‘Rubicon’ – ‘Wayward Sons’: Tied to the whipping post

A review of the penultimate “Rubicon” of season one coming up just as soon as we have stuff…

“Do not mistake fluidity for chaos.” -Truxton Spangler

When I got to the end of “Wayward Sons,” a part of me wished that it was actually the season finale.

It’s not that I want less of the show. After all, the ratings suggest this season is the only one we’re going to get, and I’ve become attached enough to “Rubicon” that I want all the hours that are going to be available.

But a part of me feels like the “bad guys win” tone of the closing minutes of “Wayward Sons” feels like a more honest ending – both for this season and, in the likely event of cancellation, series – than whatever Henry Bromell and company are going to offer next week.

As I said last week, we’ve reached a point where I’m not sure how plausible or, frankly, satisfying, it’s going to be if Will and Kale and Mrs. Rhumor are able to take down Spangler’s large and powerful conspiracy. This show takes place in a dark and messy world, with a broken intelligence system being staffed (at least in API’s corner of it) by broken people. Now that Spangler’s bunch are poised to profit somehow off of what Kateb did to the oil pipeline, I’m sure Will and Kale will find some way to expose them, but I’m skeptical that it’ll play well. What I’m most curious to see, since Bromell is writing with the idea of a season two in mind, is how things go down in a way that allows API to continue to exist. Truxton Spangler is API, and if Will takes him down, wouldn’t the government just put the kibosh on the whole organization?

But we’ll deal with that next week. “Wayward Sons” was mainly a plot-mover of an episode, but I liked the little interludes we had with Kateb soaking up American culture (cartoons, fast food, classic rock) before he died, and with the people from his former life giving a metaphorical face to our previously faceless terrorist. I’m hoping that Tom Rhumor’s clue won’t be so literal (i.e., that the answer is in St. Louis), but was relieved that, for now, all the anvils being dropped about what would happen if Maggie let Katherine leave the (clearly Kale Ingram-decorated) safehouse didn’t amount to anything bad. And genius director of photography Michael Slovis as as assured when performing full director duties as he was when he did the same on “Breaking Bad” a while back.

What did everybody think of this one? And whether or not next week’s episode is the last we get  of these characters, what would you like to see in the finale?

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