Falling Skies "The Price Of Greatness" REVIEW

Episode 2.09 A little bit of politics...

Why you can trust GamesRadar+ Our experts review games, movies and tech over countless hours, so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about our reviews policy.

Episode 2.09
Writer: Mark Verheiden
Director: Adam Kane

THE ONE WHERE: The 2 nd Mass are welcomed into the underground base at Charleston. Tom is reunited with his old tutor Arthur Manchester, a man whose political ambitions soon come into conflict with the objectives of the resistance…

THE VERDICT: For the second week in a row Falling Skies operates a strict no-aliens policy – is this a budgetary consideration or are they keeping us hungry for the season finale? It’s a marginally more engrossing episode than Death March, at least, examining differing approaches to survival in this occupied world. Do you “hunker down and play dead” or keep taking the fight to the enemy? There are no pat answers, and while we’re kept suspicious of the set-up at Charleston the episode thankfully doesn’t go for the played-out trope of the surface-utopia that’s really a front for alien-controlled horror. Pope gets a chance to shine at last, whether insolently confronting the Charleston military or cheekily glugging Bressler’s red wine as he rebuffs the General’s offer to betray Tom. Colin Cunningham is one of the great weapons of Falling Skies and it’s criminal that the character has been allowed to slide into the background this season.

TRIVIA: Pope slips in an allusion to classic Twilight Zone tale It’s A Good Life when he declares “I’m going to wish you into the cornfield” (based on a 1953 short story by Jereome Bixby, the episode focused on a young boy with the power to banish anything that displeases him into a magical cornfield). No, we never pegged Pope as a geek either.

DID YOU SPOT: Yes, we all know that’s Lost ’s Terry O’Quinn as Manchester – but did you also ID stuttery ‘80s holo-icon Max Headroom in this one? Matt Frewer was p-p-p-p-playing General Bressler.

BEST LINE: Pope: “I pray to God that means showers. You passed your sell-by date like 400 miles ago.”

Falling Skies is now showing on FX.

Nick Setchfield
Editor-at-Large, SFX Magazine

Nick Setchfield is the Editor-at-Large for SFX Magazine, writing features, reviews, interviews, and more for the monthly issues. However, he is also a freelance journalist and author with Titan Books. His original novels are called The War in the Dark, and The Spider Dance. He's also written a book on James Bond called Mission Statements.