The FOX Network concluded their ten-part miniseries “Wayward Pines,” with an episode that’s kept social-media-sites buzzing, over the last few days. The finale divided fans of the series into two camps, those who think the show ended on a brilliant note, while others simply hated it. During the last few minutes of the finale, the show-runners pulled a “bait and switch” maneuver, altering the optimistic ending that got set-up during the hour, to a much darker conclusion. While many viewers enjoyed the twist in the final minutes, many fans got confused or disgusted with the ending.
Although I’ve yet to read any of the Wayward Pines trilogy of novels, written by author Blake Crouch, I’m aware that the miniseries ended differently than the first novel did. I’m also aware that a plot-device used in the TV show “The First Generation Of Wayward Pines,” wasn’t utilized in Crouch’s books. The fact that the mini-series used the youngsters prominently and they figured into the conclusion, has many friends of mine that read the novels, besides themselves in consternation. We’ve seen Hollywood reconfigure some incredible novels, into films that were barely recognizable to the book’s fans for decades. So we’re going to leave that subject alone, in this article and just deal with the perspective of fans who didn’t read the books.
The series and its final episode are recapped elsewhere on this site, so we’re going to concentrate on just the final scenes of Thursday’s finale. The creator of Wayward Pines, David Pilcher got shot to death by his disillusioned sister Pam, earlier in the evening. The show’s protagonist, former Secret Service Agent turned Wayward Pines Sheriff Ethan Burke, sacrificed his life to save the rest of the residents. Burke connected four bombs to a detonator and when the Abbies began to attack the elevator car he rode in, he blew them and himself up. The elevator exploded into a ball of flame and then dropped like a stone to the bottom of the shaft.
Hearing the explosion, Ethan’s son Ben stuck his head inside the shaft, looking and calling for his father. However, his search didn’t last long as a piece of debris hit him in the head and knocked him out cold.
A while later, things have calmed down in Wayward Pines, as the power’s restored, the people are safe and they’ve had a chance to catch their collective breath. Pam and Kate Balinger, Ethan’s former partner in the Secret Service, knock down all the barriers that have come between them for the last 12-years and level with each other. We see a pact formed between the two women, to help run the town and end all the secrets and lies that David insisted on using. Things appear to be taking an optimistic turn as the women attempt to put humanity in the year 4028, back on the right path. Then the screen goes blank for a few seconds, something doesn’t feel right, it seems unfinished. We soon find out that’s indeed the case.
When the picture returns we hear a female voice asking how are you feeling Mr. Burke? Ben’s in a hospital bed and Amy’s wearing a nurse’s uniform, he asks what’s going on and Amy says his doctor will be there shortly and explain everything. Ben asks her why she’s dressed like that and she replies she’s a nurse and graduated two weeks ago.
Ben soon finds out he’s been in suspension for the last three-years and four-months, along with all the adults from Group B. The First Generation Of Wayward Pines, overpowered the adults and after putting them all back to sleep, took over operation of the town. The fear and ignorance are back in full force, emphasized by corpses hanging on light-poles on Main Street, one having a sign around his neck reading “Do Not Try To Leave.”
Judging by the posts I’ve encountered on Social-Media-Sites, a sizable portion of the viewers were confused by the ending. They failed to realize that Pam, Kate, Theresa Burke and the rest of the adults from Wayward Pines, were back in their cryogenic tubes in suspended animation. Many also failed to grasp that the dozens of students that rode out the storm in the supply room of Wayward Pines Academy, had taken control of the town and running it just as the man they refer to as their Savior, David Pilcher kept things in order.
Another segment of the audience, believes that the last-minute twist was the perfect conclusion for the miniseries. Many felt that an optimistic ending, with all holding hands and singing “Kumbaya,” would have felt false and forced. This was after all the story of a psychotic genius, who kidnapped hundreds of people over a 15-year period, ripping them away from their lives and loved ones, so that Pilcher could restore humanity in the distant future. The optimistic conversation between Pam and Kate, was in fact just a mirage. A momentary feeling that they could reshape their society.
The last segment of the audience, simply hated the conclusion. They didn’t like the fact that Ethan Burke died and got more upset when they realized his death was in vain. The open and free society, that Burke envisioned never came about and in fact many folks got punished just for learning the truth. They didn’t play an active role into finding out what their circumstances were, but just by getting informed they got put back in suspension.
There were some published reports last week emanating from Internet-Based TV Sites that FOX had decided against bringing back Wayward Pines for a second season. However as of this writing, the network’s been mum on the series fate and no mainstream publication such as Entertainment Weekly, or USA Today have gone with the story running on the Internet sites. So as far as this writer’s concerned, the decision whether to bring back Wayward Pines next summer’s a 50/50 proposition and the controversy over the finale, helps the chances of FOX renewing the show.
As far as this writer’s opinion on the finale, it was far from being a satisfying episode. Had we flashed ahead and witnessed a teary-eyed Theresa, Ben and Amy at the dedication of a statue to the town’s hero Ethan Burke, for sacrificing his life to save Wayward Pines and all the residents were happy, that would have been a true “warm-and-fuzzy” moment. But the “bait and switch” conclusion, may have been the best fit. It was a dark-ending for a dark-series and 48-hours after being broadcast on the East Coast it’s still causing a buzz.
While many viewers of the FOX Network’s miniseries “Wayward Pines,” might be less than satisfied with the way they wrapped things up, it might have been the appropriate way to end the season. The last few minutes of the series, harkened back, to many episodes of the classic science-fiction anthology series The Twilight Zone, a show that very few episodes concluded with conventional happy endings. Good intentions, nobility and bravery, aren’t always rewarded in life. Sometimes we discover the correct path but still fail to follow it, we overlook the bad and give the title of Savior, to those whose names shouldn’t even get mentioned in the same paragraph the word appears in.
Chapter ten of the story, jumped into action in the opening sequence and kept the viewers on the edge of their chairs, until the screen went black. David Pilcher got pretty ticked off when Sheriff Ethan Burke revealed the truth about Wayward Pines, to all the residents and decided to display his anger by cutting off all the town’s electrical power. Including the power source for the electric fence, keeping the Abbies at bay for the previous 14-years.
We see that the Abbies have breached the perimeter in the opening sequence and they’re heading straight for Main Street. Ethan contacts the complex and speaks with Pam, who confirms what Burke’s already figured out, that her brother cut off all the power to the town. Six Abbies have been found inside the perimeter, the residents gathered on Main Street need to be moved to a secure shelter immediately. Ethan tells everybody gathered to head to Lot 33, where there’s an underground bunker, which should provide them safety from the Abbies.
Ethan, Kate and some of the men head over to the sheriff’s station and Burke starts passing out weapons to them. The two grads of Wayward Pines Academy, locked in a cell ask what’s going on, but their questions are ignored. We move to an interrogation room locked from the outside, where Jason’s body’s being stored and the teen that shot Harold Balinger and three other men to death last week isn’t dead. He comes to but doesn’t say anything.
Ethan tells Kate to finish passing out the weapons and he’ll meet her at the bunker. They’re just about to leave the station when Jason shows himself through the glass section of the door he’s locked behind. He says that Pilcher’s predicted that this day was coming for a long time. The First Generation of Wayward Pines, would survive the storm in an ark. However those too weak to swim like her and Harold would die. Kate contemplates shooting Jason dead, but decides it’s not worth the time and they leave.
Ben’s sitting by Amy’s side on her hospital bed when she regains consciousness. He hugs her and tells her how scared he was that he was going to lose her. Just then Theresa enters the room, she says they need to leave immediately, Ben says he won’t leave Amy. Theresa tells her son to find Dr. Carroll the surgeon who operated on Amy.
Pam walks into David’s office and he hugs her and tells her he’s so glad she arrived. He says they have to discuss preparations for reviving Group C and her face registers horror, upon hearing her brother’s words. She tells him that those are their people down on the ground and he has to save them, but he says he wishes he could but it’s too late.
He says the town’s sick and he failed them, but says he won’t make the same mistakes with this new group. He says the Abbies will leave in the winter and then they can repair the town and start fresh. He says this time he and Pam have to be more hands-on, like in the old days.
Pamela says they’re not having a theoretical discussion, these are real human beings whose lives are in danger. She says Pilcher must turn back on the power and then send his guards down to Main Street to destroy the Abbies. David’s eyes light up when she mentions the guards, he summons two into his office and orders them to put Pam into suspension. He then has the guards round-up all the volunteers and he orders them all to be re-frozen.
Doctor Carroll tells Theresa that it’s too early to move Amy, but Theresa says they have no choice in the matter. Suddenly all the power goes out again in the hospital. Carroll says the generator’s acting up and he’s got to fix it and he’ll be right back.
Main Street’s filled with corpses, some Abbies but mostly humans, we see “Big” Bill, Theresa’s boss at the real estate office become a happy-meal for one of the Abbies. Pilcher watches all the carnage on the monitors in his office, while listening to an opera LP.
Pam and the volunteers are brought to Christina, who heads up the cryogenics process. Pam tries reasoning with her, the head-guard and a younger guard, but Christina cuts her off and says Pilcher’s their savior. Pam smiles and says he’s not a savior or a God, he’s just a man and he’s made a terrible mistake. The community’s thriving, we had a lot of birth’s in the last year. At that point the head guard knocks out Pamela with a Taser unit, the young guard starts to say something and his supervisor says he might want to stay quiet.
Some of the graduates from Wayward Pines Academy come into the sheriff’s office and release the two guys from the cell and Jason. One of them suggests they stay where they are, but Jason convinces them they have to go to the ark. He says that’s the only way they can survive the attack.
Dr. Carroll starts to reboot the generator, but he’s stopped pretty quickly by the Abbie right behind him. Theresa realizes Carroll’s likely not coming back and starts leading Ben and Amy out of the hospital. She reaches around a corner to make sure all’s clear but an Abbie grabs her arm, slicing her arm in the process. Ethan shows up and kills the Abbie with one shot and then he helps them leave the hospital and head to Lot 33.
Kate’s trying to keep one step ahead of the Abbies and goes into her toy store and bolts the door to the back-room. She’s just about to catch her breath, when she hears sounds on the roof. An Abbie falls through the roof and Kate kills it by repeatedly hitting it with a large steel instrument.
She gets out to the street and an Abbie’s munching on Tim the hotel manager. Tim’s still alive and he points to a bag about two-feet in front of Kate that contains the remainder of the bombs that Franklin built. Realizing it’s too late to save Tim, she grabs the bag and runs to Lot 33.
Pamela’s put back into a cryogenic-state. Pilcher watches and we can see the mixed emotions registering on his face as the tube’s she’s encased in get’s filled with the material that will put her back into a state of suspended animation. The rest of the volunteers watch in horror and disbelief.
Most of the town’s residents are in the bunker and Ethan goes over to Megan Fisher and asks her where the tunnels that also occupy the space where they’re at lead to and she says she doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Burke says he knows that Megan was with Pilcher from the beginning and she says she doesn’t know where they lead to. Kate asks Fisher if she wants everybody to die and Megan says David will save them all.
Burke tells her that Pilcher’s the one trying to kill them, he shut off the power and let the Abbies into Wayward Pines. Fisher says Ethan’s a liar, but Ben yells out that he’s not. He walks up to Megan and says you told us Pilcher watches over all of us, so how could he not realize the power’s off? Ben says you told us this is an ark and one crack can destroy us all, Pilcher’s the crack and we’re all going to drown.
Ben’s words resonate with Fisher and she tells Ethan that the Western tunnel leads to an elevator that she has the code for. She says the elevator will take them to the complex. Burke tells Theresa that he’ll be back soon and he and Kate head to find the elevator.
Jason and his buddies arrive at Wayward Pines Academy and there are a few dozen students waiting there. Jason opens the door to a supply room, stocked to the hilt with everything they can possibly need. Jason says this is the place that the First Generation Of Wayward Pines rides out the storm.
Kate and Ethan take the elevator up and we watch them shoot four guards. The guards with the volunteers hear the gunfire and the head guard runs to help, but the younger one stays behind. As soon as the other guard’s out of sight, the young guard points his weapon at Christina and tells her to wake up Pam.
After taking out all the guards, Kate and Ethan return to the bunker and tell all the residents they’ll need to take several trips on the elevator, but they’re all heading to the Complex where they’ll be safe. Everybody starts to head to the elevator except for Megan, her husband Brad tells her it’s time to go, but she says she’s staying behind. She says that she saw some students on Main Street and if any show up she wants to let them in. Brad kisses her on the forehead and tells her to stay safe. A few minutes later, there’s a banging on the door and then the doors knocked off it’s hinges and thrown to the floor below. We don’t see Megan get killed but it likely happened quickly.
Most of the residents have made it to the complex, but Ethan asks where Ben and Theresa are and Amy responds they haven’t made it up yet. He takes the elevator back down and gathers the last group including his wife and son, but the elevator screeches to a halt short of the floor. Ben shimmies up to the top of the car and he sees a ladder and the elevator door.
Ben helps everybody out of the car and then reaches down to help his father get out, but Ethan says he’ll catch up with him. He’s got to make sure none of the Abbies can make it to the complex, he tells Ben to go on ahead and he’ll see him soon.
Burke gets all four bombs out of the bag from Tim and connects them all to a detonator. Pilcher’s watching him on his monitor and suddenly his voice is ringing in the elevator. The Abbies are climbing up the walls of the elevator shaft and Pilcher tells Burke he warned him the truth would lead to Wayward Pines destruction, but Ethan wouldn’t listen.
Kate enters Pilcher’s office with her weapon pointed at him and tells him to turn on the fence and nobody else needs to die. He glares at her and says he’s dedicated his entire life to these people and she comes in and tells him what to do? He says she’s only there because he chose to bring her, but she and Burke have to learn it’s not just about one person, it’s for the greater good.
He looks at Kate and chuckles and says she should go ahead and kill him, that she can destroy him but his ideas and legacy will live on, long after he’s gone. Kate says your ideas end today and suddenly we hear a shot, Pam and the surveillance operator entered the office and Pilcher’s sister killed him. The surveillance officer starts restoring power to Wayward Pines.
Ethan’s assembling the bombs and we become aware that the only way he can detonate the bombs is if he remains in the car. He flashes back briefly to Theresa and he giving Ben a birthday cake and he smiles. The Abbies start attacking the elevator, shoving their fists through the floor boards. Ethan hits the button and the car explodes, bursts into flame and falls to the bottom of the shaft. Ben hears the explosion and sticks his head in the shaft and calls for his father. A piece of debris hits Ben on the head and knocks him out.
A few hours have passed, everyone’s safe and starting to calm down. Pam approaches Kate and asks how Ben’s doing and Kate says he’s still unconscious. Kate asks if they have any beds, most of the survivors are exhausted and would love to get some sleep. Pam smiles and says they have beds in the East Wing. Kate says she’d really like to help, but the more information she has, the more help she can offer. The two women take a walk.
Pam shows Kate the suspension tubes and she tells her that in each tube, there’s a person inside, whose yet to be revived and Kate says she almost believes her. Pam says that’s the truth and Kate laughs and says they’ve never said a true word to each other in 12-years. Pam says well now’s a good time to start.
She says that they’ll run things the right way, no more secrets or surveillance. Pam says we are the future of humanity, we’re all that remains. Then the screen goes black for a few seconds. When the picture returns we hear a female voice asking how are you feeling Mr. Burke? Ben’s in a hospital bed and Amy’s wearing a nurse’s uniform, he asks what’s going on and Amy says his doctor will be there shortly and explain everything. Ben asks her why she’s dressed like that and she replies she’s a nurse and graduated two weeks ago.
Ben says you graduated, how long have I been unconscious? She says your doctor will explain everything Mr. Burke. Ben says tell me how long I was out for and what’s with this Mr. Burke routine. Amy lowers her voice and says they’re listening. He asks quietly how long he’s been unconscious and she says three years and four months. She says she tried to talk them out of putting him in suspension with the adults, but they say your father killed the savior.
She says I told them, then corrects herself and says I convinced them that you’re nothing like your father, that’s why they revived you. Ben asks where are his clothes and she says they’ll put him in suspension again and he repeats the question. She gives him a plastic bag with his clothes in it, but begs him to stay. He gets dressed and leaves the hospital.
He goes down to Main Street and there aren’t many people around, he sees a young woman on the other side of the street and one of the guards looks at Ben with a leering smile. Ben sees the merry-go-round is working and sees a young couple and their toddler sitting next to it. Then he looks to his right and gets startled. There’s a statue of Pilcher that’s been erected, he’s holding a book and standing up. The inscription reads,
Jason and the rest of the First Generation Of Wayward Pines, did survive the storm and then they put all the adults in suspension and installed themselves in what they considered their rightful place. In charge of Wayward Pines and in turn, the future of humanity.
The FOX Network mini-series “Wayward Pines,” has set the table for a truly spectacular finale, with a taut and exciting penultimate episode entitled “A Reckoning.” Finally, the entire population of the small town in Iowa, are discovering the truth about their situation, however an ominous final montage leaves one wondering if the truth and the residents of Wayward Pines, will survive the final episode? The town’s sheriff Ethan Burke, averted a crisis early in the episode, but that threat was back in play at the end.
Our first image’s a wide-shot of a neighborhood at night, suddenly phones start ringing all over town and we see the lights getting turned on in the houses. We move to the town square, the spotlights on the platform where they perform reckonings, come on. Then we watch Ethan walking onto the platform holding a knife to Kate Balinger’s neck and asking the crowd if that’s what they want to see. The crowd cheers lustily, but there are 14 residents who are allies of Kate and although undetected, they’re holding weapons.
We then go back several hours, to see the events that lead up to the reckoning, starting minutes after one of Kate’s crew drove through the electric fence with a 30-foot dump-truck. The driver left the cab with the body of a comrade who died on his way to the fence. Seconds later they got devoured by three Abbies, one eating the corpse the other two killing then eating the driver.
As they finish their meal, one of the Abbies realize that the fence’s disabled. He crawls underneath the truck to the other side of the fence, then crawls back to signal his mates. However he’s killed by Ethan slamming into him with his jeep. The other two Abbies attempt to escape by crawling under the truck, but Burke shoots out all the tires and the truck falls on them and crushes them to death.
Back at Burke’s office, Kate’s in one cell while Franklin and two other members of their team are in another. Franklin’s not the guy I’d want to be spending my final moments with, as he’s the voice of doom and gloom. He keeps repeating their dead, that Burke’s going to come back and then have a reckoning for each of them. Kate says that Ethan’s not Pope and they’ll all be fine. She says she knows Ethan and he’s not going to kill them. Franklin counters with she used to know him before they got to him.
Ethan’s secretary Arlene’s sitting at her desk playing solitary, when three teenaged boys walk into the station and demand to see Sheriff Burke. She tells them he’s not at the station, then asks them what gives them the right to demand anything? The loudmouth of the trio, flashes his school ring and says he’s a member of the first graduating class of Wayward Pines Academy.
He then says that Wayward Pines has rules and punishment for breaking those rules and he wants to know when the sheriff will hold reckonings for the guilty. Arlene says that’s none of his business and tells them to leave, one of his buddies tells the loudmouth Jason that they should leave. Jason says tell the sheriff if he doesn’t want to do the reckoning he knows people who will gladly take care of it. Then they leave.
Ethan’s got a construction team repairing the fence when David Pilcher arrives. Burke says he’s got the situation under control and Pilcher responds that the rebels won’t stop. Ethan says the reason that they drove through the fence was Pilcher’s fault for not leveling with the residents. The creator of Wayward Pines blames his sheriff’s leniency as the problem, telling him he must kill Kate Balinger.
The doctor says that the rebels will fall apart without her leadership. He then asks Burke if he could have killed the Easter bomber, before he killed so many, would he have done it? He says to Ethan it’s one life for the safety of the whole town.
Burke drags Harold Balinger into an interrogation room and shows him pictures of the remains of the two guys who crashed through the fence. It’s clear that they’ve been eaten by some monster, but Harold asks Ethan what he did to them? Burke looks him in the eye and says if he killed them, he’d have shot them instead of eating them. He then tells Balinger that he needs the names of the other members of their team, or this will happen to all of them.
Pamela’s sitting in her office and going through some books, when she finds a picture of David and her when they were children. She smiles at the memory at first, but then she gets up from her desk and leaves her office. Pamela believes her brother’s lost his way, a rift formed between them over Reggie Hudson and her days of unquestioning loyalty ended.
Theresa Burke steps out of Ben’s room at the hospital and Pam asks her how Ben’s doing. Theresa says that Ben slept through the night and Pam says that’s great. She then quietly asks her if Ethan told her the truth about Wayward Pines and Theresa uncomfortably nods yes. Pilcher asks if she believes him and Burke responds she doesn’t know what to believe. Pamela says that’s a good attitude, to question everything.
She then tells Theresa to go home and get some rest, that they’ll take good care of Ben. However, she tells Theresa not to take Main Street, instead to take the route that passes Lot 33 and see what you find. Theresa smiles weakly and leaves the hospital she looks at the pass that Pilcher slipped into her hand, granting her total access to the town.
Ethan goes to the surveillance center of the complex and tells Pilcher that he’s got 14 names, they are the rest of Kate and Harold’s team. The surveillance operator says that they’re all together at the Bier Garten, but when they pull up the video feed the bar’s empty. A call by Pilcher to the bartender, reveals that all 14 tracking-chips are in a beer-mug.
Ben’s in his hospital bed when he starts hearing these codes alerting doctors to a crisis in Amy’s room. Ben unhooks himself from the monitors and walks into the hall and sees Amy’s mom and dad leaving her room crying. He tries to go into the room when Pam stops him, she tells him Amy’s developed a swelling of the brain and she needs surgery. Ben breaks down crying and Pam hugs him.
Theresa heads to Lot 33 and knocks out the surveillance camera with a steel pipe. She then heads into the shack on the lot and quickly realizes that the rickety wooden floor boards, hide a metal trap door. She opens it and sees a ladder heading down to the basement. She takes the ladder down and uses a flashlight at first but the lighting system senses her presence and starts lighting the hallway. She comes to a door that reads passes and it says total access granted and the door opens.
Megan Fisher comes to Ben’s room at the hospital and asks about Amy’s condition, he tells her the surgery’s completed and it will be a couple of hours before the doctors know anything. She then asks if he thought any more about their conversation the previous day, when she said that Ben needs to share his thoughts publicly. She then tells him about the crashing of the fence.
She says the town’s coming apart and he needs to be a leader and talk to the people, telling them he doesn’t approve of the leniency the rebels are getting. She says you’re not alone and suddenly there’s a sound outside Ben’s window that sounds like marching. However it’s all the students from his class standing outside his window, slamming their fists into the palms of their other hands, a gesture that looked like they wanted revenge.
The surveillance operator sees the commotion outside the hospital and pulls it up on the giant monitor and calls for Burke and Pilcher to check it out. Just as they walk over, they see Megan and Ben come outside and Ethan asks the operator for audio. Fisher tells the students to let Ben talk and he thanks them for coming and tells them about Amy.
He then says that Amy’s a really good person and whom ever was behind hurting her deserves to be punished. He then apologizes for his father letting the town down. Jason and his two buddies are in the crowd and Jason asks Ben when his father’s going to have a reckoning, Ben replies he’s not having one. Jason and his buddies turn around and storm off, then the rest of the students leave soon after.
Jason and his pals head back to the sheriff’s station, Arlene tries to lock the plate-glass door, but Jason bashes through it. He then tells Arlene to give him the keys and she spits in his face, he picks her up and throws her against a wall. Then he handcuffs her to a filing cabinet and takes the keys, he opens the rifle rack and starts loading three with ammunition.
Kate recognizes him, he was in their toy-store when he was just eight-years-old and he bought a wooden soldier that Harold had carved. She says she remembers it like it was yesterday and says he was a really good kid. She says it doesn’t have to end like this and one of Jason’s buddy’s says she’s right, we’ve made our point. Jason screams at him this isn’t about making a point, then asks if his pal was deaf throughout their school-years.
First he opens the cell with Franklin and the other two men, he tells them to come out and get on their knees. He then opens the cell with Kate and Harold and she tries to grab him to ask for sympathy and he responds with the butt of his rifle to her head. While she’s on the floor he tells Harold to get out and join the other men on their knees.
He then makes all four men repeat, “Work Hard, Be Happy And Enjoy Your Life In Wayward Pines.” He then takes his rifle and puts it to the back of Harold’s head. Harold mouths I Love You to Kate then we hear the rifle fire and we see Harold’s blood and tissue all over Kate’s face. He then shoots the other three dead and heads into the cell and points the rifle at Kate’s head. However Ethan comes in right then and kills Jason with one shot, then tells the other two teens to drop their weapons.
Ethan brings Kate into an interrogation room and says that the only way the other 14 people will be safe, is if she tells him where they are, so he can protect him. She responds like you protected Harold? Then she says the only way he can protect them, is by stop protecting her. He says he won’t do that and she says if he doesn’t kill her, another Jason will.
Arlene runs into the room and says she thinks more vigilantes are there, she just heard something. However when he goes out front, it’s Theresa and she says she needs to show him and Kate something. They head to Lot 33 and Theresa sits down in front of a computer containing video archives and pulls one up and starts playing it. They soon see Adam Hassler who says the date’s September 15, 4020 and they’ve finally reached the city, but have found no survivors.
He then says a band of Abbies are following them and he believes it’s the same group they saw earlier in the trip. He then turns the camera to the Golden Gate Bridge and its either in pieces or partially submerged. The video then cuts out. Theresa says there are hundreds of video journals from cities all over the country, nothing’s left.
Ethan looks over at Kate and asks if she believes him now and she asks why Pilcher hid this from them. Burke says Pilcher’s a control freak but they have to tell everybody. Theresa asks how they’re going to tell people without Pilcher finding out? Ethan says just show this to as many people before midnight as possible, he’ll take care of Pilcher. She asks why midnight and Kate and Ethan say in unison there’s going to be a reckoning.
Burke heads over to Pilcher’s office and the surveillance operator tells David that the sheriff’s in his office waiting to talk to him. When the doctor enters his office, he sees Ethan sitting there drinking liquor, Burke says he decided that reckoning Kate Balinger’s the only solution. However he needs all the residents at the reckoning, Pilcher gives him a remote control which controls all the phones.
Which brings us back full circle to the opening scene as Ethan and Kate walk across the platform, while Burke asks the crowd if they want Kate dead. He then lets her go and puts down the knife and tells the crowd he’s not going to kill her, instead he’s going to tell them the truth. The world they know is long gone, Wayward Pines is it. He then says they’ve been ruled by the man they know as Dr. Jenkins, who in reality’s David Pilcher. He says he’s ruled through fear and violence for too long.
Somebody screams from the crowd that Burke’s lying and then Kate says he’s telling the truth, that she saw it for herself. She says all these years she’s just wanted to know the truth, but she never expected that they were the last surviving people. Then Theresa says she saw it as well, then Arlene says she also saw it, followed by some other residents.
Kate says that Pilcher thinks they can’t handle the truth and will turn on each other, but she says they can show him he’s wrong. Suddenly Megan Fisher steps forward and shouts Kate down, asking how she dare talk about Dr. Pilcher. She calls Kate a terrorist and Theresa steps up and slaps Fisher across the face. Megan’s shocked and then she asks if they’re all going to just stand there and everyone remains silent. Then the lights go out, first in the square then all throughout Wayward Pines. We see its Pilcher turning off the power via a keyboard and then we see the electric-fence power down. Our last image’s the hand of one of the Abbie’s starting to scale the fence.
The Season Finale Airs Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on FOX.
The townspeople gather on main street. A reckoning is afoot. Ethan marches Kate to the platform, knife pressed against her throat. Some of her supporters are amidst the crowd with small weapons, seemingly prepared to respond. Flashing back to sometime before the reckoning, there is a much larger problem descending upon the fence. It takes one of the Abbies seconds to deduce that food very well could be on the other side of this large metal box that breached the fence. Luckily, Ethan arrives in time to introduce this Abbie to the grill of his truck. He then quickly smashes two more crawling under the dump truck by shooting out the tires.
In their holding cells Franklin begins to freak out a little while Kate remains calm. Franklin anticipates Ethan doing his ‘job’ like Sheriff Pope. Kate disagrees. Her previous experience with Ethan would seem to dictate just the opposite. Franklin insists they are already dead, it’s just a matter of time.
The apparent spokesmen for the first senior class of Wayward Pines abruptly pay the Sheriff a visit. Even though Ethan is not there, they are less than polite about their agenda. The children, even the old ones, take the rules very seriously. Their point of contention is that Ethan is holding terrorists with no intention of a reckoning. Arlene does her very best to stand strong between these kids and the detained. They reluctantly leave.
In what I at least I see as an underwhelming follow-up to a significant cliff hanger, we find Ethan and David Pilcher observing the repairs on the wall. One Abbie got through and Ethan killed it. Two more attempted to get through and Ethan smashed them with a parked dump truck. The gist of the collective fanbase’s anticipation for this episode in particular had to do with how much damage the Abbies would cause and is Wayward Pines equipped to fight them off. Taking three of them out before they could organize and fixing the fence is extremely underwhelming.
Ethan and Pilcher debate the causes of the predicament they find themselves in. Ethan believes this happened because Pilcher won’t tell them the truth. Pilcher believes this will only get worse the longer the rules violators go unpunished. Pilcher suggests that without Kate, there is no rebellion. Reckon her and everything goes back. A notion, that for now, Ethan refuses to get on board with. Then Pilcher does something that might be ill-advised. He threw the Easter Bomber in Ethan’s face as a cautionary tale before the dramatic walk away.
Ethan forcefully escorts Harold into the interrogation room…for the second time now. Harold tries to resist Ethan’s approach until he sees Kate. Ethan shrugs that off and drops two 8×10 photographs of Allen and Eric. Or what’s now left of them. As predicted, Harold is having a difficult time accepting the evidence in front of him. Ethan wants names.
Pam feeling nostalgic or fearful, finds Theresa and pulls her aside. This private conversation begins with the importance of questioning things. This is either Pam opening up or setting Theresa up for something bad. She suggests Theresa take Boxwood instead of Main St home. Just to see what she’ll find. Pam was touchy/feely for a reason. When Theresa reaches the elevator she discovers a key card in the sleeve of her cardigan. They same type of key card that unlocks the cryo-chambers.
All of the names Harold gave Ethan are conveniently in one place. Or so it would seem. Surveillance puts them all at the Biergarten. Which at the moment is virtually empty. The barkeep gets a phone call from Pilcher. No words are heard, but upon hanging up, the bartender finds all of their tracking devices at the bottom of a beer glass. The 14 dissidents are off the grid.
Amy develops a swelling in her brain. The commotion draws the attention of Ben who is under the impression that she is recovering just fine. Like any caring person in a hospital scene of this type, Ben almost cannot be contained by Pam. His emotions run over. Pam eventually convinces him to trust the staff.
During the painful time that Ben must wait to hear back from the hospital staff on the progress with Amy’s swelling, Megan Fisher re-enters Ben’s hospital room spewing her tired rhetoric. She stops speaking to let the student body’s fist pounding outside can be heard. Fisher is a rabble-rouser. She has collected the children and lobbied for Ben’s involvement to create added pressure for reckonings.
During the surveillance to find the dissidents, HQ’s staff finds this temporarily non-violent protest outside the hospital. Ben speaks to the crowd. At first it’s somber about the situation with Amy. But then it transitions into the same lines about rules and the safety of the town. Even including an apology for his father’s failures. This prompts one of the seniors to demand an answer.
Jason (senior): So when is your Dad going to reckon them?
Ben: He’s not going to.
(the senior storms off)
Naturally, the key card in Theresa’s possession would lead her to plot 33. What Theresa finds looks more like a bomb shelter than anything else. Once below, one swipe of the key card and ‘level 13 clearance’ appears and the door opens.
The Dead Poets Society rejects (seniors) return to the Sheriff’s office. This time with a bat and less calm. Jason subdues Arlene and handcuffs her to a filing cabinet before breaking into a weapon locker. At this point, Kate tries to reason with Jason by recalling a story involving Jason and a toy soldier about ten years earlier. The story only causes him to hesitate momentarily. At gunpoint, Jason forces the group out of their cells. Harold tries to retaliate after Jason strikes Kate but it doesn’t work.
Jason begins reciting the motto. He stands behind Harold, gun pointed. Then in a cinematically dark turn of events, shoots Harold in the back of the head sending blood all over Kate’s agonizing face. He continues to take out the remaining men with no abandon. Just before he shoots Kate in the head, Ethan arrives and shoots Jason.
Once moved to the interrogation room, Kate is tight-lipped. Almost catatonic. She eventually gives in. Ethan can’t protect the dissidents as long as Kate is being protected. Her plan is to reckon her to prevent others from dying. Before they can decide on this, Theresa comes in and tells Ethan she has something to show him, and Kate should see it too.
Lot 33 seems to have a library of videos of some specific relevance. The first of which shows Adam Hassler in the year 4020. He has found the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s half-submerged in the bay. He also references the Abbies and how they have been tracking him. This is another source that confirms what Ethan has said. Ethan has decided these videos need to be shared with the town. But it has to come before midnight. That’s when there will be a reckoning.
Ethan has invited himself into Pilcher residence. He tells Pilcher he plans to reckon Kate. Ethan will reckon Kate, but that’s it. No more killing. Pilcher gladly agrees. Ethan’s one other stipulation is that everyone, and he means everyone, has to be there. This brings us back to the reckoning scene from the cold open. However, he does not kill Kate. It was all a ploy to get everyone within earshot of Ethan to hear the truth.
Pilcher watches on a monitor as Ethan uncovers Dr. Jenkins as Dr. Pilcher and the man behind the curtain. The world they know no longer exists. Kate chimes in supporting Ethan’s claims. Then Theresa. Then Arlene and so on. Fisher interjects to push back and proclaim David Pilcher the savior deity she believes him to be. Megan rants on demanding Kate be reckoned. That’s the precise moment that Theresa slaps the gumption out of Fisher’s rant. Then…Pilcher cuts the power to the entire town. Including the electricity to Amy’s hospital room. And for what? To show them the horror he has been protecting them from. The final frame shows an Abbie grabbing the fence with no consequence for doing so.
“Paranoia strikes deep Into your life it will creep It starts when you’re always afraid You step out of line, the man come and take you away.”
For What It’s Worth-Stephen Stills
Utopia: The perfect society; a place devoid of all the troubles that plague humanity; a land of contentment, free from want and hardship and filled with friendship and love for each other. People have strived to reach or create such a society since the dawn of creation, but they never last for long. Are imperfect creatures capable of building a perfect society?
With just two episodes remaining in the FOX miniseries “Wayward Pines,” we’ve become aware that a sizable segment of the town, don’t truly feel they reside in “The Friendliest Place On Earth.” During episode eight, viewers found out that characters such as Ruby from the coffee-shop and Tim Bell the manager of the Wayward Pines Hotel, aren’t the compliant and passive people we assumed they were. Both were actively involved in the plan designed by Kate Hewson, to disable the electric fence surrounding the town and escape.
Dr. David Pilcher, the architect of the ark that contains the only remaining humans in the year 4028, now finds himself fighting twin battles. The first being a growing segment of the residents of Wayward Pines that want answers. However the more pressing problem’s the one he’s not aware of yet, the fence has been breached and it’s just a matter of time until the Abbies cross that divide.
Pilcher realized that humanity would cease to exist within the next few hundred-years, back in the nineties and he set a plan in motion to repopulate the planet in Wayward Pines, Idaho. He then spent the next 15-years kidnapping people and then putting them into a state of suspended animation, so they woke up over 2000 years later without physically aging a day. The new residents thought they’d been unconscious for hours, or perhaps as much as a day and most of them believe they still live in the 21st century.
When the residents awoke they found themselves with new lives and a fresh start, a needed second chance for many of them. They got new homes, new careers and even in some cases new significant others. In many ways it was a paradise, as long as the resident followed the rules, prominently displayed throughout the town:
Do Not Try To Leave.
Do Not Talk About The Past.
Do Not Discuss Your Life Before.
Always Answer The Phone If It Rings.
Work Hard And Be Happy
And Enjoy Your Life In Wayward Pines.
Those rules were not part of David Pilcher’s original vision for Wayward Pines. The current residents of the community, are referred to as “Group B,” because the people from the first group that got revived, couldn’t accept their new realities. The knowledge that they were the last survivors of humanity and the world they knew, ceased to exist two-thousand years earlier, created mass-panic. Residents either fled in panic and quickly became meals for the Abbies, or took their own lives. Determined that the second control-group not suffer the same fate, Pilcher established his wall of secrecy and eliminated anyone who threatened to peek behind the curtain.
There’s a different set of rules in effect for the children of the community, known as the First Generation Of Wayward Pines. They’re informed about their new realities by the Director of the Wayward Pines Academy, Dr. Megan Fisher. A hypnotherapist in our era, Fisher’s masterful in her ability to connect with disaffected teens such as Ben Burke. A young man that spent his lifetime on the outside looking in, he now feels loved and popular. There were no smiles for Theresa or Ethan Burke from their son, when they visited him in the hospital, however he met Megan’s arrival with an ear-to-ear grin.
Ben’s not only accepted his new life, he’s embraced it joyously. He’s got an adorable girlfriend named Amy and Fisher told him in the last episode, that he’s a hero having survived a terrorist attack and people are going to want to hear his opinions.
It’s further reinforcement of the bond she’s creating between the children and the state, further alienation of the child from the people who raise them. Your parents can’t handle the truth, we have your best interests at heart, the state in effect becomes the parent. It’s the same principles used in totalitarian societies throughout history, the Nazis, Stalin’s Soviet Union and the Cultural Revolution in China utilized the same tactics. If the people raising you are enemy’s of the state, then turn them in.
Megan quickly turned Ben against his father partially by picking at an old wound, surmising that Ethan may have been less lenient, had the suspect not been married to Kate Hewson. Fisher realized that Ben felt his father chose Hewson over his family when he had his affair with her. Fisher inferred that Ethan’s feelings for Hewson, nearly cost Ben his life.
We’re aware that Pilcher and his associates care deeply about the town’s children, but how much do they care about the adults. Pilcher wants compliance and things to run smoothly, his concerns with adults seem to be less about happiness and more about acceptance. To keep the placidity he’s trying to maintain in his town, he’s shown us that no measures are too extreme.
David’s sister Pamela interviews the staff of 24 volunteers that regulate the surveillance feeds. Although 23 members of the crew have no problems with the concept of eavesdropping, one man named Reggie Hudson admits to erasing comments that he attributed to fear. Then he looked Pamela in the eyes and said.
“These people are scared. I see them sobbing in their rooms, holding each other. They just don’t understand what became of their lives. It’s just human nature to ask questions.”
Surprisingly, the ever loyal Nurse Pam didn’t share that conversation with her brother. While she’s the first to call for a reckoning, she thinks it will send a bad message to the other volunteers if Reggie gets punished. David ignores her advice and buries the man, filling the tube he’s encased in with soil.
Whether Pilcher wants it or not, that wall of secrecy has collapsed now that the fence got disabled by the 30-foot dump-truck. It appears that the residents of Wayward Pines are going to find out the truth about their situation, sooner than later. Can they band together and defeat the Abbies, or is humanity doomed once again?
The Story Continues Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on FOX.
Ethan frantically carries his injured son into the hospital. Pam greets him and tries to put his mind at ease by reiterating that the children are their most precious resource. Shortly thereafter, Pam escorts Theresa into Ben’s room. The prognosis is better than expected, but they’re not out of the woods yet. Dr. Pilcher runs in and Pam intercepts him. He is understandably irate. Pam’s solution to the fallout is to have a ‘celebration of life in Wayward Pines’.
Harold and some of the dissenters are in the woods with an injured man. Assumption being the driver of the delivery truck. Harold gets the news that Kate is in jail and others are in the wind. One of them, while sympathetic has to leave to save himself.
While Kate sleeps, we see a flashback dream sequence of her in a padded room with Dr. Pilcher. She seems crazy, but really is having a difficult time coming to grips with the situation. With the limited truth the adults are given, it’s not far-fetched that she still believes this is a government program/experiment.
Pilcher attempts to quell the rumors being discussed in the coffee shop when Ruby gets a phone call. A gathering tonight, attendance is mandatory. Pilcher surveys the room after this news. Ruby looks awkward and removes something from her left ear. They appear to be pine needles. Her chip indicates that she’s at home in bed. Pilcher wants to look deeper to see how many other chips suggest they are at home in bed.
Ethan visits Kate demanding to know where the others are. He tells her about what happened to Ben and when she shows sincere concern, he lashes out. Then Kate brings up the question that we haven’t seen posed on-screen. Why did they choose Ethan to be Sheriff? Was it really just because he killed the Sheriff and then must assume his responsibilities? Kate believes that when it comes right down to it, Ethan will always follow orders.
Pam meets with Pilcher in his home to update him on the status of Amy and Ben. He interrupts her to tell her that he believes Ruby is ‘one of them’. Pilcher believes there is someone on the inside helping them to evade surveillance. Pam’s suggestion of conducting a security review doesn’t seem to do much for his concern.
Pam begins her questioning. She leads them down standard questioning then throws each one a curve ball. Thus far, they are giving all the right answers. Until interview #3. He is skeptical about how much he should be hearing. He believes she’s opening up for him to be honest. In turn, he gives honest answers. Not the best idea. “It’s just human nature to ask questions”.
Ben wakes up with Theresa bedside. His first concern is Amy. As Theresa leaves the room to check on Amy, Mrs. Fisher sneaks in to speak with Ben. After the initial small talk, she begins to plant the seed that this all happened due to Ethan’s poor choices in letting people go. She’s clearly doing damage control. She continues putting more thoughts in his head as to the severity of the situation. Up to and including the suggestion that he was a survivor of a terrorist attack.
The group of dissenters in the woods discover that their driver has died. They begin to dig a grave for him when one of them stops. He refuses to bury this man inside the fence.
At the gathering, amidst the side conversations, Pilcher suggests that the Mayor say some words to bring the people together. The Mayor doesn’t get three sentences out before Ethan asks to address the crowd. His message is just the opposite. Ethan thinks this gathering is a bad idea. Ethan gives details to what happened last night, which is exactly not what Pilcher wanted.
Ethan visits Ben and tries to make light of the situation. Here’s where Mrs. Fisher’s words influence Ben’s thinking. Even when Ben mentions the notion that Ethan let Harold go because he’s married to Kate. Bringing up previous issues they dealt with in Seattle over two thousand years ago. But, Ethan lets him speak. Saying to Theresa, he can say whatever he wants. Ben is clearly angered by this. Theresa tries to suggest that Mrs. Fisher is filling his head with this, and Ethan cuts her off. Then Amy walks in.
Pilcher and Pam meet again. It seems no one is intentionally breaking any rules. He says that it would be a tough line to cross if they had to punish someone on the inside. Pam claims they won’t have to. This grabs Picher’s attention. He grows a devious smile. It seems he is becoming suspicious of his own sister.
Letting the man go that would eventually cause a bigger problem would not be the first time it’s happened with Ethan. Ethan tells Theresa about the ‘Easter Bombings’, the previous example. This is the incident that lead to his infidelity with Kate.
Theresa confronts Mrs. Fisher. Theresa is not wrong, but squaring off with the Principal and residential hypnotist is probably not the best direction to take. She suggests that the best thing Fisher can do is to stay as far away from her family as possible.
Ethan gets a call about a stolen truck. In their effort to open the fence, for freedom or burial opportunities, Harold and the other man from the woods have stolen a 30 foot dump truck. Instead of assuming that there will be another bomb, Ethan thinks that the truck may be the bomb. Or at least the tool to open the fence.
Our second flashback of the night shows a more compliant Kate discussing her progress with Dr. Pilcher. She compares the difference between the same questions here and there. Wayward Pines provides a place where the imminent fear of terror is dramatically minimized. She feels safe regardless as to the answers. She can live moment to moment. Her compliance of course is only an act. Pilcher visits Kate in jail. They discuss the balance between risking loss of life for the truth. Both stand firm on their convictions. Despite that, Pilcher will not tell her what the truth is. Even after she reveals that she knows his name is David Pilcher and not Dr. Jenkins.
Pilcher: It’s not a question of keeping people in the dark. It’s a question of keeping people alive. Freedom or safety. Not both. (Pilcher walks away)
Kate: And who anointed you to make that choice?
Pilcher: I did.
Pilcher returns to his study where Pam pours him some tea. She leaves to get him some pie. Pilcher picks up the phone and quietly asks for security. The first stop is interview #3. Pilcher informs Pam of the interviewer. Pam is resistant to the idea of punishing him. Pam’s own humanity is showing through despite Pilcher’s panic. Pilcher gathers all of those ‘on the inside’ to witness what he thinks will be the last killing. With Reggie (interview #3) in cryo-stasus, one of the workers walks up and pushes a button on the panel and the unit fills with dirt. With Reggie still in it.
Harold tells his associate that he cannot continue without Kate. As he tries to walk off out of view, Ethan spots him from his truck. After a short chase and a few rounds shot in the air, Harold stops. Harold won’t give anything up and tells Ethan its too late.
Pilcher gives a Pilcher like speech to his team about vigilance. Meanwhile the man in the dump truck rams the fence. Successfully enough. He grabs his dead friend and ventures into the other side. He has a moment reviling in their success. Believing that they’ve made it. It only takes a few moments for the Abbies to find him. His moment of success becomes his moment of realization, just before they eat him.
Ethan spent the night contemplating what he now knows. In the morning Theresa comes downstairs to find him in the kitchen still pondering what he discovered the night before. Despite instructions from Pilcher, Ethan decides to gradually tell Theresa enough to get her to stop considering a move back to Seattle. As we’ve discovered from ‘group A’, she just can’t wrap her head around the idea. She predictably thinks he’s been somehow brainwashed. He tries to explain that what he’s telling her came from what he saw with this own eyes and not a drug induced haze from a treatment at the hospital. He mentions the ‘creatures’ and even the bombshell that it’s not the 21st century. The number ‘4028’ is actually the date. Shortly thereafter, they all get in Ethan’s truck and he notices something peculiar.
Ethan suggests they start walking. In short order, Ethan finds the culprit under the hood. Ethan takes the metal cylinder to his new office and discovers what looks like a small amount of C4. Pam walks in after Ethan pulls a file from the hiding spot in the floor.
On the walk to school, Theresa clings to Ben as she has since they arrived. Ben, unlike Theresa knows and has embraced the truth. He has accepted this fate and is good with it. Theresa’s mind can’t seem to get past the Seattle that no longer exists. Theresa tries to follow Ben inside the building but Mrs. Fisher won’t permit it.
On her way back from the school, Theresa again stops at Lot 33. Despite its plain appearance, she finds what appears to be a trap door in the ground.
Ethan meets with Franklin (the man from the file). He finds a way to bring up Franklin’s previous experience with explosive demolition, which prompts Franklin to leave abruptly.
Mrs. Fisher begins their Biology lesson by encouraging the children to open their text books and snicker if they’d like. This appears to be a lesson in sex education as procreation is the most important job the kids of Wayward Pines have. Reliving a sex ed class is very awkward to relive. The creepy factor rises a little when Mrs. Foster suggests that part of her job is to help them find their eventual mate.
Ethan finds Harold meeting with Franklin shortly after Ethan’s meeting with Franklin. After some small talk, Ethan asks Harold why he found a bomb in his truck then ask Harold to accompany him to the Sheriff’s office. Once outside, Harold tosses a pedestrian towards Ethan in the hopes of escaping. Harold doesn’t get very far.
Behind closed doors Ethan and Harold chat. Harold doesn’t admit to anything but does suggest that taking down the wall wouldn’t be a bad thing. “Don’t you want to get out, anywhere?” Ethan turns it back around to the ‘group’ of those trying to take down the wall. Specifically asking for names. Harold predictably jumps on the grenade taking credit for everything. Ethan writes a note intended for Kate, adding further confusion for Harold.
Clearly the note was to meet with Ethan as soon as possible. Kate is absolutely the leader, but we already knew that. We flashback to one of if not the first meeting of this clandestine group, then Ethan asks her to stop. Then she asks the magic question. “Why would I stop?” Ethan explains just enough. It’s not the 21st century out there. Kate seems to take this as more lies and she gets distant quick. Ethan gives her the ultimatum to cease and desist, but one must believe that’s not going to happen.
Amy catches up with Mrs. Foster to discuss Ben. Not as an assignment, but that Amy is legitimately falling for Ben and is considering taking their not quite relationship to the next level. Or in other words adding a level of physical intimacy into the equation.
Kate returns to the toy store and heads to the back. She and Harold believe ‘they got to’ Ethan. As we learned in the flashback episode, the adult mind refuses to accept the new reality. Kate decides to advance the time-table. They take the wall down tonight. But before that, its their turn for their annual fertility assessment. It’s obvious that the powers that be are intent on progressing towards that first completely original generation. Kate and Harold play the part well, but at the very least Pam is becoming suspicious.
Theresa and Kate accidentally meet in an elevator. After a short uncomfortable pause, Theresa asks to talk. About Ethan. They share what they know and accepting the truth is not on the table. To further complicate things, Kate tells of the only phone call she was able to successfully make to an outside like. There was a message from Ressler. Kate was entering a governmental program and would be severely tested. Possibly from another agent. And that her good-bye felt final.
Ethan pulls up right as Amy outlines her plan for her and Ben’s romantic evening.
Kate’s group attempts to set their charges when Ethan breaks up the party. Franklin disarms the bomb and Ethan accompanies them all to their respective holding cells. Kate doesn’t back down. She let’s be know very clearly that whatever this is, it’s only just begun. Once Ethan deduces that Harold is in charge of the backup bomb, she stands even more firm.
Ben makes his escape from the house (quite nimbly I might add) to meet up with Amy. They wait for the delivery truck to pull up. The same delivery truck that possesses said backup bomb. With the assistance of Pam and a very Dark Knight-esque surveillance system they locate Harold and the delivery truck driver passing a package. That package is in the delivery truck currently. Which is where Ben and Amy are. Amy finds the package and opens it. Another Ballinger original music box, which Amy uses as ambiance. Amy pulls Ben down behind a stack of sand bags and the kissing begins.
Ethan pursues that lead, but a group of Kate’s followers set up a roadblock to slow him down. It did, but just enough. Just as Ethan arrives on foot behind the delivery truck the little ballerina stops and the back-end of the truck blows up before Ethan can get there. After the explosion, Ethan finds Amy. Then shortly thereafter an unconscious Ben.
Ethan Burke wakes up in the woods just as a figure escapes from view. He ventures out and the figure is not gone. Its racing past him repeatedly and even slices his arm as if to say, ‘still here’. Ethan fires his shotgun blindly over and over. One shot sounds like it might have hit something. Or someone.
Ben has begun to take a real interest in Amy. The bigger issue here is that perhaps he’s begun to accept the situation. Last week, the Mayor admitted that the town focuses on shaping the minds of the children. Ben is doing what he must to fit in, or so he says. It also doesn’t hurt that Ben is received like one of the popular kids.
Theresa following her son’s example decides follow-up on the real estate job she was handed. Her boss or at least immediate supervisor is loud a brash. Theresa’s first assignment is to ‘give’ the newest addition to Wayward Pines (i.e. ‘accident’ victim) a new house.
Ben and a couple of others have been summoned to ‘orientation’. Three kids in numbered seats in a white room. Mrs. Fisher enters without a word and sets up a projector. Fisher shows them students. All of them that came before them. This orientation is very ominous. Using phrases like “only accept”, “if you make it through” and “first generation of”. Only those kids ready for the truth will proceed.
Ethan continues to map the terrain, I assume to map out an effective escape route.
Theresa makes her way to the hospital to greet the accident victim she is supposed to give a house to. Mr. Johnson (the victim) is resistant to her help. She then tries to sympathize with him and his attitude changes. They connect as both being accident victims. Only Mr. Johnson saw something. He implicates Pam but before he can go too far, Theresa gets closer and warns him that this place is not safe. Great approach, if Nurse Pam wasn’t eavesdropping around the corner.
Fisher shows them more slides. This time of the same section of land over time. 14 years ago, a few years after that, and 3 months ago. She asks the kids what they see. Ben points out a figure in the left third. This the first official introduction of what they call ‘abbies’. These figures are the result of genetic mutations or aberrations. The photo is blurry, but it vaguely resembles the Marvel character Abomination if it was normal human sized. They resemble humans because they once were.
While Ethan tracks his route, hoping to avoid what his son is currently more informed on, Fisher continues with the lesson. She hands each kid a dirty coin. Ben asks to scrape off the sediment. What he finds is even more unexplainable. It’s a United States quarter whose date would indicate it came from about 80 years in the future. The Abbies are devolved humans. And the long and short of it is, they don’t have quarters from 80 years in the future, they have quarters that are over 2,000 years old. It’s not 2014, it’s the year 4028. Wayward Pines, it seems, may be an attempt to repopulate the human race into a world whose civilization died centuries ago.
Fisher explains how this is possible. Ethan finds the edge of Wayward Pines to discover what I assume used to be Boise, laid in ruins. Theresa talks to Mr. Johnson in the new home with dryer running. He remembers waking up and looking out of a window not unlike that of the dryer. Cryo-sleep. And why? These people were all chosen to survive the human race.
A doctor foresaw the devolution and decided to collect a sample of people to hopefully stave off the mutation that affects all people or things outside the walls of Wayward Pines. His name is David Pelcher. They will never meet him, but he is always watching. Essentially making a doctor a God.
Out on the edge of civilization a black helicopter approaches and lands in front of Ethan. Out of the helicopter steps Dr. Jenkins (Toby Jones). Only he is not Dr. Jenkins. His real name is Dr. David Pelcher.
The kids are on strict instructions not to share this new information with their parents. The idea being that adults have lived too long in the old world and their minds cannot handle this new reality. This way, the children are the guardians of the arc that is Wayward Pines.
Following orientation, Fisher escorts them to a dark room where all of the other kids stand holding candles. Amy welcomes them to the first generation. The kids all begin pound their palms repeatedly creating a fraternity like ritual.
At the helicopter, David gives Ethan the hard sell. Reluctantly, Ethan agrees to get on the chopper just as the Abbies descend upon his previous position. As the helicopter rises avoiding the four Abbies in pursuit, Ethan sees the desolation in the surrounding areas.
The euphemism for getting killed in “Wayward Pines,” is apparently referred to as deciding to retire, or so it would seem after the airing of the fourth episode of the ten-part miniseries. Another discovery that viewers made, is that if you kill the town’s sheriff, you inherit the job. At least in the case of Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke, who found out he’d gotten named sheriff, hours after killing his predecessor Sheriff Pope.
We join the Burke family on their ride back to their new home, after escaping death at the hands of Pope. Ethan takes his son out of the police vehicle and uses the garden hose to wash the blood off his hands. Ben asks his father what kind of creature dragged Pope’s body away, when they opened the gate and Ethan replied it was a wolf.
Ethan gets back in the vehicle and tells his wife Theresa that the entire town’s under surveillance, that cameras and microphones are everywhere. They have to pretend they’re going along with everything in order to survive. Suddenly Theresa looks up and realizes Ben’s gone, they jump out of the truck and see their son standing at the end of the driveway. A deliveryman on a bicycle, gave him a package and an attached letter, it says that Ben will start school the following morning at Wayward Pines Academy. The package contains his school uniform.
Ethan heads to the sheriff’s department and uses Pope’s keys to unlock the ammunition cabinet and grabs a couple of pistols, before getting surprised by Pope’s secretary Arlene. She greets him as Sheriff Burke and congratulates him on getting the job, presenting him a cake. Seconds later Mayor Brad Fisher and a photographer enter the office, they stick a copy of the town’s paper, with the headline Sheriff Pope Retires. Fisher puts his arm around Ethan and they snap the shot.
Ethan asks the mayor who appointed him sheriff and Fisher responds that’s above his pay grade, when Burke asks to speak to someone who might know that answer, Fisher and Arlene discourage him. Ethan then suggests they have cake and Arlene says she’ll get the utensils and plates. Burke senses that the mayor wants to talk to him, but he realizes this isn’t the time or the place. He tells Fisher he’s looking forward to working for him and the mayor wishes him good luck on his first day.
Theresa walks Ben to school and they are greeted by one of the teachers, coincidentally she’s the mayor’s wife Megan Fisher. Theresa gives him a hug and tells him she’ll pick him up at 3:00 pm. We see the upstairs picture window of the building’s filled with students, taking a look at their new school mate.
Ethan starts searching his new office, he goes through the desk and the file cabinet and comes up fruitless. Then he discovers a hidden compartment under the throw rug, he unlocks the compartment and finds a box of records. The actual records of all the town’s residents, stating where they lived and what they did prior to ending up in Wayward Pines. He looks at the records of Brad and Megan Fisher, then checks out Arlene’s file, he sees that she lived in New Jersey and was involved in a domestic relationship.
He hears Arlene crying in the outer office and he heads out there, he doesn’t mention her tears, but instead asks if she misses New Jersey. She responds that she doesn’t, then she sees that it’s going to be a busy morning as Nurse Pam arrives with two big beefy guys dragging a smaller man. Burke’s nightmares didn’t end with Pope’s death, Nurse Pam is a formidable opponent and used to getting her way.
She tells Ethan she’s made a citizen’s arrest after Peter McCall spray-painted graffiti on public buildings. She says there has to be a reckoning, that McCall’s now a three-time offender. Burke tells her as long as he’s sheriff, the reckonings are being discontinued and he’s certainly not killing a man for spray-painting. Nurse Pam tells him if he doesn’t have the stomach for it, they have others who can execute McCall. He thanks her for her civic-duty and tells her he’ll handle it.
Megan Fisher brings Ben into her office and says she’s going to ask him some questions, don’t think of it as a test it’s just a way to get to know each other better. She then asks him three questions;
Where are you from?
Where do you live?
Where is home?
Ben answers Seattle to all three questions and Fisher shakes her head with a smile on her face. She asks the teen why his parents won’t take him home and he responds that his father’s working on a case for the Secret Service. She then asks why he believes that and he replies his father told him so, she then asked if Ben’s father had ever lied to him. The answer of course is yes, as he lied to his son and wife about his affair with his former partner Kate Hewson. She asks if he lied to him before, how can he trust him now?
Theresa’s exploring the town square and she sees the words that McCall spray-painted across two buildings. “In A Time Of Universal Deceit, Telling The Truth Is A Revolutionary Act.”
She looks into the window of the coffee shop and sees Kate Ballinger entering her shop, Theresa crosses the road and goes into the toy store. Kate asks if she can help her and Theresa says she’s looking for a gift for her son. Kate suggests a music box that her husband hand-crafted. winds it up and lets it play it’s song. She then tells Theresa she has 30-seconds to say what she wants to get off her chest.
Theresa tells her that she gave up becoming an agent, as she realized the job always comes first and she wanted to be a mother. She says that Kate hurt her and her family, Kate apologizes and said a lot’s happened since then. Theresa says that’s not the case for her. Kate replies that it is the case, Theresa just doesn’t realize it yet. Theresa leaves the shop.
School lets out for the day and Ben’s standing there waiting for his mother, when a cute girl about his age comes over and introduces herself as Amy. She asks if Ben’s waiting for his mother and the teen attempting to look cool says he’s just trying to figure out where his new home is. Amy says she’ll walk him home and they’ll find it together. Seconds after they leave Theresa walks up and panics when she doesn’t see her son. She finds them as she approaches the house and Amy apologizes, saying she practically forced him to walk her home. Theresa says fine, then takes Ben by the arm and they walk away.
Ethan pulls out Peter McCall’s file and shows it to him, there’s a picture of McCall with his wife and young son and daughter. McCall says that was another life a long time ago. Burke says that McCall wasn’t using a cane in the earlier picture, Peter says he hurt his leg in a rock-climbing accident. He says he actually tried to climb his way out of Wayward Pines. When Ethan asks him how long he’d lived in Wayward Pines, he replies that he stopped counting after four winters, but he believes that he’s been there for another four or five years.
Burke asks Peter if there’s anyway out-of-town and McCall puts his finger to his temple and mimics shooting himself in the head. The phone rings Ethan picks it up and hears Nurse Pam tell him that the reckoning’s scheduled for 10:00 pm the following night. Burke hangs up the phone and tells Peter it was a telemarketer.
Ethan heads home for the day and informs his wife he’s the new sheriff. He tells her he think that the mayor Brad Fisher, would like to tell him something, Theresa responds that she met a woman named Fisher at Ben’s school. Ethan tells her that’s the mayor’s wife Megan and she was a hypnotherapist, before coming to Wayward Pines. He asks his wife to arrange a dinner with them for the following evening.
Theresa walks Ben to school the next morning and tells Megan that they have no friends and she was hoping to have her and her husband come over for dinner that evening. Megan responds they’d love to have dinner, but she wants them to see some of the town so she suggests they meet that evening at the Beer Garden.
Ethan greets McCall with breakfast and Peter asks if this is his last meal, Burke tells him he’s not going to die. Peter then says he’s read his file over-and-over again and says he’d forgotten how much he forgot. He then tells Ethan that he was in Los Angeles for a conference in 2001 and he met a brunette named Denise in a bar. He says that even though he was married, after a few drinks they went to his room and had sex and did some drugs. He passed out and woke up in another hotel room, the brunette was still with him. However she had aged and her name wasn’t Denise, it was Pam.
Fisher brings Ben back into her office and says they’ll work on the same exercise they did the previous day, then asks him where he lives? He responds he doesn’t know and Megan says that’s excellent, he’ll join the other students for classes the next day and she’ll be his teacher. She then tells him to close his eyes and she gives him an acoustic guitar. He breaks into an ear-to-ear grin and she says that for his heart-song.
Theresa and Ethan meet Megan and Brad at the Beer Garden and it seems like most of the town’s in the place, we see Arlene sitting with the hotel manager, as well as Kate and Harold Balinger. Megan says the place’s known for their buffalo burgers but she suggests the trout. Theresa asks her if she’d show her the way to the restroom and the ladies depart.
Brad then says to Ethan that their son Ben seems like a good kid and Burke says his son’s great. Fisher then says that the town concentrates on the youngsters, shaping their opinions at the school. Ethan says that Fisher’s wife’s a teacher there and the mayor nods and tells Burke to be very careful.
Amy’s throwing pebbles at Ben’s window to get his attention. He comes out and she tells him she wants to take him to her favorite spot. When they arrive, she takes him over to a bench and says this is her favorite spot. She asks if he’s still homesick and he says he lied, that he wasn’t popular at his school in Seattle. She says you have me now, then he asks her what kind of animals live outside the fence. She looks like she’s going to whisper in his ear, but kisses his cheek instead. He then hugs her, more out of needing a friend than anything romantic.
The women head back to the table and Burke brings up the icebreaker, of what everyone thinks about the public executions and the Fisher’s freeze, before Megan asks him what he means. Ethan refers to the public execution of Beverly and Megan says that the reckonings are terrible, but they maintain order in the town.
The camera pans to Arlene and Tim Bell’s table and we hear Arlene saying she couldn’t believe that ice-cream eating S.O.B. retired without saying goodbye to her. She says a lot of the town thought that Pope was too gruff, but she said he was very kind and generous to her, especially around the holidays. Nurse Pam intervenes in their conversation and tells Arlene that soon she’ll feel the same way about Sheriff Burke.
Nurse Pam asks all in the house to raise their glasses to toast their new sheriff Ethan Burke, then starts going on a diatribe of how the town hopes he’s up to the task of serving justice. Ethan interrupts her, then thanks her. He says he will do everything in his power, to bring the true evil of the town into the light and the true criminals brought to justice. The crowd cheers his words.
Ethan and Theresa run into Dr. Jenkins on their walk home and Burke asks Jenkins if he can help stop the members of Wayward Pines from killing Peter McCall. The doctor gives the couple a sympathetic look, then says that he believes that great beauty calls for great sacrifice. Realizing Jenkins won’t help, Ethan tells Theresa to head home and he’d be there in a little while. However she sees an envelope in their mailbox, from the Wayward Pines Real Estate Association. It says they’ve got great news, one of our senior realtors has decided to retire, they expect her at the office the next morning at 9:00 am. Is this Peter McCall’s job that’s suddenly become available?
Burke heads to the sheriff’s office and tells McCall he’s getting him out of there, Peter tells him to be sensible, there’s no place for him to hide. Then he tells Ethan to take him to the fence. When they get to the fence, Burke asks him why he took him there. Peter points to the mountains across from the fence, and says that’s the only way out.
He then tells Ethan that his time’s up and McCall can either kill himself, or Ethan can give him a push to win the town’s confidence. Burke says he’d never do that and Peter hugs the new sheriff, saying that’s why Wayward Pines truly needs him. He then grabs the high-voltage fence and fries to death.
Ethan heads home and tells his wife Peter McCall’s dead. He then whispers in his ear that he’s going to get help, he needs her and Ben to stay there and keep playing along. He tells Theresa that she’s a lot stronger than she realizes and leaves the house.
He stops by the sheriff’s office and he grabs a rifle and some ammunition. Nurse Pam walks in and says he may just be sheriff material after all. Burke says he thinks that Nurse Pam should be the town’s sheriff and she says that’s the smartest thing he’s said since he’s come to her town. He leaves the office without a response, Nurse Pam sits at his desk and starts to meditate.
The final scene shows us Burke climbing the mountain, hand over hand. He reaches a ridge and we see a bald-headed man without a shirt, peering out from behind a tree. Guess we’ll find out who, or what he is next Thursday.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on FOX.
Beverly continues to bleed out onto the wooden rig she was executed on as a young girl leaves a single lily at her feet. Sheriff Pope continues to stump for the duty of all citizens to protect the town. The crowd recites the rules while he preaches. Ethan continues to follow the plan despite the hunting party on his trail.
Kate puts on a kettle for tea when Ethan appears out of the darkness of her kitchen. He tries again to appeal to the woman she was, but the ‘reckoning’ paralyzes her and keeps her from reacting with any semblance of humanity towards the execution she just sat through. In a brief moment of clarity, Kate moves in close. Admits that there is blood on her hands and that Ethan got the second chance that most don’t get. Then she hands him his tracking chip. Then the phone rings.
Ethan: You going to answer that?
Kate: They’re not calling for me.
Ethan: Last chance, come with me.
Kate: You’ll never get out of here alive.
Ethan: Watch me.
Ethan makes his way back to 604 Main St to find Beverly’s body handcuffed to the ceiling. He pulls her down and vows to find her daughter and convey how hard she tried to get back to her. Ethan makes his way back to Beverly’s house to find it completely empty. As in ready to show. Just then, a man walks in showing the property to a couple of workers. He stops short and instructs the workers to start upstairs. Ethan comes around the corner. The ‘realtor’ says quietly, “don’t say a word” then gestures to his right. Outside Ethan sees a delivery truck with Wyoming tags.
Theresa (Ethan’s wife) has had enough with the agency run around. Her and son Ben travel to Boise in the hopes of finding him. With or without Kate. At the Boise field office she tries to get somewhere with a secretary. At first she doesn’t get anywhere but appeals to her sense of revenge if her husband is with another woman. The secretary tries to find some information from her supervisor. Meanwhile Theresa hacks the computer using Ethan’s login. She finds the last item on his expense report then leaves.
They stop at the convenient store of his last purchase. The clerk not only recognizes Ethan from the picture, but also remembers that they were dressed like they were headed to a funeral. Then two kids that look like they belong in The Shining mention an accident near Wayward Pines.
Before then can get to Wayward Pines, Theresa is pulled over. By whom? You guessed it Sheriff Pope. As he approaches the vehicle he casually squirts out a stream of oil from a large syringe. He offers to give her a temporary fix. He instead cuts a line under the hood.
Ethan hides in the back of the delivery truck, unnoticed by the delivery guy. The vehicle eventually comes to a stop. Ethan cautiously gets out onto a very strange looking warehouse. Strangely clean. Strange in general. Another vehicle enters. He notices many dirty cars. He jumps in one that turns out to be Theresa’s car. Inside is a sealed bag that reads, “Burke, Theresa Effects”. Then Pope smashes the window and pulls Ethan out. Pope stabbed him with an injection of some kind, this time Ethan doesn’t make it 10 feet before Sheriff Pope says something curious.
Pope: I don’t know what they see in you.
Ethan wakes to a ringing phone. The voice tells him that his wife and son were just discharged from the hospital. Ethan leaves the room to find Nurse Pam. She informs him that they are probably at home. Suggesting that Ethan Burke has a home in Wayward Pines. One of the nicest properties just opened up last night.
And just like that, all three Burkes embrace in Beverly’s old kitchen. Theresa and Ben don’t remember anything. Then the realtor enters the room to welcome them home. The realtor leans in and mentions the ‘state of the art security system’. The phone rings and Ethan rips the cord from the wall. He asks wife and son to stay inside.
Ethan confronts Sheriff Pope. Breaks the rules in his presence and Pope insists that Ethan does not want to know what’s behind door number three. Then Ethan politely threatens to kill Pope if he comes close to his family again. Then there is an old fashioned testosterone standoff. The phone rings. Then Nurse Pam (ironically at the precinct) tells Pope to stand down. The nurse tells the sheriff to stand down.
Dr. Jenkins intercepts Ethan on his trudge back towards the house. Still more cryptic dialogue. “Everyone in this town is doing the best they can, including you”. Then gives Ethan the hard sell on accepting Wayward Pines as his home with his family. “Not everyone has that”.
Ben sees from an upstairs window Ethan sneak off into the brush with Kate. Then decides to follow. Ethan it seems, only wanted to see how much she knew in regards to Theresa and Ben being in town.
Around the time Theresa notices Ben’s absence, she also notices Sheriff Pope in the kitchen helping himself to their ice cream. The creepy factor that Terrence Howard brings is tangible. He then asks for an thank you. That he does not get. Then Theresa asks him to leave. He obliges, reluctantly.
In the woods, Kate opens up as she wouldn’t in town. The time that’s passed, Kate actually believes is different. Ben returns to inform on his dad to his mom. Which she absolutely seems to be buying. And why wouldn’t she. The vague details line up perfectly. Ethan returns to find her wedding ring. They two new Burkes attempt to walk out of Wayward Pines. Not knowing the rules when Sheriff Pope arrives signalling with his siren. Instead of stopping they hoof it.
They don’t get far. But they get far enough to find the wall. Ethan pursued on foot and tackled Pope before he could talk to Theresa. In the scuffle, Pope eventually gets upright before Ethan. He points his gun at Ethan. Then meets the business end of his own truck with Ben at the wheel. With Pope laid out on the ground Ethan approaches, gun pointed.
Pope: You think you want to know the truth, but you don’t. It’s worse than anything you can imagine.
The camera pulls back as Ethan discharges a round. He then grabs Pope’s keys and finds a keyless entry remote. By pushing a button part of the wall opens up large enough to drive a truck through. Just before they can drive, something pulled Pope’s body under the gate. With the appearance of the wall, I’d love to say it looked like a small dinosaur, but I’m not willing to make that claim yet. Ethan throws it in reverse and high tails it out of there.