Mastodon Mastodon Mastodon Mastodon Mastodon BrainDead - 1.05 "Back To Work" - Review: "I've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that love is actually all around us."

    Enable Dark Mode!

  • What's HOT
  • Premiere Calendar
  • Ratings News
  • Movies
  • YouTube Channel
  • Submit Scoop
  • Contact Us
  • Search
  • Privacy Policy

SpoilerTV - TV Spoilers


BrainDead - 1.05 "Back To Work" - Review: "I've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that love is actually all around us."

Using brass knuckles on an infected love interest, an endearing apology from another, paling around with a semi-cranky CDC insect specialist, and trying to prolong the life of a war veteran with liver cancer, and thee renaming a concession stand as one-of-the-first-orders-of-business as the Government goes back to work, all come to a horrific conclusion on this week's BrianDead.

The episode starts right where viewers left off in last week's episode with Anthony appearing to be deaf in one ear, leading Laurel and the audience to wonder if he has become infected. We watch the mystery of Anthony unfold all throughout the episode with ever amounting evidence leading the audience to a rather dramatic scene where he tries to attack Laurel towards the end of the episode. He washes and changes the sheets, drinks the spinach-drink at the party, gets into heavy debates with Red Wheatus, invites her over to his super clean apartment for a vegetarian meal, which ends with him passing out due to Gustav giving him sedatives, while a woman, very scorned, comes pounding at the and shouting at the door, followed by an apology with Anthony bringing cherry blossom bouquet, a copy of Love, Actually, and a pizza only for Laurel to her apartment, in which then he finds an opportune moment to brutally attack Laurel. She fights back with a pair of brass knuckles Gustav gave to her early in the episode and is able to get Anthony out of her apartment!

In the meantime Gustav and Rochelle are able to call attention to both a specialist at the CDC and also they are able to team up with Laurel at the party to show their findings to Luke, as Laurel is trying to convince Luke that there is problem with bugs and not heart medicine. Luke again is initially dismissive, until he realizes a bit later there is something already going on between the CDC and the FDA...

Gustav and Rochelle come to meet entomologist at the CDC, Dr. Joanne Alaimo. Somewhat disgruntle and not too amused with Gustav's more energetic personality, she too is bit of a skeptic until they show her video with the insect. She immediately becomes interested and sets the record straight that this is no screw worm. After finding what she refers to a cluster-pockets, she sends Gustav on a little mission to figure out how the insects are communicating. She and Gustav eventually converse again after Gustav finds some strange "feedback" from Anthony, who was standing next to a man with a hearing aid. This resulted in the idea that higher frequencies than that of human hearing, something above 300 MHz, may be the level at which they are communicating! She decides this time to go with Gustav. The two seemingly discover nothing at patch of cherry blossom trees, but never the less the insects are there and some hitch a ride with Dr. Alamio, who became infected and sought to divert everything!

The episode also featured another constituent-related story with War Veteran, who fought in Afghanistan, coming to Luke for help. Lance Corporal Middleton is suffering from liver cancer and wants Luke to get Congress an NIH to reinstate clinical trail treatments that were halted due to the shutdown that, ultimately, may prolong his life long enough to make it to his one year old daughter's next birthday, which also happens to be The Fourth of July! Luke is definitely interested in helping the man and was going to make it one of the first orders of business, but unfortunately things go astray at the meeting.

The first order of business ends up being about the renaming the Kiosk concession stand after a fallen Capital police officer, who was killed in the line of duty named Officer Ed Sharie. The name reminds Red Wheatus of "Sharia Law" (Islamic Law) insisting this as an atrocity that the public would be confused about and he takes the opportunity to suggest it be renamed after Ronald Reagan instead!!From there things escalate further as Senator Ella Pollack then argues that things need to be named after woman too! The room becomes a storm of off-agenda arguments.

Luke later than tries to reason with Red telling him the story about the veteran and showing him a picture of his little girl. Red is not very moved by this, but agrees that if Luke can find a way to rename the stand after Ronald Reagan, that he would help push everything forward.

Luke surmises to do what he might do best, using sex to get political favors. It works, the new treatment is reinstated and "Reagan Hut" lives to see the light of day, but unfortunately for Luke, an additional part of the agreement included Red taking all the credit with a full blown photo opp right next to the former Kiosk!

But Luke doesn't just get undermined by Red and Joanne either. Almost out of no where, Luke's and Laurel's father makes an appearance. At first his major concern is the all of the talk about the "Bugs". He tells Luke to stop talking about it and also asks, if Laurel was the one behind it, which Luke denies, but it's Gareth who sees the great efforts Luke made in order for the veteran to get his treatment, only be shamed by his father for allowing Red to take the credit.

Gareth, unknowingly, calls Laurel shortly after she was attacked to tell that he thinks it was really great what Luke did and that he was sorry and maybe even wrong about Anthony. Laurel tells him that, no, he was not wrong about him and doesn't take the conversation any further.

Gustav had also stopped by to find Laurel a bit distressed. He brought over headgear and mosquito netting just in case! He goes back out to the cherry blossoms and tries again to see if he can pick up anything on a higher frequency and he does! At that moment, as Laurel is preparing to go to sleep, he calls her to warn her that they may be in the cherry blossom bunch that Anthony brought over, but Laurel, very shook-up and becoming somewhat closed-off, doesn't follow through on putting on the headgear, awakes realizing they had entered her brain.

What I Liked:

This episode was really one of the best in the season so far. It found time to be funny, productive, mysterious, heartfelt, and down right scary with fairly good ease!

I loved seeing Gustav and Dr. Alaimo going back and forth. Even though, she too is now infected and this will probably continue to make it harder for our team of heroes to figure out how to stop the insects or save the infected, just at the time that they would of needed her most, as Laurel too has begun to fall pray, I look forward to seeing how the character will continue to act!

Gareth didn't have as many scenes this in this episode, but the ones he had were more than enough to compensate for his and Laurel's more traditional and fun banter. He showed a much more human side during that phone conversation. --Willing to admit that he was wrong and sorry and even awe struck by Luke's good deed, gave me something to really cheer Gareth for!

As for Anthony, I had thought that it was very possible that he would of become infected, and to some degree, despite that Anthony surely had some problems, it is still a bit sad that their relationship was reduced to the brutish plight of the space ants and that the "real" Anthony may never get a chance a explain himself, let alone, despite this fact, and as we saw with Laurel's reaction when talking on the phone with Gareth, it probably would be very hard to not remember Anthony as the guy who assaulted her in her apartment.

I also was very amused how Red made the renaming of the Kiosk all about Ronald Reagan to the point where he tried, after others pointed out that Officer Sharie was also veteran, used Ronald Reagan's film role where he played a veteran, as reason enough to push for a Reagan renaming!

In addition I liked that the episode made a kind of darker spectacle out of Dean Healy. Back in the pilot it was mentioned that he was doing something in relation to security and there was a scene where he was watching several monitors, but really the audience doesn't yet know what exactly Healy's occupation is or what it has been. There have been a couple of  random drops, including in this episode, relating to the NSA. Now that may just be the creators fun way of reminding The Good Wife fans about some of their NSA backdrops and subplots, but perhaps this is close where Healy's character is going? Laurel too had questioned him before on how he knew about her hanging out with a certain Republican and accusing him of spying, but he replied, from his friends. Whatever Healy's role in everything is, even if it's just a Super Democrat who has been a higher Democratic office with a super democratic agenda, it still feels like the character is force to be reckon with, for better or for worse. I'll be curious if there is something more behind him and how his relationship with his children continue to be unearthed and/or develop AND if he knows more about the space ants than he has let on!

The Mythology:
-Space Ants are NOT Screw Worms, Gustav!
-But they do communicate at a higher frequency than humans! So what does that mean in terms of how they seem to fight each other when they are in there host's bodies, based on their host's political point of view? Is that all for show or do they still mean what they are saying? Is there a bigger agenda than meets the eye for the space ants? Can their frequency be disrupted? Could something like that save Laurel or will it be, Love, Actually, for the love of Gareth?

The Good Wife Factor/Odds and Ends:
-The story with the Veteran reminded me of two types of TGW episodes. There were some episodes that dealt military and military court and other episodes that dealt with sick patients where the judge would actually come to a hospital room. But moreover it was the arguing between the Republican and Democrats that was so familiar like many characters fighting over settlements in Lockhart and Garner board room.
- Actor Zack Grenier played David Lee on TGW. His character Dean Healy is nowhere near as whimsical or full of great zingers like Lee, but Lee could be a very dark and manipulative character underneath all the charming wit. If one would take the comedy and melodrama away from Lee, one might get something closer to Healy.
-Actress Margo Martindale guessed starred on the final season of The Good Wife where she became a semi-advisory to Eli Gold. She often plays grey characters, including her reoccurring role on The Americans. (Also the actor who played Brett Middleton is also an The Americans alumni and seemingly serves as another important reference.) And although Dr. Alaimo may be one of the biggest skeptics or unenthusiastic characters Martindale has played to date, her entomologist role is similar to role she played in early seasons Dexter, with the exception that her character was extremely nice, despite trying to derail Dexter from learning the truth. Her BrainDead character's name interestingly is similar to Alamo, a well known historic battle pivotal in the Texas Revolution during the first months of 1836. The word Alimony also comes to mind relating to court provisions laid out for spouses going through a separation or a divorce. The name Alaimo itself is said to be Italian (Sicilia) first seen in the 1200's. Some believe that it may have come from Spain, however, during the rein of King Frederick II.
-The show continues to play with food in absurd ways. Nothing could prepare me for Reagan Hut being an actual divisive plot devise and goal of one it's main characters!
-I also thought Love, Actually was an interesting reference to have, not because it is rather popular rom-com film, but because it could be a hint at the mythology, in which love, maybe, actually, will conquer almost all. This also goes along with the space ants' favorite song by The Cars, You Might Think, whose lyrics include, "You might think I'm crazy, but all I want it is you.". A big repeated tagline of Love, Actually comes from Mariah Carey's featured song, All I want for Christmas is you! Also Martindale's character's first name is Joanne, which is also a variation of the name Johanna, which is the name of a child character on Love, Actually, who sings Mariah Carey's song towards the end of the film.

So what did you think? Were you shocked that Laurel has become infected? Do you think she can survive and/or that she will be saved? Do you think it will be about "love"? Sound off in the comments below!

About the Author - Darthlocke4
Laura Becker (Darthlocke 4) is a long time commentator, TV addict, and aspiring writer participating with other fans on SpoilerTV. She writes reviews and analytic type articles. Some of her other interests include philosophy, cultural anthropology, reading, drawing, and working with animals, as she grew up and continues to work on her family's horse farm.
Recent Reviews (All Reviews)