90s Rewatch – Earth: Final Conflict S1E7, “Resurrection”

In today’s thrilling installment, Jonathon Doors announces to the world that he’s still alive after faking his death. His daring plan? Well, to interrupt the Super Bowl World Bowl to announce to the world that he doesn’t trust the Companions, and that he has faked his death to run a resistance. Seriously; that’s about all his plan amounts to. “Kick the hornet’s nest and let Boone sort it out.”

When the episode begins, our gang is in the Flat Planet Cafe, previously known as the the Most 90s Bar Ever. Today is the World Bowl, which is presumably what the Super Bowl becomes after contact with aliens makes us a global culture. Doors interrupts the sportscasters to announce that he pulled one over on the Taelons by faking his death, predictably enraging the Taelon Synod. The Synod decides to replace Da’an, our warm and fuzzy companion, with Zo’or. Since the replacement for a series lead can never be someone more likable, Zo’or is predictably a bit of a jerk. He’s got a chip on his shoulder a mile wide and an apparent grudge against Da’an in some form or another.

Zo’or and his glare-pout. (left)

“Resurrection” is not an episode that uses its material wisely. It is largely a talky sort of episode, and actually, that’s okay, because if last week’s “Float like a Butterfly” shows us anything, it’s that Earth: Final Conflict isn’t going to thrive on action. So here, on the Taelon side, we Zo’or investigating Doors’ not-death and Da’an’s supposed failure in this regard. On the resistance side, Boone is frantically trying to something good out of Doors just popping on to TV to announce he hates those alien bastards. But to have Doors come out of hiding, at random, without some sort of tension to shore it up… This is season finale stuff for a normal show, or, at the very least, like a mid season show. And make no mistakes; Earth: Final Conflict is a normal show. It can’t, or at least hasn’t, shown itself to be a Babylon 5, capable of delivering repeated blasts of awesome.

By the episode’s end, things are more or less back to status quo. Da’an is back in power. Boone is still working for him. The Resistance is still going. Even though the Taelon know Doors is alive and working against them, they have no idea where he is. Boone and Lilly are clued in on the bigger picture of the resistance (Including their snazzy new base). The Resistance is doing research on the “Metal Scarecrow” from the last episode– but again, none of this feels momentous. It’s all been squandered on a random episode like 1/3 of the way through the season. I’m getting the feeling that the show was being run by people who had Roddenberry’s notes, but didn’t quite understand how to make that stuff sing, and who had examples of great scifi series (Babylon 5, Stargate SG-1, The X-Files) but didn’t know what made them good.

High Points:

  • I want to pretend Door’s interruption of the World Bowl some nerd’s retaliation for football preempting their scifi shows. But maybe that’s just me and the grudge I bear for all those episodes of The X-Files I didn’t see the first time because a football game ran over, and the VCR taped that instead.
  • Moving the Resistance into a sexy underground cave-office instead of the back of that terrible bar.
  • Any time Boone and Da’an sit down to talk, we’re in for an interesting conversation. It’s like the writers spend all their effort on those scenes and are all out of juice on the rest of the episode.

Low Points:

  • Doors, is, theoretically, a smart man. But a smart man without a plan. Seriously.
  • This is like, end of the season stuff just kind of ho-hummed through before we even hit the halfway point.
  • Augur cheerfully working for the Resistance is essentially an entirely different character.

Previous Episodes

Season One

Joshua Young

Joshua M. Young lives in Columbus, Ohio with his wife, son, and two more feral cats than the optimal number of feral cats. (That is, zero.) He holds a Master of Divinity from Ashland Theological Seminary, and yes, he's quite aware that writing this kind of stuff isn't exactly what you'd expect from a trained theologian. A life long lover of science fiction and fantasy, one of his earliest memories involves some confusion with a Klingon Bird of Prey and an X-Wing in the middle of a theater showing The Search for Spock, and, once upon a time, he could select the desired Robotech novel from his bookshelf, in the dark, by the feel of its spine. (Don't ask why that was a necessary skill. He couldn't tell you.) He has been published in numerous anthologies, including Planetary: Mercury, Planetary: Venus, and Tales of the Once and Future King.

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