July 21st, 2015
Boy, oh, boy. Molly’s baby has arrived.
But before we get a glimpse of this possibly extraterrestrial being, a whole lot happens in episode 5 of Extant, which dives right in to classic conspiracy-thriller territory à la The X-Files. (Incidentally, Extant executive producer Greg Walker used to be a writer for the wildly popular Fox sci-fi series.)
After John discovers Molly and Ethan lying unconscious in a ditch, medics transport Molly to a hospital for tests, when she expresses concern over her unborn child. There, Dr. Scott Beck (Joshua Malina) — insensitive to the point where it seemed like he was in cahoots with the International Space Exploration Agency — informs Molly that she was never pregnant. John then confronts Dr. Beck, who tells him that Molly is likely suffering from a neurological disorder, rather than a physical one. Thus, the seed of doubt has been planted in John’s mind, which is later exacerbated when Sam Barton denies knowledge of Molly’s pregnancy — even though she was the one who originally confirmed it. (As I said in last week’s recap, Sam was a little too easily blackmailed by ISEA director Alan Sparks, especially considering the apparent strength of her character.)
Undeterred, Molly asks her father for the bloody towel she used to wipe her hand after getting bitten by a dog in episode 4. Tests on the towel confirm that Molly was indeed pregnant, and with John now fully on her side, she resolves to fool the ISEA into thinking everything is hunky-dory. After an overeager plea to Sparks, Molly gets her job back — albeit, with heightened surveillance.
Upon her return, Molly reviews videos of her supernatural encounter on the Seraphim space station. After applying a filter developed by coworker Danny (Sam Golzari) to the videos, she notices blue-colored “interlaced energy fields.” Danny explains that they move like energy, but contaminate. Clearly, the energy fields are linked to Marcus, but how — if at all — did they influence Molly’s pregnancy? What are they? And what does the ISEA know about them?
For his part, Ethan is taken to John’s lab, where Julie and Charlie (Tyler Hilton) determine that his “core” is damaged — the Humanich equivalent of a coma — so it’ll take awhile to fix him. When John tries to stimulate Ethan’s body at one point, he sits bolt upright, creepily repeating “Who are you?” over and over again. Shortly after, Ethan inexplicably wakes up with little damage; considering all the hubbub about the disturbance to his core, the speed at which he healed is suspicious. So, I predict we’ll see a personality change in Ethan — for the worse. (On a related note, kudos to Pierce Gagnon who at 9 years old has so far been convincingly and unsettlingly robotic in his portrayal of Ethan. But perhaps because of Gagnon’s solid performance, I find it difficult to feel for Ethan, even when he’s in danger.)
At the episode’s end, we get to see Molly’s baby boy (currently a fetus) who is “thriving” in a vat under the control of the ISEA. This leaves me wondering: What does the agency — and specifically Hideki Yasumoto — want with him?
Other noteworthy points
- Extant features tons of cool tech, and episode 5 was no different. Case in point: the responsive autonomous car, the headphone-style sedation technique that Molly underwent at the hospital, and Julie’s realistic prosthetic legs and the hover platform she used while showering.
- Speaking of Julie, a so far wholly unsympathetic character, I want more details on her weird obsession with John (“He gets it from us”). Also, her overprotectiveness of Ethan is grating.
Extant airs every Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.
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