Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Eureka—Phoenix Rising

Henry revisits Kim's death in a hologram. Seems like he might need some therapy. He and Jack are both having problems dealing with their memories of the alternate timeline from last season. In the meantime, Nathan remains a bit obsessed with the artifact.

A solar eclipse captivates the town, with references to the Phoenix floating about from Taggert. Then a guy spontaneously combusts. A random guy, because we can't have main characters spontaneously combusting.

Combusting Guy turns out to be Kevin's occupational therapist, Wayne, which of course upsets Allison. Jack suspects Vincent's chili, but Lupo suggests a connection to Taggert's phoenix. Jack sends Lupo to question Taggert, which makes her a little nervous because of how she made out with Taggert last season.

Beverly talks to Kevin, who says something about "another man." Nobody knows what he's talking about. Jack discusses the "phoenix effect" with Taggert--it has to do with solar flares. He "proves" his theory by performing an experiment on skin graft tissue, which, ewww.

Allison calls Jack, who's in the shower, and via his unexpected video phone gets to see him naked, but none of the rest of us do. That's just wrong.

Jack and Lupo go to talk to Dr. Matthew, who proves to have also gone kerblooey. Henry's examination shows that the combustion began in the brain. And the two doctors had been speaking with each other before their respective head explosions.

Allison attempts to defend Nathan for his faux pas with the artifact, but the higher ups decide to replace him. With Allison. Okay, that's awkward. And it doesn't go over well. Another doctor, Dr. Brock, also appears to be connected to the combusted doctors, as well as to the artifact. Trying to depend on his memories of the alternate timeline, Jack makes some missteps. Dr. Brock combusts, and they're unable to save him.

Jack makes a connection among the victims and goes to talk to Henry. He asks to see the hologram again, from Kim's death. Brock and Matthew are both present in the hologram. Jack suspects Henry, who denies everything, then Jack makes a few more connections and surmises that the other doctors were exposed to the particulate radiation that killed Kim. Although nobody can figure out why Wayne, Kevin's therapist, was in Brock's office at the time. Nathan was also exposed, and he's not feeling so well. They take him to cryogenics to try to waylay the combustion. Henry proposes electroshock therapy to disrupt the misfiring inside Nathan's brain. They throw the switch...and then have a commercial. I hate when they do that.

When we come back from the break, Nathan is all better. ("It was only a flesh wound!") He and Allison share a bonding moment at his hospital bed, which bums out Jack, who still remembers being married to Allison on the alternate timeline. Angst! Henry proposes a memory wipe for both of them, largely because he blames Jack for Kim's death. Jack is reluctant, but Henry blasts him with the memory wiping device when it appears he's decided to go ahead with it. And then Henry destroys the device, still unforgiving of Jack.

Henry applies for a job at Global Dynamics. Beverly reports to Farraday that the artifact appears to be dead. But Farraday says this isn't possible. The energy has to have gone somewhere.

And it reconstructs itself out of modeling clay in Kevin's room. That just can't be good.

So our second season opener has laid the groundwork for what promises to be some interesting developments over the next several weeks. I'm particularly concerned about Henry--he seems to have gone a little off the deep end. Understandably so, but that little power dynamic shift doesn't bode well for Jack.