‘Last Resort’ Recap (Season 1, Episode 2): “Blue On Blue”
The pilot for Last Resort was one of the best and most promising first episodes of any show this year. The second episode is not as good as the pilot, but it’s not bad either: it shows that Last Resort isn’t going to be fully-formed from the start, but rather the writers are learning and figuring things out as they go along. Apparently ratings for the pilot weren’t very good (Shawn Ryan never has much luck), but I’m hoping the show will be able to stick around long enough to become the show everyone wants it to be.
The pilot ended with Captain Marcus Chaplin (Andre Braugher) firing a missile at Washington D.C. and warning the world not to mess with him. “Blue On Blue” is all about people trying to mess with him. A US submarine crosses the line Marcus set up, which results in Marcus testing the new Perseus invisibility device, created by Kylie Sinclair (Autumn Reeser). A while later, a plane enters the airspace of the island and XO Sam Kendall (Scott Speedman) thinks a Delta Force team might have jumped from the plane and landed on the island. He assembles a team, consisting of Lieutenant Grace Shepard (Daisy Betts), and a few men who are allied with COB Joseph Prosser (Robert Patrick), who is currently in the closest thing to the island’s prison.
The sequence with Sam’s group and the Delta Force soldiers is the weak part of this episode. The first reason is that it’s not actually Delta Force but Russian Spetsnaz, who have come to the island seeking the Perseus device. The second reason is there’s not much tension or excitement to the shootout, and even though a few people die, I never believed the main characters were in any danger, especially when they have Navy SEAL James King watching their back, who appears to be becoming the island’s Han Solo under the tutelage of bartender Tani Tumrenjack (Dichen Lachman). These two characters – particularly Tani – seem sort of out of place at the moment, but I’m interested to see how they continue to be included.
Marcus doesn’t get as much to do in this episode as opposed to the pilot, but the few scenes he’s in are great. In this episode he successfully negotiates with both Russian and US diplomants (the latter voiced by Jay Karnes, most known for played Dutch Wagenbach in The Shield) and we learn that his son died as a result of friendly fire in Afghanistan only two weeks ago after the COB shouts about it to everyone, believing Marcus’s current mission is simply payback for his son’s death. There’s a great scene near the end with Marcus breaking down and Sam reassuring him that he’s on his side, proving that getting Andre Braugher to play your protagonist is probably one of the best decisions you could ever make. The man is simply amazing.
Off the island, we’ve got Sam’s wife Christine (Jessy Schram) being held by the government in an attempt to manipulate Sam into giving up Marcus and the submarine and Kylie using her contacts to investigate exactly what happened with the Illinois after she learns they used her device. I wouldn’t be surprised if she has to go on the run from the government in later episodes and ends up on the island and allying with Marcus.
It sounds like next week’s episode is going to deal with Marcus searching for the three missing crew members and I can only hope the showdown with the island’s inhabitants is more exciting than the showdown with the soldiers in this episode. Last Resort seems like it will be at its best when these characters are in an intense situation and are forced to make a difficult decision; keep putting characters into these kinds of scenarios and I’ll keep watching.
Image credit: ABC
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