‘Under The Dome’ TV Review: Barbie Raises Suspicions
The third episode of Under the Dome saw more of the same drama—Paul (Kevin Sizemore), who is taken into custody after he kills a fellow officer, escapes prison and incites a manhunt; Joe (Colin Ford) bonds with Norrie (Mackenzie Lintz) during a house party; Junior (Alexander Koch) bonds with Julia (Rachelle Lefevre); and Barbie (Mike Vogel) hints at his own military training.
Angie (Britt Robertson), still imprisoned, convinces Junior to find a way out through the town’s cement factory tunnels. Julia catches him and follows him conspicuously down to the basement. After Junior throws himself against the dome wall, he realizes he is not alone. Will he snap? Julia, unaware of Junior’s borderline psychotic episodes, comforts and befriends him. Towards the end of the episode, Junior asks her to call him “James.” As Angie tends to the injuries Barbie gave Junior, she smuggles away medical scissors…presumably for later use.
Meanwhile, Big Jim (Dean Norris), Barbie, and other volunteers scour the woods for Paul, who is armed and dangerous. We don't know what he plans to do and where he plans to go – for a better part of the episode, I was led to believe he was going to wreak havoc on the town. He does no such thing. Paul eventually corners Big Jim and Barbie in the forest, but Linda (Natalie Martinez) shoots him before he can inflict any more damage.
Back in town, Norrie, the first teen to seizure because of the dome, invites herself over to Joe’s house. His family has the last remaining generator, which makes his house teen party central. After Norrie’s mother breaks up the gathering, Norrie and Joe begin to spasm and chant, “Pink stars are falling.” Chilling, no? Now that the military is ruled out, what else does that leave? Is this Big Jim’s doing or something otherworldly?
At home, Julia sees Barbie’s bruised knuckles and asks what he’s really doing in Chester’s Mill. Barbie dodges the question and Julia finds a marked map of the town hidden in his bag. Uh-oh. Barbie's got some explaining to do!
This episode seemed much quieter than the previous two. Gore was kept to a minimum, though there were some intense moments made even more thrilling by unnecessary background music. For example, when Paul confronted Big Jim and Barbie, it felt sort of anti-climactic. We knew Linda was in the forest, too, so there was no way Barbie and Big Jim would be picked off so soon. They have too many secrets left to tell.
I also found it hard to accept that a teen as outspoken as Norrie would feel the need to lie about her lesbian parents. Is it because small towns don’t readily accept non-traditional families? The gay couple does face animosity from some staunchly bigoted Chester’s Mill’s residents, but it might have been more refreshing if they hadn’t. I suppose that tension adds to the overall drama surrounding the dome.
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