Well, here we are. The season finale of Jericho. I for one never thought it would get this far; after all, it’s a non-CSI, non-procedural CBS drama starring Skeet Ulrich. Who on earth would have predicted that it could last an entire season? Rumors are that cancellation is not too far away, but I’m just so giddy that Friday Night Lights got renewed, I can barely concentrate on anything else. Go Panthers!
Er, and Jerichoians. (?) We pick up this week where we left off last week: at a wedding six years ago. Wait, what? Apparently it’s Eric’s wedding, and I have to say, he looks like a completely different person when his muffy beard is shorn off. It’s like Normal Looking Human vs. Weepy Mountain Man. No contest. The Greens are posing for a family picture, when they suddenly realize that Jake is not there. Come on people, there are only four members of your family, a head count should not be necessary to notice someone’s missing.Back to the present. The gang is in a meeting at city hall, and we are informed that New Bern has taken over a farm, and that Jericho is vastly outnumbered and outgunned. Gulp. Papa insists that they need to stick together, that splitting up across town would just be a bad idea. They decide to head off to Stanley’s farm and make a final stand there, amongst the chicken carcasses that Mimi has left behind. Mango margaritas for all!
There is a brief shot of the New Berners mobilizing their trucks. The camera pans out to reveal an enormous convey stretching out forever. Gulp.
The line to see Georgia Rule
Sixty miles away, on some random state route, there are a handful of dead people chillaxing on the side of the road. A handful of troops survey the scene, then notice that one person is still alive. And that person is…Heather. Fantastic. We’ll have a fertilizer-fueled ice machine up and running in no time.
Flashback to the wedding. Jake, his grandfather, Emily, and Stanley have all ditched the reception and are getting plastered at Mary Bailey’s bar. Grandpa tells a story about how, in World War II, there was a small town trying to defend themselves, and they were totally outnumbered. The opposing general sent a note that gave them a choice: fight or die, or surrender and live. The American sent a note back that simply said, “Nuts.” As in fuck you. Or possibly they misunderstood the question and answered which ice cream topping they like best. Either way, IT’S A METAPHOR. It won’t be the last. Mama tracks them all down and pulls them back to the reception. She stops Jake and gives him a set of notes for his best man speech to Eric. He shows her that he already has some. But honestly, it’s just a drawing of a cow.
“What do you mean, I’m ‘Johnny Depping’ all over the place?”
Hawkins informs Jake and Papa that he has a military satellite. Bwah? That would have been helpful, oh, in EVERY SINGLE SITUATION PRECEDING THIS WAR. I guess Hawkins kinda sucks. He tells them they can use it to track the New Berners, on one condition: no one can know that this information is coming from him. Well, this isn’t shady at all. Papa is on board! Jake is surprised that he’s not asking any more questions, and Papa then wins the prize for best line of the night: “I am about to go to war with New Bern, Kansas. The home of the nearest Costco. Today is already just about as weird as I can handle.” Hehe. I love Papa. I hope he’s around for a loooooong time.
“I just love their savings!”
Stanley, Mimi, and Bonnie are out in the back of their field, paying respects to Stanley and Bonnie’s dead parents. Stanley introduces them to Mimi, who says hello and “It’s nice to finally meet you.” Hehe. She goes on to say that she has enjoyed living with Stanley, and he fake-freaks out, saying that he hasn’t told them that yet. Mimi gets scared for a moment, then sees that he was joking, then stabs him through the heart with a pointy umbrella. Wait, no. Different movie (starring Skeet Ulrich!).
Back at the house, Fat Cop informs Papa that they have a total of two hundred men, including Dale’s group. A few more are trickling in as they finish saying goodbye to their families, but the point is they’re pretty much screwed. They begin heading out to the field, and Grey starts to go with them, but Papa stops him, saying that they elected him leader and he needs to be protected at all costs, so he will be staying back at the house. Also, Papa needs him to help arm the TANK. Finally. I was beginning to wonder if they forgot about that thing, like it was sitting in a storage closet somewhere collecting dust amongst a pile of board games and soiled hats.
We find out that Allison has been stationed at City Hall, while Darcy gets to stay at home to watch Sam and follow Hawkins’ shady dealings. He gets the satellite up and running, then radios over to Jake that the New Berners are coming already, causing Jake to alert his men. Hawkins then notices that his actions are being tracked and someone is trying to trace his location. He tells Darcy that his guess is that it’s Valenti, the former head of Homeland Security. She tells him to shut down immediately, but he tells her that it should be fine as long as he disconnects the feed before the trace is finished. How very 24 of you, show.
“This is so much FUN!”
Heather wakes up in a hospital bed, then gets up and makes her way outside. She finds herself in a giant army base, with plenty of army dudes swarming everywhere. A subtitle informs us that this is Camp Liberty, in southwest Nebraska. Heather looks confused. Though, let’s be honest, Hot Pockets confuse Heather as well.
Team Jericho is still sitting around, waiting for New Bern to show up. Finally, two men appear in the distance. For a moment I think that these are just two random country bumpkins who have stumbled onto the wrong piece of land at the wrong time, but no, after looking around they signal to someone behind them and the trucks start rolling in. Team Jericho, surprised at their numbers, scramble out and take their positions. “We’re gonna need that tank,” mutters Eric. Oh, Eric. Shut up. The shots cut back and forth between Jake and the New Bern sniper, who at long last takes the first few shots.
Flashback to the wedding. Eric approaches Jake and also tries to give him a prepared speech, because he doesn’t want him to ruin his special day. He calls Jake’s life a joke, and says that people wonder what the hell he’s doing. He came home from flight school and then did nothing. Jake pulls it out of Eric that he didn’t choose him as his best man, that Mama made him. So Eric was a total wuss back then as well. And here we are, six years later, and he still hasn’t grown a pair.
Team Jericho is still fighting. They have to hold out until the tank gets there, so Jake tells everyone to keep drawing fire. He runs up a nearby hill to go get a better shot.
Hawkins is watching all of this on his satellite. Darcy should go make popcorn or something. Instead, she bugs him about why the government would want to eliminate the witnesses. Hawkins points out that he has the last bomb, which, as Darcy puts it, is “the smoking gun behind the greatest crime in the history of the world.” Darcy has quite the penchant for the melodramatic.
Jake finally arrives at the top of the hill. He manages to take out the New Bern sniper. Then there is more shooting, until…the tank arrives! The peasants rejoice! Upon seeing the tank, the New Berners proceed to soil themselves and run away comically. The tank slowly turns and fires, blowing up a truck. Team Jericho celebrates, but the mirth and merriment is cut short when Jake and Eric realize that dear Papa has been shot.
Jericho + Tank = Hilarious Deadly Hijinks
They bring him into Stanley’s kitchen and lay him out on the counter. I think it’s safe to say that Mimi won’t be making any more Headless Chicken Surprise there for a while. They clean the wound and apply pressure, while Emily is sent to go get Dr. Kenchy. Surely the apathetic, alcoholic doctor will be able to help! Hawkins radios in and informs Jake that they have a little bit of time to regroup, since the New Berners are just waiting for more men to assemble right now, so the Greens should have just enough time to squeeze in a tearful goodbye.
Heather goes up to a random army guy and demands to speak to whoever’s in charge. I laugh at her because, who does she think she is? But then I laugh even harder when the dude is all, “Yes, ma’am! Whatever you say, random stranger!” She meets with the commanding officer and tells him about the war with New Bern. He says there’s nothing he can do, he’s just a government employee. Yeah, that’s the same line my mailman fed me when I asked him if I could speak to the President. They’re full of lies, those “government employees”. Heather asks which government he’s talking about, and he informs her and us that the federal government has been restored and now resides in Cheyenne, Wyoming. How Brokeback.
Papa is dying. He shoos everyone out of the house except for his two sons. “You’ve both been constant disappointments to your mother and I,” he fails to say. Instead, he tells them that he’s sorry that they have to see this. He says he wishes that Mama were here, and wants the boys to tell her that he loves her. Aw. Okay, I get a little sad at that one. After that, it’s kind of hard to make out what he’s saying – he must have gotten that disease that dying people develop wherein they mumble everything they’re saying so that we, the audience, can’t understand a damn thing. I think he goes on tell Jake that he was hard on him and he pushed him away, but he’s glad that he came home. He tells both boys that he loves them, then he dies. PAPA NOOOO! Your Costco membership had three whole months left!!
He died as he lived. Bored by his spawn.
Jake and Eric hug, then exit the house. So Jake is in charge now. God help us all.
“Slinkys and Fruit Roll-Ups for all!”
Back in time at the wedding, Jake is stumbling around like a drunken maniac. It’s time for his big best man speech. He starts off by making fun of the other speeches that people suggested that he give, then calls them out as being lame. He goes on to say that everyone used to think Eric was gay (this is comedy gold!) but even though he teases him a lot he’s still proud of him. He praises Eric as being kind, gay, giving, gay, and very lucky. And gay.
Back in the present, Jake gives the news to Team Jericho quite simply: “My father’s dead. We’ll get through.” Grey and Stanley run back into the house, presumably to go through Papa’s wallet.
“Eric and I are going into modeling. Don’t try to stop us! This beauty must be shared with the world!”
They all decide to get Grey back into town, because he’s far to important now to be out in the field. Haha, whereas before we had a backup mayor in the form of Papa. Now our backup is Jake. It’s a world too horrible to imagine. Mama finally arrives and they all leave the house so she can cry over the body. And also steal a credit card.
Jake is sitting outside on the porch, when Emily walks over and gives him a hug. He lets loose with a big old cry, and it’s one of those laughy kinds of cries wherein my father, if he were watching, would remark “What’s so funny?” Hawkins crackles back on the radio to inform them that a couple hundred men from New Bern are mobilizing and will be there in about twenty minutes. Also, strangely enough, there is a train plugging along the tracks along the river. Hawkins tries to give more details, but the tracking program finishes, which means his location is going to be given away. Darcy yells at him to disconnect, but he stays on just long enough to tell Jake that the train is coming, and is filled up with hundreds of reinforcements. Darcy snaps the computer shut, and Hawkins tells Jake he’s on his way. Well. I think it’s safe to say that Jericho is totally fucked.
Back at Camp Liberty, the commander is in some sort of a video conference, and is reporting to Someone about the skirmish between Jericho and New Bern. That Someone turns out to be Valenti of Homeland Security. He tells the commander that there is a suspected terrorist in that area, and that they are to crush the skirmish and then begin a search for the terrorist. Which shouldn’t be too hard. Hawkins IS the only dark-skinned dude in Kansas.
Stanley tells Jake that he’s proposing to Mimi. Aw. Then he says that he doesn’t want to die today. Well, duh. Jake promises that they’ll both make it out of there, and I promise myself that if this show somehow gets renewed I’m going to watch next season completely drunk.
Hawkins shows up and reminds them that Constantino is very close. Hawkins is always full of delightful news. He tells them that the train is about twenty minutes away, and that he needs to borrow the tank. Stanley and Jake are confused, since it doesn’t have any ammo left, but Hawkins slyly says that he’s not going to shoot. They wish him luck. So do I.
While Team Jericho sits around with their thumbs up their asses waiting for New Bern, Emily tells Jake that his father is watching. So no pressure! We flashback one final time to the wedding, where Dad and Jake meet outside the reception. He tells Jake that it was a nice speech, and Jake admits that Mama wrote it. Papa tells him not to worry, that one day he will become the man he was born to be. Aww, I’m gonna miss Papa. He was so full of encouragement. And lies.
Constantino calls one last time on the radio. He says he’s sorry about Papa’s death, and reminds them yet again that they can’t win this war. He gives them one last chance to give up, so Jake picks up the radio and says, “Nuts.” Ohhh, I get it. Like he said before. SYMBOLISM. “You’re the one I’m coming for,” he snarls into the radio. Constantino laughs heartily, probably.
Heather asks the army men to take her home. They inform her that Jericho has just been moved up to the top of the priority list, so they’re going to do just that. She is pleased, then glances up at the new reincarnation of the American flag.
Somewhere, Betsy Ross weeps.
Team Jericho waits, still. Jake leads them in yet another rousing speech. “My father expected us to take a stand here. To defend our home. That’s what we’re gonna do.” And with that, they take their positions as New Bern moves in. A pack of helicopters fly overhead, and Hawkins doesn’t look too happy about it. Jake gives the signal (a hearty “NOOOOWWW!!”) and gunfire erupts as we go to credits.
So, that’s it? No resolution at all? I understand the concept of a cliffhanger, but since I don’t really care about what happens to these people I guess it just doesn’t have the same effect. All evidence points to the fact that Jericho’s ass will be whipped soundly. Maybe next season the show will be called New Bern. And it’s just not going to be the same without good ole Mayor McCheese. As this is the end of the season, and perhaps the entire series, I just wanted to say that despite my constant griping, I certainly did enjoy ripping this here show and Jake’s facial expressions apart each week, and I would like to thank each of my loyal readers. All three of you.