The Outpost: Sweet Victory Followed By Blackblood Betrayal – Review, Ep. 212-213

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Well, I can’t say I”m surprised by how season 2 of “The Outpost” ended. While I suspected there would be a path to victory for the queen and her followers, what came in the aftermath of that triumph sort of summed up the overall experience with the blackbloods to date for the queen, Talon and friends. I wondered how these new allies would repay their benefactor after the battle. And we saw that, didn’t we?

I’ve called Zed the “bad penny” a time or two in the past and certainly feel he lived up to that moniker in this episode as he came around one last time and turned sweet victory into bitter defeat for Queen Rosemund, Tobin, Garret, Janzo and the others. However, given what we witnessed, it sets things up for a very interesting season 3 – a season I think we certainly deserve and have earned. “The Outpost” is a quality show that fills a unique niche in the television landscape. My hope is the “powers that be” see the value in that and we get to keep this adventure going.

However, season 2 has come to a close. So in prep for talking about it, this is the spot where I set plaguelings in place and warn you about SPOILERS ahead. That’s right, there are SPOILERS coming, so if you don’t want to be “spoiled,” stop here. If you’re good to go, please read on.

The Outpost — “This is Our Outpost” — Image Number: OUT213_0005b.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Jake Stormoen as Garrett and Jessica Green as Talon — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

First, let me say how much I enjoyed the double episode finale. Let’s face it, two hours of storytelling on “The Outpost” is pretty sweet stuff and I enjoyed it. The chance to see the final chapters of this season’s tale played out back-to-back certainly gave the finale a nice kick. Lots of details, revelations and then the fighting, which I always enjoy. Yeah, the double episode finish worked just fine for me. So, Kudos to Dean Devlin and his people for going back-to-back and giving us a lengthy send-off for season 2.

And what a send-off. So much leading up the climax, and while I enjoy the intrigue and storytelling, I am partial to a healthy amount of swordplay. We got that in buckets by the episode’s end, didn’t we? The Prime Order army, now under the control of Sana and her kinge, prepares to lay seige to The Outpost when the queen comes up with a clever plan – lure most of the army into the outpost and spring a trap. Nicely done with the deserted-looking outpost and then slamming the gate shut. And with that, the arrows flew, the swords clanged and the blood started to spill. I giggled with sheer delight.

But as the carnage unfolded, some interesting developments occurred. First and foremost, we lost someone, someone very dear to me. The Mistress was killed defending Munt (that’s right, he returned) and Janzo from Prime Order soldiers. I love the work done by Robyn Malcolm in this role and to see her die was really devastating for me. I just couldn’t believe it, particularly in a noble effort to protect her “boys.”

The Outpost — “This is Our Outpost” — Image Number: OUT213_0006b.jpg — Pictured: Jelena Gavrilović as Sana — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

Janzo was crushed and Munt went berserk, which was fun to watch. Armed with a large hammer-type weapon, Munt proceeded to wade into the Prime Order soldiers and lay waste to them, one-two-three. It was a terrific Munt moment. There’s just too much for me to unpack here emotionally, but losing The Mistress really hits me where I live. I will miss her guile, her opportunism, her wise counsel to the queen, and her ability to find adaptability in just about every situation.

For me, the loss of The Mistress is a big loss. She was an important component of the show. Ugghh, I’m still devastated. We also had a nice moment between Tobin and Garret (Jake Stormoen & Aaron Fontaine, nice job on that respect-laden tension you give off) as they were cutting their own path through Prime Order soldiers. I’m telling you, these two feel like they have a little “band of brothers” vibe going. In the midst of cutting and hacking, they spot each other and give a nod to one another, the universal male signal of respect and honor. I don’t know, it just felt special.

Our heroes win that first battle, but there is more to come. Turns out Sana has a couple more armies rolling into town and given the casualties “The Outpost” has suffered after their successful ambush, the odds are not looking good. Remember, Naya has come back and told them of the explosive device, something that Talon and Garret confirmed upon their return. So that’s still in play as we see more soldiers roll into the Prime Order camp. Sana seems to be quite hungry for victory and death. Maybe it’s that white facial paint she’s wearing. Perhaps it’s too tight?

The Outpost — “This is Our Outpost” — Image Number: OUT213_0001b.jpg — Pictured: Jake Stormoen as Garrett — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

Here’s where things get interesting. In their desperation, a couple of plans are hatched. Before dying, The Mistress hinted at the tunnels and Janzo susses out what she meant. One of the tunnels leads right underneath the Prime Order encampment. Janzo, brilliant mind that he is even as he morns the loss of “mom,” has developed his own explosive powder. He used it in the ambush (he seemed to take quite a lot of delight at its power) and the plan is to blast a whole in the ground, giving Garret an opening to make a rush for Sana (he wants to kill her bad) and perhaps set off the device.

While that’s in motion, Talon takes it upon herself to summon Zed back, as well as other blackbloods and their La’Qiri. And the battle is on again (Nice traitor in the queen’s guard who sabotages the outpost gate), this time with some help. In the end, the battle is won, Garret gets his revenge (I think Sana really did have a thing for him – can you blame her?), and the device is set off in the camp to devastating effect. In short, this battle with the Prime Order is over and won, so it should be cause for celebration, right?

Freaking Zed (Reece Ritchie, I loathe this character. Well done, sir). As the queen extends her hand of friendship to Zed and the other blackbloods on hand, the tables are turned and Zed informs them “The Outpost” is a blackblood port and they are his prisoners – and the front gate shuts to emphasize the point. Are you kidding me? All this effort and sacrifice and Zed turns out to be just as untrustworthy as I’d suspected from the start.

The Outpost — “This is Our Outpost” — Image Number: OUT213_0004b.jpg — Pictured: Aaron Fontaine as Tobin — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

It’s clear to me that we need a season 3, if for no other reason than to get to the bottom of this blackblood-human dynamic and how it went so horribly wrong. And why Talon’s mom chose not to bring them back when she could have. I suspect “mom” knew there would be issues. Now Talon knows it too. The blackblood equation just fascinates me and the way this ended begs for explanation and more stories.

So that’s where we are as season 2 closes – The Prime Order defeated (for now), the blackbloods in control of The Outpost, and plenty of uncertainty looming over what may happen next. For the love of all that is holy, could we round up one other blackblood that has some honor and integrity? Was Talon’s time among humans the tonic needed to draw those qualities out of her?

Obviously, her kinsmen aren’t too keen on doing the honorable thing. By the way, kudos to Jessica Green, whom I think has really taken Talon to another level this season. Just really enjoyed the season 2 journey of our badass blackblood and Green is a big reason why. If you read this, Jessica, much love.

What disturbs me about this whole scenario was that I expected the queen to heartily thank them and invite them back to this realm to re-occupy their old lands, etc. You know, the olive branch of peace and friendship thing? But no, Zed and his cronies appear to have malice in their heart. So that’s going to be interesting in season 3. Note my optimism. Yeah, I said it. Season 3.

The Outpost — “This is Our Outpost” — Image Number: OUT213_0002b.jpg — Pictured: Jessica Green as Talon — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

But that was just the end, wasn’t it? On our way to that horrible twist, we learned that Naya and Janzo appear to be brother and sister (Munt loved the idea), that Alton wasn’t really the queen’s long-lost brother, but a family friend just looking to survive, and that Garret’s thirst for vengeance hasn’t helped his mind and soul heal. On the radio show I do about “The Outpost,” I posited the thought that I’d rather see Garret not end up with Queen Gwynn, but perhaps go on walkabout as he processed all that had happened to him. Turns out, that’s exactly what he was about to do when Zed and the blackblood baddies hatched their plan.

As I’ve noted before, Garret’s honor has been sullied by who he became and what he’d done, something that still rattled around in his head. He knew he couldn’t stay or be the man the queen had once loved. Unfortunately, now he’s trapped, though I think he and Tobin will have something to say about that, along with Talon who must be getting tired of the whole blackblood betrayal mentality.

There’s so much to like in these episodes, and far too much to rehash here. Naya returns, demonstrating her devotion to the queen. Talk about honorable, she could have easily lit out for parts unknown, but she came back to warn the queen. I mean, let’s face it, there was something somewhat amusing about Naya, Janzo, the Mistress and “Sammy” all being in the klink at the same time. It was also pleasing to see the queen kind of recalibrate herself and get back to being the person that Tobin has been telling her that she is. She even references those words upon their release. She’s certainly found a family this season, hasn’t she?

The Outpost — “In the Worst Corner of My Memory” — Image Number: OUT212_0004b.jpg — Pictured: Amita Suman as Naya — Photo: Aleksander Letic/NBCU International — © 2019 Outpost TV LLC. Courtesy of Electric Entertainment.

Those qualities were somewhat lacking in the last couple of episodes, but she finally turned on the switch to the honorable side of her soul. Let’s face it, Naya, Janzo and The Mistress, while committing offenses, had all served important roles in her cause – and with pure intent. I was happy to see her release them and acknowledge their contributions to her successes to that point.

As for Sammy? Hey, you can’t fault a guy for trying, can you? And it was a nice touch his admitting that he’s always had a thing for Rosemund. Awww, that was nice, wasn’t it? And when sword came to spear, he mixed it up with the Prime Order soldiers as well – even getting a little skewering for his efforts. Interesting to see what his role might be moving forward.

For my money, season 2 of The Outpost really moved the bar up a few notches in terms of the storytelling, the settings and the characters. Jelena Gavrilovic as Sana was a delightfully corrupting influence; Adam Johnson as Munt is always a joy to have on screen (#TeamMunt); Imogen Waterhouse continues to take Queen Gwynn on a developing ride; and the work of Anand Desai-Barochia is superlative as Janzo continues to develop so well. There’s just a lot to like about “The Outpost” right now.

I feel as though this show has really hit its stride in terms of the many components that go into it and feel it would be a disservice to the show and the fandom to not continue on with this story. Particularly given the blackblood presence is re-establishing itself, something that should be fascinating to watch develop. And with that, season 2 is at a close and we await word on season 3 and beyond. The Outpost is a unique show on the TV landscape, something that I appreciated more and more with each passing episode in season 2. Let’s let folks now we want that uniqueness to continue.

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John Baker