Okay, where do we begin?
Abe Gaines’ adorable baby daughter, Lucy, was facing surgery if one last round of powerful drugs didn’t fix the issue with her heart. Abe juggles this and nearly being outed as both a Fed and as having used his sick daughter to gain the Meyerists’ sympathy when Eddie turned up by surprise in Lucy’s hospital room. I’ll let you decide just how exactly Eddie found their specific room when he only had Abe’s fake name to go on. Pretty sure the front desk didn’t let him in because he knew a kid called Lucy was having heart surgery, but what do I know?
But in a series of genuinely moving scenes, Eddie and Abe –who Eddie knows as Sam — come to a new, more developed understanding of each other, or at least, Abe does of Eddie, who admits his new found state as an atheistic bachelor. AbeSam is, of course, incredibly curious why Eddie chose to leave but Eddie skips the answer and prays a Meyer prayer over Abe and his family and in response to Abe’s question of praying when he’s having his lack of faith, Eddie explains ‘it can’t hurt’. Which, is the realest shit in the world. Religious or not, asking the universe at large to keep a baby alive isn’t hurting anyone.
In a twist I admit I saw coming, Lucy recovers enough at the very, very last minute to not need the dangerous, open-heart surgery at all, but I’m okay with it. Not every show needs to kill children for drama. I just hope Abe stays as rational as he is and doesn’t see this as some kind of Meyer miracle and get sucked into their vortex. We leave Abe at something of a lose end, his daughter healthy, his job probably safe but his case and involvement with Meyerism all the more complex than ever before. But let this warm your heart.
Meanwhile, Mary met her In-Laws to be and while Sean’s father remains uncomfortable with his sons choices, his mother, Karen, is just happy to see her son happy.
The best piece of dialogue of the night is delivered by Sean’s father, who bitchily asks if the couple were allowed to choose each other or if they got paired up like ‘Moon People’.
If you knew. If you knew, Mr. Sean’s dad.
Later, in a scene that made me sob, Karen gifts Mary her own vintage wedding veil. She admits having wanted to give it to her daughter, Sean’s murdered sister, but Mary will be her daughter now. It’s such a beautiful, sweet moment. But this…this is Mary.
So, she goes to Cal and talks him into bed, finally. And makes clear that despite marrying Sean, she will always want, and presumably will come to, Cal. And now she’s had him. And her face when she does…
Lady Macbeth would be like ‘girl chill’.
Because the show really does love to stick it in and break it off, they hit us with a series of scenes of Hawk and Summer dealing with their parents’ ending marriage. Divorce is always confusing for kids but for the Lane bobbins, the added layer of Meyerism further complicates the issue. Eddie has refused to sign paperwork in which he would admit to being a ‘Denier’. In doing so he would lose access to his children, and Sarah — in her only decent moment of the last few episodes of just being a terrifying viper lady — doesn’t force the issue. A rough visitation is arranged and I can’t wait for something to happen that forces these people to deal with real Courts when it comes to custody.
I am predicting a future season will feature Sarah fleeing with aaaat least Summer, out of the country, to get away from US courts. Hawk, who turns 16 the day his father leaves, appears to be re-committing to the Movement. In another truly tragic scene he attends his final day of high school and through a series of nods and pained looks manages to convey his choices to a distraught Ashley.
Who, I wish would just tell him what happened.
The scene ends with Hawk walking slowly into a blurred fade and a later scene and later we see him taking his vows during the same ceremony which sees Mary and Sean married, and…
…sees Alison, recommit to Meyerism.
See, remember how she read Jason’s journal and then tried to end her life? She couldn’t go through with it, thankfully, but she does reveal what it said; Jason had gone crazy. Or maybe there’s something in Meyerism.
Jason had been claiming to have found The Ladder and to have made repeated, failed attempts to climb it. His hands had been left burned and bloody by these failures and in his last diary entry he spoke of his commitment to climbing the ladder or dying trying.
By rights the Meyers don’t have to let her stay; which didn’t stop them from locking her in a room on the compound, by the way.
But Cal intervenes. Because he probably fucking pushed Jason. But he escorts her to the dining room and while both he and Alison, astonishingly, don’t catch fire under the heat of Sarah’s enraged glaring, Cal talks the room into forgiving Alison, a new facet of the Movement as described in the new Rungs.
See, because Cal is still claiming that. He’s got the completed Rungs, Steve will visit them soon and hooo boy, Cal…is that one going to bite you in the ass.
You see, first of all, Sarah…
Sarah has come into her newly found strength and confidence and though Michelle Monaghan is predictably outstanding as Sarah does deal with the breakdown of her marriage with crying and shouting, her main mood this week is that eerily calm place of anger she has found and in which she now resides.
She’s bitter at Eddie, her family, Cal, everyone. She refuses Cal’s continues advances, even sort of semi-admitting that her emotional, semi-sexual visit to his cabin when Hawk left was part of a bid to keep her boy around.
She’s also finally on the hunt for Silas and after A FULL MONTH finally figures out the hand wrapped, hand carved Pachamama icon found on her desk was likely left there by Silas himself. She speaks with Felicia who doesn’t pause for a second before pointing out Cal was missing the same night the icon appeared, which is suspicious, no?
Sarah confronts him on this and he manages to turn it around on her by ‘admitting’ that she knows where he was that night, in his cabin, diving deep into a bottle of scotch. She’s like ‘…but were you?’
Sarah runs her own little investigation, which includes another hilarious scene with the sole security guard we have ever, ever seen on this show, having to be reminded he was ‘on duty’ the night Cal was absent from the vote on the Honduran families. He finally ‘admits’ to helping Cal back to his cabin after finding the man fall-down drunk, and with Eddie leaving and a seeming alibi for his whereabouts, Sarah is happy enough to accept Cal’s offer and stand beside him as the new Guardians of The Light. She smiles and claps while he tells people Steve has ‘become pure light’ and is no longer with them physically but will be when ever they see the sun and light! She marries Sean and Mary, she and Cal see Hawk through his vows.
And then she encounters Mary’s dad, who in the clumsiest dialogue ever — for any show, let alone one of this calibre — he admits to being there the night of the Honduran vote, and to seeing Cal leave ‘Like he was running from something’.
That’s an honest to god line Mary’s dad delivers and I had to go and read a book for a half hour. Fucking…you’re better than this, show.
But, that BS is enough to send Sarah to Cal’s office, where he later finds her. She’s hacked his computer, chiding him for the ‘romance’ of his passwords being her name, and she’s learned he wrote the final Rungs.
Cal goes all in, admits he had to as Steve is dying, but it’s based on Steve’s vision. Then he asks, a little smug, if she’s going to tell. Sarah’s smart enough to know he’s too popular to derail so she’ll just figure something out. Like what happened to Silas? Then she forces him to drink with her.
And I have to pause for a second to talk about that. It dragged the episode down for me in such a huge way, in the same way I’ve been distracted by the portrayal of the passage of time and other little bits here and there. Sarah made an incredible leap of logic that Cal lying about leaving the compound means he’s guilty of something, more to the point that he may have harmed fucking Silas, a man she took a month to even really think of as missing. In a day she’s gone from ‘he’s probably fine’ to ‘Cal absolutely murdered him’ with basically no work in the middle.
The show hasn’t made clear how much time passed between the Honduran vote and Cal staggering into Sarah’s garden but it seemed like a couple of days at least. If nothing else, if he turned up in her garden, she can reason he left the compound. And she believes Mary’s dad about the exact time? A man who just asked her to buy his daughter from him? And Mary’s dad not only paused to note the time Cal threatened him but remembered it?
Also, how did Mary’s father switch from demanding money for Mary, to happily feeding Sarah all the vital details and clues she needs but not demanding a penny for information she clearly, hungrily wants?
In a season finale that’s otherwise pretty damn solid, this whole leap for Sarah was just so weird and strange. And, while I’ve talked before about my concerns about Sarah’s abilities and her inner darkness and ruthlessness, the cold, calculating, can handle her liquor like a pro Sarah she magically morphs into was just too much. We’ve seen her rapidly develop and grow in the last few episodes but this fireman pole descent into being actively evil and scheming and not just a brainwashed lunatic was unnatural and felt forced. Even accounting for what she’s been through, accounting for the continually combative nature of her relationship with Cal and the strange inference of her much earlier conversation about his ‘wandering hands’, it didn’t feel right to have her basically morph into his female counterpart. It felt like a scene was missing somewhere that mapped at least some of her thought process from her conversation at the compound gate, to her decision to break into Cal’s office and break into his personal files. And, not a small scene but a hugely important one. It threw me out of that entire aspect of the story and left me not so much waiting for the conclusion next year but wondering what in the fuck I missed.
Things are a little better with Eddie.
As described above, Eddie is out of Meyerism but rather than move further away from all the crazy, he falls headlong into it. When he’s not nearly blowing Abe’s cover, he’s immediately plagued by a series of visions, first of the same albino python he saw in Peru all those months (weeks? Years? Centuries?) ago. Later in a toy store he sees a dead, trained hawk-the bird, not his son-wearing a falconer’s mask and laying prone on its back.
The bird, with the slow blurry fade on Hawk earlier in the episode immediately rings alarm bells for me. Hawk is going to die because of Meyerism. He’ll die like Jason did, trying to find a truth that isn’t there.
The visions are enough to send Eddie back to Richard, the stateside Shaman who appears to fulfill Silas’ role for the New York based members. Richard is the guy who gave Eddie and Sarah their marriage counseling, and oversaw Eddie’s ‘In House’. Eddie tells Richard of not only his new vision but his ‘vision’ of Steve dying back in Peru. Richard, curiously and like he knows something, asks if Eddie saw the Ladder, while Eddie wonders aloud if he’s having a break down.
Richard is a dyed in the wool Meyerist and I laughed myself dizzy when Eddie was shocked, shocked that Richard thinks the visions ‘Come from The Light’.
Eddie, babe, what you honestly think he was going to do? Send you to a doctor??
Eddie listens to Richard and heads back to Peru. In a scene slightly clumsily intercut with much longer proceedings that make Eddie’s adventures seem to take days, Eddie searches the Peruvian compound. He finds Silas’ workshop and the evidence the man is long gone, but no one else is present, or at least visible to Eddie, which raises…so many questions.
He also finds the dead hawk from his vision, a pet of Silas’ which has died in his absence. Eddie is shaken by this. He must know this means the man is dead.
Brilliantly, or perhaps too obviously, the shot cuts to young Hawk taking his vows at that exact moment.
Hawk is doomed, guys. Calling it.
And eventually Eddie finds the corridor from his vision, and behind the door he finds that same hospital bed only this time, no snake. No Steve.
Because Steve is standing right behind Eddie. Because Steve got better.