TV Recap: Falling Skies, ‘Find Your Warrior’

Falling-Skies-Season-5-Poster

‘Find Your Warrior’ Plot Summary:

Tom Mason (Noah Wylie) has improbably survived his mission to destroy the Espheni power core on the moon. As his Beamer drifts into space, he awakens to a shocking site – he’s in his bedroom back home, and his first (and now deceased) wife confronts him. What starts off as Tom reliving the memory of discussing how he and his wife will deal with her breast cancer flare up, things take an unusual turn. She begins to tell Tom to ‘find your warrior’ and that only by using rage, and anger will they win the war against the aliens. He returns home to lead 2nd Mass against the Espheni, but something is definitely not right with Tom.

With this being the final season of TNT’s Falling Skies, the creators have seemingly pushed all their chips to the center of the table, beginning with the season premiere, ‘Find You Warrior.’

The episode is filled with great hallucinatory visuals, some serious bad ass action, genuine white knuckle moments, and a mystery wrapped inside the head, and heart of our hero.

Noah Wylie’s Tom Mason goes into complete ‘Ricktator’ mode, and using the same playbook AMC used for their bearded sheriff, when he went all unhinged and violent. While, the similarities between Falling Skies and The Walking Dead are quite obvious, their leading men behave quite differently. Mason’s violent tendencies are much calculated, and controlled. When he’s fighting aliens he doesn’t loose himself in anger, he just executes with cold detachment. He uses a fallen comrade to harbor a bomb, he executes an Espheni holding a son captive — not something the old Tom would’ve done. It seems the new Tom is living up to his new billing of being a cold-blooded killer.

It’s fascinating to see Wylie, who’s been a terrific good guy in this series (and usually just a good guy in general), show a really nasty shade of grey. He’s an absolutely convincing bad ass, and for the thrill seeker in us all, we love him for it. However, we, like his comrades, realize that this new Tom, is a dangerous Tom that could lead them all into doom.

We get some clues that Tom’s return to earth, and his vision were purposeful. That some being is using him as a pawn to carry out their plot. Is it some Espheni big bad using Tom as a corruptor, an agent of chaos, slowly and unwittingly breaking Second Mass down from within? Or, is this another alien (maybe the Volm?) manipulating him into helping extinguish the Espheni in order to further their own agenda?

‘Find Your Warrior’ is at its best when running on pure adrenaline and action. The secondary plots and romance are bit whatever. They really feel like filler between action sequences. They’re a bit too contrived, and a bit too been there done that. They slow the episode down to near screeching halts at times. Those watching it on DVR would be best to make use of the fast forward option.

Overall, this was a damn fine beginning to the final season of Falling Skies.

Rating: 7.5/10

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Bill Bodkin is the Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder of Pop-Break. He can be read weekly on Trailer Tuesday and Singles Party, weekly reviews on Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire, Hannibal, Law & Order: SVU and regular contributions throughout the week with reviews and interviews. His goal is to write 500 stories this year. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. He’s the reason there’s so much wrestling on the site and is beyond excited to be a Dad. Follow him on Twitter: @PopBreakDotCom
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Bill Bodkin is the gray bearded owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, he is lucky husband, and proud father to a beautiful daughter named Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites