This week on Revolution, ‘The Plague Dogs’ should have been called An Hour of Unrelenting Gloom. Charlie’s kidnapped, Danny escapes…and is recaptured, Maggie dies, Rachel is tortured. Quick, someone crack a smile before their tears cause a flood.
I’m not sure how to explain my feelings about Revolution without sounding horribly negative, which isn’t my aim. There’s nothing fundamentally wrong with the show — good premise, decent actors, great visuals — but it’s just so flat and dull, even when it’s supposed to be thrilling.
‘The Plague Dogs’ sees Charlie, Miles and Nora meeting up with Maggie and Aaron as planned. They’re soon joined by the personality-deprived Nate, who Miles finally catches following them. But before they can determine exactly why he’s following them without, well, doing anything, they have to escape a pack of feral dogs. Holing up in a diner seems like a good idea, up until Charlie is kidnapped by the man who ‘owns’ the dogs.
He’s yet another victim of this post-event world, a man who lost his daughter to something that would previously have been completely treatable, and who wants company. Of course, the fact he’s sort of crazy and trusses up Charlie with an booby trap primed to take her out sort of makes us less sympathetic towards him. Miles and Nate kill him, but then almost kill Charlie in their attempt to save her. That, dear readers, was the most thrilling part of the episode, even though we knew she wouldn’t die.
The crazy guy did make a lasting impact on the gang, though. One of his dogs got Aaron’s leg pretty good, and crazy guy himself stabbed Maggie in the thigh — which caused her to bleed to death, despite the gang’s best attempts to save her.
Alright, so pro: my question about why Maggie couldn’t just take a ship home was answered. Apparently the various militias aren’t too big on ships and seafaring, because, I can only assume, no member of the militias knows about basic history and the way the world worked before electricity. You would assume that they’d want to trade goods with other countries, or maybe visit other countries to see if they can shed light on what happened to the power, but apparently not. Hopefully this will all be addressed in future episodes.
And the cons: why exactly was Maggie killed off? I’m not sure why she was in the show to start with, since she didn’t really do much, but there was no point in killing her now. Was her death supposed to have some sort of huge emotional impact? All we’ve heard about for 4 episodes is how so many people died, and how depressing life is, and that’s before we saw Charlie and her mom parting ways in a flashback (which was genuinely saddening). Maggie dying doesn’t really add or detract anything from the show. It was pretty pointless, in this reviewer’s humble opinion. (ETA: Okay, so it did convince Miles to stay with Charlie and co. Since I don’t particularly like him, I’m not convinced this is a good thing.)
Back at Chez Monroe, the big man himself has Rachel tortured (though we can only guess at what was done) before realising the best way to get at her is to imply she’s a bad mother. And to tell her that when Danny arrives, he’s going to torture him. The way the Rachel scenes played out, especially her going to the militia (and Miles) willingly, it’s looking as though either Ben did tell her more than she’s letting her on (as Monroe assumes), or she’s actually the one who knew about the power going out originally (which possibly contradicts the pilot episode, but would be more intriguing). It’s going to be interesting to see how things pick up once Danny arrives.
Though, to be honest, I don’t really want Danny to get there. My favourite part of this show so far is him and Captain Neville on their travels. Things were shaken up this week when Danny finally managed to escape, taking advantage of the commotion caused by a huge storm approaching (which everyone seemed pretty scared of, but why?). Neville recaptures him and the pair are left to wait out the storm, alone in a storm cellar. When the structure is damaged and Neville is trapped under debris, Danny has another chance to run, but Neville tells him that if he does, he’s essentially a killer too. Danny decides to help — and is recaptured again for his efforts.
Character-wise, Danny is my favourite on Revolution so far. He’s smart, he’s mouthy, and he’s not constantly emoing about something or other. Admittedly, it helps that he randomly ended up sleeveless and attractive at some point. Neville’s pretty awesome, too, but that can be explained by the character being played by Giancarlo Esposito, who is always fantastic.
In my idealised version of next week’s episode, the gang meet up with Danny, Neville and the militia and hijinks ensue. Alas, that may not be the case, but whatever happens, I hope the gang stop emoing, stop trekking through woodland, and finally get somewhere. Bonus points if ‘somewhere’ involves a more interesting plot.
What did you think of ‘The Plague Dogs’? Let us know in the comments below!