Ratings are better than expected; so are the reviews. Yet, for the first time, Revolution takes a step in the wrong direction. As the series progresses the little aspects of the show that were just subtle annoyances start to build. Mainly, the flashbacks are starting to halt the progression of the story.
At first I honestly felt that revealing what happened immediately after the blackout would make the show more intriguing, but instead it does the opposite. Now we know too much about too many characters. The mystery surrounding the past is unraveling too quickly, and the show is losing steam.
“Sex and Drugs” finds Charlie, Miles, Aaron and a dying Nora at an old ally of Miles’. He’s able to save Nora from infection, but he sends Charlie on a suicide mission to get even with Miles. The tension should be high, but even after Maggie was killed a few episodes back, we all know NBC wouldn’t allow the writers to kill off the newest heroine just yet. Instead the episode offers a slow-paced standoff. Miles saves Charlie without any serious fight. Meanwhile, Aaron and Nora are forced to shoot one another. Aaron turns the gun on himself, only to be saved by a flask in his pocket. But that wasn’t the biggest head-scratching moment of the show; instead that goes to what happens next. He kills the gang leader, and all of the henchmen just shrug it off.
The anticlimactic episode is interspersed with flashbacks detailing Aaron’s life. It’s too obvious that Aaron has issues with his mediocrity, but if it wasn’t clear enough, those flashbacks certainly give us a step-by-step play revealing exactly why Aaron is such a nervous wreck. It turns out his uber-gorgeous wife didn’t leave him after the blackout (which is his and his wife’s anniversary)—he actually left her simply because he didn’t think he was good enough now that he doesn’t have millions to impress anyone.
It wasn’t something we needed to know, and that was the show’s biggest mistake. So far, the flashbacks have revealed interesting tidbits, but Aaron’s history shouldn’t have been shown now, and maybe not ever. Some background is better left unknown.
Even though the majority of the episode was a letdown, we were able to see Charlie evolve yet again. She wants to be a tough guy, yet deep down she is just a scared teenaged girl. Her arc is slow-burning, but that’s why it works. Unlike all of the flashbacks that give us the precise reasons the characters does what they do, Charlie’s story reveals a complex character who doesn’t know how to go about getting what she wants.
Hopefully the show bounces back from this detour and continues to move forward. Now that Danny and his mother have reunited, we’ll be able to see a different plot unfold instead of the same old development we’ve had so far. This episode will be easily forgotten, but it did provide a turning point for many of the characters.