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Roswell, New Mexico: Free Your Mind

“Well, one thing’s for sure. You’re not going into hell alone.”

In keeping with the episode’s title, freedom was the name of this week’s game. And we’re not just talking about the fight to save Maria.

We’ll begin with most obvious reference. Saving Maria from Jones’ attempt to shred her brain. Step one: get Maria out of the hospital before anyone discovers the glowing handprints and other unexplainable things happening to her body. Step two: stabilize Maria long enough to separate her and Jones' psychic link. Not a simple task when you don’t know how the link works. Regardless, Liz is convinced she’ll find the answer. After all, she’s always the smartest one in the room.

If only it were that simple. As Isobel and Rosa’s discussion points out, each of our heroes has their personal dragon to slay. Maria is no exception. In the mindscape we discover the person she is, her very self-worth, is tied to her belief in the righteousness of her forbears. I’m glad that Patricia turned out to be on Team Badass, but it would be just as believable that she could have sacrificed the people in the experiment if she thought it was in service to a greater cause. That wouldn’t make Maria less. Her faith in her friends and her willingness to risk everything to save others makes her a hero, no matter what her ancestors did or did not do.

For Rosa, it is one step forward and two steps back. She saves everyone from Jones, yet she’s sent back to the JV team. The biggest offender is her little sister, Liz. Liz is the one with the big brain, Liz is the one who always knows best. Rosa is just the ex-junkie with the messed up life. Intellectually, they both know that's no longer true. Rosa has worked hard to stitch her life back together while Liz has blown hers apart. But old habits die hard. Luckily, neither holds a grudge. When Rosa’s ability holds the key to saving Maria, Liz quickly admits she’s wrong and asks for Rosa’s help.

Rosa’s not the only one with doubts. After last week’s debacle, Isobel’s a little gun shy about taking Jones on. In theory, I don’t blame her. If the sword of destiny gives him the strength of everyone he’s ever killed, then she shouldn’t stand a chance. We’ll whistle past the fact that his abilities seem to expand or contract for plot reasons and get to the point. Jones may be stronger, but Isobel knows the terrain better. It helps that their goal was not Jones’ defeat but to buy enough time to sever the link between Maria and Jones.

It appears the years of bad timing, where either Alex or Michael’s loving overtures are rebuffed by the emotional unavailability of the other, are finally coming to an end. Alex no longer lives in his father’s shadow and has finally come to terms with his sexuality. Michael is no longer the angry, self-loathing youth searching for a family among the stars. He is content with the one he’s made in Roswell. Freed from the weight of their personal dragons, Alex and Michael meet from a place of honesty and trust for the first time.

So, when Michael sets off to find Dear Ol’ Dad outside the mindscape and rescue Max from his clutches, Alex is determined Michael makes it out in one piece. In the past, this would have resulted in one of them storming away in anger. Now their mutual respect outweighed their frustration, allowing them to work together to save Max.

But our heroes aren’t the only ones in search of freedom. Jones’ “immortality” is based on body swapping with a long line of clones. Of which, Max is the last. Jones believes the missing piece of alien glass will give him the means to make more. This is important for more than just the continuation of his life indefinitely. They’ve been hinting at some inadvertent connection between Max and Jones that must leave Jones vulnerable. There is little Jones wouldn’t do to keep that from happening.

The puzzle I previously described is slowly coming together. Maria has her mind all to herself. Max is safe even if he’s stuck in Jones’ body. All of our merry band now know Jones has a weakness even if they don’t know how to exploit it. They also know how the Lockhart Machine came to be and what it’s used for. Better yet, Alex has access to it. What I want to know is if they find a way to contact Oasis, will the people who show up help Max or Jones?

Each of our heroes may have their personal dragons, but as this episode illustrates, it is only by working together that they are going to defeat the threats that surround them.

4 out of 5 placebos

Parting Thoughts:

This week’s title was brought to you by En Vogue’s 1992 release.

What’s with barns turned into medical centers? First Kyle and now Maria. That cannot be sanitary.

The non-existent Dr. Holder makes another appearance. She really gets around.

Quotes:

Jones: “Now, I may be in control, but I’m hoping this endeavor can be a cordial one.”
Maria: “Cordial? Right. I’d rather go down swinging.”

Alex: “That sounds crazy dangerous.”
Michael: “Luckily, both are my specialty.”

Alex: “This world where you don’t live in fear is not going to build itself, so I have to try.”

Michael: “You picked a hell of a time for a grand gesture, Manes.”

Maria: “So, I’m Google Maps for Diet Thanos.”

Liz: “I stabilized your vitals. Now I just got to figure out a way to save your life.”

Isobel: “There are monsters in every shadow waiting to prey on the weak.”

Alex: “You are the one piece that I cannot go through life without.”

Isobel: “I didn’t know that ten-year pod soak came with a Yoda setting.”

Alex: “Maybe Nora is the chip you’re off of and not Jones.”

Isobel: “We come from badass stock, babe.”
Maria: “Clearly.”

Liz: “All right. I’m gonna drink this wine. I’m gonna hug Maria DeLuca till it hurts.”
Isobel: “Yes.”
Liz: “And then I’m gonna do what I always do... Save Max Evans.”

Shari loves sci-fi, fantasy, supernatural, and anything with a cape.

2 comments:

txrus said...

Liz's freakout over Maria's drop in temperature was absurd, especially when the camera pulled back to show the wide open barn door in the midst of New Mexico winter w/significant snow on the ground. Yes, I know almost everything has been done outside this season due to the real-life cootie pandemic, but still-waaaaaaaaaaay over the top.

Shari said...

You're right, but the fact that they were in the barn to begin with was absurd. I imagine it was to keep location costs down but still...