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TV Review: Last Resort – “Another Fine Navy Day”

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In the most intense episode since the Last Resort series pilot, the island come under chemical attack in “Another Fine Navy Day.” The episode narrative flashes back and forth from hours after the attack to the moments just before all the island’s inhabitants are overcome by the chemical weapon BZ. 

The effects of the drug last eight hours, and while it is not fatal, it results in hallucinations, delusions, and erratic behavior. Epinephrine can counteract the worst of the effects, but supplies of the antidote are limited, and by the time the crew of the Colorado and the island’s residents are aware they’ve been attacked, their judgment is already compromised.

While XO Sam Kendal (Scott Spedman) holds down the fort on the island, Capt. Marcus Chaplin (Andre Braugher) and Lieut. Grace Shepard (Daisy Betts) dive the Colorado to protect the submarine. Chaplain believes that the sub has a supply of epinepherine aboard, but they soon find out that the supply is missing. The episode’s nonlinear narrative unfolds from within the POVs (points of view) of both Chaplin and Kendal.  We, like they, are on the shaky ground between reality and delusion. 

Chaplain sees visions of his son as a child, unable to sleep without a bedtime story, paralleling Chaplain’s own growing lethargy under the powerful drug. But he also hallucinates a fire on the ship (or is it real?), having to cut off the oxygen before the entire ship goes up in flames.

While the crew all pass out around him, Chaplain, himself ultimately loses consciousness, and when he finally awakens, he finds that he’s been jabbed with an epi pen. Oxygen levels, seemingly at critical levels just before he loses consciousness, are fine. The ship seems fine. Had there really been a fire, or had the entire crisis been imagined? If it had been real, then who restarted the Oxygen supply? Who jabbed him him with the antidote?

Only one thing is out of place: the crucial firing key for the ship’s nuclear arsenal. Without it, they are all sitting ducks with no way to bargain with the rogue U.S. government. Who aboard the sub would have stolen it, and why? Has the entire attack been to extract that key?

Kendal’s visions are even more personal, as visions of his wife Christine (Jessy Schram) haunt him and even taunt him. The hallucination pulls at his feelings of guilt over leaving her for so long, and at his longing to be with her again. As he tries to fight off the drug’s effects, he encounters a crew member he’s never met before. He’s not quite so addled as to completely succumb, and eventually he realizes that this man is no ally. 

It appears the attack had also been a attempt to remove the Navy SEALs who had hitched a ride on the Colorado in the first episode. Their role in the attack on Pakistan and on the attempt to eliminate Captain Chaplain is still not clear. But as the SEALs, particularly James King (Daniel Lissing) become more aware of the facts and the rogue goverment that commands them, they like the situation less and less, allying themselves with Chaplain. And they are good guys to have on your side. 

The attack had been facilitated by Julian Serrat (Sahr Ngaujah), whom the U.S. troops had co-opted on the promise that he will soon get the island back under his control. But Julian is way out of his depth here, and when the attackers tell him they will eliminate NATO official Sophie (Camille De Pazzis), it is a step too far, even for him. 

Ultimately, for both Chaplain and Kendal, it is the anchors of home calling from within their hallucinations that keep them grounded enough to survive. But for Kendal particularly, the vision of Christine is painful and difficult with an interesting twist at the end. How that will play out is anyone’s guess at this point. But with Kendal projecting Christine onto Sophie to whom he is already very drawn, it is sure to get more complicated. And with the firing key now missing, not only do Chaplain and Kendal have to deal with the enemy outside the boundaries of the island, but also with a possible enemy within. Is there a sabateur in their midst? Apparently so, and whoever it is, that person had been on the sub with Chaplain. So wo is it? Who do you think? Let me know in the comments below!

Last Resort airs Thursday nights at 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC. You can watch this week’s episode at ABC’s official video site. 

Note: Jessy Schram (Christine Kendal) will be appearing with me on Let’s Talk TV Live, possibly on November 19, although it’s not been confirmed yet. So, do stay tuned for further information on her appearance. 

 

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About Barbara Barnett

Barbara Barnett is publisher and executive editor of Blogcritics, as well as a noted entertainment writer. Author of Chasing Zebras: The Unofficial Guide to House, M.D., her primary beat is primetime television. But Barbara writes on an everything from film to politics to technology to all things pop culture and spirituality. She is a contributor to the book called Spiritual Pregnancy (Llewellyn Worldwide, January 2014) and has a story in Riverdale Ave Press' new anthology of zombie romance, Still Hungry for your Love. She is hard at work on what she hopes will be her first published novel.