6   +   7   =  

underthedomespeakofthedevil-1‘Speak Of The Devil’ 

As if last week’s display of unrealistic madness wasn’t enough, Monday night’s episode of Under the Dome forced us to continue down the path of no return, stealing away yet another hour of our lives that we’ll never get back. Speak of the Devil saw a storm brewing in Chester’s Mill, both literally and metaphorically, but rather than worry about the welfare of the characters amidst the intensifying tornado, the most pressing concern was just how long can they drag this storyline out?

Whilst the previous episode was all about big revelations, this week was all about repercussions. Max, evidently feeling powerless after having her advances rejected by Barbie, shot Julia at point-blank range, leaving her bleeding out on the floor. Up until this moment, Max had seemed all words and no action, but she’s a woman who likes to get her own way, bringing down everyone who doesn’t comply. At times I’ve wondered if her and Big Jim are related – they’re scarily similar in their attitudes.

Barbie and Joe raced Julia to the clinic, as an angry storm swelled above them, throwing trees in front of the car and all manner of paraphernalia through the air. Mike Vogel (Barbie) and Colin Ford (Joe) were surprisingly animated in these scenes of panic, flexing their acting muscles against the restraints of dodgy dialogue. With Barbie miraculously saving Julia’s life (his medical skills never cease to amaze), we’re all too soon taken back to the increasingly boring foursome. At times it feels as if we’re watching a wooden school play, though it’s difficult to decipher whether this is a result of bad acting or bad script.

Angie believed the storm had descended because Junior no longer wanted to be a part of the dome foursome. He was more petulant than ever, telling Angie that he’d rather die in the dome than be free without her. After he saved Angie from a wayward bench flying through the air, the storm subsided…leading the pair to believe that Junior is even more important to the dome; he could even be the mysterious monarch. There’s only one problem. Junior and Barbie were both saving the lives of their respective loves at the same time – so which saviour calmed the storm? Your guess is as good as mine.

Meanwhile, Big Jim was busy trying to turn everyone against Barbie after getting word from a radio transmission which revealed that Barbie was a wanted man on the outside. Using this knowledge to his advantage, Big Jim killed Max and her associate and framed Barbie for the murders. With the whole town thinking he’s a killer and Julia still unconscious, Barbie went on the run. And so another Under the Dome manhunt commences.

The episode ended with the teenage foursome, who decided mini-dome had been having too much attention and it was time to venture out to major dome again. Upon touching the dome together, a vision of Big Jim bleeding from numerous wounds appeared on the other side of the dome. When the teenagers looked down they saw knives in their hands, which vanished when Junior broke away from the dome. Big Jim wants his kingdom and, with Julia and Barbie temporarily out of action, we’re led to think that it’s up to the youngsters to stop him from taking his crown. With barely an intelligent thought between them, it’s difficult to see how they might achieve it.

The fleeting moments of excitement at the beginning and end weren’t enough to make up for the giant lull in the middle. Under the Dome suffers from an extreme case of hitting the breaks too early. Just as a storyline is starting to develop they stop it in its tracks. Allowing the storm to actually materialise would have made for some epic visuals and more dire consequences than what transpired. You never really felt that the characters were in any danger and as a result you’re left feeling horribly indifferent at the end. Roll on next week. I think.

★★

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