crookeddy laughs at how I say it like it's a bad thing. I laugh at how anyone thinks it's not. But I have to admit: If you sympathize with Jace Turner, then his repeated tragic misunderstandings that lead his fundamentally good heart astray are much more satisfying fantasies. Like every good soap, repeating the same story is never a problem. Notice how not repeating last season is deemed as getting lost. The first season was pointlessly repetitive and dramatically simplistic (as in no serious choices made,) until the final episode, where it suddenly moved. The second season isn't lost. Quite the opposite, it's suffering because a rigid political agenda is keeping it on a very narrow track. No exploring their version of Sense8 or their version of Liber8, (from Continuum, which at least had political people talking politics.) As to the question of the show's budget. The heavy reliance on camera effects like a motor shaking the camera for Noah's murder of Madeline; the limited use of even stock opticals like Clarice's rings; the limited use of the time-consuming (hence expensive) camera work for the Frosts, using a simple hexagon as the cell unit for Lauren's shields; using wire stunts for Andy's power; heavy use of non-speaking and/or masked extras; the part-time work from Grace Lee Byers...all indications are the show is extremely parsimonious. I'm pretty sure the show's topicality, which has offended so many here and earned such sullen silence, isn't going down any better in boardrooms at FX or anywhere. Actually, with Fox being split, this should be a property kept for flexibility, but in particular..."Hawk" News? A tycoon's media empire is a major cause of our problems? No, far better the show should pretend the media are just hamstrung by the consumer sovereignty of the rabble, vainly trying to reconcile their professional ethics with the superior citizen's duty of enlightening the unwashed masses. It's true that it's the despicable Andy who wants to censor Fox, er, Hawk News for being demagogic. Obviously no right-minded human being could possibly find anything remotely sympathetic about him. (I'm not right-minded, equally obviously, but it seemed to me the Strucker family reunion was outstandingly acted and very affecting.) My guess is that's too subtle a takeback to make up for Benedict O'Reilly. Possibly the funniest line in the wretched torture scenes was Turner calling Andy Strucker a major Mutant Underground member. Andy is not even a major Inner Circle figure. But maybe it was him saying Atlanta was a disaster for John, as if he'd actually succeeded in killing them all, just as he ordered. Or maybe it was his astonishment at the thought a revolutionary political group might not have a monopoly, or even split. What wasn't funny was the way the scene deliberately glossed over how Turner was torturing John, by turning Officer Ted into .50 cal Kyle, the dude who wanted to murder the doctor at the clinic, so that Turner looked moderate and humane by contrast. John ratting out Lorna while never mentioning the Frosts or Reeva Payge was an inadvertent character assassination. I don't blame him for talking, torture, right? But arbitrarily omitting them but singling out Lorna was so Jace could wrongly think that the Purifiers and the Mutant Underground are enemies. The title reminds us, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. The Mutant Underground, according to what the episode shows, mistakenly thinks they and the Inner Circle share an enemy and thus are friends. But they learn better because the dregs of inhumanity (aka Andy,) show they are wrong. The conclusion of the episode is that the good guys are now confirmed in their commitment to kill the Inner Circle. I think all this is BS, driven by political commitment, which is why they love Jace Turner. There's not much point in arguing in detail against a point of view so congenial to the popular (here) political views. I will point out that the episode early on has the good Struckers returning from their assault on Madeline Risman Garber's lab, where they are spared the embarrassment of doing the murders themselves by Noah. Noah was called a "curse," by his mentor Dr. M, whereup he of course killed her, the two guards if Lauren hadn't already killed them and demolished the building (and probably himself.) Since Dr. M has also dissed the good guys, this was entirely appropriate. Since Andy is a bad guy, his losing his temper at a man who shot his sister in the back, even hurting him and being tempted to kill him long enough for Lauren to pull him away, well, obviously this is entirely unforgivable. I know Lauren is not really a very well defined character, but for my part, I think she and her parents should at least be conflicted about what happens to someone who shot her. (Yes, he did, hence the emphasis on the bullet proof jackets earlier.) This is a interesting example of a fantastic fiction that everyday people should be able to relate to, by the way. Every young soldier sent to some other country has a significant chance of having done something like this, or worse. Or with a certain degree of premeditation. Do we, the families and fellow citizens of these young men (and occasionally women,) simply condemn them as innately bad people, unforgivable? Do we condemn their fellows who let them get away with this? Do we suspect everyone who returns, because we know (not guess, know) these things are inevitable when terror and guns and mortal struggle are conjoined? That is after all why it is a crime against peace to start a war. Lastly a question about how strikingly pale Emma Dumont and Percy Hynes White are. Is this a makeup thing? As in, they're trying to keep from identifying the Inner Circle with black nationalists by playing up the blonds? Or is it just the contrast with Dumont's green hair? And the kid is leading an unhealthy monied lifestyle already? PS There were a couple of notably wrong lines. Lauren claimed Andy attacked her, but it is perfectly obvious that if Andy hadn't fought back at the hospital, Marcos still would have fought to keep the mutants from escaping, just as he and John fought to keep other criminal mutants in prison with the restraint collars. And when Marcos spoke about going back to hating each other, it was even more objectionable. It has always been Marcos dumping Lorna because of politics and Marcos hating her because she joined the Inner Circle. About the only thing the episode did get right was that Lorna and Andy don't hate their friends, they disagree with them. Helping them out was of course a big mistake, as no good deed goes unpunished.