Home Featured TV Shows All TV Shows Movie Reviews Book Reviews Articles Frequently Asked Questions About Us

Roswell, New Mexico: Never Let You Go

“Can we hug you now?”

The finale is the culmination of all that’s come before. The resolution of at least this phase of the characters’ journeys and the answer to the narrative questions posed at the beginning of the season. How did this one hold up? Each of our characters began the season alone and searching for meaning. Some by choice, others fear, and one through ignorance. It may have taken a murderous megalomaniac, but they have learned how much they need and value each other.

One thing I love about this show is they never hit reset at the beginning of the season. Characters learn and grow from their mistakes so that they can make new and better ones next time. Isobel is the perfect example. It’s clear she married Noah because she thought he was safe. He accepted all of her foibles and never asked too many questions about her relationships with Max and Michael. Learning that not only was he playing her, but he literally invaded her body to commit murder sent her into a justified tailspin.

Her response was to focus on self-defense and survival skills. These tactics included erecting barriers to keep anyone from getting close enough to hurt her. Isobel sought to become the badass warrior she believed her mother to be. She forgot that walls lock things in just as easily as they keep things out. Doubtless, her mother was a strong woman, but she wasn't alone. It may have taken Isobel all season, but she finally understands that depending on your family can be a strength and not a weakness.

The love Michael and Alex share has never been in question. Whether they could overcome their past guilt and their self-loathing long enough to have a future was another story. Which is why they spent so much of last season apart. Michael’s time with Maria taught him that relationships don’t have to be painful. Forrest showed Alex that he didn’t need to hide who he was or how he felt. Those relationships may not have lasted, but the lessons did. And Michael and Alex are better people for having learned them.

At the risk of repeating myself, Michael is not the broken boy he once was. It takes incredible strength to be vulnerable with another person. The Michael of old could never have done it. He would have lashed out or drunk himself into oblivion rather than face his feelings. The new and improved Michael’s ability to bare his soul to both Max and Alex proves how far he’s come. And it’s born out in his final showdown with his father.

Liz’s response to any problem has always been to run away and bury herself in work. That was great for her career but it left her life in chaos. Her saving grace was her humongous, beating heart. Even hundreds of miles away, she still searched for a way to help Maria. And once she learned Max was dying, she was determined to save him, even if she couldn’t save their relationship.

Max’s isolation was based on his belief that he had no future. Getting close to people would only hurt them when he was gone. The moment he was healed and could contemplate what came next, he was hit with the knowledge that the only surefire way to defeat Jones was his death. He spent the remainder of the season balancing his desire to make amends with Liz with the fear he might have to sacrifice himself to keep her safe.

Separately, they each realized the answers to their problems were with each other. Liz’s love for Max tempers her ambitions while allowing her creativity to soar. As for Max, I think he’s gotten used to owing her his life. And now they have what they both wanted, a chance to build a life together.

The season also brought us a few fresh faces. Faith helped Dallas make sense of his life and gave his ability to hear people’s thoughts meaning. Despite this, he still felt like an outsider. Now he has a family that understands and can hopefully heal him.

I think Dallas’ description of Heath is perfect. A good man with bad options. He did what he had to do to save the life of the only one he’s ever considered family. No one, least of all Liz, has any right to cast stones. Luckily, as Liz’s work Max, he might have a few more (and hopefully better) options.

Maria and Rosa’s journeys were similar. For very different reasons, both have had to adjust to the idea they are alien adjacent. For Maria, that meant discovering the extent of her powers, understanding the cause of her mother’s illness, and redefining the term family. Although Rosa’s definition of family keeps expanding and she too had to come to grips with strange and often terrifying abilities, I feel like her journey is still a work in progress. Rosa may have left the drugs and alcohol behind, but she’s still lacking the confidence to strike out on her own. Regardless, they both conquered their fears and mastered their abilities well enough to come to the aid of their family.

Because that’s what they are now. In the end, Jones’ need to divide and conquer served as the catalyst to pull them all together into a loving, though often fractious, family. He revealed their individual insecurities. In facing them, they discovered they were stronger together than they could hope to be apart.

Then there’s Kyle. Don’t get me wrong, he too is part of this family. His relationship with the Pod Squad may have begun as what could be, at best, defined as frenemies. However, after years of witnessing their frailties and strengths and revealing his own, not to mention saving each other’s lives multiple times, they’ve grown past grudging respect and duty to genuine trust and care.

However, Kyle ended the season much as he began it. Alone and questioning his life’s choices. I have to believe this is all a setup to a major story arc for him next season. One that may or may not lead to Isobel’s door.

Speaking of, we can’t end without mentioning the seeds laid for next season. First, there is no power in the 'verse to make me believe Jones’ message did not get through. Whether his message is connected to the mystery girl sporting Max’s galactic tattoo and little else remains to be seen. As does Allie’s relationship with Liz and the “sky people.”

Personally, I thought this was their strongest season yet. It felt like a cohesive whole which could not be said of some other shows I could name. Every character had an arc that made sense and never felt forced. If I had a nit to pick, I often got lost in all the scientific gobbledygook, but emotionally, they hit me in the feels Every. Single. Time.

Now the wait begins.

4.5 out 5 secret acetone margarita recipes

Parting Thoughts:

This title was taken from Third-Eye Blind’s 1999 hit.

So Jones called in reinforcements? Can Max pretend to be Jones and send them away?

I’m assuming Sanders made it through, otherwise I doubt Michael would be so cavalier.

Speaking of things unsaid, still no conversation about Anatsa sleeping with both Evans siblings. Hmmm.

Quotes:

Isobel: “Okay, so, while you guys live in the land of fingers-crossed, I’m gonna go rebuild the only thing that we actually know has ever defeated Jones...”

Michael: “We agreed Kamikaze Max isn’t on the table.”

Kyle: “Would you like the bad news first or the bad news first.”

Liz: “We could both use a little calm right now.”

Alex: “We are not who we were in high school.”

Max: “So you’re sure this is gonna swap me and Jones?”
Michael: “Uh... 92% sure.”
Max: “What about the other 8%?”
Michael: “Blind faith.”

Michael: “And since you don’t have your pointy glow stick, we’ve turned you into just your normal pain-in-the-ass galactic bully.”

Jones: “This is what you call a cavalry?”

Michael: “It’s time for you to hold my metaphorical beer.”

Liz: “I knew you’d show yourself.”

Rosa: “I’m all fireworks on the inside.”

Isobel: “So, did E.T. phone home?”

Michael: “I think I’m gonna leave the mysteries of the universe on hold for the night.”

Allie: “How the hell do you know who Liz Ortecho is?”

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

10 comments:

Billie Doux said...

Shari, congratulations on finishing reviews for another season! It's no small accomplishment. I still haven't seen this one but I'll be back with comments soon.

Shari said...

Considering everything you're about to witness, I'm waiting with baited breath...

TJ said...

When that woman in the dark comes up in the end, I thought, it must be Shiri Appleby! And it was!

I wonder if they are going to tie this in with the original Roswell somehow?

Shari said...

I knew I recognized her voice but I had no idea who it was until I saw her.

I doubt it'll tie into the previous show since they didn't when Jason Behr was on. However, I will lose it if they ever bring Majandra on. She was my personal favorite.

txrus said...

First, thanks to the reviewers for all their hard work-I can't even begin to imagine what it takes to do these thorough reviews week after week.

I discovered the show, by accident, about 2 episodes into this season, so I binged the previous 3 seasons & then caught up. Maybe it's because I didn't have a break between seasons, but this current one was just different to me on so many levels. I didn't like the Jones story & am glad he's gone. There seemed to be a very subdued energy (no pun intended) throughout the whole season likely because so much of what happened was done in pods (again, no pun intended). And don't even get me started on the whole hospital in a barn w/the door wide open thing. I get why it was done, but to me, it is just very jarring compared to season 3 that I had just finished. I sincerely hope, when production resumes for season 4, things are back to some semblance of normal.

Finally, thanks to members of the FB group for explaining who the lady @ the end was-just started watching THAT Roswell last night to tide me over until this one comes back :-)

Shari said...

Hi txrus,

I'm glad you enjoyed the reviews. It can be a lot of work but mostly it's just a fun way to connect with other people who love the show as much as I do.

That said, using the barn as a hospital was just plain odd. No matter the reason.

I think they've started filming already so I'm very excited. I too hope they can go bact to normal.

As for Roswell 1.0, it is a very different animal. Don't get me wrong, I loved it but if you watch it expecting something similar to this show you'll probably be disappointed.

Billie Doux said...

I enjoyed this finale. The body-switching with Max and Jones went on a bit too long, but the "family" coming together to defeat Jones was very nice. Although I was absolutely expecting Max to tell Liz to kill them both and that it would be the perfect way to tell them apart. A "kill us both, Spock" moment. :)

And everyone pairing off in the end was also nice. Although the Isobel/Kyle thing interrupted by Anatsa was disappointing. Next season, as you say, Shari. Maybe.

Shari said...

I think Max wanting her to get the shotgun was their version of "Kill us both." That said, I knew it was going to come down to the song. They'd spent too much time on it earlier. Sometimes I wish I could just watch the show without my writer hat on.

Anonymous said...

Cool ending. Really hated that Kyle's moment with Isobel was broken by Anatsa. I don't trust her and Isobel will find out she slept with Max. Right?
Liked all the other couples getting together and Jones being gone. I hope.
Thanks for your reviews. Really liked them. LOL I guess the showrunners really love Counting Crows.

Shari said...

Either they really love the Counting Crows or the band gave them a deal on their music...