouts:

1. Cameron is inside John Henry with John Henry.
2. Cameron is inside John Henry, but John Henry is still in The Turk.
3. John Henry is inside John Henry, but Cameron is inside the Turk.

Then there's my own special blend:
4. Cameron is inside John Henry with John Henry and John Henry is inside The Turk.

Since the message that brought him and Cameron together was "will you join us", it seems logical to me that he and Cameron are both needed in the future to enact the plan. And in order to make the jump, they'd both have to be on Cameron's chip. But unless John Henry wiped The Turk, his programming is also still on it too — John Henry is still in The Turk. If so, he'd be in the present and the future. I'm not sure what the implications of that might be, though.

It's also possible John Henry left a copy of Cameron behind on the The Turk as well, but from a story standpoint, it would be an impractical setup. I can't imagine Sarah lugging around Cameron's body (and wouldn't she have to keep it on ice to prevent decomp?) in hopes she can pick up a super advanced neural net processor somewhere then download her from The Turk.



We change a wire, we change John Henry

If changing a wire "tweaked" John Henry, I think it's safe to assume that loading his software into Cameron's chip and sticking it in his processor port will have changed him dramatically. What he'll be like when we see him next is anyone's guess. I suspect he won't be quite the fun machine we're all accustomed to. I'm thinking the change in environment, the untethering and the potentially split personality chip in his head might make him prone to anger and fits of rage against humans and their inferior non-ball-jointed bodies. Will anyone be able to reassure his angry mind? *gulp*

How the hell did John Henry get Cameron's chip to fit his port anyway? Cameron's chip is distinctly different than that of T-888. Did Cameron stop off at Radio Shack on the way to Zeira Corp to pick up a Universal Neural Net Processor Adapter Kit?



Ring of fire

Every time bubble we've ever seen has left a concave impression on the ground when it arrived. This time was no different. There was a slightly depressed circle with a smoldering perimeter where it dropped John and Weaver. Now, we've never actually seen a bubble leave, but when Sarah, John and Cameron time jumped from the bank vault, the entire bank was destroyed. So even if Catherine Weaver's time machine is more advanced, I'd still expect it to leave the same kind of impression from the point of departure as it leaves at the point of arrival. Yet John Henry had already time jumped and there wasn't even a mark on the floor. The room looked completely normal.

I'm inclined to say that's suspicious. Is it possible John Henry didn't actually jump? Could he have maybe left to go find his brother instead? That would certainly put a nice twist on things — John and Catherine get to the future only to find out that John Henry/Cameron is not there. But since no one questioned the lack of damage to the room at Zeira and Sarah wasn't even in a rush to get away from the giant ball of energy, maybe it was just a big oops?



Miscellaneous

Sarah to the priest: "I don't know about God or heaven, but I do believe something wants this world to burn — the devil, demons." I think if we call those daemons, she's right on the money ;)

Ellison wants Sarah to tell the FBI everything while he says nothing because she's got nothing to lose. Fuck off, Ellison. Not only are you an arrogant, lying fool, you are also a coward.

Weaver to Ellison: "I don't think now's the time to be parse in which laws we'll be obeying and which we will not." John Henry reiterates: "Now is not the time." *SNAP* Even the metal can see how fucking high that horse is that Ellison sits on.

Fugliest motel room ever! Also, not a very secret location. Sarah tells the priest, who tells Chola, who gets followed by Ellison, who was prompted to do so by Weaver, who used logic to deduce that Sarah would be using the priest to get in touch with John.

Not!Mute!Chola! So nice they found an organic way to bring her back. And now we know what became of her — she took over Carlos' business. Cameron's new passport had the alias Emily Gage. Dorothy Gage was L. Frank Baum's niece, and who the character of Dorothy was named for. I guess that means Sarah will be Sarah Gage next season? Maybe we'll get to see Chola again when she gets her new ID.

John Henry was an awesome God in the prison break.

Sarah to Aldridge: "John is dead." That's our Sarah. She wasn't falling for his "I believe you" bullshit. She said it so many times, I think she was trying to convince herself of it since she thought she'd never see John again. Now that John's in another time, I'm sure she's back to thinking it.

I feel like I should say something about John telling his mom he loves her, but since he said it after learning she might be dying of cancer and followed it up with a time jump, it kind of got diluted.

Ellison to Weaver: "I've been asleep." You're damn right, Ellison. That's the first thing you've ever gotten right.

Ellison to Weaver: "I told you, she'll never leave his side and he'll never leave his mother's." Wrong again, Ellison. Wrong again.



Comments

( 64 comments — Add a comment )
cj2017
Apr. 23rd, 2009 01:43 pm (UTC)
Picking and skipping through a whole bunch of nice points!

As much as I enjoyed the 3-dots journey, I was terribly unsatisfied with that whole loop being nothing but coincidence.

Ahh, gotta credit the girl with persistence though! The way this show plays around with fate, maybe the whole 3-dot journey was just fated to turn out the way it did with everyone learning lots of life-lessons along the way. This show took quite a lot of time with stuff that ultimately went nowhere. Cameron's kill switch just seemed to give John a trinket to play about with and the whole John Henry development was fun but ultimately wasted a lot of episode time. Once you've seen him play a game and learn a lesson about having a soul, you've seen it, and yet they reduxed it time and time again. Then turned him into Cameron. Or something. It's not terribly clear.

I would've liked more from all of them on the reveal of Catherine as liquid metal. We waited all season for it.

On the plus side, Ellison had the wind taken out of his sails by it. On the minus, Sarah should've instantly grabbed John and headed for the hills, because yes, those things are really really dangerous and nigh on fucking impossible to kill. Oh, but Weaver said she was a goodie. Well, that's ok then. *sigh*. As for the drone. It was a kinda nifty FX shot. And after that, it made absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Now I'm fully expecting the next machine Sarah encounters to grab her by the throat and tell to her to "call to Savannah" ;)

Heh. Poor girl never catches a break does she? Her petulant arse of a son finally buggers off after his robo-bird and she instantly ends up with another kid to protect. She must be really looking forward to her next run-in with vindictive teenage hormones. She'd probably take a good throttling over that any day!

Believe it or not, I used to like Ellison. He was a great character in season one. But I turned against him in a big way this season.

I liked him a lot. Now I cannot stand him. Me, me, me. "You might be in jail and facing the death penalty for crimes you haven't actually committed, but I just had to spend FOUR hours telling people I had nothing to do with you. Oh by the way, you have absolutely no previous history of being locked in an asylum, why don't you tell them all about the murderous metal and the impending apocalypse?" I can't believe they didn't fucking kill him. I'd have forgiven all of the final 6 minutes if Ellison had been exploded messily by the drone. Or just shot by Sarah for being annoying. Actually, I'd go for the latter. Gods, that would have been awesome.

How the hell did John Henry get Cameron's chip to fit his port?

Step slowly away from the considerations of logic and no one will get hurt. It was cool. Remember? Do not think about it too much. Just try to remember that it was cool.

But since no one questioned the lack of damage to the room Zeira and Sarah wasn't even in a rush to get away from the giant ball of energy, it may simply be a big oops.

See above. I think Weaver's time machine had an energy dampening switch that sucked all the blue sparkly stuff into a big vat and actually transformed that potential into electricity for the whole of LA. It's very eco-friendly. And it makes about as much sense as anything else. They should have been exploded into tiny bank-rubbled sized pieces. And they weren't. Go fig.

I feel like I should say something about John telling his mom he loves her, but since he said it after learning Sarah might be dying of cancer and followed it up with a time jump, it kind of got diluted.

It was a lovely moment. It was beautifully played by Lena and Thomas and I kinda like stopping the disc at that point and forgetting anything else happened. It's my patented head in sand approach to season finales that leave you a little pissed off and bitter. Highly recommended.
motoki
Apr. 23rd, 2009 06:29 pm (UTC)
On Weaver I think Derek's "If she wants me dead, I'm dead" line applies except even more so here. I think they know that they wouldn't be standing in that room right then and certainly she wouldn't have been shielding them from the HK attack if she wanted them dead. So it must be something else she wants and I think they were just playing along for a moment to try and figure out what that was.

For Sarah calling Weaver a "lying Terminator bitch" I was like 'Whoah lady you've got balls!'. I mean while it was clear by that point she didn't want them dead, at least not outright and directly, but you don't provoke a 1000 series either. I kind of feel like for a moment there Sarah almost felt like it was Game Over and Skynet was already made.

That or Sarah just really is that much of a bad ass. ;-)
(no subject) - bobmacpharson - Apr. 24th, 2009 02:03 am (UTC) - Expand
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johnnypate
Apr. 23rd, 2009 02:34 pm (UTC)
The bank time bubble scenario from S1 was somewhat different in (at least) these ways:
  • The time machine in the bank was cobbled together from 1960s era tech by humans;
  • Sarah fired the Terminator-destroying nuke gun as the time bubble blew, whatever that was it caused Cromartie to come apart and whatever amount of collateral damage firing such a weapon under such cirmstances might cause.
  • It would be reasonable to assume, given the intended circumstances of its use, that the bank time machine was rigged for self-destruct after the jump.
We've seen that time bubbles cause electrical effects and fires ("Self Made Man") but thus far the actual destructive effects have been reasonably localized, except for the bank. This gives credence to the hypothesis that Sarah firing the weapon had devastating effects in that particular case, and/or the machine was rigged for complete destruction to prevent the time machine falling into the wrong hands.

Good catch on the possibility JH/Cameron didn't jump into the future. There definitely was something odd about the time bubble tho, in that the Cameron carcass should have been taken thru? John questioned the Weaverbot about it but the answer wasn't exactly informative.

It's not obvious why either JH/Cameron or the Weaverbot would jump to the future anyway - all they have to do is wait it out. It's not like they're going to get older or anything. Unless they're jumping across timelines, which presumably might have a point.

The three dots coincidences thing could be a hat tip to, "The Illuminatus Trilogy." I'll be watching S1 and S2 over again with hindsight so more hypotheses may present themselves.

Don't worry about the pretty Terminator - they can always make another one for you. Maybe when the Japanese have saturated the market for Summer Glau sexbots they'll start on copies of him.
johnnypate
Apr. 23rd, 2009 02:39 pm (UTC)
BTW, I wasn't particularly a fan of the Ellison S1 character but I do think you're underestimating the role of character in S2. (Some exchanges on this issue occurred in the comments thread of your last "Born to Fail" entry.)
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roxybisquaint
Apr. 24th, 2009 06:51 pm (UTC)
It would be reasonable to assume, given the intended circumstances of its use, that the bank time machine was rigged for self-destruct after the jump.

It's possible I guess, but the time machine in the bank vault was set up 36 years before it was used. It doesn't seem like a good idea to have explosives in place for that long. Your idea that Sarah firing the primitive plasma rifle as they were jumping could have caused the damage is probably more likely. I'm still not satisfied, though.


the Cameron carcass should have been taken thru? John questioned the Weaverbot about it but the answer wasn't exactly informative.

I'm fine with Cameron's body not going through. It was partially exposed metal and also, with no power, she was basically dead — no living tissue. In T1, Kyle said "nothing dead with go."


Don't worry about the pretty Terminator - they can always make another one for you. Maybe when the Japanese have saturated the market for Summer Glau sexbots they'll start on copies of him.

LOL.

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bobmacpharson
Apr. 23rd, 2009 10:38 pm (UTC)
Rewatching Season 1, I have been reminded of how much I used to like Ellison. It's amazing the difference between Season 1 and 2. I'm not explicitly angry at Season 2 Ellison. He's bitter, wrought with survivor's guilt and going through a crisis of faith. I can forgive him for doing some dumb things. I think Season 3 will intend to redeem him a bit, whether or not he and Sarah will ever get along.

I second the point that there wasn't a whole lot Sarah could do instead of calling Weaver a bitch. Liquid metal is essentially indestructible, and if Weaver was gonna kill them there wasn't a lot to do about it. If I had been in their place (any of them, Sarah/John/Ellison) I would have reacted the same way. I'm sure we'll get more complete reactions from everyone in Season 3. Assuming, you know, Season 3 exists.
motoki
Apr. 23rd, 2009 11:41 pm (UTC)
I don't really know what the hell he (Ellison) thought he was doing. It doesn't seem like he thought at all but he was just making it up as he went along.

To be fair, if a robot from a post-apocalyptic future came back in time and killed an entire swat team leaving only me, and then another robot from the future looking exactly like me tried to kill me, well I think I would be pretty screwed up too.

I do like that John Henry called him out on his do as I say don't do as I do BS. And he knew he was wrong too. You could see it in his face that he had just been pwned. :-p

I feel like they should redeem him in a hypothetical 3rd season but I'm not even sure how to go about doing that.
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the_narration
Apr. 24th, 2009 04:00 am (UTC)
Well, I think you're on the money regarding the symbolism of Sarah's dreams. Funny how on television everyone's dreams are prophetic even in science-based settings, huh?

The whole "three lights on the Turk are the three dots" thing seemed really forced to me. In what way was that a better clue for the dying Resistance fighter to leave than, say, the word "Zeira"? Not to mention that I didn't even think that the three lights looked much like the three dots. And you're right that it's kind of bullshit that the three dots leading Sarah to Kaliba was apparently a complete coincidence. I mean, seriously. What was the point of all this?

Many things about the finale feel like they were pulled out of a hat at the last minute. Hey, writers! Quit watching BSG and X-Files! Stuff like this has to be planned out ahead of time! You can't just make it up as you go!

Everyone was awfully calm about finding out that Weaver was a T-1000, weren't they? I think by that time they were all just kind of resigned to it. "Well, that's it. We're boned."

That's kind of a waste of an expensive prototype drone to crash it into a building. Do they not have air-to-ground missiles in the Terminator-verse? Or miniguns? It would be easy for anyone with the resources to build the drone in the first place to turn it into a reusable death machine.

The Kaliba Terminator didn't wind up accomplishing anything, did it? And after they got the guy from Charlie Jade to play it, too. Subplot started and then promptly stopped.

I think that the bank exploded because the time machine in it had a self-destruct to keep it from being found. But you're right that there was no sign of the time machine's traditional sphere of destruction in John Henry's room. How exactly do we know he time traveled? And what could John Henry actually accomplish in the future? By 2027 standards, his A.I. would be pretty weak.

But if we assume he did time travel, then I have a thought about why Cameron's body didn't go. I hope I'm wrong because it's a horribly unscientific idea, but since when do scifi writers care about rationality? The body didn't go because it was "dead", with no mind in it. Kyle Reese said that it has something to do with the "energy field around living things" and nothing dead can go through. What if a mind is somehow key to that? It's been wondered why T-1000s can time travel at all, since they're liquid metal with no flesh whatsoever. Perhaps this is why. T-1000s are sentient, so they can go through, and an empty Terminator body isn't, so it can't. Perhaps that's why they don't try to send weapons back in meat-wrapped crates. (A better question would be why Weaver would come out of the time machine naked, or at least looking naked, considering that she wasn't actually wearing clothes but just shapeshifting the appearance of clothes.)

I wonder who's going to take care of Savannah now. Her parents are dead, the T-1001 impersonating her mother is gone, John Henry is gone, even her babysitter is dead... it's down to either Sarah or Ellison unless she's going into foster care.

The finale kind of felt slapped together at the last minute, like they were rushing to wrap up all the season 2 plots instead of like they were coming to the end of a well-planned story arc. I am disappointed. :-(
bobmacpharson
Apr. 24th, 2009 04:43 am (UTC)
People are really overanalyzing Cameron's body not going through. It didn't go through because it had metal sticking out. The official fake science has always said the living bodies generate bioelectric fields that allow them to work with time travel. Terminators can go through because they're covered completely in living tissue. There's no reason it doesn't apply differently here or that we need a different fake science solution.

It's the T-1000s have never really made sense (even accepting the fake science). Presumably they're based on equally fake science that somehow allows them to mimic flesh (even though that's way more complex than the bombs and guns they for some reason can't make). Sentience doesn't work any better as a solution because, as noted, there'd be no reason for her to go through naked. (I'm assuming she just folded her outer clothes into more skin at the last second).

The best theory I've heard is that while they can't mimic cells exactly, they can mimic parts of it close enough to generate the electric field. I like this idea, because I have an easier time believing that the time-machine-compatible electric field is somehow simpler than all the other functions that cells have.
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bobmacpharson
Apr. 25th, 2009 05:49 am (UTC)
In the previous post, there was a discussion of what "victory" would look like for Sarah Connor in the resolution of the Season 2 cliffhanger. I've got another related question:

This is ultimately Sarah's story here. What's victory gonna look like at the end of the show?

I think it almost definitely needs to end with her dying (there's been way too much build up of cancer and whatnot to make any other ending feel like anything but a cheat). The show also suggests so far that victory over the machines is not possible through military conquest, because of the inter-temporal arms race between Skynet and humanity, and because the singularity is inevitable.

John's relationship with Cameron (and Savanah's relation with John Henry) is important because it shows a path for humans and machines to coexist. I *think* the show will end with something like this, but this runs contrary to what Sarah currently wants and believes. Which I guess is okay - there's room for growth on her part there.

It's been said that at the beginning of a story, your protagonist needs to be at the opposite end of whatever you need them to become, so that you can show their journey. So far, we have:

• Sarah doesn't trust machines
• Come to think of it, Sarah doesn't trust anyone.
• Sarah's relationship with her son is strained over Cameron
• Sarah wants to protect her son but can't because she's not machine enough
• Sarah wants to teach her son to lead humanity but can't because she doesn't give him the opportunity to interact with anyone but Cameron, who is busy teaching him to be too machinelike to effectively inspire people.
• Without John, Sarah's life has no purpose
• Sarah has trouble distinguishing reality from her subconscious
• Sarah never feels safe.

So... any thoughts on what the opposite of all that would look like in a satisfying ending?
roxybisquaint
Apr. 25th, 2009 07:41 am (UTC)
I think I need to sleep on that one ;)
bobmacpharson
Apr. 27th, 2009 04:07 am (UTC)
So I just rewatched the episode where Riley and Jesse come back through time, and suddenly was incredibly bothered by the fact that Riley came through the jump with dirt all over her face. If the time machine deletes all our clothes as we come through, shouldn't it also wipe clean random crap on our skin? Heck, it should probably give us a full exfoliation.
roxybisquaint
Apr. 29th, 2009 04:49 am (UTC)
LOL. Good point.
(Deleted comment)
roxybisquaint
May. 29th, 2010 09:17 am (UTC)
Hey look, almost a year later and I just saw this comment for the first time! I guess the notification drown in my inbox way back when. Anyway, I was rereading all the comments here and you hit on an interesting point:

"Is Sarah prepared to save humanity at the cost of her son?"

One of the things I've assumed Sarah would be dealing with (with John gone) is her sense of purpose. Obviously the world still needs saving, but in doing so, I don't think she'd be sacrificing John. If there's no j-day, he'd land in a normal future, not a post-apocalyptic one, and then he'd be free at last to live his life.

What she would likely be sacrificing, though, is his chance to ever return home. If saving the world meant no time travel, she and John could never reunite in the present. BUT, as long as she lived to 2027 (or whatever year he landed in), she could see him again. But if she has have terminal cancer, then saving the world before she died would mean she'd never see her son again.

So much story to be explored. A year later and I still miss this show terribly.
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Roxy Bisquaint

Roxy Bisquaint...

Is self-indulgent. Over thinks everything. Tweets too much. Looks really good in these jeans. Wants to eat butterscotch. Makes herself laugh. Obsesses about aging. Does some crunches. Lives with two ghosts. Procrastinates daily. Measures once, cuts twice. Hates Foo Fighters. Drinks lots of coffee (keep it coming). Puts spiders outside. Brings balance to the force. Draws a perfect curve. Enjoys dark chocolate. Bangs on the drums. Always gets in the slow line. Orders from a menu. Hopes to be reincarnated. Speaks fluent Sarah Connor. Cooks tasty crack theory. Loves a good storm. Dances like a dork. Picks some locks. Tips well. Refuses to share the popcorn. Dreams about the future. Ignores the clock. Sings off key. Has a superpower. Shoots the paper bad guys. Needs some eyeliner. Goes to bed at dawn. Can't resist good smut. Quotes movie lines. Eats whipped yogurt. Lets the story tell itself. Maintains a rich fantasy life. Knows all the mysteries of the gods and of the universe.

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