Monday, September 8, 2008

Terminator's Back: Or, River, You Still Have My Heart

Well, the Fall TV season has officially begun with Terminator: The River is Really Freaking Hot Chronicles back and pretty much amazing. It'll continue with Fringe tomorrow, of course, but first I have to talk about Terminator. Or, rather, I have to talk about River. And how hot she is.

Oh, River, how I missed you so.

Anyways, things start off with a bang. Well, I guess they finished last season with a bang, but since this season starts off from that same point, I guess it's still accurate to say that. And, well, the first thing I noticed was that apparently River is fire resistant. Yes, that's right, a car bomb goes off, with her in it, and the only damage she suffers is from the glass and metal flying from the explosion. I mean, I don't really mind since if she got all burned and disfigured and stuff, well, she might not be quite as hot, so I promise not to complain about this again (there's plenty of other things for me to complain about...and complain I will, no doubt about it).

So, the first thing I liked about this episode was that they didn't actually show the most traumatic thing that John went through that day (okay, he went through a couple traumatic things that day, so I can't say for certain that this was the most traumatic thing he did). I mean, knowing most TV, they'll wait a couple episodes and then show us what happened, just because they don't want people to get confused, but I really liked the decision in this episode not to show it.

John killed a man. A human. A human that wanted to kill him and his mom. I'm not sure he knew any more about the man than his last name.

I like that this decision not to show us what happened follows John's own unwillingness to talk about what happened (once again, reinforcing my position that Sarah Connor is not the main character in this show). John won't face it and neither will the audience.

The rest of the episode was dedicated to the obligatory sub-plot where River turns evil and tries to hunt down/kill John. Personally, we all knew this would happen sometime and I'm glad they only spent an episode on it. It was still fun watching River play and extra cold hard bitch, though. And to watch her hurt Sarah, that was fun too (I think I might be a bad person).

But, the best part of River's bad guy phase was her death. Yeah, that was awesome. She suddenly turns into the River that was naive and almost human and is capable of slowly seducing poor John (or, lucky John, depending on your position). We get to hear her beg for her life. I've never heard a terminator beg for its life. It was touching. Pleading that she's better now, that's she's not going to kill him. And then, when all else fails, she exclaims that she loves him...and that he loves her.

I smiled. The look in John's eyes. He wants to believe it's true, but at the same time, this is the first proof that she's not the Cameron that he has a crush on. That Cameron would never say such a thing. She's been programmed not to. By John.

But, here's where we get to play. What does it mean that she thinks this will sway John? Terminators don't really understand feelings, so why does she think it'll help? In almost any situation, this is a huge gamble on her part (and considering that it backfired, clearly it was a mistake). But, she thought it would work. She was using all the knowledge she had to try to influence John Connor into sparing her life. I can't help but think that her experience with future John made her think that this might work. Man, I want to know just what her experience with future John was...

Let's see, they also introduced Shirley Manson as our new over-arching bad guy. I'm not sure how I feel about her. I mean, she has very red hair, which adds some variety to the show, to say the least. She's also got a pretty ridiculous accent, so that's worth points, maybe, I think. In any case, at this point the jury's still out on her.

Oh, I guess I should talk about Sarah at some point, huh? So, yeah, my thoughts about her haven't really changed. I still don't really like her because she just doesn't kick enough ass. That really needs to change. All she ever does is react and it still feels like that's all she ever wants to do. That's the opposite of what Sarah Connor is all about. She's supposed to care about changing the future, not protecting it. But, well, I guess she has all season to get better. Too bad she probably won't.

Lastly, I just want to say that John Connor does just about the stupidest thing imaginable at the end of this episode. It's so stupid he really, truly deserves to get shot in the face. I mean it, seriously. River should just shoot him and say, something along the lines of, that was for your own good, because you're too stupid to lead the human race against the machines in the coming war. John has already gained experience hooking up the Terminators to computers and getting information off them. I feel like it shouldn't be too hard to find out what her prime directive is, you know, without putting a gun in her hand and hoping that you've cleaned the chip enough.

In any case, I hope we don't have to deal with too many more "River turns bad" episodes. But, well, this was a good start. It was definitely a fun episode. Depressingly, the ads for the rest of the season look, um, kind of bad. Apparently John is going to get a girlfriend? WTF? Seriously, that's just stupid (and it's just an excuse to add a blonde to the cast for a little while). And Sarah's ex-fiancee's wife is going to get kidnapped? I mean, come on. Shirley Manson better find out that John's playing around in her time period soon, because things are going to be kind of boring until she does. Also, I'm still waiting for that FBI agent to get around to joining their cause. That would be nice.

Well, I'm still satisfied and it looks like it'll be a fun show. Too bad once Chuck starts up in the same time slot in a few weeks, I'll have to just record Terminator and watch it later, but well, let's be honest here. Not even River is hot enough to make me not watch Chuck as religiously as possible.

That is all.


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