‘Falling Skies’ Season Finale Review: “Brazil”
‘Falling Skies’ season 3 rains down its 10th and final episode of the year with season 3 finale “Brazil,” where the 2nd Massachusetts find that victory over the Espheni comes with a steep price from the Volm, while Tom shares his final confrontation with Karen and receives an unexpected reunion.
Previous ‘Falling Skies’ episode “Journey to Xibalba” saw Tom Mason return to base as an explosion in Charleston trapped hundreds of survivors underground, and the identity of the mole finally came to light, so what does the season finale bring?
Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Falling Skies’'s season 3 finale episode, “Brazil”!
Weaver, Pope, Anthony and a captive Lourdes roll forward on a train bound for Chicago, while Dr. Kadar and Cochise master usage of the Volm cannon on a giant barge bound for the tower in Boston. Inside the boat, Hal gives thought to how he and Karen might settle down after the war, but Karen believes herself only to be good for fighting. Meanwhile in Chicago, Weaver and his team find mechs prepared to greet them, as the distraction team opens fire.
With the Boston tower largely deserted, Tom gives the order for Kadar to fire, for which the cannon produces a giant ball of light that impacts the tower, but does little apparent damage. Two beamers arrive inbound, quickly taken down by Hal on the turret, before the Boston tower finally gives way and collapses, taking the massive energy grid with it. After the victory sets in for the moment, an enormous snowflake-shaped Volm ship descends from above, and lands atop the destroyed tower.
Later, with the group outside celebrating victory, Tom plots for his meeting with the Volm commander, hoping to involve Ben and the Rebel Skitters where possible. Before long, Weaver, Pope and the others return to camp, eliciting further cheers. The duo thank Cochise and the Volm for leading a rescue operation, before Cochise reveals they’ll have their meeting with the commander the next morning. With the Espheni heading north, Tom, Pope and Weaver all toast to their victory.
The next morning inside the Volm ship, Tom and Weaver greet the commander, who reveals himself to be Cochise’s father. After exchanging pleasantries, the commander rejects Tom’s assertion that humans will take part in the further war effort, and informs them of imminent relocation to Brazil. Refusing to hear Tom and Weaver’s pleas, the commander strikes down Tom for getting too close, and orders Weaver removed.
Back in camp, Weaver tersely orders the group to prepare to ship out before the Volm can arrive to take them to Brazil. Alone in his tent, Weaver begins experiencing arm pains, falling over and struggling for a pill bottle of nitroglycerin before Jeannie finds him. Weaver asks that Jeannie not tell anyone about his condition, before Volm soldiers enter the camp and ask the resistance to lay down arms. Weaver reluctantly orders the group to stand down, seeing no alternative for the moment. As the group lowers their weapons, Pope chides Weaver for kneeling to the Volm in the manner they’d refused the Espheni.
Alone in a Volm cell, Tom receives a visit from the Volm commander, who admits his confusion that the humans resist relocation in a way none have previously. Tom explains that humans are passionate about their freedoms, and resisting those who would take them away, begging the commander for a chance to prove their worth. The commander admits he had never previously thought of breaking protocol in such a way, and agrees to consider Tom’s request.
Back in camp, Hal visits with Lourdes to assure her that he’ll take care of her the way she once cared for him, though, outside the tent, Maggie warns they may have to put the girl out of her misery. Cochise arrives to lead the survivors to the transport, by which Tom is waiting. Rather than place them on a ship, however, Cochise allows the 2nd Mass. back its weapons, and advises them to leave the Boston area. The commander steps out, warning his son that the humans may perish out on their own, but Cochise assures him these humans are different from others they’ve encountered.
Out on the road, the group expresses individual apprehensions about their new situation, before Ben halts everyone and senses an incoming beamer, one which drives Lourdes into a fit. Realizing it to be Karen, Tom and the others confront the landing party in a clearing, for which Karen steps out waving a white flag. Karen acknowledges that they shouldn’t trust her, but offers that their interests may one day align against the Volm. Karen offers a gift of trust, but Tom shoots her to the ground before she can finish.
In the ensuing battle, all of Karen’s forces are wiped out, though she herself remains dying on the ground. Hal comforts her in her last moments before Maggie coldly shoots her dead, and Tom hears a voice that leads him into the forest. Tom finds Anne alive and waiting for him, but when Tom asks about the baby, a young 6-year-old, Alexis, appears and runs to hug her father.
The next day loading up, Maggie and Hal appear distant, while Weaver and Tom admit being out on the road again feels like old times. Kadar, for the moment, has no answers about Alexis or Anne’s condition, while the group resolves to return to Charleston and form a new human resistance for their part of the war effort. Meanwhile, Alexis finds a captive Lourdes and cradles her face. Tom sees all the bugs pour out of Lourdes face and into Alexis hands, after which she turns them to dust and smiles.
Thus endeth another season of 'Falling Skies.' In spite of the show's assurance of a fourth season, we'd known from interviews with the cast and crew that season 3 would end on a less cliffhangery note than the season before it, so we weren't altogether surprised to see so few threads set up for the extended fourth season next year.
As far as the action portion of the evening, we might have liked to see a bit more time devoted to the actual assault, the larger portion of the budget clearly going into the effects shots rather than their real establishing purposes. Naturally, the true conflict of "Brazil" stems from the Volm finally revealing a more duplicitous side, though even then the commander seems rather quickly pacified, allowing the 2nd Massachusetts to go on unimpeded.
So, where does that leave us? Our heroes are out on the road again, aiming to regroup in Charleston and reconnect with the military with no (heroic) casualties to speak of. Even Anne and Alexis are revealed to be alive, though clearly Alexis' significance will become a factor next season. We're hard pressed to complain about a finale that succinctly wraps up the defense grid story, Karen's reign of tyranny, and opens up an entirely new chapter for the war, but "Brazil" definitely could have benefited from a stronger sense of conflict, loss and a clearer sense of direction going into season 4.
Well, what say you? Did you get your fill of Skitter-y ‘Falling Skies’ action? What did you think about Sunday's finale? Join the discussion in the comments, and be sure to check back for the latest details of ‘Falling Skies’ season 4 in the coming days!