Never underestimate the things a son will do for his mama.
That’s the takeaway from the Extant series finale, in which both of Molly’s (for lack of a better term) “kids” play a significant role — and one of them sacrifices himself to protect her and the rest of the world.
But which non-human saved the world: the robot or the alien? Read on to find out.
BACK IN THE SADDLE | Molly preps to go back into space, because she’s the only person on the planet who can bring home Sean Glass and Katie Sparks – provided they’re still alive. (Well, one outta two ain’t bad…) Oh, and she’s going to make sure the Seraphim doesn’t enter Earth’s orbit. She gets a fancy second-skin suit and a shiny helmet protect her from the spores’ mind-control capabilities, then blasts off while Ethan and John watch from home. Why aren’t they there to bid her adieu, you ask?
THE DANGER WITHIN | Well, John’s pretty sure Odin put something very bad, possibly a bomb, inside Ethan. So the two Woods men stay home in order to keep everyone at ISEA safe. Later, though Julie and Other Tech Dude want him to call the bomb squad, John chooses to open Ethan up himself; the police will just do a controlled explosion, he argues, which will end Ethan’s life-or-something-like-it. But with Odin’s words echoing inside his little tin head, Ethan pulls out the special phone and prepares to hit buttons to call his buddy – and John freaks when he realizes the phone is most likely a detonator. He promises the humanic he’ll wake him up after shutting him off, and Ethan eventually believes his dad, handing over the device.
SPACE INVADERS | Up in orbit, Molly finds Sean, who her helmet tells her is the real deal. But Katie, who appears just as Molls finds a piece of mission-critical technology, certainly is not. When the two women tussle, Molly loses a glove and becomes infected with spore badness. Though this causes her to hallucinate, see Marcus and otherwise become the victim of camera work that makes me nauseous, she eventually tranquilizes an also-infected Sean, whom she straps into a pod and then resumes her work planting explosives all over the space station. But when Molly jumps in the driver’s seat and tells B.E.N. to get them the heck outta there, the computer refuses: They’re infected, and the probability of things going well is very, very small – especially because ISEA has been evacuated, given that the offspring is running rampant inside. It looks like Molly’s mission is going to have a very terrible end, until…
HOT, NOT BOTHERED | … Ethan realizes that his non-human status makes him the perfect entity to get into ISEA and help Mom out: Because he’s not made of flesh and blood, the offspring can’t work its mojo on him. John is all, “No! You can’t! You can’t! OK, maybe you can.” They have a tearful farewell, then the kiddo rides his scooter through the facility’s hallways (truth be told, that visual was the only thing I genuinely enjoyed in the hour) and patches into the computer, hailing Molly.
She sadly tells him and John – the humanic is also a conference-calling system! – that she’s not going to make it home, because an anti-virus failsafe means that only a human being can override B.E.N. Against John’s wishes, Ethan heats his warmers to 98.6 and places them on the sensors (“I think this is my purpose,” he says, calmly), ultimately gaining control of mission control and allowing Molly to fly away from the space station, which blows up behind her. (Wait, aren’t flames in space scientifically impossible? Nevermind.)
But Ethan’s too hot for anyone – even himself – to handle. And while the offspring watches, John and Molly’s son overheats and goes to that great big blue screen in the sky.
BUT WAIT… | Five days later, Molly and Sam discuss the possibility of the offspring having escaped before the Ethan-splosion. Molly thinks he made it – and he did! We watch a nice couple in a car pull over and pick the boy up while he’s walking on a bridge, and he must be thankful, because he doesn’t immediately suck out their life force while they’re zooming away.
Back at the Woods’ house, Molly’s voiceover tells us that “In those final moments, Ethan taught us something about what it means to be human.” (Side note: Ugh. Did Hallmark script-doctor this thing?) And as she mourns the robo-son she never really liked (oh come ON, Molls, admit it!), Ethan’s metrics suddenly appear on every screen in their home. “I’m here,” the boy’s voice happily announces as John and Molly cry happy tears in their living room. “I’m everywhere.”
Now it’s your turn. Grade both tonight’s finale and the entire season of Extant via the polls below, then hit the comments for detailed discussion of your picks.