12 Monkeys: Tomorrow Review

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By: Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)

Oh 12 Monkeys, you were just one big downer weren’t you? “Tomorrow” was the series’ best episode to date.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

It’s hard to find anything to critique in this episode. Episode after episode of being a somewhat generic time traveling procedural, albeit a solid one, 12 Monkeys has finally found its footing and “Tomorrow” is exactly what I wanted to see from the series since the pilot. There were emotional scenes, well done action sequences, twisty time travel narrative, and off the wall twists.

From the pilot episode 12 Monkeys was perceived to be a story about both Cassandra and Cole. Switching perspectives made this a reality, but with this episode it became clear that this is Cole’s story. Just like Cole, we are experiencing time out of order and no episode demonstrates this better than “Tomorrow.” When he is slung to 2017 we are inserted into the panic and devastation the virus has caused.

The scene between Jones and Foster was so brilliantly done. Foster’s death was so shocking. He and Jones were having such a quiet, civilized, and an almost reflective moment, so when Jones shot him it was a surprise. Even if Foster did indeed find a cure, to Jones it doesn’t matter because that doesn’t bring her daughter back. That’s her ultimate goal, not saving the world but saving her daughter.

Foster was such a great and interesting foil to Jones’ character. Even though they have the same end goal, to eradicate the virus, they are on opposite sides of morality and Jones displayed that as she killed half of Foster’s community. The population of the world is so low that killing that many people seemed unnecessary. However, I can see her logic that if she and Cole successfully complete their mission none of this matters. That’s only if they succeed. She’s counting her chickens before they hatch.

Jennifer Goines’ little cameo was so much fun. Really it was the only lighthearted moment in the episode. It never ceases to amaze me how enjoyable her character is, she just brings a smile to my face. If anyone would survive the virus it would be her. Listening to her rants is one of the best parts of the series. Trying to decipher what she’s saying, because you know she is saying something important, you just need to get past the crazy.

In a previous episode, Cassandra was shown grieving Cole’s death. Now in this episode Cole is seen grieving Cassandra’s death. Only on this show does the main character die only to still be a main character through flashbacks due to the non-linear timeline presented. Their deaths give each other purpose. If Cole wasn’t fully supporting the mission before, he is now. Even though he knows Cassandra dies, watching his 2015 partner in crime die should’ve been a significant wake up call. It seems like it was during his confrontation with Ramse.

Their disagreement at the end of the episode was one of my favorite scenes. I loved that the end of the episode was a direct contrast of their 2041 flashbacks. Their character development is quite evident and now roles are reversed. Ramse was the one who wanted them to stay in the first place, but now he wants nothing to do with the time machine and the mission.

So let’s discuss the watch, more specifically the scratch on the watch. In the pilot Cole scratched Cassandra’s watch to show her the approximation paradox. Now at her death the scratch on the watch was erased. I’m to assume that the scratch disappearing signified the loop closing. The scratch disappeared so that Cole is able to once again show her the paradox. Because of the scratch on the watch, it was determined that he’s able to change the future. Well, now I guess not. Now it’s to be believed that it all could be pre-determined and everything he does in fact creates the virus situation instead of preventing it.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars


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