by Guest Contributor Olivia Richards (@RichardsOlivia)
This week’s episode of Under the Dome had me reaching for a (sadly nonexistent) bottle of vodka. It really would have taken the entire thing to make the plot of this episode, “Blue on Blue”, make any kind of sense. When I first read the synopsis, I was mildly intrigued and hoping for the best. We’re now five episodes in and the show is so plot heavy and character laden that it’s hard to feel any kind of real connection with anything that’s happening week to week. The bad writing isn’t helping, either.
The episode focuses on citizens outside the Dome flocking to Chester’s Mill, some to visit their confined loved ones. There is even mention that television networks want to make the situation into a reality show.
We get to see how this barrier affects the characters, primarily Linda and Norrie. Linda’s separation from her fiancé provides us with the mandatory “separated from our love” drama, also leading to the most awkward attempt at a kiss I’ve seen in a long while.
Norrie has to deal with meeting her biological father through the barrier. We’re led to believe that he’s only doing it for the media attention, but Norrie is very upset and storms off. These writers really try to throw in the teen angst factor whenever possible.
That leads me to the trainwreck that is Junior and Angie’s storyline. There are no words to properly explain how done I am with them as characters. The whole scenario is beyond frustrating, beyond poorly written, and just falls so flat.
Last week, Angie took the award for Worst Character. This week, that title goes to Big Jim. Typically, when you find out that your son kidnapped a girl and kept her locked up in your basement, the first thing you would do is to let her go. Not if you’re Big Jim! No, in that case, you leave her there in order to contemplate all the ways you failed as a parent.
The Reverend is another character who is almost unbearable to watch on screen. He’s like that weird guy that no one invited to the party. We find out that, like Norrie and Joe, he’s been communicating with the Dome…through his hearing aid. I don’t think I’m the only one who was totally relieved to see him die at the end. At least this (hopefully) eliminates the religious ramblings from the plot.
His incoherent mumbling of the word “Moab,” assumed to be a Biblical reference, is actually an Army attack strategy to get rid of the Dome. MOAB is actually a huge bomb that will demolish the bomb, along with all the inhabitants of Chester’s Mill. The town has a grand total of about three hours to evacuate everyone to the abandoned cement factory for safety when the plan is discovered.
This is the plot point that had me reaching for a much-needed drink. It’s not confirmed whether or not this was a government-sanctioned project, but how else would it have been passed. That’s my real question: how in the world was this even a plausible strategy? The most logical government plan is to drop a bomb on an indestructible force field, jeopardizing the lives of a town of innocent civilians. Is it even legal to drop The Mother of All Bombs on a town with zero warning? Was the audience meant to rely on suspension of reality THAT much? The whole thing was completely ridiculous and implausible.
The entire episode was so plot heavy, sacrificing logic and character development to make room for more conflict. We had the mandatory butterfly metaphor, the ridiculous storyline between Junior and Angie, a huge bomb threatening innocent lives, loved ones separated by an indestructible force, parental drama, and religious undertones all tied into one discombobulated package. What more could you ask for…you know, besides actual quality televison?