Dominion Review: GodSpeed
Okay. I like this show. I enjoyed the pilot but wasn’t sure if the show would be able to keep my attention in the second episode but even though it’s not as grand as the first episode, it does enough to keep my interest going. The first episode kinda threw a bunch of stuff at us at once. This episode was more toned down and mainly focused on Alex dealing with the revelation that he's the Chosen One. I'm fine with that. I'm actually reassured that the show isn't going to just constantly throw a lot of things at us each episode. Even with a slower, streamlined episode, what we got was good overall for the story and that's a promising sign.
This episode is definitely slower than the Pilot. Outside of a flashback with a young Alex and still alive Jeep, there’s only one other action scene in this episode. Still there’s enough here to keep me interested for the rest of the season. The main focus of this episode is Alex not wanting to accept his role as the chosen one as well as Consul Whele and General Riesen also wanting to keep that revelation a secret. While the whole “I don’t want to accept my destiny” thing is annoying, in the case of Alex I think they do a decent enough job explaining why he’s having a hard time accepting this. After the war, a caste system was put in place. Because Jeep left Alex and Michael was trying to hide Alex’s identity, Alex was in the bottom of the societal structure. As he tells Claire, he joined the army not to protect others and the city but just so he could get 3 meals a day. He’s had a rough life and now the weight of humanity is put on his shoulders and he wants none of it. He just wants to leave. And while from a selfish audience point of view it’s annoying, when you think about it, his behavior makes sense.
I felt better about Tom Wisdom as Michael this episode. The character of Michael is still wooden (by design) but I feel like Wisdom had a bit more personality this episode. His interaction with Alex was good this episode. Alex doesn’t trust him anymore (for good reason) and Michael really can’t understand. He even goes to General Riesen for help because he’s genuinely perplexed. But the scene that made me feel better about Wisdom as Michael was his scene with Carl Beukes as Gabriel. Michael describes Gabriel as nothing more than a spoiled child acting out in hopes of getting his father's attention. It's actually a pretty accurate description when you think about it. While this show does have an obvious religious overtone to it, it's really "humanizing" the Angels and God in a way. Think about the scene where Gabriel is celebrating their "victory" from the last episode. It's basically one big Angel orgy with wine. Seems like Gabriel's whole motive is to destroy humanity in hopes that it will make God come back. In other words, God is nothing more than an absentee father right now and his kids are battling each other and acting out in hopes of getting his attention. And there's also heavy implication that Gabriel is jealous of Michael and that Michael is the "favored" son.
General Edward Riesen & David Whele might be two sides to the same evil coin. Thing is, Whele comes off evil and acts evil with a purpose. Riesen though comes off as reasonable but clearly has his own secrets and acts evil undercover. Whele really turned the "wait a minute, you endangered all of us by bringing that 8-Ball into the city" into a "Well I did it to protect the city." It was a perfect example of rich white male privilege. Not only did Riesen defend him but then he showed how shady he is by agreeing to have tech who was in the room when Alex was revealed as the Chosen One killed. And how does one deal with a dead body after you kill them in Vega? By feeding him to the lions of course. The Biblical significance of this isn't lost on me. Gotta love the fact that while the lower classes of people in Vega are struggling to find food, someone thought making sure the MGM Grand's lions were well fed and taken care of for the last 25 years. Apparently PETA is still going strong. Whele being a former televangelist just makes all the sense in the world. Anthony Head continues to slay this role. His conversation with Alex about religion makes so much sense you almost forget he has his own motives for keeping Alex's identity a secret.
One of the things I'm most interested in seeing from this show though is more about the city of Helena. Arika is ruthless. First off, you know a city is tough when the nail polish of all the diplomat's handmaidens contains poison. I don't think Whele knows what he's dealing with in Arika. He thinks he knows...but he doesn't. She reminds me of Stahma on Defiance. She's a ruthless woman who men think is weak because all they see is her sex appeal. It's a fatal mistake. She had all her handmaidens commit suicide then used that to give Whele an ultimatum. Basically let her go and just say he had to kill the handmaidens or kill her and have Queen Evelyn bomb Vega into the stone age. know what? I’m intrigured by the city of Helena. It's coming off as a version of the nation of Themyscira (aka the home of Wonder Woman and the Amazons). They worship the "divine feminine", are a female led society and honestly, I think they're far more dangerous, cunning, ruthless and smart than anyone in Vega. I want to see more from that city. I wonder who they cast to play Evelyn. I have my fingers crossed for Tricia Helfer being Evelyn when they finally reveal her
This was a strong overall episode. Not as strong as the first but it was necessary. We got a little more from some of the other characters. There was only one action scene but it was pretty good. Alex's whining was annoying but we know that the character will eventually get over it and with him leaving the city, I expect more fireworks next week. Still there was enough here. The reveals about the General's health and that he leaves the city every few weeks to have an affair with an angel was.....whoa. Like I said, this show has enough potential to keep me interested in this season