"In cooking, as in all the arts, simplicity is a sign of perfection." - Curnonsky

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Sarah Connor Chronicles: The Demon Hand

"Demon Hand" strikes an uneven balance between being powerfully dramatic and somewhat needlessly ponderous. As is becoming the norm, the show once again delves into the Terminator mythology with great success, this time even bringing back Dr. Silberman.

There are distinct spheres of action happening in this episode, with no single solid through line. I had Agent Ellison looking into Sarah's past, which takes him to see Dr. Silberman. Then I had Cameron searching for the missing Terminator hand, which takes her to Andy Goode's chess playing colleague and his sister. Finally there's some stuff here between Derek Reese and John Connor. John knows that he's talking to his uncle, and even though Derek is unaware of this – he does seem to sense a connection.

There are some great unexpected moments here. Silberman drugging Ellison was a tough one to see coming. Cameron may be learning some of the behavior of human beings in order to fit in, but I got a nice reminder here that she has no compassion.

When John finds the tape of Sarah giving up her rights as a parent – John is understandably crushed. It's also interesting to revisit one of the more famous sequences of the second movie and understand some of her motives behind what she was doing.

What this episode lacks is any kind of action, at least action of the sort I've come to expect from the series. That does make this episode feel a bit slower than normal, but at the same time it seems the show is maturing. Watching Cameron walk away from the two Russians, or seeing Silberman crack up in the rain – and Reese's face as he watches the machine practice ballet. All of these moments are effective, and serve their purpose well. While it would have been nice to have some action thrown in as well, as it nears its two-hour finale, Terminator is proving to already be a good show in what is a sadly shortened season.

No comments: