BrainDead “Notes Towards a Post-Reagan Theory…” Review (Season 1 Episode 6)

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On the latest episode of “BrainDead,” we discovered Laurel’s fate, the team finally figured out a way to combat the ants and an alien connection was finally made between the ants and space- to say nothing of The Cars- while Luke tried to secure a budget for the CDC moving forward amongst the usual in-fighting between the two parties, in “Notes Towards a Post-Reagan Theory of Party Alliance, Tribalist, and Loyalty: Past as Prologue.”

We picked up right where we left off, with Laurel waking up knowing the ants had invaded her brain and none too happy about it, as she called for medical assistance, and was told it’d be some 45 minutes before assistance could arrive, because of the high volume of such calls, which is an alarming bit of information.

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Fortunately, Gustav arrived shortly thereafter, and with an assist from the subsequently arriving Rochelle, the three set about trying to figure out how to save Laurel from a full-on takeover. Figuring out that the bugs targeted one side of the brain, they sought to appeal to the other one: the more creative, artistically-driven part.

Though I liked one readers’ theory about how Laurel’s music that she was doing the documentary about would end up saving her, in the end, it was a combination of dance music, booze and sex that did the trick, with a helpful assist from Gareth, who showed up after a too-bizarre-not-to-investigate call with Laurel and company.

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All in all, given the insane predicament the two were in, it’s a miracle Gareth was able to pull it off, as Laurel was downing booze and food like it was going out of style, including during the act of sex itself! But he nonetheless managed, and the bugs hightailed it out of there, with Gustav catching one of the bugs en route out the door.

Rochelle and Gustav took the bug to her lab to investigate, at one point pulling off one of it’s legs, which then proceeded to crawl on its own back to rejoin the rest of its body. Clearly out of their depths, they took it to Dr. Wu, only for it to be confiscated when there was an objection at a hearing to determine how much funding the CDC would receive.

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Red was dubious of funding it at all because of the bug thing, along with allegations that the CDC was wasting money with “zombie” research, in case of an impending apocalypse. This bit of business, believe it or not, has some basis in truth, as the CDC did indeed launch what amounted to a “Zombie Preparedness” campaign, as a way of educating people in a “fun” way about disease control and prevention.

Red used this, and later on, the mention of the level of animal testing as a way of stalling the budget vote, only to have Ella go in the opposite direction, trying to secure even more funding to combat “death” itself. Whatever the case, it led to the bug research by Wu being shut down and the bug placed in a vault, “Raiders of the Lost Ark”-style, where it seems to be actively trying to escape and wreak more havoc, one assumes.

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Fortunately, the team uncovered some things on their own, in researching various other areas. On Laurel’s end, she was looking into the planning of districts after a constituent came in and complained about having to travel a great distance to vote, only to discover there was some oddball gerrymandering going on via Red.

At first, there seemed to be no rhyme or reason to it, only for Laurel to discover that, from a “bird’s eye view,” it looked like crop circles, which Laurel perceived to be no coincidence. Likewise, Luke pointed out that they looked a bit like constellations as well, which I don’t think is a coincidence, either, though the show glossed over it a bit.

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However, Rochelle managed to connect things to space nonetheless, as she discovered an online article about the “music of the spheres,” aka the ambient noise one heard in deep space, which, when sped up, sounded like, of all things, The Cars’ “You Might Think.” This bit couldn’t help but remind me of that famous scene in “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” in which the people of Earth communicated with aliens via sounds and visual aids.

Meanwhile, Laurel, now armed with the potential means to combat friend Stacie’s brain bug issues, hoodwinked her into meeting her at a disco, but she was stubbornly uncooperative, refusing to dance, drink or anything else “fun.” Even worse, Stacie- or rather, the things occupying Stacie- outright told Laurel that there was nothing that could be done for Stacie, as she was too far gone to come back at this point.

According to the bugs, speaking through Stacie, to remove them now would effectively lobotomize her. When Laurel asked Stacie what the bugs wanted from them, she said, “Everything” and informed her that “There is no government anymore.” Tell me something I don’t already know, lol.

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That was about it, save Laurel finally coming clean with Gareth about what was going on at the end of the episode, though we never really got his reaction, which I’m guessing will be disbelief. And who could blame him? But we’ll just have to wait and see next week whether he goes along with all this insanity or not. I’d have to say no at first, but once he starts noticing the signs Laurel will no doubt fill him in on, then he’ll get it and be onboard.

All in all, an okay episode overall. It was nothing spectacular, and really left the viewer wanting on the political side of things, save a well-placed Trump-style joke at Laurel’s expense on the behalf of Red, which is disappointing. That said, I am glad Laurel’s okay, as it would have been pretty unexpected and near-unprecedented if the show had taken out the main protagonist this soon into the show’s run.

Although, in the show’s best joke, Gustav pointed out to Rochelle: “Have you noticed in horror movies, black people die first?” Though Gustav and Rochelle are still very much with us, thankfully, you’ll note that one of the show’s first victims was indeed a black man, aka Rochelle’s father, so Gustav isn’t wrong there. Lord knows I’ve seen enough horror movies to confirm that the fact is all too true.

Notes Toward a Post-Reagan Theory of Party Alliance, Tribalisim, and Loyalty: Past as Prologue

What did you think of the latest episode of “BrainDead”? Were you surprised that Laurel managed to defeat the bugs in the short-term? Is there hope for the team to defeat the bugs in the long term, given what they found out in this episode? Or are the bugs smarter than they seem? Will Gareth buy into Laurel’s story? Or into Laurel in general? Sound off down below and see you next week!