Did You Miss the Action Last Week? It’s Back.
While last week’s only action scene turned out to have major consequences on this week’s episode (The Last Ship 406 – Tempest), it’s slower pace allowed the narrative to settle on some important character moments. Aww. Now, let’s get back into the fight!
This week, the Nathan James saw Captain Mike Slattery (Adam Baldwin) return to his position as CO. Meylan (Emerson Brooks) returned to CIC as XO and Chander (Eric Dane)… Chandler pinch-hit wherever he could, mostly acting as a sage adviser to the command staff. For at least one half of one episode, we got to see the crew of the James operating at full capacity, with her rightful CO (Slattery) and Chandler standing on the bridge together. Shows like this don’t let us savor special moments like that very long before something goes wrong. Although some could describe the outcome of the episode as, “could have been worse,” I say the consequences were still pretty bad.
A LOT of fellow fans chatted with me this week as we all wondered what a ship would do now with a third captain on-board. The ship’s captain-without-a-post functioned mainly as an adviser and confidant for Mike. Although he acted with as much autonomy as the ship’s CO, he never over-stepped, never countermanded, and never put the crew in a position to cast doubt on Mike’s orders. The respect he has for Mike and his abilities made that possible. The situation changed this week and from here on out, I bet Nathan James transforms to an offensive footing. Chandler will probably act as tactician -and- operator in the coming action.
Side note: Last week, Chandler advised Meylan to discount his instinct to protect the seeds and let the refugees sink. You remember? The refugee ship carrying the deceitful British spy Harry on board? Sometimes, constantly being the hero will actually get in your own way, apparently.
We saw Captain Mike back up on his feet this week, re-installed as CO of Nathan James. A few scenes gave me hope that, as many fans have wished for, Mike did not become addicted to Nostos and made it through the worst of it. First, we find Mike in sick bay, answering questions with Doc. He makes light of the sense of serenity permeating his being since the Nostos, but otherwise offers no complaints. Doc mentions his study of the Nostos and Mike never bats an eye, never asks anything more about it (like you might do if you were going to look for it later). Another scene I liked showed us Mike picking up his family’s portrait. Instead of mooning over it (or crying or something like that), he tucks it into a pocket inside his uniform. Since I want the best for Mike, I saw that as symbolically putting the memory of his family away so that he could get back to captaining a warship. The last little bit showed Mike returning to his cigar collection. While not a perfect fit, I choose to believe he recognized his body’s need for SOME kind of pharmaceutical intervention and addressed it with cigars instead of Nostos. I’m cool with that.
Stupid Fletcher (Jonathan Howard). I mean Commander Stupid Fletcher. Did you notice more sailors referred to Fletcher this week by his rank? By doing so, the crew reminds the audience of Fletcher’s patriotism to his native United Kingdom while simultaneously creating distance. Which can we get over faster: Commander Fletcher stealing the seeds and killing crewmates OR good ole’ Fletch, Sasha’s buddy, betraying the crew? This suggests to me the writers wanted to make it easier to hate that stupid turncoat’s guts a little easier. Previously, I proffered the idea that Fletcher would have remorse about his seed stealing ways and redeem himself by coming clean. All that went out the porthole when 5 (FIVE!) sailors were killed in his escape. Now, as we say in the south, there ain’t no goin’ back for “good ole’ Fletch”. He earned shoot-on-sight status this week.
Fletch would steal the seeds, but feel bad and help get them back – Sure enough, he stole the seeds alright. Things went sideways and, like I previously mentioned, he and Harry killed 5 sailors, just to deliver the seeds to Giorgio (Jackson Rathbone). These actions basically make the redemption part of the prediction impossible. He may try, but it won’t matter.
The James would engage the Greeks, but come away limping – More or less I called this one correct, but not in the way I thought it would play out. The James engaged not one ship, but THREE Greek warships in a game of chicken. Although the ships didn’t exchange fire, the 5 sailors the James lost (including a very capable engineer!) from Fletcher’s collusion with Lucia scored a deep wound.
More action? Yes, please: The James will hold nothing back trying to recover the seeds. I bet we see Chandler both leading either ground or boarding action (how come this ship has no marines?) AND in temporary command of the Nathan James before too long. Unfortunately, more people will get hurt.
Hell hath no wrath: Sasha (Bridget Regan) will catch Fletch at some future point, unlikely to occur next week, and this time, she WILL shoot.
This guy is too stoic: The wound Master Chief Jeter (Charles Parnell) sustained on the bridge during the storm will have greater consequences than he is letting on. Look for him to go down when they can least afford it.
Notice what Miller (Kevin Michael Martin) read in the break room? The Odyssey. That old epic keeps staying relevant to the story this season, doesn’t it?
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