(WARNING! CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR SEASON 1 EPISODE 7 OF THE PASSAGE!)
I'll admit it, this is the episode of The Passage that I have been both looking forward to and dreading for a while. The reason for that is, when the season began, Mark-Paul Gosselaar told me during our interview, that this is the episode we would find out what happened with Brad and Lila's daughter. What I wasn't prepared for was the fact that there was going to be a lot of blame and a lot of guilt to spare in this week's episode. So, how is it possible that the episode is titled, "You Are Like The Sun"? Let's find out.
First, I think we really need to rip the band-aid off here. We know that Brad and Lila are trapped in the trunk of a car, headed for certain execution thanks to Guilder. While they are trapped, we start to see flashbacks of what happened with their daughter. I know this is supposed to be a spoiler filled review/recap, but I won't go through every little detail. Brad takes his daughter to a party after soccer practice alone, because Lila was asked to do a surgery. When picking up the supplies, there was one thing missing, so Brad went to a store across the street to get the item. When he did, the store was being robbed. His daughter walks in on the robbery, and you can probably guess what happened. We already know what this did to Brad and Lila, but we get to see the aftermath play out even more. We even get to see why Brad ended up on the path to Project NOAH in the first place.
As it turns out, they both blame themselves for what happened to their daughter. This realization seems to be really freeing for the both of them, and it almost seems like they have reached a point where they may be able to start over. That is, until they are found and once again facing execution. Luckily, Richards saves the day and tells the both of them that he now wants to help them get Amy out. On the ride back to Project NOAH, Brad reveals to Lila that he murdered their daughter's killer. This seemed like the final weight lifted off of Brad's shoulders. All of the guilt has finally come out, and Lila is just there for him. You could really feel how tough of a moment this was, but they seemed to both find acceptance in it. Even though I knew what was coming for this family, I still wasn't prepared for it. Man was Brad a good father! I wish we could have seen more of Lila as a mom too, but we did not get much of that. You really understand why Brad wants to save Amy so badly, but Lila reminds him that the two situations are not the same. We'll get back to Amy in a second.
First, I want to talk about Dr. Lear and his wife, who is losing her battle to the virus. Lear and Sykes have tried everything, and nothing seems to be working. To make things worse, Guilder is looking at a completely overhaul of Project NOAH, starting with revoking Sykes' security clearance. After countless rounds of anti-virals, and worsening vital signs, it looks like Lear may finally have to let his wife go. Meanwhile, Fanning is convinced that Elizabeth will choose him over her husband. He comes to her and tries to convince her. In her final moments, she chooses her husband and letting the virus kill her. The guilt pouring off of Dr. Lear is palpable. The writers really did a good job turning him into a sympathetic figure in such a short period of time. The introduction of Guilder as a villain that's easy to hate definitely helped this along. Lear blames himself, and quite frankly he probably should, but in this moment you really do feel for him. What we don't really get is Fanning's reaction to this choice, but this won't be the last time we see him.
As it turns out, Amy has been holding on to plenty of guilt herself. Guilder pays her a visit to tell her that Brad has left, which Amy doesn't buy for a minute. She makes a joke about his moustache, which was definitely long overdue. That's when Amy gets another visit, this time from Carter in the Viral world. Carter tells Amy that Fanning is coming for her, and then tries to prepare her for what's coming. He tells her that Fanning will try to use her guilt against her, and then really starts to push Amy about her mom. You see, that's the problem with literally sharing a mind with someone. Problem is, if Carter knows, Fanning certainly knows. Carter finally gets Amy to admit that she feels like her mom's death was her fault because she said some mean things during a fight with her mom. While Carter didn't help her directly, he did tell her that she was powerful enough to go wherever she wanted. What happened next was obvious, she goes back home to see her mom. You gain a whole new respect for her mom during this scene. Sometimes all you need to do is talk to your mom to set your mind at ease. Amy pours her heart out, not only apologizing, but telling her mom that she is worried about becoming a monster. Calm as can be, mom tells Amy that she knows what kind of a girl she raised, then that's where the title of this episode comes in. She also gives her what looks like a matchbook with a picture of a sun on it. You have to think that this will come into play at some point. It may do that sooner rather than later, because there is a knock at the door. Amy knows it's time to face her fears head on, because when she opens the door, Fanning is standing there waiting for her. Talk about an epic cliffhanger!
This really was the most emotional episode of the season. We heard a lot of hard truths, and even a quick admission by Babcock that she actually has feelings for Richards. THAT I did not expect! For a show that we knew from the beginning would only have 10 episodes, the writers have done an amazing job at character building. Several times while watching this episode, I wanted to just hit that pause button so I wouldn't have to see what was next. This wasn't a horror element or even science fiction. This was an element of pure, character driven drama. That doesn't just happen in shows like this, certainly not in this short amount of time. Credit to not only the writers, but the amazing actors for bringing such realness and truth to these moments. Of course, now I am just freaking out about Amy facing off against Fanning for the first time!
Will the meeting with Amy's mom be the key to fighting off Fanning? Will Guilder completely screw things up and be the reason the Virals get released? Are things really ok now between Brad and Lila? What about Sykes and Richards? We only have a few episodes left this season to find out!
(Photo Credit:© 2019 FOX Broadcasting. Cr. Erika Doss / FOX.)