Entertainment Magazine

Review #3577: Eureka 5.11: “Mirror Mirror”

Posted on the 04 July 2012 by Entil2001 @criticalmyth

Contributor: Gregg Wright

Written by Bruce Miller
Directed by Mike Rohl

After a long string of regular format episodes, we get one that ends on a cliffhanger, setting up the closing arc of the season. There’s still a malfunctioning invention, of course. But it’s really just there to play a role in more significant events. It’s a refreshing change in direction, considering how underwhelming the season arc has been. Only two episodes in the season remain (one less than I mistakenly said in the previous episode’s review), so I hope the writers can make them count.

Review #3577: Eureka 5.11: “Mirror Mirror”

I really wish that this was simply the setup for a mid-season finale. The previous season’s first half dealt with the fallout from the timeline jump, introduced a wonderful new guest character, and ensured that the Consortium remained a continually looming threat. Overall, I found the fallout from that incident (as well as the incident itself) much more interesting than what we’ve seen this season. And after that fallout phase, the second half of the season set the show off a fantastic new direction that (with the help of that constant launch countdown reminder) held my interest right up to the excellent finale.

This season never really got the direction it needed, and that might have been a lot more forgivable if this were all just the first half of a season. Red herrings kept getting tossed out, and then went nowhere. It feels like the season has been treading water. And I can’t help but feel that some stronger individual episodes might have smoothed over these issues somewhat; maybe another Carter comedy gold mine like “Up in the Air”, or more Deputy Andy, or maybe even an Isaac Parrish-centric episode.

The developments in this episode do help to partially resolve my complaints about the over-prominence of Holly’s storyline. Her new body and the bio-printing technology have enabled something (or probably “someone”) dangerous to take hold in Eureka”. Holly’s behavior and personality remind me of Beverly, but I can only imagine that this is Senator Wen, escaping from the prison that Beverly left her in. This allows Felicia Day to put in some of her finest work in the show, and it’s nice to see Eureka in such serious peril again, but I’d be pretty disappointed if the Senator Wen theory was confirmed. She was fine as a despicable Consortium mole, but as some manipulative arch-villain trying to take over Eureka? I don’t buy it and I don’t find it interesting.

Of course, Holly’s “now we’re even” line after zapping Carter means that something more interesting is going on. But given that Wen was the one who murdered Holly previously, and probably knew that the Carter NPC was the one to do it, this line may just be her idea of a joke. I’m hoping that’s not the case, but that hand-reaching amidst the static in that video seems to strongly hint at the idea of a person trapped somewhere, trying to claw their way out. The best case scenario is that the writers are about to throw something completely unexpected my way, but considering how the season has gone, I’m not too optimistic about that.

Still, I liked the creepy buildup, as characters are slowly replaced by evil doubles (or, in Andy’s case, reprogrammed), and the cliffhanger that leaves Carter and the gang in a very tight spot. It’ll be easier to judge this episode when I see what it’s leading up to. And I have no real complaints about the B plot, involving Henry, Jo, and Zane’s efforts to help Grace. Of course, Henry’s attempts to rationalize his guilt over the other Henry’s actions are extremely poor (though understandable, given the scene where Henry views the communique sent to the Consortium by the other version of him). But it’s quickly made clear that Henry is just being self-sacrificing out of his concern for Grace. And then in one of the episode’s best scenes, Grace sets Henry straight.

It is a little hard to judge this episode when it was originally written as just the first part of what is basically a two-part finale. I want to see where all of this is going before getting too harsh. I suppose some fans will probably think that I’ve already been a bit too harsh on the season as a whole. I’d remind them that “Eureka” is still a beloved favorite of mine, and I will still be immensely saddened to see it go. The season has, in my opinion, been a bit weaker than I’d expected, but I’ve still found a lot to love about the season. I’ve stated plenty of times before that the characters play a huge role in my appreciation of the show, and that’s just as true as ever.

Score: 8/10

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog