The second episode of Last Resort began about 24 hours after Captain Chaplin colonized the island of Sainte Marina and declared a policy of Mutual Assured Destruction with the entire world. Suffice it to say that the geopolitical situation quickly escalated. The episode began with the Colorado perusing the waters around the Independent Nation of Chaplinia. Some American submarines were testing the waters around the 200-mile line. Chaplin took this opportunity to test the mysterious anti-radar device onboard the Colorado: A device called the Perseus Prototype. (Perseus: Greek hero who survived being cast adrift on the open sea, later killed a sea monster, was retroactively declared the first whaler by Herman Melville in Moby Dick. Also starred in various Titanses.) The Prototype worked. Chaplin nudged another submarine with an unarmed torpedo, the naval equivalent of a really hard backslap.
If Last Resort is going to succeed, it’s going to have to establish some intriguing power dynamics back on the Island. This episode focused on one emerging threat in the Colorado’s midst: The imprisoned Chief of the Boat (or COB, as everyone calls him), who is stirring up some trouble from his prison cell. The COB is not in a very good mood. “When they find you guilty of mutiny, murder, it’s not gonna be the jail cell that gets to you,” he explained. “It’s the sound of people outside chanting for your death.” When Chaplin insisted that he was only doing his duty, COB bluntly told him: “Your duty, sir, is to fire when you’re told to fire. To be the strong and unwavering first of our nation.” “I always appreciated your candor, COB,” said Chaplin, clearly just marking off the days until Last Resort gets a back-nine pick-up and the public executions can start.
Lest you were concerned that this show would just be about simmering resentment and backroom power struggles – Boardwalk Empire on an Island – a passenger 747 passed curiously close to the island. The threat was clear: Everyone agreed that they had probably dropped a squad of Deltas, who would be approaching the Island capitol in a manner of hours. Grace and Sam volunteered to take on the attacking Deltas, but they needed some help.
So they went down to the local watering hole to have a chat with James, the Bright-Eyed Navy SEAL. James was working through a serious hangover, with the help of the bartender from Dollhouse, who I will continue to refer to as “the bartender from Dollhouse” until she officially introduces herself. (A reminder: Refer to our handy dandy Last Resort character guide if you’re still using diagrams to keep the massive cast straight.)
James advised her to leave the island before things went apocalyptic; she said told him the old story about how the island was plucked from the bottom of the ocean by angry gods, and deadpanned, “Telling an islander they’re gonna die violently is just reminding us we’re home.” Grace asked James for some help with the Delta mission. James responded by stripping in front of her, telling her exactly how she was going to die, and then taking a shower.
Up at UN Central, Sam received a phone call from his favorite angelic blonde wife. She told him that the government was offering him full amnesty, and then suddenly yelled, “Don’t trust them! Whatever they say to you!” The shadowy conspirators ended the phone call and looked conspiratorial. Considering that Sam was just about to set off on a mission that would either end with him dead or with a bunch of Americans dead, it’s fair to say that his day was just not off to a good start. Chaplin gave him a half-time pump-up speech by referring to the Siege of Grozny back in 1994. (Terrifying fact: If you look up “Battle of Grozny” on Wikipedia, there are ten different entries.) Chaplin ended his speech by noting, “Sometimes the enemy is just the man keeping you from getting home.” A nice bit of subtext here: Is Chaplin the guy keeping Sam from getting home?
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