This week’s solid episode of Revolution, “Ghosts,” was written by the team of David Rambo and Melissa Glenn who also wrote a solid episode in “Ties that Bind.” Once again, the story deals with family. Most of the characters are dealing with a loss and fragmentation of their family. The episode was directed by Miguel Sapochnik whose credits include another JJ Abrams’ show: Fringe. Sapochnik’s use of tight focus and light and shadow in the first scene between Monroe (David Lyons) and Flynn (Colm Feore) is particularly effective in being evocative of the cat and mouse game the characters are playing as they vie for dominance in their relationship. There is also a beautiful transition between a slow motion shot of Flynn walking in the present to a regular speed shot of him walking in the past.
Danny’s death, perhaps most importantly, really causes Miles to commit to helping the rebels and he embarks on a mission to gather all his own former senior officers, starting with Jim Hudson (Malik Yoba). Going forward, this supplies us with at least a few episodes that will revolve around the quest to build Miles’ special force and has the potential to supply us with a number of interesting characters going forward. When Nora (Daniella Alonso) tries to reach out to him about Danny’s death, he tells her, “I’m fighting for your stupid rebels, what more do you want from me?” He’s committed to getting revenge for Danny’s death as opposed to the rebels themselves.
We see that Flynn’s motives aren’t that much different from Rachel’s. The flashbacks show Flynn and his wife receiving notification that their son has been killed in active duty in Afghanistan. He is clearly motivated by this to design some kind of weapon at the Department of Defense – and we learn that not only Rachel worked for him there but also Ben. Flynn’s motivation seems to be for good, to “stop the bloodshed” so more soldiers won’t die.
I’m also not convinced that the tower is actually a tower in the way we think. The final flashback talks about “executing” a “virus” – both computer terms. We came very close, I think, to the moment the power actually went out. I wonder if Ben hid some kind of failsafe in the machine/weapon they built for Flynn so that when it was activated it actually killed the power so it couldn’t be used or whether Flynn’s plan was to turn the power off, and the failsafe is how to turn it back on. I thought it was an interesting twist that Flynn is fixated on putting his dream team together again. I also wonder if he knew that Aaron Pittman (Zak Orth), computer genius, was with them, if Flynn wouldn’t want him even more. I’m really looking forward to seeing Aaron get to strut his smarts going forward. We get more clarification that Rachel was the one who first took Aaron in. Rachel promises to tell Aaron everything, including about the Tower. If anyone can help to fix a computer virus, I’m betting it’s Aaron.
Giancarlo Esposito (Neville) only has one small scene in this episode, and he is magnificent in it. He goes to Monroe because he’s heard about the mission to retrieve Rachel. As he asks Monroe why he’s not on it, Esposito’s voice quavers. Monroe has just asked how Neville and his wife are, considering their son’s passing. Neville’s voice quavering may be because he is nervous that Monroe has found out that Jason isn’t dead or it could be that Neville is simply concerned that Monroe is replacing him with Flynn. Monroe’s answer isn’t designed to set Neville’s mind at rest on either point, as he says that he doesn’t trust Flynn, but doesn’t trust anyone else either – implying that he also doesn’t trust Neville. Again, this could be a reference to Jason or simply letting Neville play a bigger role. Esposito continues to create a fascinatingly nuanced character with layers of insecurity coupled with ambition, troubled by his love for his family.
Overall, this was a really solid episode. Family remains a consistent theme going forward that motivates all the characters for good or ill. All of the characters are haunted in some way by the “Ghosts” of their past. I’m pleased that they aren’t going to drag out the tension between Charlie and Rachel, but that Miles is still grappling with his own inner demons. Colm Feore is proving to be an intriguing adversary. What did you think of the episode? Let me know in the comments below.