La Brea has turned the corner on its halfway point and it’s barrelling ever closer to its finish with episode ten. Episode six, titled “The Way Home,” opens with our heroes getting a bit lucky, later getting a message from the future, and their path home becoming a bit fuzzier before it gets any clearer.
If the last episode was all-out action and chase sequences this next episode slows things down as the characters figure out a way through the glowing green crack in the sky before it closes. They have less than 24 hours, putting a clock on their choices and actions. Luckily, Levi (Nicholas Gonzalez) discovers another person trapped in the past named Diana (Vanessa Buckley) who may have the skills to fix their plane.
This episode leans into the family issues surrounding the father Gavin (Eoin Macken) and his drinking issues due to the visions he had of the past. Josh (Jack Martin) doesn’t want to believe it when Eve (Natalie Zea) reveals he wasn’t some crazy loon, but actually seeing visions. Customary of this show it shouldn’t be hard for Josh to believe something like this considering he’s been transported 10,000 years into the past, but here we are.
Josh’s anger towards his father rears its head midway through the episode when Gavin sends a message through the crack in the sky warning them not to attempt to escape via the plane. It turns out the plane was excavated — once again right in time to serve the plot — and everyone is dead on the plane. Kind of a buzzkill when the group is excited the plane can actually work but a message is sent just as they’re ready to embark saying to not use it.
Subplots abound in this episode of La Brea, further showing how the priorities of these characters are way off. One involves Veronica (Lily Santiago) not dealing well with her secret religious cult being revealed. Ty (Chiké Okonkwo) continues to play therapist to Veronica and it does not go well for him. It’s an eye-rollingly boring subplot that feels way off considering the circumstances these characters are in. Meanwhile, Scott (Rohan Mirchandaney) is forced to look for Lucas’ (Josh McKenzie) heroin which he can’t remember due to his massive pot addiction. It’s a subplot that hasn’t made much sense from the start, but alas it continues.
Gavin (Eoin Macken) and his daughter Izzy (Zyra Gorecki) continue to waffle on when they’ll fly the secret second plane through the crack to save everyone. Thankfully this subplot moves forward although it plays mostly as longwinded melodrama. Jessica (Ione Skye) has been pushing to fly the plane for a few episodes now but also keeps distracting them from actually flying off. Given the new info she gives — which is honestly exciting on some level — it’s yet another example of characters withholding information to serve the plot at opportune times.
The way Jessica exits — and how this episode ends — is borderline hysterical. Jessica delivers some rather clichéd dialogue that doesn’t seem very believable and is way over the top, plus she literally nopes out of the episode in a funny way too. Chock that up to her being a mad-scientist type in her demeanor, I guess. The fact that the episode ends on sad pop music feels extra false as it leans on the music to create an emotional state for these characters. It’s also not the first time this show has used pop music to make the audience feel something in the final moments.
If you’re enjoying La Brea, it’s likely because this show offers some of the best over-the-top melodrama on prime time right now. It’s not saying a lot since there isn’t much competition outside of the usual CSI ongoing shows, but if you like over-the-top acting and plot you’ll dig this show. That said, don’t expect a show that feels natural or realistic, but similar to the characters stuck in the past you should probably already know that.
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