So I have couple of observations about the town of Chester’s Mill, which I have picked up from the first three episodes of Under The Dome.
-There must be lithium in the water because, with the exception of a couple of psychopaths, everyone seems more or less cool with the fact that they are now trapped together by some sci-fi shit until forever.
-Everyone loves to talk about how it’s a small town and they all know each other’s business and are probably related, but FUCKING NO ONE HAS NOTICED THAT ANGIE IS MISSING. You see her find a little radio and turn it on, expecting to instantly hear about “anxious townspeople are banding together to comb area bomb shelters for missing blonde teen, Angie” but no. Everyone is too busy not doing jackshit about the dome situation to care.
-Since Chester’s Mill is supposed to represent “Anytown, USA, roughly 30% of its inhabitants have some variation of a southern accent. Those same people also happen to make up roughly 80% of the town’s throwaway morons. And dear producers, using a southern accent as a shorthand for idiocy is lazy and insulting.
But the most important observation I have to impart is: Y’all, this town is completely run by women. Pretty much good idea or action has a lady behind it. Let’s take an overview of the action this week.
When Paul Randolph (the cop who came unhinged and accidentally shot one of his colleagues) escapes from jail, Big Jim gathers a hunting party to track him down. Basically all any of the men do is compare penises and football stories and shoot at each other. Meanwhile, Sherriff Linda sneaks up behind all of them and shoots Paul herself. When they bring him back to be stuffed and mounted, Big Jim tries to give Linda this big pep talk about how he’s gonna be her father figure now. And then her face does this magnificent thing where she’s like “do I need this man’s slightly condescending approval? No, I do not.” So that’s lady business number one.
Meanwhile, in the bomb shelter, Angie is still imprisoned. Okay so this plot relies on us believing that Big Jim never goes to hang out in his bunker, which, knowing what we know about Big Jim and his self-mythologizing, I cannot do. While down there, Angie has the first really good idea about how to escape the dome yet: go under it. Like way the fuck under it. Ladybusiness number two. She sends Junior (who we learn prefers to be called “James” but who I shall continue to call Junior because he is a kidnapper) to go check out the tunnels under the concrete plant. Darling Julia follows him because of her adorable red-headed way of finding trouble. They go as deep as they can but the dome is there, of course. Junior cries and punches the dome and then slumps to the ground, where he decided to mention that, by the way, he has no clue how to get out of the tunnels. Julia though, knows an old miner’s trick where she uses the light from a match to guide them out. Lady business four, with extra points for spunk.
So Norrie is kind of a shitty kid, right? First she runs away from her two apparently perfect mothers to hook up with young Joe, and then she lies about being the offspring of two lesbians. She tells Joe her father is a musician, as opposed to a red-haired sperm donor. And I can relate to the teenage need to blend in with the pack, but as a (maybe) future mother, ouch. While she’s, ahem, “charging her ipod” at Joe’s, Mama Carolyn is frantically scouring the town for her. (Mama Alice is frantically scouring the town too, but off-camera, because actors are expensive.) She’s showing everyone pictures of her family in case they’ve seen Norrie, and some of the local rednecks are predictably dickish about it.
And I really love the way Aisha Hinds chooses to play Carolyn’s reactions to the bigotry; stung, but not about to show it to these lowlifes. When she finally finds Norrie (lady business number five!), she’s about to drag her home when Norrie and Joe’s hands touch briefly, which cause them both to have pink star seizures again. So maybe, just maybe, the dome is powered by teen angst.
To be continued.