The last episode of FlashForward, "Scary Monsters and Super Creeps," filled in another blank on Mark's bulletin board.
With the "Blue Hand" and "Baltimore" clues coming true, FlashForward is continuing to bring the clues fast and furious as the show's central marriage goes on the rocks in more ways than one.
But before we go any further with this week's recap, I just want to start out with a couple things from the last two weeks that readers have pointed out:
One is that Nichole might be undergoing a baptism in her flashforward. I went back and re-watched that scene, and you guys are right. It could be a baptism, although the one shot where she is sinking in the water doesn't seem to support it. Whether it's one or the other, I still don't think the "attacker" (or "baptist," if you prefer) is the pastor from that scene, but after pausing on his face, it's possible. They do look similar.
The other theory that got my attention is that the president wasn't necessarily still president when he was woken up by the Secret Service in his flashforward, giving credence to Clemente's belief that she will be president by April 29th. Again, I went back and re-watched the scene and you're right again. While he's called "Mr. President" by the secret serviceman who wakes him up, that is a title used even for former presidents. And there's nothing in the scene to indicate he's within the White House nor that he's still president. Chalk another one up for you readers, although the scene could still be interpreted either way.
Now let's get to this week's episode recap.
After Janis was shot last week, she's taken to Olivia's hospital where, of course, Olivia herself operates on the FBI agent. The experience unnerves Olivia, who has been calling Mark and leaving messages when there is no answer, making her worry that he's drinking again. Her concern isn't helped by the anonymous text she got last episode, telling her that his flashforward including him drinking.
When Mark finally shows up, they bond for a moment, making the audience let out a giant, "awwwww" when their exchange is so loving and cute. But it doesn't last long. The truth is that their flashforwards have made them distrustful of each other.
That "trust issue" comes to the forefront when Dylan, the autistic son of Lloyd Simcoe, shows up at the Benford household. When Lloyd comes to pick him up, he realizes this is the house from his flashforward. Mark realizes Lloyd is the man from his wife's flashforward. When Olivia walks in, it becomes the most awkward scene ever, and the actors do a good job of demonstrating just how destructive these flashforwards have become to people's lives.
Two things important about this storyline:
- Future Causes Future: One again, we're shown that the future probably wouldn't have happened without the characters having seen the future. If Olivia hadn't seen herself cheating, if Mark hadn't seen himself drinking, would they be having marriage problems at all? Indications are no, since everything was going along smoothly until their issues of trust, which are all the result of their flashforwards.
- Charlie's Flashforward: Dylan's flashforward is nothing special, and Charlie's right there with him. That's weird, because we've been led to believe there's some great mystery within Charlie's vision. Nothing exciting to see here. The reason Dylan knew Olivia's name when he came into the hospital? He saw her picture on the fridge with her name. He had some cookies and hung out, with Charlie telling him, "this is your house too," a phrase he repeats again and again. The problem is, if Charlie's flashforward was the same, which it apparently was, then how does she know "D. Gibbons is a bad man?" And why did she say there would be "no more good days?" Something's funky here. Still, Dylan showing up at Mark's house was a surprise to me (I was convinced he was going to his own home), so kudos to the writers for that one.
Meanwhile, there are things cooking with the FBI agents. While Stan watches over Janis, whose "damaged" baby-maker has made her flashforward even more questionable, Demetri and Agent Al Gough decide to investigate her attacker. They find a mark on the assailant's body that is only visible under ultraviolet light, and bingo -- the mark is a "blue hand," which is one of the cards on Mark's bulletin board.
Because Mark had associated "blue hand" with "Baltimore," the agents go to Baltimore Street (deciding that if it doesn't pan out, only then will they take the trip to Maryland), and they luck out again. There are skeleton-shaped blue hands that point the way to a house where the agents find a dead bodies, one with a hand painted blue.
- Blue's Clues: Although there's nothing in this "blue hand" part of the investigation that provides the kind of answers the crows and towers in Somalia did, there's obviously something going on with these attackers, since they went after all the FBI agents investigating the blackout. Plus, the discovery of the blue hand house begins the "Rutherford" investigation that will show up in Al's flashforward in London.
- Celia Bedelia: Speaking of Al's flashforward, anyone want to help me out with exactly what was going on there? We already know he's looking on the Mosaic website for a woman named "Celia." Now we find out there's more to his flashforward than what he shared? What was he doing after he saw that dead bird? I'm ready to know more about this character and what his mystery means.
- Poor Demetri: Dude's got a crazy need to solve his murder before it happens. This character is probably the strongest part of the show so far. If he dies on March 15th, I suspect I'm not the only viewer who is going to be very disappointed.
Then we come to the third thread running through this episode -- Dominic Monaghan's character, Simon, gets fleshed out a little more. We found out:
- Quarks and Skirts: Simon is not only a quantum physicist "genius," but he's one of the more accomplished and famous ones on Earth. And he's rather charming, as we find out during his seduction of a woman on a train.
- Trachea Toys: Simon gets a little too much pleasure out of crushing a man's trachea in his flashforward, a scene he admits to his on-the-train lover. This isn't Charlie from Lost anymore.
- Northern California: Simon tells Lloyd later in the episode that he rode the train "down the coast," so he and Lloyd must work somewhere north of L.A. -- far enough north for Simon to have gotten a sleeping car and had the time to use it.
- Mucked Up Experiment?: When Lloyd is confronted by Simon, he says, "Our experiment killed 20 million people, Simon. What more is there to say?"
Every episode, it seems more and more apparent that the flashforwards can't be stopped, which is really frustrating. The best hint we have that fate isn't set is the burning of the friendship bracelet -- it provides hope. But the deterioration of Mark and Olivia's marriage, the fulfillment of Mark's bulletin board, and Demetri's inability to find a clue about his own murder mean things seem to be spinning out of control and straight toward the future already predicted. If another friendship bracelet shows up on Mark's arm, I swear I'm going to throw something at the TV.
But as the set future is disappointing, the relationships are getting a lot more interesting. I'm finally caring about Olivia and Mark. I'm actually liking alleged bad-guy Lloyd Simcoe (I mean, a dad that has to buy a Flava Flav costume is just too adorable). And while I'm a little disappointed we didn't learn more about Simon, he's a deliciously intriguing character. Since he's a series regular, I'm really looking forward to seeing more of him.
As for the ongoing mysteries, I'm honestly surprised that all the bulletin board hints are in place already, at only Episode 6. After watching "Lost" for years and still not really knowing what the hell is going on, I'm liking how quickly we're getting information about the blackouts on FlashForward, albeit jumbled information. I may be proven wrong, but it feels like we'll at least have a basic understanding of the blackout's cause by April 29th. And I'm intrigued enough to stick around and see where this goes next.
That said, all my theories from past weeks have been pretty much proven wrong. What about you? Have any guesses that are holding out?