Salvation S02E01 Review – Fallout

Since it was my 24th birthday a few days ago, I haven’t done much but I did find out that a new season of my favourite all out clusterfuck of a series, Salvation has started again. This season has already proven to be more of a clusterfuck than the last season was and we’re only 4 episodes in. The season premiere has the biggest amount of fuckery with absolutely tonnes of information and I’ll try to pack it all in as best I can but for now, I’ll start with a quick recap of what happened in the last few episodes of the previous season.

Previously on Salvation…

There’s a big fuck off asteroid heading for Earth and everyone’s favourite Calvin Klein model with a brain the size of his ego, Darius Tanz (Santiago Cabrera) has a plan to stop it. With the help of his protege and MIT student, Liam Cole (Charlie Rowe), the two successfully launch a gravity tractor into space in order to deflect the asteroid off its current trajectory.

Meanwhile, Press Secretary, Grace Barrows (Jennifer Finnigan) is having an affair with the hunky Deputy and later full Secretary of Defence, Harris Edwards (Ian Anthony Dale) but their relationship runs into some problems mostly because Grace fancies the arse off Darius and there was something about Harris being involved with a secret weapons project that went wrong and flung a great big meteor into Russia. Also he had a short affair with Presidential Advisor, Claire Rayburn (Erica Luttrell) who then tried to kill Darius so Grace killed her first. And his son is part of a hacker group that totally aren’t Anonymous but are called RE/SYST. Or should I say ‘was’? Because Harris’s son was apparently killed by a strike team which I’m still dubious about and there’s still a chance for some kind of grand revelation. RE/SYST are actually a bunch of bastards and do some naughty things like blackmailing Darius into handing over his super sophisticated Artificial Intelligence and super-computer, TESS which they then use to blow up an American submarine and made it look like the Russians did it only to then blow up a Russian Aircraft Carrier and made it look like the Americans did it. Naughty.

Speaking of Russia and politics in general, Lady President, Pauline Mackenzie (Tovah Feldshuh) has a stroke and ‘dies’ on live TV leaving her Vice President and all round bastard, Monroe Bennett (Sasha Roiz) to take command. He seems a bit too eager to start nuclear missile throwing contest with Russia but he wont get to push the big red button just yet. Harris and Grace discover that the President is not dead but was poisoned by Bennett and so she takes command.

In her return to work speech to the nation, she plans on telling the public about the asteroid but she’s interrupted by the Emergency Broadcast System which tells a soon to be crying public that 4 nuclear weapons are heading for the country. They are instructed to stick their heads between their knees and kiss their arses goodbye. It’s alright though because Darius as ever, has a plan. Since near the start of the series, Darius has enlisted the help of Liam’s girlfriend turned fiancée , Jillian (Jacqueline Byers) into selecting what is deemed as ‘the 160′. I.E 160 people who will travel up in Darius’ rocket ‘Salvation’ and eventually live on Mars. With nukes inbound, everybody at Tanz runs to the shelter. This leaves Harris, Grace, Jillian and others underground whilst the bombs fall. Darius stays behind because he failed the medical due to Huntingtons Disease being in his family and also he needs to stop the asteroid. The Gravity Tractor won’t do shit as the asteroid has a dense iron core. Liam also stays behind. The final shot of the season is Liam running into the lift at Tanz with Darius whilst telling him that he knows what to do and there’s still hope. Are you sure, Liam?

There you go, we’re all caught up.

I’ve decided that the best way to tackle this first episode is by splitting it up into sections therefore, we’ll start with down in the bunker with the survivors.

The Ark.

When the doors close, there’s a lot of panic and no one can get a signal on their phones. One bloke supposedly named ‘Joe Riggs’ (Aaron Douglas) freaks out and tries to smash the door. Not a good idea when there’s potential radiation outside. Grace manages to calm him down and everyone ahs to come to terms with the fact that until Darius lets them out (if he’s still alive) then they’re stuck down there. Everyone gets jobs to do and Harris meets up with an old acquaintance. Remember Fiona (Taylor Cole)? I didn’t either until a flashback told me who she was. Back when Harris and Grace were having relationship troubles he went to a bar where she was working and they had a crafty shag in the back room. Now she’s in the bunker. Turns out she’s part of the 160 and she’s an environmental engineer. Moving forward. This ‘Joe Riggs’ person falls from a very high place one night and both Harris and Grace wonder what he was doing up there. Then the oxygen level begin to falter and everyone falls unconscious. When Grace and the rest of the bunker awaken, Darius has joined them except now he’s being addressed as Mr Vice President. Erm…. What?

The Bombs.

We rejoin Darius and Liam. They enter the tree-house and watch as the nukes draw ever closer. The take pills to safeguard them against radiation and Darius brings down the shutters, creating their own little bomb shelter.

Cut to President Mackenzie. She’s on the phone with Russia, asking them to disarm the nukes. One of the questions lingering from last season was, Did the Prez send any nukes of her own? We now know that she didn’t. 4 nukes are on their way. The missile defence system intercepts two of the missiles whilst one more goes off radar. The last one strikes. Where? Rural Kansas. With around 100 fatalities, RE/SYST pipe up and admit to re-directing the nuke into some farmland. They’re keeping one nuke active and circling the planet. The world’s leaders must submit to their demands or that nuke is coming down. I shit you not.

More problems are inbound as RE/SYST appear on every TV screen and tell the world that they stopped the US and Russia from killing the world with nukes but also that an asteroid is on it’s way. Cue Pandemonium. After Darius stops a man with a gun from making a fool of himself and makes a passionate speech about what man can achieve, the footage of his heroic act goes viral. After RE/SYST commandeer Tanz Industries and take Liam for their special think-tank of brain-boxes which includes a familiar face, Darius is rendered useless. No supercomputer, no company and no Liam. This time, its the President who has the plan.

This is where some first degree bullshit comes into action. Someone at the writers table thought it would be a good plot twist to make Darius the Vice President but someone pointed out that he has an English accent and his family is English so someone else said “Well that’s OK, we’ll just conveniently say that he was born prematurely in the US while his parents were on holiday.” Philadelphia to be exact. Darius has a good public image and the people trust him and he will be given every resource possible to stop the asteroid. Darius accepts.

The funniest bit of the episode was definitely when Harris goes into the President’s office to voice his concerns about Darius being VP. Her answer is basically, “I’m the President so shut up.” I like that attitude.

Since the nuke circling the world cannot be disarmed, RE/SYST are holding all the cards. Everyone has no choice but to submit. I mentioned a familiar face. That particular face would be Professor Malcolm Croft (Dennis Boutsikaris), Liam’s former Professor at MIT and Russian double agent. He’s been drafted in to the think-tank mostly to cause tension.

Also, Monroe Bennett is planning to overthrow the President again. One day, he’s just going to have to accept defeat.

Other than Jillian becoming Darius’ new Personal Assistant, I think that’s it for the first episode.

A small editorial note. I’m trying to finish off my book so I can get it sent off for the beginning of August so these reviews will be a bit sporadic and not always on time. Apologies but to be fair, there is only one of me and I’ve got a lot on.

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