Welcome back, 12 Monkeys fans! We are four episodes in to the SyFy original series and I have to say, I am still really enjoying this show. I am not afraid to admit that each week when I write these recaps I have to watch the new episode at least twice. While I like to think that I’m no dummy, 12 Monkeys is incredibly complicated, introducing new characters all the time and running multiple active timelines at once. The complexity of the series makes it very enjoyable and entertaining but I have to say that this week was a welcome addition to the three previous episodes in that it was mostly about character backstory and relationships. It also served to introduce a version of a “short jump,” something the series had not explored so far.
At the end of last week, Deacon, the leader of a pack of really nasty scavs learned that Cole and Ramse were hanging out inside of the compound not too far away with food, water and electricity. This week, we learned the history of Max and Deacon and Cole and Ramse’s relationship. When Cole and Ramse were on their own, starving and looking for anything they could find to survive off of, they ran into Deacon and his group, the West 7. They take the two in with Deacon taking a liking to Cole and letting Ramse stick around on his account (a theme that has already come up once before). While a part of the 7 tribe, Ramse starts to question Deacon’s ruthlessness while Cole seems to accept the violence as a necessary evil for survival. We also learn about Cole’s relationship with Max, the young woman who attacked Whitley and Ramsey in the woods in last weeks episode and who tells Deacon of Cole’s location. Max and Cole started a romantic relationship but when Cole was given the order to kill Ramse and couldn’t do it, they both bailed instead without a word to Max leaving her super pissed.
As the West 7 storm the compound they find Ramse in their cross-hairs and Cole and Jones lock themselves in the splinter room. She offers to send Cole back to 2015 to save him and hopefully work with Cassie to prevent the plague while the compound is under attack. Instead, she sends him back to a week earlier, thus allowing Cole to be captured by the West 7 and convince Max to help him save Jones and his brother. Cole also has a crazy mental freak out while being tortured by Deacon, probably one of the first times that Twelve Monkeys feature film director Terry Gilliam’s visual influence could be felt the hardest. When all is said and done, Jones allows Max to stay as she saved Jones’ live on Cole’s orders. Deacon and his crew retreat and Ramse is saved as well. Where does that leave Cole and his romantic interests? Cole reveals that he is going to pursue Cassie, not his previous relationship with Max and he returns to 2015 to tell her how he feels about her and for the first time, open up to someone. Instead, Cole learned that in his absence Cassie has found The Night Room. Cliffhanger!!!
All in all, this episode is one of my favorites so far, finally starting to color in some of the characters who we have spent a lot of time with already. I expect now that Cassie has found The Night Room we’re going to hit the ground running to get there before The Army of the 12 Monkeys and we will be seeing the return of Jennifer Goines next week.
Don’t forget you can watch all of 12 Monkeys for free on the SyFy website. Are you all liking the series so far? Did you enjoy this new style of episode? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
12 Monkeys, starring Aaron Stanford, Amanda Schull, Emily Hampshire and Tom Noonan, airs Friday nights at 9PM on SyFy.