‘Revolution’ Season 1, Episode 3: ‘No Quarter’

Published 3 years ago by

Billy Burke and Mark Pellegrino in Revolution No Quarter Revolution Season 1, Episode 3: No Quarter

Because the show is still in its infancy, it’s easy to understand there being some wrinkles that still need to be ironed out – but by and large, it feels like Revolution is searching for a means of consistency and a stronger way of presenting its story. With ‘No Quarter’ the show has cut back on its tendency to leave so many question marks at the end of the episode, while placing a premium on making action sequences within the confines of a weekly television series work.

More importantly, there is a stronger emphasis on the survival aspect – which some might argue is the true driving force behind whatever interest there is in the series. Like The Walking Dead or even Falling Skies, Revolution has the benefit of taking place in a situation audiences find engaging as much for its unique (yet, increasingly commonplace) setting, as they do all the opportunities it inevitably presents for them to suggest what they would do differently. But the survival portion of Revolution is also connected to what is so far the strongest aspect of the show’s young narrative, and seeing it develop that – rather than endlessly turning over questions of who or what turned off the lights – can be seen as a sign the series is headed in the right direction.

‘No Quarter’ picks up directly after the events of last weeks’ ‘Chained Heat,’ keeping the core group split up. This seems like it would drag the episode down by constantly having to break from what Miles (Billy Burke), Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) and Nora (Daniella Alonso) are doing to check in with Aaron (Zak Orth) and Maggie (Anna Lise Phillips), but the episode largely manages to make the two plots work with one another, while offering more pertinent insight into the immediate post-blackout world than the Rachel and Ben revelation did from last week.

Daniella Alonso and Tracy Spiridakos in Revoltion No Quarter Revolution Season 1, Episode 3: No Quarter

For his part, Miles is still playing the unenthusiastic hero, saying “no” to every request for help he comes across, as he’s much too busy being annoyed by his niece in their considerably difficult quest to recover Danny (Graham Rogers) from the clutches of Captain Tom Neville (Giancarlo Esposito). This time, though, Miles is right to be reluctant to help. It turns out Nora is planning to meet up with the rebels to hand over the sniper rifle she stole. Miles, Charlie and Nora arrive at the rebels’ HQ to find them in pretty bad shape, and, as Miles points out, seemingly unconcerned the militia is likely not far behind.

Again, Miles is proven correct, as a militia commander named Jeremy (Lost and Supernatural alum, Mark Pellegrino) is seen interrogating a rebel who looks just like Frank Zappa, while discussing just how difficult it has become to get a hold of actual bullets. The game of Russian roulette Jeremy plays with Zappa, seems to be part of the militia conditioning system, wherein high-ranking officers have what appears to be civilized conversations with their adversaries before using them as a display for utter ruthlessness. As a result, after Zappa gives up the location of the rebels, he gets one of those rare bullets for his trouble.

Meanwhile, Charlie and Miles are again at odds over doing what she believes to be the right thing. It seems like this is going to be a regular part of the show as it progresses, and although Charlie comes off as naïve and more than a little willing to forego her primary goal in order to annoy her uncle, there’s the sense that it’s all working out to be part of the character’s overall growth. Besides, Burke seems to play off Spiridakos’ sensitivity with a distinct lack thereof that somehow makes him a lot easier to root for. This comes in handy after Jeremy and his militia buddies storm the Bennigan’s-esque restaurant the rebels are holed-up in and, following some semi-dramatic swordplay, ends with Jeremy being used as leverage for the lives of the rebels.

Mark Pellegrino and Billy Burke in Revolution No Quarter Revolution Season 1, Episode 3: No Quarter

Of course, this doesn’t really work out well for Miles, as the big reveal this week, courtesy of Jeremy, is that Miles is responsible for the creation of what would later become the Monroe Militia. This development probably isn’t shocking in and of itself, but it does work in terms of making the aforementioned flashback sequences more relevant, and by making Miles into something more than an unstoppable badass with a chip on his shoulder. It also goes a long way in providing better reasoning for Monroe’s interest in Miles than simply his potential knowledge about the blackout.

And since questions about that still need to be answered, ‘No Quarter’ manages to handle the topic quite well with a particularly convincing scene between Aaron and Maggie. After finding their way to Grace’s (Maria Howell) empty house, the two nearly leave empty handed. But  while Aaron laments the monumental rise of the bully in the new world order, the medallion somehow turns on and activates several electronic devices in the room, including Maggie’s iPhone, which provides her a fleeting glimpse of her children. Questions of electronic integrity aside, the scene actually plays out with some emotion, as the two take short pleasure in simple things like listening to a CD and viewing a photograph locked away in digital device.

Aaron and Maggie learn that the medallion is only able to power the devices in its immediate vicinity for a short while, and the larger issue is revealed that whatever has disrupted the world’s energy is not going to be corrected by being in possession of the medallion alone. Making the medallion less of a deus ex machina will go a long way in keeping the quest for power interesting, while the overall conflict between the rebels and the Monroe Militia hopefully heats up.

Tracy Spiridakos in Revolution No Quarter Revolution Season 1, Episode 3: No Quarter

There’s not a whole lot of Capt. Neville in ‘No Quarter,’ but what we do see offers a few clues as to what his ongoing arc with Danny might entail. After Danny winds up on the receiving end of some beatings from a soldier seeking vengeance for his dead friend, he takes a bit of action and nearly strangles the soldier in full view of Neville, who perhaps begins to recognize the boy as something more than just a feeble prisoner. Either way, as both the Matheson siblings are Revolution’s weak links, seeing Charlie and Danny do more than act defiant and sulk, paints them in a much better light.

Revolution is taking small steps, but seems to be going in the right direction. We’ll see if things continue to progress as the season moves on.

Revolution continues next week with ‘The Plague Dogs’ @10pm on NBC. Check out a preview of the episode below:

TAGS: Revolution
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  1. I am surprised how much I am enjoying this show :)

    • Jesus…just make a list of the movies so we can choose the one we are curious about. It’s bad enough these people make me think I can write, direct, act or produce better. Now they make me feel like I can publicize or create websites better. guess I’m in the wrong business. You people make the saying: “you can be anything”, true

  2. Charlie is really annoying (long stares, crying spells, bipolar responses to dangerous situations), and Miles needs to decide if he’s going to lead or follow (“You listen here, Charlie!” vs. “Okay, let’s all do what Charlie the teenager says”). I hope the writers give the actors more to work with because I feel like they are blowing a chance at making this a great show.

    • Spot on with the choice of words. I second you on that. Charlie is the biggest Pain of this series. Her brother seems more capable than her in handling situations. Maybe they should have swapped places. But, going by the premise it seems that Charlie is the pivotal character around whom the series is going to be spun. If her characterization continues the current ways and it comes more to the forefront, I’ll be forced to move on from this series. By the way, anyone notice the close resemblance to the LOST series format of going back and forth with current and past events to build a character and flesh out the story further.

      • Person of Interest also uses the same flashback format. As did Flash Forward. And while we’re at it…Angel, Highlander, How I met Your Mother (the entire show is a flashback), Psych, The West Wing, The Wonder Years (narrator flashes back just like HIMYM), Dexter, Heroes (if I remember correctly), and pretty much any sitcom that gets more than 4 seasons has flashbacks involved in some way or form. And the Clerks cartoon second episode. LOST wasn’t the first show to utilize the flashback and it’s obviously not the last. But yes, LOST, Person of Interest, and Revolution all have J.J. Abrams involved and they use flashbacks…so there is that.

      • It seems to be a thing with Abrams, and it seems like it might play like Lost did too. The actual main story being told in the present tense has little progression going on, so they mix in backs story, which serves as a distraction and stretches out the plot over a season. The problem with Revolution (and towards the end with Lost) is that the flashbacks seem like a more compelling story, and the action in the present tense just seems to hang there.

        And unless something drastic happens I feel that focusing on the daughter and possibly the son may be a huge mistake, because for whatever reason they have written them to be the stereotypical bratty teenagers. And it doesn’t help that the lead actress seems like they found her on some MTV show or worse.

  3. Did anyone else notice Maggie’s phone when the power device gave it juice? The date was Monday September 17; the day the Pilot aired and the date that power went off. I can’t help but think that the time at the clock, 6:23 (PM since the power went off in the evening) is a hint of something about the power device. I may be thinking too much into it, but still, numbers always mean something in JJ Abrams’ productions.

    • Nice catch! I’ll have to go back and check that out.

  4. Im liking the characters for the most part, except charlie, she still annoys me. i wish they would give more screen time to nora or someone else and not her.

  5. The show isn’t too bad but the Charlie character is being played completely wrong. I don’t know if it’s the actress or the writers but this is a character who has lived in this lawless society for fifteen years. She should be tough as nails by now and recognize the necessity for sometimes being ruthless in dealing with enemies. There’s no way she would have survived this long without that happening.

    • They were living in a small community of people who paid their dues with crops and such to the militia for protection. Episode 2 showed us that her dad who raised her didn’t have it in him to kill (even to protect his family and their food), but her mother did…but Charlie wasn’t raised by her mother, she was raised by her pacifist dad. I think her character can seem annoying, but she is playing the sheltered teen who has been living naively in a ruthless world perfectly.

      • Sorry, but the girl has to be at least early 20’s by now. She was about 5 (minimum) or older when the power went out 15 years ago. That’s still no excuse for her contradictory behavior in just about every scenario we’ve seen her in.

        Premiere: trust someone who winds up an enemy only to give them a free pass again later (all in the same episode).

        Ep 2: Fuss over Miles wanting to kill a bounty hunter tracking them for the militia, making him let the guy live, only to volunteer to kill a militia guard. Afterwards complain with “What do you mean good job?! I just had to kill two people!! (all in the same episode).

        Ep 3: Miles berated her for calling Dad a pacifist and says not to talk about him like that. She acts wounded. Later gets all high and mighty when he berates her again over something else, rightfully so, with “Don’t talk to me like that!”

        This isn’t growth of a character, this is writers intentionally injecting artificial juxtaposition to give the appearance of growth, but only succeeding in making one of the most annoying and unlikable primary characters on TV expected to carry the show. When done within the same episode, every episode, it just comes off as forced and fulfilling. It’s like a spastic girl who has no clue how to act just going along with whatever circumstances dictate for the sake of the plot.

        And the brother? The article touches on how the siblings are the two weak links and they are supposed to be the one’s we are most invested in as the audience. So far, he’s shown himself to be the more worthy of investment than Charlie, but he seems to be hampered with some vague asthma condition that so far seems only to be present to give the character something to trick a guard with.

        The kick is, the show is growing on me… not because of any investment or appeal of the primary characters but because of Miles and Neville, who are arguably secondary characters. Take those two characters out and I just don’t feel following the narrative is worth stomaching the siblings.

      • I meant comes off as forced and UN-fulfilling.

        • Agree.
          Charlie is such a weak character, constantly on the verge of crying her eyes out, righteous to a fault (but murderous too?). I see no redeeming qualities in her character (and acting) that would create any sympathy for her lot. For all I care, she could just fall off the set and never come back.

  6. I agree with Royal, the Charlie character is bloody annoying! As for Danny, who cares if he’s rescued. I think the show would be much better if they got rid of those two and just focused on Miles/Nora quest to stop Militia and Aaron/Maggie trying to figure out the pendant.

    Honestly, I’ve started DVR this show and fast forwarding thru much of Charlie’s talking. Bad actress and she constantly sounds like she’s whining. Thandrale is right, after growing up in those conditions, she should be tough and not so obnoxious.

    Hey, why not have Miles smack the snot out of her and act more like a ‘parent’ to her, that might help improve things!

    • Right on. If this show fails it’ll be for the same reasons (IMO) that Terra Nova failed: because they focused too much attention on the “kids”.

      Everyone understands that Charlie loves her brother and wants to save him. We get it. Quit giving reasons to make Charlie cry just so she can remind us why they are on this “quest”.

      And for that matter, is this show about saving Charlie, or is it about turning the power back on? We need some focus.

  7. I’m still not sold on this show but it seems to be showing some potential. I’m really not a fan of Charlie as a character still though. I’ve been talking to my DISH officemates and we think she may be the downfall of this show in the end. I’ve been busy with class at night so I’m catching up on Revolution using Prime Time Anytime on my Hopper. My DVR automatically records all the prime time shows on the four major networks for me. I thought the twist with Miles being a former militia leader was interesting. This third episode was good enough for me to continue watching for a couple more weeks.

    • Spam is very popular in Hawaii. Are you and you’re co-workers at DISH going to enjoy the Walking Dead too, oh wait……

      • LOL

  8. All those beautiful clean ‘n pressed clothes are distracting me from the bad acting!

    And the charmed locket that jump-starts electric devices, would have to spooky-powerful to power-up a dead iPhone located halfway across a room, plus another electronic device.

    Could the writers be about to inform us that the locket is a tiny fission-device? If that’s the case, I hope the glorious Elizabeth Mitchell will have to hit it with a rock in the season finale!

    • The clothes being nice after 15 years has me baffled too.

      Also that Aaron is still overweight 15 years when junk food is probably gone is another. A season of Survivor makes you lose more weight.

      As for the pendant, I actually don’t think that it supplies power, I think it removes whatever is suppressing electricity (which could explain why no one has been able to use steam or kinetics to create electricity). It must still rain (or they couldn’t grow crops)… so is there still lightning?

  9. Aaron is the highlight of this show for me and one of the actors who can, well, act. His history and storyline is interesting and Episode 3 showed a great scene with him talking about how the bullies are now in charge again. Great stuff! Then Charlie comes back on the screen. She is the low point for me and her mentality of “don’t kill anyone until they capture you, hunt you down, and almost kill you…then its fine” is getting old. I love the concept of the show, but a few of the characters are dragging it down. The character of Miles responds to every situation in the same way. That is to say, that whether the situation is good or bad, to Miles it is a bother and that kind of “Eeyore” mentality is not countered in any of the scenes by better acting. So the highlight of the show is everyone surrounding Miles and Charlie. They need to pick it up.

  10. Show would be fantastic if they got rid of Charlie or at least all the angst. As it is it’s too frustrating to watch. I’m interested in the world and the politics, not in some chick getting emotional every 3 seconds.