Whaaaat? The last thing I expected was that somebody else would splinter, least of all Ramse, but it makes sense.
So we begin with a pissed-off Ramse torching all the research and stealing the serum Cole needs for his jumps.
Cole jumps to 2015, walking in on Cassie and Aaron at the exact wrong moment as things are heating up between them–newly domestic and entertaining ideas of a vacation. Aaron is immediately, “Oh, no, no. You can’t be here.” Then it registers. “It’s not over,” he says. “No it’s not,” says Cole. He and Cassie stop in front of each other. “You’re alive,” she says softly. “So are you” is his reply. But noÂ hug this time (boooo).
He’s immediately all business and Aaron is pissed thatÂ the plagueÂ is still a thing. They realize Peters is the key because he could just manufacture a replacement. Cassie and Cole talk about findingÂ him.Â Aaron is not onÂ board. “How manyÂ times does she have to die before you figure your sh-t out?”Â He rails that Cole has no idea how to stop it and storms out. Cole’s face says he’s not wrong.
Cassie and ColeÂ set out looking for Peters. They talk and she tells him she went to look for him. He says he knows. She says he looks worried, and he says he is.Â TheyÂ find the corpse ofÂ Peters’ husband, andÂ recipe for theÂ plague hidden in a book.Â They retreat to a bar andÂ Cassie thumbs through the pages, finding Japanse text alongside the formulas, and a mention of finding the mummy in 1987 Tokyo. Cole says he needs Cassie’s help and she flatly says it’ll be her pleasure. “Splinter…apocalypse…rinse…repeat.”
He is visibly deteriorating and before he splinters, he asks Cassie why she’s so angry and she tells him he shouldn’t be there. He says he doesn’t want to be, but that’s what they’re left with. She tells him to go, and acknowledges he’s dying. He says he’ll be fine and then he blips. As she heads out, she notices the plants in the bar turning from green to red.
When Cole gets home, he tells Jones about the Tokyo date and she tells him Ramse did. We catch up with Ramse and Elena in a refuge camp at an amusement park. Then a nomad crew of womenÂ who call themselves The Daughters rolls by, and Ramse spots the logo of the 12 Monkeys on the lead carriage.
Cole tells Jones where to find Ramse on the promise she won’t hurt him. “Killing Ramse can’t be the last thing I do here,” he says. That changes by the end of the episode. Jones dispatches Whitley with Cole’s request acknowledged but the understanding that if it comes down to the serum or Ramse, the serum reigns. “Anything we do, even if we undo it, it happened nonetheless in God’s eyes,” she tells him.
Cole is slid into an oxygen tank to buy him some time.
Ramse goes to see The Daughters and amidst a sea of heavily-armed warrior women, he comes face to face with a batty-as-ever Jennifer Goines (over-aged, I think–she should be on par with Jones if my math is right), who says most come to see her for her herb, once it’s turned red, after “he’s been there,” because it helps people to see. He asks her who she is. She says “Daughters of midnight…and fathers.”
She says they have work to finish to undo what they have done and will do. He mentions Cole, and she says “Eyes that see. Poor otter eyes. Can’t stop the plague.” He asks her who starts it and her replies are jumbled. She says there’s only one who does and will know–The Witness. She asks him to tell her where Cole is and she’ll tell him what he needs. She gives him a medallion and tells him we’ll need it later. “You’re a good friend. Not yet. But you will be,” she says.
Then she warns him. “Today something happens that will change things for you. Not everything is preordained no matter how it may seem. They say everything happens for a reason, That is a lie. Death can be both cause and effect. That’s how it works. No straight lines. You’re ready. It’s time to go.”
In 2015, Aaron tries to talk Cassie out of continuing on this path. She says she can do it alone but she doesn’t want to. “Don’t make me,” she asks, and he’s defeated.
The serum recovery mission turns into a cluster and Elena is killed. Whitley at least takes out the mook who kills her. Ramse shows up afterward and tells Sam that what happened to Elena isn’t fair or right. He tells him he’s never alone, and he’ll always protect him, except he’s gotta go right now, which inadvertently made me laugh because I am awful.
Jones and Whitley argue about the serum. He says he made it right and she snarks back, “Is she alive again?” He tells her Ramse should spend the time he has left being a father. He’s not going to go after him. “Someone, someday will judge us for what we’ve done,” he says.
Cassie finds Peters inside a locked shipping container–somehow not infected although all his test subjects have died (thankfully not shown). He says he completed the virus to protect his husband. He tells her the army talked about the messenger and the 12 and the plan. He realizes Jason is dead and asks her to kill him. She’s tempted but instead tells him to stay off main roads and in the country, and crawl into a hole.
Aaron’s wandering around outside when he comes face to face with Alisen Down, who tells him Cassie is very important and asks,Â “What are you willing to do to keep her alive?”
Ramse brings the serum to Jones and asks for assurance that he and his son will be left alone. Then he drops the guards and Whitley and locks them out. When the alarms sound, Jones wakes Cole up and tells Max (who I completely forgot about) to keep him away from Ramse. He comes to as alarms are blaring and asks what’s up and she says she’s on it. Jones starts barking orders and then Ramse reaches the control room and shoots Adler.
He faces off with Jones and wires the machine with an explosive and tells her it ends today. Max comes in and tries to talk him down. He tells her to leave. She tells him she wants the same thing he does–a better life of all of them. He says Jones took Elena and he won’t let her take his son.
Jones tries to rationalize that maybe Sam will have a better future. He tells her that’s not good enough. She recounts the billions of losses while Max moves toward the gun on the ground. He mentions Hannah. “That’s what this is for you. My son is the future. Your daughter, she’s the past,” he says. She tells him to shoot. Max yells at him and fires and shoots her. Jones gets the explosive and they close themselves off.
Ramse shoots himself up with the serum, telling Jones he promised he’d protect his son and if he can’t do it now, he’ll do it then.
Jones disarms the bomb and Cole reaches Max as she dies. Another loss.
Ramse forces the last tech in the control room to send him back. And then he blips out.
Aaron chats with Cassie about letting Peters go and says nothing about his encounter with Alisen Down. He says he understands about going to great lengths to save one person that you love. He says isn’t that all that matters and Cassie says no.
Cole asks Jones where Ramse went and she tells him the machine was preconfigured for 1987 but there’s no guarantee he got there and there’s no tracer for him–it was one way. She tells him they are out of time, this is his last jump. “1987 is the endgame. You must find the source of the plague and eliminate it. If Mr. Ramse survives the jump, he will try to stop you,” she says. Cole looks squarely at her and says, “And when he does, I’m going to kill him.”
And then we see Ramse, disoriented and screaming, in an alley in 1987 Tokyo.
This episode sets up the final three of the season, and the developmentsÂ that occur because of the shift in theÂ timeline are HUGE. I completely didn’t expect this ripple, but once it plays out, it’s sort of genius, and terrifying, and sad. But so, so good.
Acevedo was so good here as a man on simmer until he isn’t–and then he has absolutely nothing to lose. Next week, he owns the hour.
On the face of it, I’m not a fan of less Cole/Stanford per episode, but these two episodesÂ directly feed the final two, which are almost ALL Stanford. It’s all about balance.
I like that Cole is sort of numb in this episode while Cassie is just almost on autopilot in a detached, get it done kind of way. When they’re in the bar and she’s mainlining her scotch he tells her that’s not helping and she remarks that scotch can’t avert the apocalypse. The next morning, aspirin in hand, she’s back on the case. Her whole world is this, still this. The brief moment she thought she was a civilian didn’t soften her. It hardened her. She’s pissed off now, rightfully, that this is consuming her life. She’s all in.
I love this show. Only three episodes left!
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