Revolution Recap: It's Lights Out for [Spoiler] -- Plus, a (Coal-)Burning Question Answered?

Warning: The following recap, by the very definition of the word “recap,” contains spoilers from NBC’s Revolution.

NBC’s Revolution, in its fourth outing, busted out one of the oldest tricks in the book: inviting us to care, more than we had done to date, about a major-ish character, before killing that person off.

In this case, it was Maggie, the steely British doctor who had been Ben Matheson’s “lady friend” and joined Charlie in the mission to find Danny after Ben was killed by the militia.

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In flashback, we saw that Maggie had been working here in the States and was Skyping with her two rugrats at home across the pond at the time the blackout hit. The tragedy of her tale then become apparent, as the mother truly labored, trekking vast expanses of land, trying to get to a point from which she could embark for home. But when she arrived where she had been told might get her to the Atlantic Ocean, her sliver of hope was dashed. Tall ships and steamboats* had been destroyed in the post-apocalyptic war (along with all the good lumber to rebuild), and there was simply no way for one to get from the US of A to Europe.

Distraught by the futility of her situation — and without even a way to make contact with her kids, if they themselves were even still alive — Maggie decided to poison herself… but was interrupted by Ben, who found her by a lake and invited her to break bread (or the like) with him and his family.

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In the here and now (meaning 15 years from now), Maggie, Charlie, Miles and Aaron’s latest travels ran them afoul of a very nasty pack of dogs, and in the course of escaping, Maggie shot her crossbow at one. The dogs’ mad (and I mean mad) owner later exacted vengeance by running a knife into Maggie, slicing an artery, before he took Charlie prisoner and lassoed her to a booby trap. Miles, with help from “Nate,” managed to kill the dogs’ owner and save Charlie, and despite Aaron’s best efforts as a surgeon/suturer, Maggie bled out, but not before imagining one last glance at her iPhone photos of her kiddies.

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Also in the episode: A nasty storm trapped “weather whisperer” Danny, who had been caught (again) in the midst of (another) escape, with Capt. Neville, until a roof nearly caved in on both of them. Danny made the difficult decision to save a pinned-down Neville, only to have the militia boss promptly overpower him and take the “important” lad back into custody. Elsewhere, Monroe questioned Rachel, for what apparently was the bazillionth time, about what Ben did for the DOD prior to the blackout, but she kept mum — even when Strausser the Inquisitor was brought in. Monroe warned that Danny will be here soon enough, and he might not put up such a good fight.

The hour closed with Rachel flashing back to when she parted ways with her family to “fetch supplies” and subsequently vanished, and we realized that it was planned and yet against her will — as fulfillment of some sort of a bargain she made with militia meanie…. Miles, who cuffed his sis-in-law immediately upon her surrender.

*Returning to the topic of otherwise-powered thingamabobs, the previews for next week show Miles & Co. aiming to blow up a working locomotive. Who’s curious to hear the story on that one? Is this the show finally getting around to nipping in the bud that nitpick?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Emily says:

    I was kinda hoping Charlie was going . . .she bugs me.

    • smh says:

      right there with you.

    • Naazneen says:

      Yes yes yes. Charlie might be the main character, but i find her really unappealing.

    • Erin says:

      We were SO close :(

    • sash fan says:

      They are not going to kill off the main character. I say give Charlie a chance. She is supposed to act young and stupid right now, so her character can grow later on. Seriously, the lines they give her to say — what can an actress do?

      I’m ok that British lady went. More Juliette!!! (I mean Elizabeth Mitchell)

      • Zak says:

        Oh I have nothing against the actress playing Charlie. The problem is the writers are writing her to be bi-polar or something since the character is all over the place. The character was whiny and annoying in the pilot and sadly that’s the only episode she was consistent at any thing.

    • Evolution! says:

      Imagine you dad just died, your mom has been awol for years and presumably dead by all accounts, your brother/sister has just been kidnapped and you have no one but this one guy, who was the leader of the people you perceive as violent thugs, to depend on. Your whole world is falling apart and you’ve nobody you can trust. If I was in her position (and I was), I’d be more ‘annoying’ than her and I’m a guy! All of her queries to Miles were fundamentally right and I find no character flaw there. In fact, she’s better than most girls since she’s also badass but her moral compass is still in place as well.

      • Trent says:

        @Evolution, I agree 100%. As Charlie said last night, “everybody leaves me.” How would *any* young woman act in that situation? I really liked her apology to Maggie and her emotional breakdown during the latter’s death was well-acted, IMO. I thought last night’s episode was fantastic and the best yet.

        This show just keeps getting better and better! I’m in for the season…

    • I totally get it about Charlie… My problem is her constantly wrinkled forehead and the way she looks like she’s smiling at times when no one would smile, even though she isn’t. I know that sounds silly, but it really bugs me. One of the things, to me, that makes an actor good is the ability to act without words. Charlie always looks quizzical or snarky.

      • Gary says:

        I’m sorry she doesn’t look like someone who just came from a supermodel photoshoot. I like her realistic and yet, beautiful face. Her forehead is really expressive and takes a lot of the attention, but you can ignore that by seeing her wonderful eyes. She did get really better this episode though. I felt for her.

    • Danyelle says:

      I’m sure no one with a head on their shoulders actually thought it’d be Charlie, LOL. Oh, the snarky little internet where everyone is a world class acting coach. So charming.

  2. Josh says:

    Why would they kill off the main character seriously!

    • A.Rae says:

      Because her bad acting is dragging down the show?

    • Akemi Chandler says:

      I knew charlie wasnt going to die BECAUSE THE SHOW FOCUSES A LOT ON HER. Killing her off would give miles no reason to find danny. Then it would lose its appeal about growth of characters. And yes Charlie can be annoying but Id like to see anyone calling her that and wishing she was dead survive what shes had to go through. Honestly this is what will happen when the power goes out because we rely too much on technology for things. Charlie was supposed to watch her brother, shes trusting a man she barely knows so I think shes justified in how she acts. I love how this show is constructed because if you really think about it, if the power really did go out for good how would we survive? How will our personalities change? I wish no one had to die last night but thats what keeps people watching. How they will use that in the future.

  3. Wrstlgirl says:

    That reveal at the end, oh my!

  4. Irishgirl says:

    Are we going to find out that Miles is pretty much responsible for all the bad sh*t in this world?? So, he’s not just the former leader of the militia, and a murderer, he’s also held his sister-in-law captive for the last 10 years?? I mean, that’s some serious redemption he’ll be going through.

  5. Joseph says:

    I knew it had to be Maggie who died. Ever since it was announced a major character was going to die I just knew it. Use the process of elimination, the show would not get rid of the female and male lead, too early to write out the bad guys, the rich tech guy and the brother still have story -so her death was pretty obvious. Too bad because I kind of liked the character. Now I have to hope that Elizabeth Mitchell’s character has some experience in patching people up.

    • Kalee says:

      It also helped to know that TV Line item where it said Revolution demoted Maggie and the woman who plays Grace from series regulars to recurring characters back in the summer. ;)

  6. Disappointed about Maggie – she was one of the few characters we really liked.

    Also not particularly happy about reducing Monroe to a more cartoonish villain – he’s still interesting, but he needs to do more than simply torture people. The cliffhanger, however, is tasty and enticing. In our review of the pros and cons of the episode, it ranks pretty high.

    • melinky says:

      I TOTALLY agree about Monroe! I can’t wait to see what happened between Miles and Monroe, and why they went their separate ways. I think there’s a good story there, maybe even an unexpected twist, but they really aren’t doing much to make Monroe interesting.

      • cinephilactic says:

        I’m sure that now that they have a full season they’ll get there, but they can also afford to take their time. :(

  7. kavyn says:

    I really wanted Aaron to die, but the moment they started showing flashbacks of Maggie, it was too obvious. I’m actually incredibly pissed about how they did this episode, because they showed basically nothing of Maggie in the first few episodes (the first time we got anything from her was when the power came back on in episode 3), and then suddenly episode 4 the entire episode is dedicated to her.

    …I mean, maybe it wouldn’t have been as obvious that she would die if they didn’t make a huge deal about a main character dying. Maggie showed some serious potential of being an underdog to root for but they decided to prioritize the other characters over her.

    Also they could have done something a lot better than a stab-and-run. If that dude kidnapped Maggie instead of Charlie and put her in the gun situation instead, that would have been a million times better. Especially if they had Charlie open the door making her the cause of death.

    …But whatever, a stab-and-run’s cool too I guess…

  8. cjeffery7 says:

    i liked Maggie. and actually, i found her even more interesting AFTER those flashbacks. just the idea that she spent years – YEARS, PEOPLE! – trekking across the united states to try and get back home, and then just WANDERING all the way back to wisconsin in her distress… i mean, think of all the experiences she had along the way? all the allies she might have gained that could come in handy later? why not create a Desmond/Penny type storyline where she briefly sees or hears, or even just types with her children over a pendant-powered computer? ugh. well now i’m just making myself bitter about it. lol.

  9. I thought it was sweet for Miles to actually showed he cared a little for Charlie…but then to find him taking her mom…wow…I’m so conflicted…also, anyone else say to themselves “Is Danny a moron or what? First he tries to escape surrounded by bad guys, then he tries to escape into a frickin’ tornado??” LOL

  10. M3rc Nate says:

    I almost think i am punishing myself by watching this show. I cant stand the main chick (the actress i really like!), all her CRYING omg. And the huge pouty eyes, and the whining. Its insane.

    The BIGGEST of all things i think i have against the show…is the main plot is played as so mysterious….why is the power gone?! why wont anything new work?! Yet the answer and the whole A-plot i will solve right now. Someone created a machine (most likely multiple) that put a continuous EMP field around the whole earth…not only turning everything off, but allowing nothing new to turn on, a world wide dampening field. Its hard to say who for sure, my best guest considering the father being in the DOD and knowing it was going to happen, it the US government was working on it, the tech was stolen by a group who wanted to re-invent the world (Think Jericho), built and turned on the devices.

    The little necklace power USB things…create a tiny bubble that pushes back against that EMP field, and create a bubble in which things can be turned on (Computer, Caddle Prod/taser the baddie used)

    There…whole show solved.

    Have seen every single thing coming and thats a bad sign for a TV show, especially one only 4 episodes in and sold as huge show with huge mysteries. Every trailer: “Why is the power out?! Can we get it back on?!”.

  11. JC says:

    How is Aaron still so heavy? They’ve been walking for what—three weeks now? And how much food could he possibly be eating? He looks like he’s eating 4000 calories a day while sitting on the couch.

    • M3rc Nate says:

      Amen, dont forget…he was rich and eating (i assume) a fat guys diet 15 YEARS ago. So lets assume his wealth/food lasted him…at most 6 months? Thats 14 years 6 months of eating what you can get your hands on and only able to get around by exercising (walking, cycling etc). Also we cant forget to wonder, how long has he lived in that little community? They had a very limited food source from their own gardens, so for years he was eating what? Corn, beans, meat sometimes when available, fruit…lol hes eating a Paleo diet. He could literally only ever move to go to the bathroom and eat and be 20 lbs lighter than he is just eating what they showed in that community/towns garden.

      I dont have a issue with fat people or anything like that, but i do have issues with continuity. At least TECHNICALLY on Lost, the big guy found a stash of unhealthy food, then the Hatch which had a supply of “Western” processed foods. But they were on that island for a very limited time, months if that if i remember right…compare that to 15 years for this guy?

      Like the old days, the only fat people around would the be the rich that can afford large portions / fatty / sugary foods. With everyone else having to do manual labor and work as a community and travel by walking etc, they would all be relatively fit, im not talking six packs and huge arms, but the healthy weight for their height, burning a lot of calories a day, eating rationed but homegrown healthy meals.

      • Really! says:

        Huh, you think fat normal, poor people didn’t exist throughout the ages even if they lived healthily..! I can’t even comprehend your assumptions!

      • Renee says:

        There are physical reasons for being overweight that have nothing to do with your diet. Ever heard of hypothyroidism? People can consume basically a starvation diet and GAIN weight. Trust me on that. Since the show has never addressed his weight, we are just guessing.

        • M3rc Nate says:

          Of course there are reasons such as those, but honestly, what are the odds your born with one of those diseases? One in every thousand people? every 10 thousand people? My assumption is that 98% dont have a illness/disease that makes them fat no matter what. Dont make out the 2% to be 50%. Most larger people that were poor existed because of alcohol aka Beer, which i dont think was high up on the Revolution community farm’s priority list to make a distillery.

  12. Dieu says:

    If it wasnt the news from july, that they’ll be writing off the characther after coule of episodes, it would be surprising

  13. GK says:

    If you people really want to enjoy a show, stop reading every damn spoiler about said show!
    I didn’t know anything (I stay away from promos, trailers, most casting news, almost everything I think of as a spoiler) about the death of a major character and I literally had tears even before Maggie died when she was reminiscing about the inability to get to her kids. Being a guy, I don’t normally get emotional about shows! That was one hell of a episode! I’m really loving Revolution! Charlie just got a lot better this episode, truly likable. Miles, Monroe and Charlie’s mom – That story is so enticing now! Best new show this fall! This and Last Resort are quite impressive newbies!

    • Gary says:

      Agreed. What kind of a person who wants to be bowled over by the twists and turns, actively tries to spoil themselves and make the show less awesome than it actually is.

    • H.Houston says:

      I agree with your comment. If people are pissed because they know everything then they need to stop reading all of the spoiler sites (sorry Matt). And I too was crying. I really understood the character of Maggie and it broke my heart. I was crying as she died.

  14. Dean says:

    You know what the best thing about this episode was? It was like playing Russian Roulette. You knew one character would die, but didn’t know who. Charlie, Tom Neville and Maggie were all in life threatening situations. The writing, acting, pacing and execution were brilliant. R.I.P Maggie. You will be missed.

  15. Stephen S. says:

    I don’t understand the hate for Charlie. I like her and I like the actress who plays her. Anyways, it was obvious that Maggie was the one who was going to bite it when they started using flashbacks on her. And even more obvious when Miles was saying that he was going to leave. You knew from that that something big has to happen for Miles to change his mind about leaving and Maggie’s death was that big event. Good episode.

  16. Renee says:

    Really loving this show. And oh my are they digging a huge hole for Miles. Going to be interesting. And I think “Nate” is Capt. Neville’s son.

  17. BillK says:

    Sorry, Maggie did not look at the iphone pictures again before she died. She held the phone as her last connection to them and had a flashback. Had she looked at the pictures everyone else would have seen the device work and they didn’t. Also got to hand it to the crazy dog guy for doing what I wanted to for weeks, tape Charlie’s mouth shut. She needs to learn how to be quiet sometimes.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Hi. You may wanna give that one more read: “…but not before imagining one last glance at her iPhone photos of her kiddies.”

  18. Gary says:

    Best new drama this fall for me. Hope the ratings reflect that. If anybody isn’t a fan of this show yet, make them watch the fourth episode and they’ll love it.

  19. Jackie says:

    I am left wondering if there was more to Miles handcuffing Rachel. Here’s what I think would be most interesting:

    Monroe’s original threat was to the kids and maybe his brother but Rachel and Miles hatched a plan for it to be her that went instead. Maybe telling Monroe that Ben had told her everything anyway. It would be easier for Miles and Rachel to plot an escape later because Monroe seems the type to totally underestimate a woman. I’m wondering if before they could get Rachel out, Monroe faked-killed Rachel but Miles thought it was real. That’s when he would have lost it and walked out on Monroe after that (filled with guilt, which is why he would stay away from Ben & the kids all those years). Also, what is Rachel thought Miles knew about Monroe holding her prisoner even though he didn’t? It would set up a redemption, good plot twist, and reason for conflict between everyone once Rachel is found.

    Anyway, just my two cents.

  20. the girl says:

    I would like to issue a lesson to all good guys on TV shows and movies. Stop saving the lives of the bad guys!!! Showing them mercy is not going to make them stop wanting to kill/hurt/maim/imprison you. Assume they are above redemption and save yourself. That is all.

  21. Daisy says:

    I’m not sure I understand Matt’s nitpick. What did I miss? I’d just assumed the “locomotive” had a steam engine. No electricity needed.

  22. Clover says:

    I’m officially off this show as of last night. Can’t believe I wasted four hours of my life on this. Really bad acting (most notably Charlie, I mean c’mon on. Seriously? There were no more believable actresses out there?), bad special effects (the tornado), the endless violence and the unending questions about the feasibility of it all are the main reasons it turned me off.

  23. TV Watcher says:

    Hi, we’re talking Revolution over at my site from 1-2pm (EST) if you’d like to join and discuss last night’s episode.

  24. Sheldon W. says:

    Loved the pilot; got totally pi$$ed off 10-minutes into ep #2 and haven’t watched since.

  25. Frankieboy says:

    kinda annoyed that they killed of Maggie. She had such potential. Also really annoying that they started to fill in her story and killed her off in the same episode.

    besides that. Good episode. loving the show more and more :)

  26. H.Houston says:

    I think it is going to be super interesting to watch how the end twist plays out…

  27. Jimmy says:

    Can’t stand Charlie she is just about ruining the show for me she has to go.

  28. AD says:

    The thing I hated about this episode is they killed off a main character to justify the arc of the narrative (bad writing people) which was to change the mind of Miles about his relationship to the group. Miles wasn’t going to stay with the group, then they finally gave Maggie a convincing backstory about the fact that Ben and the kids saved her from desperation, she conveyed this to Miles, next scene, she bleeds out and dies and this (?) convinces Miles to stay with the group. Miles is meant to be this hard-boiled, compassionless douche who engineered the whole Militia and he is convinced in five minutes to change his mind? Crap writing. An earlier post said that Maggie’s backstory was the most intriguing part of the episode, and I agree. This poor women spent years trying to get back to her family. And the whopping twist at the end of the ep says that Miles is one very bad dude indeed. This is all really badly plotted and unless they reveal the point of the MacGuffin soon (the stupid USB) this is going to end up a poor clone of Lost. I will give it another couple of episodes before I tune out. BTW don’t have a problem with the Charlie character, she is just very poorly written and has two emotions — outrage and sadness — not enough colour in the character. The actress is doing her best with bad material.

  29. Mary says:

    Was there a line in the episode:
    You think your family will save you? Your family Is the militia. Think again

    Just wondering.

  30. Myron says:

    Any sane person never RUNS away from dogs…. they chase! Any kind of predator you don’t let them know you are prey. So stupid.

  31. Yale Dikes says:

    The actress playing Charlie make Heather Graham look like Katherine Hepburn. Her acting is atrocious. She is killing the show.

  32. wynny says:

    Acting is a talent, if you don’t have it, you simply don’t have it. You can’t force, its painful to us, viewers. The girl that acted as charlie should get extra lessons before going on TV again or simply quit acting, even with bad written lines or conflicting emotions, a good actress would pull that without making it painful to watch. I pratically had to fastforward her part anytime she came on. By the way, I loved miles, monroe and the capt. Now that’s some acting.

  33. RobertSF says:

    The only reason I watch is to see Charlie getting punched in the face.