Although one could argue that the entire existence of The 4400 is for the purpose of throwing out a whole lot of questions that aren’t necessarily going to be answered, the second season has come up with two big question marks in particular. Yes, there is the ongoing saga of Jordan Collier and just what his true motivations might be with the 4400 centers, not to mention that whole thing where Maia is predicting that Mommy’s bosses will pay for betraying the 4400. However the real question marks, in my mind, start with Isabelle, Richard and Lily’s cute, cuddly, and seemingly capable of serial murder at any whim baby. The other big question mark is Kyle Baldwin, the once-in-a-coma son of NTAC specialist Tom Baldwin, who channeled the future humans in order to tell us the purpose of the 4400, and recent victim of unexplained, random blackouts. In this last episode, we got a few more hints to the mysteries, but not a whole lot in terms of answers.Since I didn’t recap the last episode and want to get caught up at some point in time, you will have to have the one-paragraph version of events for the episode that I skipped. In short, Jordan tracks down Richard and Lily, but Isabelle has no problems with Jordan, so they decided to go back to the 4400 center. While that was going on, Kyle had another blackout, this time while his cousin Danny (older brother of Shawn and hater of all things alien, including Shawn, who tapped Danny’s girlfriend last season, or so we think) was about to get into a fight with some meatheads. Diana and Tom spent their time trying to figure out why some parents accused a teacher of child abuse simply because she used her 4400 power to make them music and art prodigies. Got it? Sweet. I’ll fill in more gaps as needed.
Jordan has always been obsessed with Isabelle. He believes that she is the key to the future. Now that she is back and she isn’t, you know, warping his mind to kill himself with a shotgun, he enjoys talking to her, rolling her around in the stroller, etc., etc. And he has many happy thoughts on his mind, including the success of the 4400 centers, and the upcoming 4400 reunion. It was going to be just like old times, with as many of the 4400 coming back as possible, but we are assuming everybody is coming at their own free will and that there will be a lack of anal probes and/or memory loss.
As exciting as all of that is, Maia is here to rain on that parade. Maia is pretty darn accurate at her visions, and her latest vision was so scary that she woke up and had to tell her mom. “He’s going to die!” and “he” == Jordan Collier.
I knew that they were looking to shake things up, but would they really kill off Jordan Collier? The 4400 movement is tied to him in so many ways, you wonder what would happen if he wasn’t around any more. It seems like he has prepared a lot for his departure, with Shawn basically getting everything, but he is a powerful and charismatic figurehead.
Anyway, after Maia tells Diana, Diana has no choice but to tell her bosses, even though she has told people Maia is not having visions anymore. NTAC decides to tell Jordan, but they are met with a lot of resistance. I mean, it just sounds a little too convenient, no? “Well, uhhh, there’s this girl, and, um, she, ahhh, can tell the future, and she like, said you were going to die. We want you to be safe so, ahhh, we thought that, like, maybe you should hide in a bunker, until, um, further notice? ‘Time frame’? I don’t know…forever?” Jordan really doesn’t want to buy it because his indefinite detention would be of major use to NTAC as they see him as an agitator.
Even though he doesn’t believe that NTAC would be creative enough to come up with such an elaborate scheme to get him detained, he brushes them off anyway, saying that he has plenty of his own security and that he isn’t worried. Shawn isn’t so sure. Although he admonished Jordan for having sex with that celebrity just to get some 4400 recognition and was bewildered at how anybody could become so attached to one person in the movement when he learned the assistant Devon had slept with him as well, you can see that Shawn also cultivates a lot of those dependencies, although we are pretty sure he is not sleeping with Collier in order to gain spirituality, despite what that Larry Ellison-meets-Karl Hungus beard Billy Campbell has been sporting tells us.
Kyle has his own problems though. Last time, he befriended a bunch of homeless kids, bought them a guitar, and accidentally used his powers on one of them when he was about to die. Now some people know his secret, and since Vancouver is too far away and Hilary Clinton isn’t president, they know that the best chance at free health care lies with Shawn. One of the homeless kids, a young girl named Liv, who Shawn sort of was hot for even though she was already in a nice committed relationship (he always goes after the ones who are taken), begs him to help, but Shawn tells her that he can’t help everybody, and if he could, it drains him anyway. She storms off, or actually, she probably just shuffled off, since she had some homeless and/or injured stragglers along for the ride, but you know she’ll be back again.
When she does come back, she is looking for some more healing. She is clearly high, and her boyfriend is not around. Shawn once again says that he can’t heal everybody, but he can give her what helped him heal himself. I am not sure on the exact quote, but it was laden with a very similar style of cheese bullshit. What was that gift? A 4400 key of course! She takes it, and starts on her path to being off drugs, and not with any of those fancy pills those psychiatrists try to prescribe. Take that Brooke Shields! In all seriousness, I can’t tell if they are trying to make us sympathetic to pseudo-religions (*cough* Scientology *cough*) or are trying to mock them.
Things have started to pick up for Lily and Richard, however. The reason why they were able to get back in the good graces of Jordan was because of the help of her ex-husband. To thank him, she meets him at a local market they used to frequent with a gift for her daughter. She knows that she can’t see her first daughter, but she knows it is her birthday and wants to give her a gift. Lily may have been gone for ten years, but she still knows what is in vogue with the kids these days, having bought her a handbag.
Lily probably thought that would be the end of it, but the next day, Heidi shows up at the 4400 center. She skipped school to meet her mother. Heidi says that she always heard her parents arguing about Lily, and she just wanted to meet her mom for once. Like any person who has been apart from her parents for so long, she just wanted to know what happened. Heidi knew her mom had tried to contact her, and her mom assured her that she never spent a day without thinking of her.
Now that those formalities are out of the way, the only thing is to meet the rest of the family. Lily brings Heidi to meet her step-dad, Richard, and her half-sister Isabelle. Richard is so very glad to meet Heidi, especially since he knows that it was so very hard on Lily being estranged from her daughter. Isabelle, on the other hand, wasn’t so happy to see Heidi. I thought for sure Heidi would most likely be OK, but Isabelle had other ideas. She started crying as soon as Heidi came any closer to her, and knowing how sensitive Isabelle is, Lily said that she should go, and maybe she can pick up Isabelle next time. Phew! That was close; at least she got by unscathed, right? Well, I wouldn’t go that far.
Lily’s husband came to see her, and Lily was about to go and tell him that it wasn’t his fault that Heidi came to see her, and it wasn’t in violation of her restraining order (yes, dad put a restraining order on mom, thinking daughter wouldn’t be able to handle her mom’s return from future human abduction). Her husband stopped her, however, saying that Heidi became sick and had to have her spleen removed. Apparently, her spleen ruptured for no apparent reason, but the doctors said she would make a full recovery. Shit, soon it’s going to be like that episode of the Twilight Zone where the town is completely held hostage because this one kid can control everything with his mind. (If you haven’t seen that one, it also happens in a Simpsons Treehouse of Horror episode.) Before Isabelle was just a little bit of a handful, but if she is just hurting people for no reason, perhaps it’s time to really consider if this baby is really evil.
I was trying to think of a nice segue from baby to college boy so I could talk to Kyle, but I couldn’t think of a good one, so I’ll just jump right in. Kyle has been having blackouts, but doesn’t want to tell his dad. Only his cousin and his hot comp lit teacher know. Like most kids in college, he sees the weekend as a chance to blow off some steam, and wouldn’t you know it! Look who’s in town playing at a local bar! None other than “The Kills.” No, that is not a typo. I didn’t mean to say “The Killers,” although I am sure that is what the producers wanted us to think of.[So the Kills are actually a real band. Thanks AC slater.] Or perhaps not. Mabye the Killers were playing at the Bait Shop and couldn’t be bothered with a community college in Seattle. Eh, this joke was funnier before I went to make some rice, so I’ll just get on with it.
While at the concert for “The Kills,” Kyle has another episode. He doesn’t know what is happening to him, but we see that he is digging for something. Hmm, what could it be? Well, we won’t find out, because the next thing we know, he’s awake and sprawled out in the hallway of his hot teacher’s apartment building (Which reminds me, I always wanted to create a blog where I just record my dreams, which I figure might bring some mild amusement to some folks). His teacher is worried, and really freaked out, and tells him to leave. He tries to tell her it was another blackout, but she shuts the door. When he catches up with her the next day, she tells him he needs to get professional help. The nerve! Kyle gets all defensive, not understanding why this woman he has hardly known for a couple of months dares tell him solving his problem might involve more than reading “Chicken Soup for the Comatose Soul.” He storms off once again like the whiny little bitch he is.
So, this 4400 reunion thing. Jordan decides that he is going to visit Maia and see what all the fuss is about. He knocks on the door (luckily her mom is gone and it is just her Aunt April around; btw I love how british chicks say “auntie.” Did you need to know that? Not really, but I thought I would tell you anyway) and when Maia opens it and sees him, she drops her glass, saying that “it’s not her fault” and runs away. Jordan tries to apologize, and by the look on his face, you can tell he saw the look on her face and knew what she said about his death wasn’t a lie.
Wow, what to do? You don’t want to live in fear, but then again you don’t want to, well, die. If only there was some other way to look into the future? I got it! How about your new best friend baby with the supernatural powers? She’s like the Fantastic Four and all of the X-men put together. During one of his stroller jaunts around the grounds, Jordan touches Isabelle’s finger, and she gives him a glimpse into the future. In this future, he is well-respected, and more importantly, has gray hair, meaning he is going to live awhile. That’s all the proof Jordan needs, and he goes ahead with the reunion plans.
Is she a cold-hearted snake? Look into her eyes…
Even though Jordan is secure with his future, NTAC is still doing a lot of work. They profile several people who would be out to kill Jordan, including one person who mortgaged his house to study at the 4400 center, but oops! they didn’t want him anymore after he had no more money to spend. There was even a guy who created a gun and bullets from a polymer, much like Malkovitch in that movie, what was it called? Oh yeah, “In the Line of Fire”! I knew that title sounded familiar! This guy made it into the center undetected, but NTAC made it just in time to stop him before he put a couple of bullets into Jordan.
With one attempt on his life thwarted, Jordan believes it is safe to do the reunion. Since NTAC was so gracious to save his life, he even decided it would be OK to let them provide some security. They have people roaming the hall and snipers o guarding all of the rooftops. But who is guarding the snipers? Well, I bet somebody wishes they thought of that, because just after Shawn announced Jordan, a sniper put a few rounds into Mr. Collier. How did that happen? He overpowered the other snipers, and it looked like maybe he even worked for the government, or at least he looked like he did.
From there, it was complete chaos. Shawn was distraught. The paramedics were quick, but they were of no help. Shawn tried a couple of times to save Collier, once being caught on film, but it was of no use. He simply said “she lies,” probably referring to Isabelle, and dropped dead. Tom raced to try and find the sniper, but of course the sniper was smarter than the government agent. BTW, what kind of person who is trying to not identify himself as a sniper leaves a building he knows people are going to check wearing a ski mask? What part of incognito doesn’t he understand? The cog or the nito?
Looks like Maia is still batting 1.000. Jordan’s funeral service is the next day, complete with open casket viewing. Luckily the sniper didn’t hit him in the head. Shawn gives the eulogy, and after everybody has left, when he is discussing the senseless death with Tom and Diana, somebody notices that Jordan’s body is missing. Whaaa? It’s kind of hard to run off with a body, especially since somebody was watching the door. It’s just another blow to Shawn, who now must take over running the movement. Jordan said he wasn’t ready to be a martyr, but clearly the answer wasn’t up to him. Shawn’s homeless friend Liv shows up to show Shawn how she is drug-free, has some clean clothes, and once the lice are gone, she’ll be ready for some action. Shawn wants nothing to do with her however; he is still in pain from Jordan’s death. He had tried to tell Liv he couldn’t save everybody, and Jordan was a perfect example.
But that is not even the most interesting part of the episode. When we are about to get our outro, we see that the sniper is hiding his weapon. How is he doing it? Is he digging?! Wasn’t Kyle digging earlier and didn’t know what he was doing…what? Kyle is burying the sniper’s gun? Was Kyle the sniper?!
All of this leads to some crazy speculation. What if Kyle’s blackouts aren’t random? What if the person who possessed him when he woke up from the coma had to come back? And why didn’t he come back in a flash of light? And we haven’t even started with the Isabelle speculation. Is she evil? Why does she hate her older sister so much? Did she lie to Jordan on purpose? Or was her version of the events just a reflection of what Jordan wanted to see? It’s all too confusing, but I know I’ll be watching this weekend.