Somehow you had to anticipate that the powerful, dangerous, and unhinged Julian was going to return to The Tomorrow People at some point. I just did not think it was going to be so short-lived, nor did I imagine that it would end with his head getting blown off by a small explosive device imbedded in his sinuses.
This was one of the darker installments of this series in that regard. The disregard and, with some folks, joy that the Tomorrow People exhibited when they knew Julian’s number was up felt really creepy. It was, though, an appropriate fate for someone who spent the episode trying to strangle Cara, torture the tender mind of Charlotte, and shot Stephen with a tranquilizer dart. He likely got what he deserved.
But so much of the show to date has balanced out a need to preserve life—a credo that the Tomorrow People seem to embrace—with the brutal tactics of Ultra. It was a discomforting thing to watch the good guys cross over to the dark side, even for one small but impactful scene.
The rest of the episode could hardly keep up with the travails of Julian and his efforts to corral the Tomorrow People up for Jedikiah. There was a lot of flashing back to the first meeting of John and Cara, and a tender “b story” with John trying to coax Astrid out of her home and control the fear she is feeling. It all served as a push to get John back into the loving arms of Cara and the rest of the ragtag gang of misfits.
The meat of the show involved watching Julian wreak havoc on the Tomorrow People via his intense hyperkinetic skills. I love the guy they cast for the part. James McKay has the right kind of burning intensity you need for a role like this, and can convey the sadistic side of the character’s personality. The sick thrill he seemed to be getting from torturing Charlotte for information was evident and made my skin crawl.
It’s just a shame we won’t be seeing more of him in the future. Interesting though it was to see the Tomorrow People’s bloodthirsty side come out, he made a great foil for the do-gooders and gives off that spark of devilish energy that even Jedikiah doesn’t possess.
Robert Ham is a Portland-based freelance writer and regular contributor to Paste. You can follow him on Twitter.