Almost Human: Simon Says (01×07)
Synopsis: A solar flare cause electrical outages which means that even the police are rationing power. Operating at half power leaves Dorian feeling a bit out of sorts. Meanwhile the police are trying to track down a man who is abducting innocent people, strapping bombs to them, and then uploading their final, frantic moments to the internet. John and Dorian manage to start to throw a wrench in his plans before John finds himself in a particularly perilous position.
Okay, so, apparently one of the issues with the DRN models is that they can’t exactly handle their emotions when not fully charged. The first thing to be sacrificed is their personality chip and after that the rest of their systems shut down. This means they have mood swings when, as John explains, they “don’t get enough sleep.” Which means that we get some whacky Dorian moments. He slugs douchebag cop Richard and then apologizes profusely. He bugs John to let him live with him in the backroom so he’s not stuck with the Ken Doll MX units. He ‘forgets’ to roll down the window when amplifying his voice to tell someone to pull over during a car chase…
And then suddenly we have some poor guy getting kidnapped and forced to rob the very bank he works at with a bomb around his neck.
This episode actually had a really cool premise. We’ve got this guy – played by the creepy dude with all the snakes from Prisoners – kidnapping people, putting bombs around their neck, and then uploading their final moments online. Pretty damn creepy, right? John and Dorian get stuck in the middle of everything after happening to come across the first victim driving away from the scene of the bank robbery. They try to save him but they can’t. It’s kind of a heartbreaking moment, right? John stands there telling the guy he’s sorry and then he puts up some sort of force field and the guy just blows up.
Yeah. He blows up. While trying to say he loves his wife one last time. I mean, man. Hit me hard in the feels why don’t you, Almost Human.
Determined to find the guy who did this, John and Dorian manage to really get on his radar when they impede the killer’s attempts to knock off some poor girl. She’s just a flower delivery girl – or so we think. It turns out she spurned him after some online dating fiasco and he’s out to get his revenge by using her death and the death of others to build up some sort of crazy online following. It’s sort of the stereotypical rejected geek sort of thing but hey. Whatever. We’re going to get those sorts of plots in every police procedural drama from time to time – even nerdy science fiction ones.
Pissed off that John stopped him from killing the girl – and equally pissed off that John got a second chance with the police department when nerdy dude got kicked out of the Academy for a bad psych evaluation – he decides to make Kennex his next victim. Masquerading as a CSI at a crime scene he kidnaps John and locks him to a park bench in the middle of the city. Considering how packed this park is I have no idea how he manages to get him there without anyone seeing. Nor do I know why no one is wondering whey he’s got some massive coat on but hey. John has to try and defuse a bomb that’s locked to his neck and Dorian has to try to find a way to stop this crazy dude from just flipping a switch and blowing him up anyway.
Dorian manages to take care of his end of things before powering down completely and John thankfully manages to defuse the bomb with 0:02 seconds left on the clock. I mean, we knew he wasn’t going to blow up but still.
Afterward John and Maldanado shared a drink in her office. Which, by the way, is made of glass windows. Everyone can see them drinking in there. I guess that’s okay, though. They have a nice little heart to heart and a very touching moment where John thanks her for ignoring his own psych report and giving him another chance. And then he makes good and gets Dorian out of MX hell… and into Rudy hell. But Rudy is so happy to have a ‘roommate’ in his lab. It’s cute.
All in all – solid episode. As always, a bit campy. But what can you do?