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Revolution 1.14 "The Night the Lights Went Out In Georgia" Review: What We Do For Family

    This week’s episode of Revolution, “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia,” was originally supposed to air last week, but due to the Boston Marathon bombings, it was quickly pulled from the schedule and delayed until this week. Given the scenes of terrified citizens fleeing from a potential terrorist attack, I applaud the people who made the decision. It’s pointed out several times that the bomber wants to try for the “maximum innocent casualties.” Even a week later, those scenes very much resonated with me, and I’m sure with many watching.
     The episode was written by Paul Grellong and directed by Nick Copus. Grellong again delivers an action packed episode and flashbacks that help to flesh out Miles’ back story this time. Copus is new to Revolution but has turned in episodes of both Arrow and Supernatural this year. He brings a great sense of timing and delivers some really emotional scenes and some great action sequences. I particularly liked the fight sequence in tight quarters between Miles (Billy Burke) and Alec (Dayo Okeniyi).
    The episode begins with Monroe (David Lyons) learning that the Nevilles have snuck out of town and that their son has been seen alive. Monroe is clearly becoming paranoid and kills the Captain who bears the bad news to him because he was Neville's aide. Monroe also looks to be finding solace in alcohol. I hope that this is not the beginning of the end for Monroe as I’ve very much enjoyed Lyons. I’m still hoping they’ve got more for him to do other than simply unraveling and that we’ll see him reunited with Miles (Billy Burke) in flashbacks and in ‘present’ day.
    Burke gives a wonderful performance in the episode as Miles is faced with one of the people he betrayed – a young soldier whom he mentored and considered a son. Miles trained Alec and gave Alec the knife his grandfather gave to his father who gave it to him. In flashback, we see that Miles had to sacrifice Alec to prevent a war. Alec botched an assassination attempt, and therefore, Miles has to give them Alec to placate them. Alec feels betrayed as he expected Miles to protect him. Ultimately, Alec feels even more betrayed because when he finally did return to the Republic, Miles had left, making Alec feel like his sacrifice had been for nothing. Ironically, it is Miles’ family knife with which he once again must sacrifice Alec for the greater good – to stop the detonating of the nuclear device.
    Alec also manages to hurt Miles by telling Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) that Miles did something to her mother. It may be that he sacrificed her to the greater good or the Republic as well, with no regard to her being “family.” I wonder if their history had anything to do with Rachel’s (Elizabeth Mitchell) determination to leave. Other than coming to Miles’ rescue by shooting Alec when Miles was doing very little to protect himself, no doubt out of guilt, Charlie really has very little to do in this episode. Nora (Daniella Alonso) also had little to do in this episode. In fact, they don’t even get to rescue Miles from the Georgia Governor (Leslie Hope).
    The episode is, however, populated with interesting women. The Governor proves to be a good leader who has both protected her people and made the economy grow while fostering international relations with England. I felt bad that had Maggie ever made it to Georgia, she might have been able to reunite with her family. Interestingly, the Governor also has a history with Miles. It seems likely that they had a relationship at some point in the past. I am getting a little weary of Miles having – apparently – slept with every woman we meet.
    Meanwhile, Rachel and Aaron (Zac Orth) find Jane Warren (Kate Burton). Warren rescues them from two men attacking them by burning them to a crisp with what looks like a Star Trek phaser. We never do learn what it is which is annoying. We are left to simply surmise that she is scary smart. We do learn that the nanites are keeping her partner Beth (Avis-Marie Barnes) alive because she is in stage-four cancer – and has been since the lights went out. We also learn that the device Rachel took out of Danny was what was keeping him alive too. So there seems to be some sort of conspiracy to set the nanites free in order to save loved ones. Mitchell really knocked it out of the park in the scene in which she tells Warren that if she’d known the price she would have to pay to keep Danny alive she would have let him die. In the end, it’s Beth who convinces Jane to help.
    By the end of the episode, Miles is pushing Charlie away, telling her that he hurts everyone around him and he doesn’t even think twice about it. Of course, he wouldn’t be so torn up with guilt if he didn’t care. Foster asks him to be a General again – she will give him two hundred men and unlimited guns if he’ll lead them and his rebels against Monroe when she attacks. Ironically, it is Monroe’s “ruthlessness” that made him a good and effective General. It will be interesting to see if he can continue to forge relationships and be an effective General. I’m curious to see if Neville (Giancarlo Esposito) turns up to join his son with the Rebels and if he does join, if he can be trusted.
    I liked that we again have a split storyline which surprises me as I was simply annoyed at Rachel having to go off on her on again last week. I felt that having the two stories running parallel helped tighten the action up. It was also interesting to see the two sides to the theme of what you will do for family – or won’t – and how that may help or hinder the greater good. I thought the episode did hold together well thematically. Both Burke and Mitchell turned in wonderful performances. I thought the crowd scenes were well done and used small spaces well to make it feel like a much larger population. When Charlie stopped on passing out of the Republic to remark that she’d never left it before, I flashed instantly to Lord of the Rings when Sam Gamgee – also a “hick” – says to Frodo that as they leave the Shire that he’d never been so far from home before. Sam becomes the friend and moral compass for Frodo as he struggles on his journey to do the right thing and not lose the essence of himself in the process, so that is a nice parallel to cast Charlie in with Miles. I did think that for such a strong entity, Georgia’s borders were ridiculously flimsily guarded. Also? The title – “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia” – was a classic music title shout out from Kripke. It’s also nice that the show actually shoots in Georgia and is now set there. It’s also convenient that the Governor has insured that Georgia is rich, so they can use locations that aren’t falling down.
    Next week’s episode looks intense. It looks like we are quickly moving toward another kind of "revolution." What did you think of this episode? Should Miles agree to become a General? Should the Rebels join forces with them? Did you want to know more about the mysterious Jane Warren and her super weapon? Let me know in the comments below.

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