Eureka: In Too Deep

... in which the writers go to an all-too-familiar well to eke out some tired story drama.

Oh, boy. In case the “… in which” tease didn’t tip you off, I wasn’t too thrilled with this one. In fact, the bulk of ‘In Too Deep’ made me angry. And I mean angry. The writers just couldn’t resist going for the “let’s cast doubt on Allison and Carter’s couplehood” trope one last time. What an utter waste of time. We all know full well that Carter and Allison are meant to be together, and that there’s no way they are going to split up, so why bother to spend an entire episode forcing us through “maybe we should call the whole thing off” shenanigans. It’s irritating as hell. Especially since we had to suffer through a few rounds of Carter fearing Allison is embarrassed by how “dumb” he is, and Allison dredging up her irrational jealousy of Jo.

I wasn’t much impressed with Allison’s actual reason for being hesitant either. Are we really supposed to believe that she’d still be in “what if things don’t work out” mode? After all this time? I bought it back in ‘The Ex-Files’ (probably a year ago, storywise), but now? No freaking way. This is, after all, the woman that chose building a family with Carter and her kids over her childhood dream of going into space (‘Glimpse’) and then moved her children into Carter’s home. So why should we believe that she now has reservations about things not working out if they get married? You don’t uproot your kids and move them into someone else’s home if you think it is an impermanent situation that may not work out. You could maybe argue that she’s just stressed because of the excessive chaos, or maybe she’s harboring doubts because of her Matrix experience, but I’m just not buying it. There’s no way that Allison should be on the fence about a lifetime commitment to Carter, and to string it out one last time was annoying as hell.

I guess I should be thrilled that they finally put the lid on that story well by having Carter and Allison get married in the end, but I found their “wedding” incredibly disappointing. After all the time we’ve invested in them as a couple (some of you far longer than me), I really wanted some kind of fairy tale wedding for the official blending their two families. Zoe, Kevin, and Jenna should have been there with them. All their friends should have been there, watching them finally tying the knot. (Hell, even Warren Hughes should have been there to see his favorite couple get hitched!) Having only some of the important people in their lives remotely listening to them exchange vows while trying to prevent them from drowning was not satisfying. Not in the slightest.

The real crux of my issue isn’t the lack of romance or that this wasn’t the wedding I envisioned for them. It was that their union barely had any emotional resonance for me at all. Instead, it felt like a rushed act of desperation, not an emotional climax years in the making. Allison and Carter are the center of this show, and their wedding should have reduced me to joyful blubbering instead of just somewhat curbing my rising ire at the writers. Aaargh!!!

Okay. Deep breaths. Now on to the very few things in this episode that did work for me. Fargo congratulating Carter and telling him to cherish every moment with Allison was incredibly resonant, and did briefly choke me up. “Don’t waste a second with her. Not one.” I also really liked Fargo telling Zane he deserved the promotion to head of Section 5 and letting him know he believed in him.

Zane: “Everyone knows I’m a maturity-challenged screw up with … with little to no capacity for leadership.”
Fargo: “That’s what everyone knew about me, too. It took a timeline shift to throw me into the deep end. But I swam. So will you.”

I’ve said it many times over the last few weeks, but I really love the friendship that has developed between these two. Seeing Fargo being willing to open up to Zane about Holly’s situation and the seriousness with which Zane treated the confidence was another lovely demonstration of how their dynamic has evolved. “Fargo gave me his trust. And I’m gonna give him something back. […] Holly.”

The closing scene between Jo and Zane was also wonderful. Her acceptance that his pranks and spontaneity have their time and place, countered by his acknowledgement that her taking her responsibilities seriously is something he can respect, felt like another nice step in their relationship. I liked seeing Jo encouraging Zane in his new job and being supportive of his desire to help Fargo. And her turning his prank around on him to dress him in a suit was an especially nice coda. “I’m sure your butt looks pretty good, too.” I’m so happy to see these two getting back on track. (How long before the writers start screwing with them again? Erg.)

Other Thoughts

Credit Where Credit is Due: I did not immediately figure out the cause of this week’s disaster, or spend time wondering why the characters couldn’t figure things out sooner. Of course, I was also rather blinded by my seething rage over what was happening on the character front, so maybe things were more obvious than I realize.

Fargo’s beard made me smile. Definitely a different look for him.

Holly: “How do I look?”
Allison: “Ummm … exactly like … you.”
Holly (dismayed): “Aww. I asked for bigger boobs.”
Fargo: “You were perfect before your untimely … interruption, and you are perfect now.”

So is Feinman Day like Leap Day, in that it only comes around every four years or so? Because I don’t remember this holiday coming up before, and you’d think given the utter havoc it wreaked we would have heard about it before Season 5. (Please correct me, if I’m wrong.) Of course, maybe the total chaos is the reason they only celebrate it every once in a blue moon.

My house is not nearly so crowded or chaotic as Allison’s, but I completely understood her contented sigh of pleasure at finally having some peaceful solitude.

I was so tweaked by the Allison-Carter business, I couldn’t even enjoy the allusions to The Abyss in their storyline. And that’s one of my favorite movies!

On the other hand, Andy pointedly controlling his dice rolls for the gaming campaign was very amusing. (Of course, you wouldn’t want to play a dice game with a robot unless he’s on your team!)

I did well up a little bit when Allison told Jo she would have been her maid of honor regardless. But only because Jo was so affected by it. It didn’t really feel earned after the way Allison has been behaving around her for the bulk of this season.

The whole time Zane was telling Jo about Holly’s consciousness being too different for even their advanced computers to handle, all I could think of was Kim 2.0. Henry designed the program for the original one, yes? Shouldn’t they be asking him for help? I know Zane wasn’t there, but Fargo and Jo should remember Kim 2.0.

I will admit that the big, happy family ending made me smile. Something about all of them gathering around to go on a fantasy campaign was strangely heartwarming.

Final Analysis: I enjoyed some of the final moments, but on the whole this one was a frustrating mess for me. And we totally got robbed on the Carter and Allison nuptials!

Jess Lynde is a highly engaged television viewer. Probably a bit too engaged.

15 comments:

celticmarc said...

OMG Jess !

Never seen (read) you so angry after a show like this ! Wow LOL

But, SOB, gotta agree with you : enough is enough. Stop pulling the sauce (french expression).

Weirdest wedding on TV. The thing that made me smile the most though ? Colin Ferguson directed this ep.

Always a pleasure to watch a show directed by an actor after a few seasons. Super cool.

And, finally, I am totally unable to rate it. And I prefer a beardless (and cleaner) Fargo...

Anonymous said...

This series is sinking fast. And I mean FAST.

And even though unintended, that pun is SO appropriate to review this episode and the state of the series.

Every episode I see I become more convinced that not only I'm going to miss the promised S6 (typical of SyFy to go back on their word), I'm going to wish Eureka had ended with S4.

Patrick said...

Kim 2.0 is one way they could save her, but my first thought was back to the very beginning of the series, when we learned that scientist had made an exact duplicate of his wife. Using something from the very beginning would be a nice way to end the series.

Matthew L said...

I feel your pain and anger Jess. I liked everything about the episode except for anything that was Carter and Allison related.

When I first saw the previews for this episode and saw where they were going, I started fast forwarding through all the Carter/Allison scenes.

I loved everything else about the episode. The Feinman Day pranks and resulting chaos were hilarious. The whole D&D scenes with Holly, Fargo, and Andy were fun. Like you I loved the Zane and Fargo friendship as well as the growth in Jo and Zane's relationship.

Like I said, everything non-Allison/Carter related was great. Not even the "quickie" wedding saved what the writers did during this whole episode, although the final scene with everyone playing D&D was cute.

I agree with you, tweaking and throwing doubts into the Allison-Carter relationship at this late date made no sense. I'm assuming the whole mishagash was done just so that they could segue into the quickie wedding scene.

Hope the writers come up with something better for the next episode. :)

Quachett said...

Damn this was one angry post lol. I gotta agree with you on the Allison-Carter doubt wrong plot wrong episode wrong season, I could not, for the life of me, justify the doubts that Allison showed, there was nothing in the 5 seasons that could give base to any doubts at all, it would have been better had they at least try to link her fears to the deaths of Kevin's dad and Stark given that Carter works in a dangerous job and all.

The Holly situation is doing a number on me, with each episode I get to ride a rollercoaster of emotion one ends with her being alive and its ohh joy!, the next ends with her having limited time then back again I really am nervous now I hope she makes it I really do but as things stand there is no telling.

Zane and Jo's relationship was nicely handled but I loved how their stories are shaping up. Zane is now an even better partner to Jo than the Zane that proposed in the previous timeline. The suit at the end was such a powerful stride in developing his character. Instead of having episodes of him taking more responsibility and all; they just abbreviated the process with that suit. I really can see him as the Head of Section 5 not just the brilliant Physicist he is.

Finally this is it, this episode was the genesis of the end game, I couldn’t help but sense the get ready, set... preparation for the end. It's almost like they wanted to create on final high before all hell started breaking loose, something big is about to happen and it feels threatening it almost feels as though someone is going to die or Eureka will be brought close to destruction. It might be just me but Eureka is making its goodbye rounds now.

P.S. Is there any chance it can be saved or is it truly on its final approach?

Jess Lynde said...

Thanks for the comments, all! I was going to refer you to my S2 finale review for another angry Eureka screed, but when I went back and read it, it didn't sound nearly as angry as this one. It surprised me, actually, because I remember being as angry about that one as I was this one. I guess since we are approaching the end, I just don't want to waste time with pointless and illogical conflicts that we know will be resolved, so the anger came out on the page more.

Patrick, I like the idea of going back to the Susan Perkins clone. Just to bring things full circle. I don't know if it will go that way, though, because they didn't actually know this was the end run. It could be a nice coincidence if they do.

Quachett, that's interesting that you got a sense of a building endgame, because I'm still feeling like the season has become rather directionless. I have no idea what to expect next, except that Zane will continue to work on the Holly issue. If we do suddenly move into a clear season-ending arc, that would be great. I hate when the series becomes directionless. It works much better with a clear, consistent overall season (or half-season) arc. (See the first half of S3 and S4, and even the back half of S4.)

Quachett said...

Jess, For me this season (or atleast the first half) is about the characters being developed to the ever after point. while Eureka has done a great job with them as individuals there is deffinately room to develop them with respect to relationships and carrers. Allison and Carter, Fago and Holy, Zane and Jo all these guys have had thier relationships without them actually building something more than just dating, I think that the first half was just trying to advance these relationships and have some fun before they start building a season arc threat. Now that Carter and Allison are married, Zane and Jo seem to be heading for something more meaningful with a more mature Zane, who is also progressing proffessionally and the mini arc about Fargo and holly promising a very impacting end, Holly dying or finally gaining a body, the stories are now done its time to start bringing the end game and I just sense it coming.

That new security system that was installed is increadibly intrussive and a potential tool that can be used to take over Eureka, or the continued reference the Matrix design and how specific situations can trigger some interesting behaviour from the Eureka population; all these are potential foundations to build an overall arc of the season. I guess the lack of an arc is the reason why I feel that something is about to happen. I dont know if that makes any sense

Anonymous said...

Didnt really like the way Fargo sacked the scientist who'd just saved their lives. Really arrogant, and would you really sack someone who just perfected a transmat

Billie Doux said...

I didn't hate it, but it was just too bad that we never got the Jack/Allison big wedding that the two main characters in the series should have had. Dan said (and I thought he was absolutely right) that the sub plot should have been Zane and Jo.

Dan also laughed out whenever the guy (whose name I don't recall) was talking like the Muppet beaker. Really funny.

Jess Lynde said...

But he didn't perfect it. He was playing around with it (off the radar, apparently), trying to get it to work, and caused all sorts of problems (fish tank office, soapy detergent lab, exploding metals lab), including nearly getting Carter and Allison killed. It was Zane's DNA targeting system, which he combined with Fowler's (?) flawed tech that ended up saving the day.

I thought Fowler's original sacking by Warren Hughes was rather unfair, and apparently so did Fargo, since he redacted the redaction. But then he just re-proved himself incompetent this week. The firing didn't seem unjust to me this time.

Although it does make you wonder how he got on to the Astraeus crew in the first place. They were supposed to be the cream of the crop, yes? Who passed a rigorous screening process. Are we to assume the Senator just thought the basic transporter idea was cool and figured someone else in the Matrix (like Zane) could help him bring it to fruition?

zob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
celticmarc said...

I haven't read the new comments, but boy !!! this ep has sure stirred up a massive amount of emotions !! Wow !

I just hope someone at ScyFy has-had a look at this.....

inspirejenny said...

- loved zane in a suit... yes please!
- i enjoy seeing mature fargo, so sweet when he said the thing to jack about treasuring alison
-I love the "puppy dog" jack and it broke my heart to see alison hurting his feelings.. plus she is just better than that
- really she had doubts? after all that time being devastated in the matrix that she was not with him? WTH?
-laughed out loud at "hologram" vincent talking and making no sense which was what tipped henry off that it was jack! cute!
-so uh are we just done with grace? what the heck is she doing over there are CERN... get over it GRACE it was a matrix, not real..

Tiffany said...

I actually really liked the way Jack and Allison were married. It was typical eureka-style, and a contrast to the elegant,glamorous, but very formal wedding that signified Allison/Stark relationship ss opposed to Allison/Carter simplistic, chaotic, and enduring union.

EurekaRewatch said...

My biggest issue with this episodes is that Carter (and Jo) thought it would be a great idea to trap someone who was just traumatized beyond reason by being trapped in a space ship going to Titan, in a submarine and launch it????
No to mention that she hates surprises AND needed some space.