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Throwback Thursday - Salvation - Episode 1x08 - From Russia, With Love

Throwback Thursday is a weekly article in which we look back at our favorite TV episodes from the past. I was the SpoilerTV reviewer for the wonderful sci-fi adventure show, Salvation when it aired on CBS in 2017. The fact I loved this show was never hidden in my detailed reviews of each episode. It had brilliant writing and an exceptional cast. I reviewed almost every episode of the series which ran for two seasons and clearly deserved more. One of the episodes I did not get to review due to illness eventually become one of my very favorites, Episode 1x08, From Russia, With Love. Apparently, I'm not alone in my love for this episode. When I asked series star Jennifer Finnigan which was her favorite Salvation episode, she didn't hesitate to share her love of From Russia, With Love in a tweet. The opportunity presented itself to participate in Throwback Thursday once again, and I quickly grabbed the chance to share my thoughts on this outstanding episode.

Only a show like Salvation a sci-fi adventure series about Earth's impending collision with an asteroid could produce a taught two-parter during it's first season that adds tense political intrigue and espionage to a looming global disaster. That is exactly what this show did with the tautly written and a paced; beautifully acted episodes Seeing Red Ep. 1x07 and one of the show's finest hours in From Russia, With Love. The main storyline involves government spokesperson Grace Barrows (Finnigan) and brilliant scientist/entrepreneur Darius Tanz (Santiago Cabrera) going rogue and going off-grid to travel to Russia to convince the Russians to work with them on a plan to stop the asteroid. Tensions between the two countries are at an all-time high to the point of nuclear weapons pointed at one another, neither trusting the other country. Darius is in hopes that he can convince the Russians to trust and work with him and not the government.
While several important storyline developments are happening in this episode, the central focus on Grace and Darius (Santiago Cabrera)'s adventure is, in a way, is all about an elaborate dance. First, there is the elaborate dance they do with the Russian authorities to cover their unauthorized presence in the country as they try to negotiate an agreement to prevent world destruction both by nuclear weapons and the ever-looming asteroid which by this time is 148 days away. Second, there is the dancing around one another Grace and Darius do while trying to evade their growing feelings for one another. Finally, there is an intimate, actual dance they perform in one of the most romantic sequences of the series.
Drugged with a powerful substance the lowers their inhibitions, the two drop their guard as they wait for an answer to Darius's proposal. Each country has something the other needs, the Russians have built a gravity tractor and Darius has the EM unit needed to power it. He proposes they work together to launch the gravity tractor they hope can alter the asteroid's course, with the Russians having oversight of the launch. As they pass the time, they reveal some serious truths that result in them engaging in a seductive dance to an old Ella Fitzgerald record they find in the room. It is one of the series most seductive moments and that is totally due to the off-the-charts chemistry between Finnegan and Cabrera. According to Finnigan's tweet, that scene, which normally would have covered 1-2 pages of a script was 4-5 pages long.
This episode not only ratcheted up the suspense and intrigue, giving a closer look at the games governments sometimes play, but it was also a major turning point in the series for its main characters. Grace and Darius were finally honest with one another. Salvation was an exceptionally well-done series that deserved far better treatment than it received from CBS in its two short seasons. Even its series finale set up an equally exciting premise for a third season that would be wonderful to see at some time. It is a series that is certainly worth searching out and watching as an example of great writing, great acting, and overall great entertainment. What are your thoughts about Salvation and From Russia, With Love? Leave your comments below.

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