‘Falling Skies’ Season 2, Episode 5: ‘Love And Other Acts Of Courage’ Recap

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Drew Roy and Sarah Carter Falling Skies Love and Other Acts of Courage Falling Skies Season 2, Episode 5: Love And Other Acts Of Courage Recap

With a title like ‘Love and Other Acts of Courage,’ it was clear from the start that this episode of Falling Skies had something other than the eradication of the skitters and their overlords on its mind. With the blossoming romance between Tom (Noah Wyle) and Anne (Moon Bloodgood), not to mention the constant “we’re just partners” kind of flirtation going on between Hal (Drew Roy) and Maggie (Sarah Carter), one could say the human race doesn’t let something like their pending extinction or enslavement stand in the way of having a good time.

Thankfully, however, ‘Love and Other Acts of Courage’ also manages to introduce a rather intriguing notion, but through the return of an ultimately unwanted source. When some of 2nd Mass arrive at the scene of a battle, they’re more than a little curious as to why all the casualties seem to be a mixture of mechs and skitters – not just put down, but also burned to a crisp. Weaver (Will Patton) is the first to suggest (albeit in a half-joking manner) that perhaps the skitters have begun shooting at one another – a scenario that would definitely have positive implications for the human resistance.

The team’s questions are answered soon enough, though by means no one would be capable of trusting. To begin the episode, we saw Ben (Connor Jessup) responding to what appeared to be an alien call to arms for all the harnessed kids. Just as he’s done all season long, Ben keeps quiet about his harness lighting up and the attraction he has to the aliens as a result of his temporary enslavement. Ben’s ongoing struggle and inability to entrust his secrets in anyone has put him on the fringe of the 2nd Mass, but even so, as Tom’s son, they rally to try and find him.

Instead of Ben, however, Hal finds Rick (Daniyah Ysrayl), a similarly harnessed boy who disappeared last season after becoming such a liability folks from the 2nd Mass were actively calling for Carl from The Walking Dead to join them instead. As if the arrival of Rick weren’t bad omen enough, the squad comes to find Ben protecting an injured Red-Eye – pleading for them to help the creature rather than slay it.

Since Rick’s post-harnessed role seems to consist of creeping people out and acting as translator for skitters, his words confirm what many viewers had expected from the beginning: there is more to Red-Eye than being a mere skitter. After the episode seemed to work so hard at setting up a great reveal for Red-Eye’s (supposedly) true nature, it only does so by presenting it in nearly identical circumstances as the last time a skitter was questioned under incarceration. Tom’s willingness to speak with Red-Eye alone is somewhat justified as an act of trust toward his son, but the situation already feels played out to the extent the audience can see where it’s headed almost immediately.

At any rate Red-Eye reveals himself to also be a former victim of harnessing. The difference being he, and apparently an unseen faction of skitters, are able to resist to the degree they can stage some kind of rebellion. After a century’s worth of imprisonment, Red-Eye sees in the human race the chance to finally combat the overlords effectively – but only if they work together. Subsequent to seeing the aftermath of what we are meant to believe is a skitter on skitter battle, there is evidence Red-Eye has access to the kind of firepower needed to pose a significant threat to the aliens. The cost, however, has yet to be determined.

Of course, one skitter with a gooey red eye isn’t exactly a good salesperson for the idea of a team-up – especially when using Rick as a mouthpiece. Still, Red-Eye warns Tom about a death squad headed his way – which Weaver immediately interprets as “he led them right to us.” Amidst the sounds of an attack, Weaver summarily orders Red-Eye’s execution, which, naturally is defied by Tom and Ben, allowing the gooey-eyed one to escape and resulting in Rick taking a Berserker shotgun blast to the chest – essentially trading one liability for another.

Connor Jessup Falling Skies Love and Other Acts of Courage Falling Skies Season 2, Episode 5: Love And Other Acts Of Courage Recap

Meanwhile, as Falling Skies is apparently building some intrigue of alien rebellion to go with the promise of Charleston, it’s also taking a break to include some developments in the long-developing romance between Hal and Maggie. While on a supply run, the two have a heart-to-heart on the steps of a hospital where she shares with him the story of her three surgical procedures to remove brain tumors – the last of which caused her to almost welcome death. This was Maggie’s way of apologizing for directing the prior evening’s conversation to Hal’s now-harnessed girlfriend Karen. Taking a conversation about brain tumors as a romantic signal, Hal moves in for the kiss only to be rejected by Maggie’s insistence they remain just partners.

After rescuing her from a mech attack in which she sustained injuries, however, Hal apparently earns enough brownie points that he is allowed to watch Maggie fall asleep while recovering from her injuries. The examination of Hal and Maggie’s feelings for one another may not be the best use of time for Falling Skies, but at least it gives the most likeable of the Mason children something to do other than yell at, and subsequently be overpowered by, his little brother.

Tom, in the interim, finds time to apologize to Weaver – who is recuperating from an infection caused by the harness attack in last week’s episode – and try to get some answers from Ben. As usual, Ben is less than forthcoming and once more blames his secretive nature on fear of feeling even more like an outcast. Those feelings, he later reveals to Matt (Maxim Knight), may now be strong enough that the call of Red-Eye and his alien faction is too much for him to continue resisting.

Falling Skies isn’t quiet at the level where pausing for an episode about love and loyalty is a good idea, but the addition of a possible skitter rebellion helps raise it above the maudlin tones seen in ‘Compass.’ As the 2nd Mass marches toward Charleston, hopefully the show will keep to what it does best: shooting aliens.

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Falling Skies will continue next Sunday with ‘Homecoming’ @9pm on TNT. Check out a preview below:

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  1. I have to admit, I liked this weeks episode. While the underling rebellion isn’t exactly a new one, it does add a twist that can make things more interesting.

    • I agree this weeks episode was quite great in terms of the series and very good towards television. The plot has spread into a larger scale event, and other characters are now interesting because they are quickly touched. Most impressed

  2. I liked this episode too, I was glad to see them introducing a new element to the plot. Im excited to see were they go with it!

  3. while one could see the skidder twist coming a mile away .. i still do enjoy the show .. but ben is getting on my nerves .. so is matt. to be honest . and i am glad rick is done for good .. here is what i dont get .. are the mechs with the overlords or skidders ? since red eye was able to get the mech to spare tom when they killed all those other abductes in episode 1 this season .

    • The mechs are just robots as far as we know, so I think they’re controlled by the skitters. That will become important if the Skitter rebellion comes to pass.

      • i wonder if they are gonna touch on the “overlords” history any ..

        • I hope so. I’m a geek, so I’d like to see some history of both the Skitters and Overlords. We were getting some Skitterific history until Weaver came in guns blasting.

    • Actually if you re-watch this last episode, when Tom kneels down beside the downed Mech with the hole in it you can see what looks like blood and tissue inside. Granted it could just be the wiring and hydraulic fluids. But it got me thinking it was robotic suit with something inside.

  4. I liked the episode, but have two major beefs: 1) Enough with the Hal/Maggie and Tom/Anne romance crap. This is completely unbelieveable in the midst of a struggle to survive and 2) Was Tom really discussing the murder of his son with Weaver? Then, did he just skip off to bone the doctor, who also seems to have forgotten about her husband, who’s only been dead around 4 months?

    On the plus side, great Ben episode with an “awwww” moment between Ben and Matt at the end. I love the action, but those two are rapidly becoming my favorite characters with Tom turning into something of a dick.

    • i dont see how its unbelieveable .. romance between partners and co worker happen all the time ..

    • It’s the new unwritten rule….You have to show some romance or apparently some of the youth target group will lose interest. On the other hand I guess you can only stretch high intense drama and action for so long before it becomes an over load. I just thought in this case it was kind of foolish that this girl was all but jumping his boens in the car, but then turned off the second he made his move…..That had a high stink level.

      One more thing…..How is it that this so advanced alien race has attack robots that can be heard for many miles? You’d think they’d make them as stealth as possible to catch the enemy in the open…

      • I blame Twilight, but I guess that rule existed for a long time. I hate romance, period, but I can grin and bear it if it serves the story. How do these people have time to jump each other when their lives are at stake 24/7? Where’s the leisure time there?

        • Well from a male perspective….That’s not really a big issue if there’s a opportunity…….We’re natural horn dogs who would make the time unless we’re under immeadiate attack….But that’s the male part of the equation……But a tough woman like Maggie….I think she’d be willing to chance it too…..It’s not like a big night out on the town or something.

          I just thought that extreme flirtation that really seemed like it was going to happen under the lights of those Robo Cops then the sudden attitude a short time later when he made a move was pretty absurd

      • I wondered the same thing about the mechs. The only thing I could come up with is that they were designed for a shock and awe attack: rush in, wipe out the population, and the job is done, no need for stealth. They just didn’t count on the humans making it a guerilla war where the mechs were actually liabilities in some cases.

  5. Interesting to think of the skitters as having their own world (and what would THAT have been like?), but if the human/skitter alliance succeeded, would Earth accept the creatures once the war was over? I guess the Overlords aren’t telepathic enough to read the skitters minds? Show was boring me but I’m in again.

  6. Last week I was worried, then my suspicions about Redeye were confirmed, Ben’s allegiance issues were addressed and the Captains injury may end up being a bigger deal than we first thought. The show is back on track in my book.

  7. so this story is getting similar to the old V series(80′s) when they started their rebellion against the Visitors. I sure do miss Tom’s historical stories that he would tell to the other characters.

  8. Mister Red Eye revealed some Skitter history so my question is what is the life span of the skitters? Red Eye said they have been prisoners of the overlords for 100 years so does that mean he has been around for the whole ride of 100 years or does he mean his alien race?

    I still have some questions about Red Eye’s true intent since he still has that flying worm bio-tech harvested in his eye (or at least his head). Perhaps the overlords still control this flying worm and are spying on both the Skitters & human now? Not sure about that though because it seems like Red Eye welcomed that thing into his eye.

    Lastly on the relations between Tom & Ann and Hal & Maggie, I don’t mind them as long as they keep it short. They start giving 15 -25 minutes an episode to these relationships I will not be pleased.

    I kind of agree with others comments if I were in a last surviving group of humans after an alien attack & sleeping with one eye open every night I’m not sure how eager I’d be to hook up with the females in the group. But as another stated from a male perspective – I guess once you know your surroundings and are not in imminent danger it very well will happen. My only concern would be the cleanliness of the whole transaction. People in the 2nd Mass can go a long time between showers.

  9. It would seem, that many have forgotten that all skitters were originally something else, not those green things. I wonder what Red Eyes looked like before he was harnessed.

    I didn’t really like the fact they killed off Rick the way did. His dad died heroically protecting the children of 2nd Mass last season, then Rick dies like a dog. If that wasn’t bad enough, the people who were supposedly close with his dad, the people who promised to look after him didn’t say a word when he was shot, not even an oops my bad. Ben was the only one.

    On another note too many dying children, and not enough adult deaths to equalize it. >_> Looks like either Karen or Maggie might be biting he bullet next episode. Weaver might not be too far behind, since they seem to be building Tom for the role of leader.

    The flirtation scene when the battalion of Mechs were passing was just crappy. Especially sense it only took 1 mech to utterly own him and Karen early last season. You’d expect him to much more alert, considering all the mechs had to do was look down.

    I spotted Tom and Anne’s romance happening from episode 1, they were much too chummy during that walk up thee hill.

    Meh…. now the love triangle has been invoked, time for stupid teen angst, some obvious trickery, some denial, and some inevitable high emotional arguments between Hal & Maggie. Bleh……>_> Overall it was a decent episode, but I hope they can the foolishness before they get to Charleston.

    • I don’t think they had much empathy for Ben because they figured he turned traitor and went to them with information about the 2nd Mass. He also had suddenly done a completelchange that really didn’t make too much sense other than maybe Red Eye changed him with mind control. Before he left he felt he belonged with the skitters and not the humans because his body and mind had changed so much. Now before he died he was suddenly with the program again…..That didn’t make a lot of sense.

    • I remembered about that small detail, but was wondering if skitters turned out to be humans that had been captured earlier. Guess not. But it would be interesting to see what they were like before.

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