Last year, Revolution got everybody's attention with an intriguing premise. What if all our electricity was sucked away by nanotechnology? Its second season premiere gave us political baggage and daddy issues — but we're hoping the show will look a lot more like this scene.
After her mother Rachel let somebody die last season so that she could complete her mission to turn the lights back on, scrappy teen Charlie has been out on her own. She's pissed at mom, annoyed with boyfriend Jason for defecting back to scary dad Neville's camp, and just wants to get laid (which we see in the episode's opening scenes). She's also exploring more of the post-electric world of Revolution, like visiting "New Vegas," where the former political leader Monroe has been reduced to street fighting and David Schwimmer is performing in sideshow tents. I love this scene so much. If only this whole show were this snarky and weird, I would be all in.
Mama Drama and Daddy Issues
Unfortunately, most of the episode was down to Mama Drama and Daddy Issues. The tough-as-nails Rachel, who got the lights back on last season only to watch as her former colleague used the power to nuke Atlanta and Philly, has had a nervous breakdown. Cue vacant stares and sobbing and bullshit. Miles has to take Rachel back to her doctor dad, where she slowly recovers and dad gives Miles a lecture about how Miles is a bad boy who shouldn't hang around with his daughter.
Everybody says things to Miles and Rachel like "I see how you look at each other — I know you are in love." What's the big deal? Rachel's husband is dead and before this whole breakdown thing Rachel was as much of a badass as Miles. Is the whole "bad boy" thing really relevant after the apocalypse? I guess so, because we have to endure like two scenes of Miles saying he's going to stay, and then leave, and then stay, based on how much Rachel manipulates him with the crazy. I'm over it.
Meanwhile, Neville and Jason are playing Big Jim and Little Jim from Under the Dome. Neville has taken over Monroe's army, and is murdering people for fun, while pretending to Jason that he's doing the right thing. Poor Jason. He's always wanted Neville's approval and now he's just leaving himself open to being pushed around.
One thing that Neville gets right, though. He suspects that the guy who set off the nukes was secretly working for the former United States president, who mysteriously returns six months after the nukes to try to rebuild the country. (He's been hiding out at Gitmo, which is another fantastic detail that hints at how inventive this show can be.) Indeed, Neville is right. So it looks like the big bad this season will be the former US president, and Monroe will be shirtless. Nice.
The other big bad is going to be the crazy cult brother from Big Love (sorry — I'm sure he's done other things, but I will always think of him in that role). He's running some kind of warrior tribe "up in the plains" full of men who like to kill and rape. In fact, one of them tries to steal Google's new girlfriend (yep, he's got one and of course we have to endure watching him grovel to her about how he can't even believe a lady would want a nerd like him, etc.).
But instead of hiding while men take his woman, the way he did last time, Google steps up to the plate and smacks the bad guy with a baseball bat. Of course the guy promptly swords Google in the chest, which is awesome — now Google has given his life defending his lady friend. What a manly man. So manly in fact that after he dies, he comes back to life again!
Because why? I'm sure you've guessed that the nanotechnology is at work here. We already learned last season that it was developed as a medical technology. And throughout this episode, a bunch of animals and fireflies have been acting really weirdly — AS IF UNDER CONTROL OF NANITES. Or something.
I'll admit it — I like the idea that we'll discover that the nanotech is doing something useful. And I'm intrigued by the Gitmo Presidency. Now if we could just cut down on those whiny bits with Rachel, and the daddy freakouts with Jason, I'd be set. Also, more worldbuilding like that New Vegas bit, please.