Revolution (NBC): Is It March Yet?

Two weeks after the winter finale, and I’m still not over it.

Revolution may not be a consistently great show, but it has grown into an addictive one, and “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” was Revolution at the very top of its game. From the emotionally fraught reunion of Miles and Monroe to Rachel plunging Strausser’s own knife into his chest to the final moments when Monroe’s tricked-out helicopters took flight, this was a show moving with confidence and with purpose. The winter finale resolved the “save Danny” arc, an arc that has been weighing it down for a long while now, and gave us a glimpse at the compelling stories that await us in the future.

What do we have to look forward to? Hopefully, many, many more scenes between Miles and Monroe. Billy Burke and David Lyons bring out the best in one another, and the confrontation between their characters infused Revolution with more energy and emotion than anything else we’ve seen to date. Charlie’s journey from sheltered post-apocalypse kid to hardened soldier may have been the intended driving force behind the show’s concept, but Eric Kripke and company would be much better off permanently recalibrating to focus on the complex and damaged relationship between these two former friends.

Now that Miles has successfully pushed Monroe right over the edge into crazy town for good, the next leg of our heroes’ journey should have much higher stakes. We’re no longer bumbling around in the hopes of rescuing an ill-defined character, now Revolution has an excuse to get…yes, I’m going to say it…revolutionary. Our gang literally handed Monroe the power, and that means it’s going to be their responsibility to find a way to wrest control away from him before he becomes too powerful to stop. Meanwhile, Monroe has Georgia knocking at his back door and Randall Flynn waiting patiently to wreak some havoc of his own. That’s enough potential sources of conflict to fuel not only the rest of the season, but a second season as well.

Things are looking up from a character standpoint too. Miles and Monroe are the clear standouts at the moment, but Rachel, Tom and Julia are all on the verge of moving from interesting characters to major players. By virtue of being played by powerhouse performers Elizabeth Mitchell and Giancarlo Esposito, Rachel and Tom already have a head start. Neither of them has been given much to do yet, but the winter finale indicated that’s all about to change.

Rachel has been released from captivity after fifteen years, and she’s coming out on the other side with her already inherent ruthlessness increased tenfold. She’s going to be painfully aware that she chose to finish that amplifier, once again putting her kids ahead of everything (and everyone) else, and that in turn should motivate her to take an active role in the resistance movement. There are other emotional avenues to explore as well, thanks to her history with Miles and Aaron, and her new found opportunity to reconnect with her children. Mitchell has been turning in fine work already, but with so many story possibilities opening up, I can’t wait to see where she and Kripke will take Rachel next.

As for the Nevilles, well, those two are the show’s undisputed power couple. Tom’s going to be gunning for Miles after Miles threatened his wife, which means he now has a deeply personal reason to want to make the Mathesons’ lives miserable. He also has his wife spurring him on to seize power from Monroe, adding a layer of political machinations to the militia action. Kim Raver is no slouch either, and I get the sense that we’re just beginning to see the full extent of Julia’s ambitious nature.

From a character and a story standpoint, Revolution is in a much better position now than it was ten episodes ago. Exciting and emotionally rich– “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” presented a vision of a show that I look forward to watching. Unfortunately, we’ll all have to wait until March 25th to see if Revolution can turn that vision into a permanent reality.

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  • matt o

    I’m right there with you! Those last few episodes really get you stuck on the show. Another area I like is the scenery and sets. They really did some research finding overgrown areas without having to computer generate the sets.