Friday, August 19, 2011

Mini-cap: Harsh Realm E8 "Cincinnati"

In the Harsh Realm version of Cincinnati, Ohio, Tom, Pinnochio and Florence have a man on his knees with a bag on his head.  They pull off the bag: it's Santiago.

72 hours earlier:  Ah, a voiceover from Tom explaining how no one has tried to stand against Santiago until Native American rebels in Cincinnati took over an army depot.  Santiago sends Waters against them.  Outside the city, Escalante, the Republican Guard soldier whose life Tom saved in the last episode and who is now apparently sympathetic to their cause somehow, tells the gang that Santiago is planning to assassinate the rebel leader himself.  Tom sees this as an opportunity to grab Santiago for themselves.

Here's the thing - this episode is rife with those dang voiceovers, Tom droning on and on about Santiago's inner thoughts instead of trusting the audience to be smart enough to pick up on it from the acting and the story. STOP WITH THE EFFING VOICEOVERS!  The rebels plan to move their leader to a safe house; Santiago plans to ambush the convoy; Tom, Pinnochio and Florence plan to ambush the ambush, laying out explosive charges.  Santiago's men attack the rebel motorcade and Tom sets off the charges, blowing up shit indiscriminately.  There's a firefight.  They think they got Santiago but no, he's run off into the underbrush.  He finds a wounded soldier who says he's got a [miraculous gadget that seals up the worst wounds].  Santiago heals the guy's gut wound, then uses the gadget to (1) grow skin over the guy's whole face, suffocating him (Fringe used that to good effect in S1) and then (2) modify his own appearance so that he sort of but not really looks like himself anymore.  That's a handy gadget!  Santiago runs off deeper into the forest.

Back at Capital City, Waters thinks Santiago is dead but is reluctant to take control of the army.  Meanwhile, the Native American rebels think that Tom, Pinnochio and Florence, whom they have captured, are the erstwhile assassins.  Also meanwhile, Santiago trades clothing and dog tags with an old guy, then leads the rebels to him and after they shoot the old guy, everyone thinks that they've really killed Santiago.  The real Santiago manages to get himself a janitorial job with the rebels so he can keep an eye on their leader.  The rebels decide to hang Tom, Pinnochio and Florence but Florence manages to get them all free.  They and Escalante infiltrate the rebel HQ where the disguised Santiago sees his traitorous soldier and kills him.

It's kind of confusing and a little boring and I'm not really paying attention as Santiago keeps changing his identity and no one has any names.  Needless to say, the Santiago with the bag over his face is not actually Santiago but the rebel second-in-command, whose identity Santiago has stolen in order to get close to the rebel leader to stab him.  The rebel insurrection is quickly put down without their leader. Later, back at Capital City, Santiago puts his own face back on and demands that Waters bring him Tom and Pinnochio.

One episode left, thank goodness / previously on Harsh Realm

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