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Eureka pulls out all the stops this week, with the return of some old characters, the beginning of a global conspiracy, and even some bedroom antics with Carter and Allison. The character development is extremely welcome and enjoyable throughout, but the introduction of a new mysterious rival organization is decidedly un-sinister.
Dr Grant is continuing his rendezvous with the slightly odd woman in an old fashioned diner. I’m not going to lie, on revealing her name last week, I had not connected her in any way to Grant’s past (I can barely remember my own name most days). But she is in fact the granddaughter of his business partner from 1947. The woman is a member a kind of Illuminati group, which contains scientists, politicians and other high ranking officials across the globe. The problem is, it’s deeply unoriginal and just not very interesting. Because Grant’s back-story is vague at best, the reveal that he has a connection to some outside group doesn’t feel like the beginning of a conspiracy but simply a forced narrative device to give his character some purpose.
However, this is one very small part of an episode containing multiple angels and an interesting story that acts as the catalyst for some soul searching. Henry and his sort of wife are making use of some form of empathy device that allows them to share memories. Unfortunately (as is the Eureka way), something goes a little bit haywire and the device causes the gang to start hallucinating a surprising selection of individuals. But of course when Nathan reappears to Carter and when Zane starts to get romantic with Jo, they do not realise that what they are experiencing is a construction of their own psyche. Each character has their own piece of emotional baggage that they need to work through and even though it feels a little Dawson’s Creek, it is a nice way of moving forward the relationships of the main characters.
Fargo’s imaginary guest is the little girl that bullied him in Junior High. This provides the funniest line of the show, as he describes to everyone, the person he is seeing: “I’m imagining a ten year old girl... Which isn’t as creepy as it sounds”. All of these crazy events are being caused by the Illuminati group, who are trying to obtain a weapon being developed at G.D. and Dr Grant is at hand to perform a bit of light sabotage. He isn’t convinced which side is the ‘right’ side and this could provide some interested crises of conscience for him.
Carter and Allison talk about their feelings, which isn’t quite as sickly as it sounds (it is pretty saccharin though) and ends with them taking a trip upstairs. They don’t even have dinner first which is unheard of in Britain; we take dinner with us! Finally we have some real development in their relationship; it’s only taken four seasons. Similarly, Jo confesses her feelings to a confused Zane, who she mistakes for the hallucination. But his reaction hints that his feelings may not be so straightforward as we were originally led to believe.
A really excellent episode, with great forward momentum. It was great to see Nathan once more and the interactions between him and Carter are as fun to watch now, as they were in the first season. Each character is settling into their new role in the alternate Eureka and it’s refreshing to have them adapting to their new situations instead of falling into old routines.
The mystery organization is unfortunately not that compelling and has little context in the show at the moment. Grant’s female liaison is an extremely one-dimensional character and almost entirely void of personality, so it’s a little strange that Grant is so quick to follow her instruction. I will give the writers some time to set this story in motion, but at the moment it is merely a superficial distraction.