‘Revolution’ Midseason Finale Review – Shattered Bonds

Published 2 years ago by

Billy Burke in Revolution Nobodys Fault But Mine Revolution Midseason Finale Review – Shattered Bonds

It is no secret that Revolution, despite being a hit for hit-starved NBC, has been dragging in viewers who watch it simply to opine about the program’s lack of logic, direction, or any other general shortcomings. So, facing a four month hiatus and the prospect of falling off the radar of even its most ardent detractors, the show’s writers have the gargantuan task of building enough suspense and wonder that the audience (whichever side of the fence they may fall) will be ready and willing to resume watching when Eric Kripke’s creation returns this spring.

One of the most important aspects of ‘Nobody’s Fault But Mine’ isn’t the apparent massive power shift (that’s not a pun) of the Monroe Militia, but the rather simple fact that the series’ first task – that of Miles (Billy Burke) and Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) tracking down her little brother Danny (Graham Rogers) – has been completed, and now Revolution is ready to move on to (hopefully) bigger and better storylines.

It’s been a long, sometimes grueling 10 episodes where the series has seemingly taken small steps forward and then significant leaps back. That kind of regression no doubt damaged the reputation of a series that didn’t have the most auspicious of debuts to begin with. At any rate, despite the fumbling in the beginning, there were a handful of episodes that – regardless of their own episodic shortcomings – began to alter the course of the series a bit, and place the focus not on the weak points (Charlie and Danny), but rather on the show’s more capable and sensible lead: Miles.

Tracy Spiridakos and Daniella Alonso in Revolution Nobodys Fault But Mine Revolution Midseason Finale Review – Shattered Bonds

And so, after last week’s ‘Kashmir,’ in which we were given a glimpse at the quandary Miles was facing at the prospect of killing his oldest and closest friend, Revolution has the good sense to place its most potent dynamic – the surprising energy that exists between Burke and David Lyons (Monroe) – as the driving force of ‘Nobody’s Fault But Mine.’

As such, there is a swiftness to the midseason finale that was rarely seen throughout the first nine episodes, and while there are shortcomings here as well, the pacing manages to mostly negate those deficiencies by heading toward an inevitable confrontation. Now as much as this finale could have spiraled out of control and placed the series back at square one, it actually seems to work through measured interactions with the key cast. Simply put: the episode pushes nearly all of the characters in the right direction by pairing them with the individual who has the most potential to make them more interesting.

After entering Philadelphia, Charlie, Aaron (Zak Orth), Nora (Daniella Alonso) and an old buddy of Miles’, Major Kipling (Glynn Turman, Super 8) are almost immediately taken prisoner (though we don’t see what happens to Kipling, he seems like too familiar a face to disappear from the show at this point) with only Miles left to save them. It’s here, however, that Revolution shows it has learned from some mistakes in the past by granting its characters the ability to move the plot forward themselves, rather than respond to a situation that’s predictably gone beyond their control.

Reunited at last with her brother – and much to Charlie’s scowling surprise, her mother – Charlie assumes the kind of capable role many wished she’d had since the series premiere by orchestrating her and Danny’s escape from captivity, just in time to meet up with Miles. Meanwhile, Rachel (Elizabeth Mitchell), who is clearly now poised to fill the void left behind when Maggie died, dispatches Strausser (David Meunier), one of the show’s more memorable, but increasingly exaggerated villains. As a positive side note, it looks like the exit of Strausser will make room for the always entertaining and welcome presence of Mark Pellegrino as Jeremy Baker.

David Lyons in Revolution Nobodys Fault But Mine Revolution Midseason Finale Review – Shattered Bonds

Since the series has no shortage of memorable villains, the best of course being Giancarlo Esposito’s Tom Neville, it was inevitable that Miles would run into him first. Though their meeting is brief in terms of screen time, it transitions Neville’s opinion of Miles from one of cautious admiration and competition to intense rage. But more importantly, perhaps, is the way the Miles/Neville meeting propels the heroes toward the endgame, rather than have them sit around and discuss a foolhardy plan to infiltrate Monroe’s R&D facility.

This leads up to the confrontation between Miles and Monroe that the seemingly rushed and somewhat silly flashbacks hurry to create additional perspective for. While the big moment visually is the sword fight between the two, thematically it’s Miles’ admission that his regret stems not from their fractured relationship, but that he failed to follow through on his initial assassination attempt. Miles laments: “I’m sorry I didn’t kill you the first time.” For the episode, and for its characters, that was the more important fight – one that will hopefully help dictate the future storylines in Revolution.

Of course, now that Monroe has the ability to use the devastating weapons he’s been stockpiling, the dynamic of the series is bound to change. It’s irrevocably going to go from the story of survival in a world without power, to the battle between those who can wield power in limited fashion. Whether or not that will be enough to bring viewers back, or progress the series in a way that its storytelling improves, remains to be seen. This cliffhanger suggests the series is headed in a better direction, but many episodes remain, so Revolution could just as easily be on its way to more of the same.

The advertisement for the spring return of Revolution teases, “Everything will change.” Here’s hoping that change is for the better.

Billy Burke and David Lyons in Revolution Nobodys Fault But Mine Revolution Midseason Finale Review – Shattered Bonds

Various other items:

  • “You’re the reason I’m in so much trouble.” Miles seems understandably unimpressed when meeting Danny for the first time.
  • Aaron’s lighting of the bomb fuse is a nice nod to continuity. He’s finally ready to get that wife back!
  • The midseason finale wisely chose not to cut from the action to check in with Randall (Colm Feore) and Grace (Maria Howell). No doubt they’re well aware someone is using a pendant, and it will be interesting to see how Randall responds to this development.
  • Neville’s almost gleeful recognition, and sudden indignant denigration of Aaron is the kind of performance Revolution needs a lot more of.
  • “Run, you idiot.” How many viewers have screamed this at the screen while watching the show?

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Revolution will return to NBC in March, and Screen Rant will be there with more news and reviews of the series. Check out a short preview for the series’ return below:

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  1. If Miles were smart, He would have killed Monroe the second Monroe put his gun down. Or at least taken him into custody, and begin to overthrow the government. I understand they wanted to pump up the suspense, but come on, the situation didn’t make any sense.

  2. This show just sucks to me. Hopefully it will get better but I’ll have to pass for now.

  3. Is it just me or is there something we don’t know between Miles and Rachel?

    I get the feeling that Charlie might actually be his kid from an affair with Rachel because Miles seems way too affected by the fact that she is alive.

    And what is the timing of when Miles left the militia and Rachel went to it? Seems like he didn’t know about her but based on the flashbacks, she went there relatively early because Charlie and Danny were still very young so Miles should have still been there (also based on the fact that he was still with the militia 5 years after the blackout).

    • Had the same feeling. Hopefully not; stupid story telling that’s frequently done.

    • A lot of the plot of this show seems be attempts at being clever that come off as convoluted. They had already established that Miles and Monroe were best buddies in the Army, but the whole childhood friend and him stopping him from killing himself was just a big old plate of cheesy nachos. Going by that plot arc Monroe must have known the father and mother for decades, if even only in passing.

      At this point they have established that Monroe is mentally unstable, and the people that follow him are sociopaths and psychopaths. Now that he has one of the magic necklaces he can power his various weapons, and one would guess that the enemies he has in Georgia are going to be his main target. The thing I don’t get is why put the only thing powering everything in a helicopter that can be downed relatively easy.

      • The reason that the device has to be in the helicopter is because it’s effective range is limited. Once out of that range everything that requires power, quits working again.

    • Reference the timing… Miles was still the General in the militia when Rachel went to them.

      The episode where you see Rachel leaving Charlie, Danny and the dad on the side of the road shows Rachel walking up to a barn. Miles turns around and Rachel greets him.

      Of course, we don’t know (at this point) how long after that Miles remained with the militia but he was at least there when Rachel first went to them.

      • I vaguely remember that.

        So at some point in time, Miles thought Rachel died and maybe that’s why he left Monroe?

    • Rachel went to the militia while Miles was still in. As a matter of fact Rachel was held for a very long time by Bass, with Miles never knowing. As far as miles being Charlies dad, I am skeptical. Perhaps the split from Bass has caused Miles to rethink his priorities. At the beginning, I thought that the dad was the one who was the key, now I am taking a serious look at Rachel. This has the potential to get very interesting, if the writers take the right leaps.

  4. I think generally its a decent show. i don’t think its as provocative as Last Resort was but i could be crazy. my problem which it looks like will be fixed next half of the season (or at least i hope it is) is that Tracy is not a strong enough actress to carry an entire show which is part her character and part her ability. up until now its been a charlie centric show which has hurt its viewership IMO. if they shift it to Miles and let Billy Burke and Elizabeth Mitchell do their thing i believe its definitely worth keeping around, because the premise at least artistically speaking is pretty clever. my other problem is NBC clear lack of leadership, to put a show like this off air for 4 months even if they shove it down our throats with ads and promos it will loose a lot of its momentum. and I personally don’t think the ending of the episode was gripping enough to carry that length of time. ill tune in to watch it but certainly not be as enthusatic about the show as a hole as i was when it started.

    • Is it really 4 months?

      We are at the end of November, and most shows go into reruns or hiatus during December/Jan… if the show is back at the beginning of March, isn’t it really only 2 months, Jan and Feb?

      • March 25, 2013

        Basically four months

        • Yeah not surprised, shows are constantly putting midseason replacements, i think thats why we got previews for that Deception show throughout this episode, b/c it will probably take Revolution’s timeslot during it’s hiatus.

          As far as the quality of this show, i am nowhere near the harshness that the majority of these comments reflect, i believe they casted Miles and Charlie perfectly honestly, Though JJ Abrams is pretty much a god at discovering or lifting people’s careers. (Anna Torv, Chris Pine just to name 2). My biggest problem, and it was mentioned somewhat in this review, was the pacing, i thought the pilot was very convoluted just because they had SO much to explain, and i felt like they would of been better off progressing a couple storylines faster at a time rather than a multitude of them at a slug’s pace, but again i believe this was due to them biting off more than they could chew. I also believe as the show has gone on, chemistry has gotten better, which is only natural, especially between the main foursome of Charlee, Aaron, Miles, & Nora. Also i think the last handful of episodes have only gotten better, and just showed the show needed a little while to get things straight. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if this overall quality of the show is dramatically improved over the second half, simply because of them getting a hang of what works, what doesn’t etc.

  5. I haven’t watched a single one of these but the one thing that puzzles me from the previews is how are these people so clean lol ? They apparently still have access to shampoo and conditioner ?

    • Quite a few natural soaps exist …

      • Dude, I make my own soap. I buy the ingredients, but I could easily make them if I had to. Fat of some sort and lye is all you really need and both are easy enough to obtain in nature.

        • And certainly there is plenty of it available in the Monroe Republic, let alone wealthier nations like the Plains Nation.

  6. So we know they probably brainwashed danny now after the comment they made about the power station’s original purpose.

    Show seems really rushed and in the dark story line wise. Why are they keeping the necklaces secret? Why are they not restoring power? I mean really… what is the story about this show, we’ve yet to even get a glimpse of it, we’re following people who are directly tied to everything that’s happening in their world and they haven’t said anything that directly ties to what happened on the blackout.

    Is this going to be yet another show that gets canceled before we even have the show’s storyline even explained to us?

    • Like ‘Lost’?

      Oh wait… that didn’t get cancelled… it just ended badly.:)

  7. @BigNerd I’ve posted this on this site on other show review pages, such as fringe b/c other people have mentioned it. But while i definitely don’t necessarily pick a fight with people who didn’t enjoy LOST’s ending, and somewhat understand it, it also boggles my mind what the majority of people who were disappointed in it were expecting.

    Sure the 6th season had some lows, and some “filler” episodes, but it also had some of the biggest highs as well, though i think those problems don’t matter much in most viewers eyes, i think the huge divide between people like myself who immensely enjoyed the ending, and who were disappointed with it was their expectations and what each group wanted from the finale.

    I believe the group that enjoyed it including myself, were the ones who realized all the bells and whistles, and unknown things about LOST were never going to be revealed, at least not fully and if they were it would most likely ruin the essence and integrity of the show, which was the core characters and their relationships, and the unknown of everything. I say this because i saw it coming definitely a full season ahead of time if not more, that whatever reason they gave would of felt so contrived and probably cheesy, that i almost wanted them not to reveal it so it didn’t affect my outlook on the show overall.

    Obviously with that being said, i believe people in your boat who were siappointed, wanted some HUGE reveal, that the show had been doing every season, predominantly on finale’s with subsequent hangovers, but this time was different, it was over, and we needed closure, i think the writer’s decided that what you had been watching those 6 seasons were the characters, you weren’t sticking around purely b/c of twists, and the sci-fi elements, and if you were, you were apart of an extreme minority that watched the show, so what was better than giving them the utmost closure on all their characters, and as the ending insinuated, the path getting there, nor did the circumstances explaining any sort of reveal of some bigger meaning was trivial, what was important was in the end, they were together, which was ultimately what they the characters, and the audience all wanted.

    Sorry for the rant.

    @Worseley As far as Revolution goes, this season is definitely getting another season, so it will not be canceled soon, secondly how can you complain about a mystery type show, with tremendous amount of backstory that is slowly revealed and fleshed out over time, not just sitting down and spewing it all to us, that would remove the point of watching the show.
    @Greg honestly they aren’t all that clean, sure they’d be dirtier if it was real, but it’s TV, have you not watched TV shows? lol.

    • Obviously we can’t argue whose opinion is right or wrong about Lost since opinions are subjective… but I disagree with how you define who the audience is and who is the majority or minority. Like you, I read many reviews and comments when Lost ended and I saw less support and more criticism on how it ended.

      I’m sure everyone knew that it was about the characters but the way they ended was so ridiculous that it made the whole character build-up during its run almost worthless. Any Locke character fan can relate to that. And regardless of solving mysteries, I can argue that the island was the central character to the series, yet its “closure” was contrived and cheesy (mystical powers given to boys born there and their “murderous mother” before them? What?!?).

      I’ve read alternate endings from fans and those were magnitudes better that preserved the stories of the characters, didn’t answer all the mysteries of the island but better concluded the series.

      So you know for sure that Revolution is getting another season? Isn’t that what was said about Terra Nova?

      • I see so many plot holes in this show that it’s starting to remind me of Heroes.

        but seriously… in Revolution we’re supposed to care about what happens when Monroe gets power but they haven’t even said why that’s a bad thing? THOUSANDS of people will die… seriously? how many died after the blackout??? definitely in the hundreds of millions on that one. So again, please explain to us why we should as viewers care about a few thousand people when you have yet to explain why millions were killed while the rest were kept in the dark.

        This whole series is just starting to irritate me because I don’t see this show actually starting for another season or two. What’s really happened this season so far? You can summarize half the season in a few sentences, and people just now starting to watch it wouldn’t have missed much/if anything.

        • Monroe getting power to run his weapons just seems like it means he can beat whoever is an immediate threat. They have just mentioned there is some faction in Georgia that is giving Monroe problems (which is odd since Philadelphia is nowhere near Georgia). The fact that the Randall guy seem to have a decent amount of power and they teased Miles and the crew getting their own amulet, it just seems like it’s going to be a race between who can keep their power amulet and collect up tech to use.

      • I think he meant to say if the season keeps going as it is going ratings wise then it will defiantly get a second season seeing how it is like the highest rated drama on NBC and all ;P

    • The problem with Lost was in fact the highs compared to the very weak simplistic ending. For a show with such high quality imaginative writing the ending was something a beginning writer would have done and in fact a lot of viewers were already worried that this ending might happen. Lost had begun to feel as if the writers had no idea where they were going and the ending just confirmed that feeling.

      • I got into Lost through a friend and during the second season I told him it felt like they were winging it and probably thought they would be cancelled a lot sooner. Random people and random things just kept happening and I can honestly say that I never saw how it ended because I tuned out when they went backwards or sideways in time.

      • @Jerry – That’s exactly why everyone I knew was upset with the ending of LOST. During season 1, people were predicting it was purgatory and the writers assured fans that wasn’t the case and that they had a plan and knew where the story was going. You’ve summed up my feelings of that show by saying “Lost had begun to feel as if the writers had no idea where they were going and the ending just confirmed that feeling.”

  8. Is it just me or did Mikes drive up in a new challenger when it was suppose to be like 17 years ago?

    • They never actually said WHEN the blackout happened, just that the show takes place 15 years after.

      • Didn’t someone point out that someone’s watch or phone had the date the show aired as the day the lights supposedly went out? That would mean the show is supposed to take place in 2027.

  9. Some Garbage like this show stays on while cool new shows like Last Resort get canceled !!!

    The world ends..!!

  10. There was such a swiftness to the mid-season finale that we somehow went from Charlie and Danny being taken away from armed guards to Charlie leading Danny up some stairs with an assault rifle, without a scene behind it or explanation. Mind you that this is a girl that a couple episodes ago punched some guy around her age in the face without even fazing him and was promptly knocked out with one hit. Did I miss something or was that left on the cutting room floor?

    • The show seems to switch gears a lot and things just kind of happen. The pacing of the actions during the main story might be getting thrown off by the amount of flashbacks(and in last weeks case hallucinations). They throw in characters each week that disappear again for two episodes and then pop back up, making it hard to keep track of who is where at times. Neville’s son was prominent early on and then vanished(maybe they sent him wherever Monroe was threatening a few weeks ago), and they showed a flash of Randall’s stronghold and we never heard about that again.

      When they come back in four months it will be interesting to see if they can get people back into the story due to the amount of things they have left on the table at this mid season break.

  11. I thought the midseason finale worked just fine. It ended the main story line of Charlie saving Danny and now the writers can move forward and write new, more interesting stories down the road.

    My issue was the final scene. Did we really need to see the gun turret spinning to know that they have an imminent threat? They could have ended with Monroe looking at the helicopters and one of those starting up and the blades start spinning…and that would have set up the potential for an exciting 2nd half of the season.

  12. I really wanted to like this show, it offered an interesting premise and I didn’t care whether it had perfect scientific validity. I like to be entertained when I watch television. I watched the first 3 or 4 episodes and gave up. A great show has you caring about what happens to the characters because you like them, or admire them, or something. The only character I thought was multidimensional and really likable was Maggie, and they killed her off. I could care less what happens to Charlie or her brother, they are flat and dull. Aaron is a whiny wimp. Nora, meh. Miles could be interesting but the writers just don’t provide enough character development to really grab me. Monroe, Neville, and everyone in the militia are sadistic sociopaths and psychopaths, with the exception of Neville’s son. Even bad guys need some redeeming qualities, and these bad guys have none. A great show needs to balance the dramatic tension carefully, and this show doesn’t achieve that. I don’t want to watch a show that is just one dimensional, cartoonish in its evil, and offers a very depressing view of the future and humanity.

  13. i just got off the phone with my oldest daughter(14) and her step mom says it being cut and not even coming back. not aurging with her but i personnal want to know this is not fair saying your coming back in spring then not to. it would be like Terra Nova or firefly. please anyone even the nbc please say ur bring it please

    • Ugh. Do not compare this crappy show to Firefly. They aren’t even on the same level. Firefly is way better.

  14. I just want them to find another power device, like in that complex where Randall is keeping that Grace chick hostage. She’ll properly die and give that too Aaron. I believe they’ll try to use it against helichopters, when that part comes up.

  15. I think the mid-season finale was the best episode so far of the whole season. I was surprised at how well the interactions between Miles and Monroe were. I think the show, now that they saved Danny and the mom, needs to put more focus on Miles and Monroe. Burke and Lyons are the strongest actors on the show and I could definitely see more story lines between them in the future. They also need to give more interaction between Neville and his son.

  16. just watched ep 1 here in Ireland and i have to say that i was ready to turn the show off the minute i saw all the clean cute tweenies with the perfect figures and make up, there isnt a zit or a spotty face in sight, is this not just twilight meets hunger games? This show has so many flaws that it will take forever to list them, after 15 years and the main characters dont seem to have changed a bit, i can tell you that i looked a lot better 15 years ago then i do now. Its hard to figure out what target audience is aiming for, I loved the medieval music as the characters went through the forest,what a riot, this show is for 12 year olds