Wayward Pines Recap: Unsafe Sex

Wayward Pines Ben Bomb

After uncovering so many of Wayward Pines‘ far-out secrets in recent weeks, it would seem that this Thursday we uncovered its first dull episode.

I mean, as entertainingly awkward as it is to watch Hope Davis play matchmaker to high school kids and then nudge them to hook up — and as fun as it is to get There’s Something About Mary flashbacks whenever Matt Dillon basically tells a character, “Ah, I’m just f–kin’ with ya!” — the rest of Episode 7 (of 10) fell flat for me. And here’s why.

I’m not a fan of Ethan Burke the “company man,” doing Pilcher’s bidding. Sure, he has his reasons — to protect his family as well as the citizens of Wayward Pines from exposing themselves to the nasty truths beyond the fence — but it’s such a 180 for the guy who just days ago (on screen) was leading his own “resistance.”

And then there was Kate’s flashback, to a gathering of similarly spooked individuals who 12 years ago suddenly found themselves hanging their hat in this Idaho hamlet. That put the focus squarely on what I feel is the show’s most gaping plot hole, which is: “Forget freaking out about abbies and 2,000-year time jumps. Isn’t the fact that you mysteriously relocated to a new town and have been, say, cut off from your fiancée, enough reason to go bananas?” Why is everyone just shrugging at this wacky circumstance they found themselves in?

Now, Kate said — claimed — to Theresa that shortly after she landed in Wayward Pines, she retrieved a voice message from Secret Service boss Adam, saying that she had walked into a “government experiment” and was to toe the line and eventually be “tested,” perhaps by Ethan. If what we have been told to be true in fact is, then she is baldly lying, to, what, underscore her argument that Ethan got  brainwashed “in the mountain”?

But if she isn’t lying, it contradicts things we downloaded in Episodes 5 and 6, since any infrastructure that houses her voicemails surely doesn’t exist anymore. (If you’re going to go to such lengths to keep people away from phones, why bother keeping their voicemails alive?)

I dunno.

Anywho, to recap: After returning from his tour of the chocolate factory, Ethan found a bomb in his truck, and suspected the “resistance.” First, he felt out Franklin Dobbs, to no avail. Then he grilled Harold, only to glean that Kate is the “leader.” Meeting with Kate, Ethan gave her the 411 on the state of civilization, but she was skeptical, thinks he was fed some bull. So she forges ahead with the plan to blow a hole in the fence. Ethan takes the bait and chases Kate, Franklin and one bomb, only to discover that a second explosive is out there somewhere — namely, in the back of a delivery truck, where Amy is taking “the next step” with Ben, in the wake of Mrs. Fisher’s pro-procreation biology class.

Ethan is just catching up to the truck when the music box bomb goes off, blasting a hole in the side of the vehicle. He first finds a shaken Amy, before discovering that Ben, too, was caught in the blast, and now is bloody and unconscious on the ground.

Elsewhere in the episode:
* We learned that Pilcher has chronic insecurity issues, but Pam apparently keeps them at bay.
* Speaking of Pam, she’s doggedly been trying to get the Ballingers — the perfect Wayward Pines couple, she beams — pregnant, but no luck, yet.
* Theresa literally poked around Plot 33, which she discovered has some sort of structure beneath it — but Big Bill ain’t talking!

What did you think of the episode “Betrayal”?

I thought this went without saying, but clearly label any BOOK SPOILERS in Comments.

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. LK says:

    Another option is that Adam is still around somewhere.

  2. laurelnev says:

    I think part of the reason this episode was so dull was to emphasize how the inhabitants of WP feel. Look how excited Ben’s GF was by the music box. There’s no music, art, movies…just work and obedience. But I DO hope it gets back to it’s quicker, more interesting pace in the few remaining eps. I get that life in WP is FAR from utopian for anyone but the good ole Pilcher family.

  3. jose389 says:

    well if the show is anything like the books it would mean hessler is in the future too and probably pretended to call kate from 2014

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Thank you, Jose, for clearly labeling a book spoiler. (I thought that was common courtesy, but I have since added a big fat honking red reminder to folks.)

    • Bob Backus says:

      You mean this is actually the truth, it’s all in the future, that’s al this is about? Then the show falls flat.

  4. Drew says:

    This was one of the weaker episodes. I still don’t buy the whole 2000 year time jump thing. It is either poorly executed, or not really what is happening. There are too many brainwashing tactics going on.
    Theresa asked Ethan if he had been injected with anything prior to seeing the “real world”… He was scratched by one of the mutant thingies, without really seeing it.

    I don’t know. If that was the reveal of the truth, it doesn’t make a lot of the behavior make sense. Even Ethan is acting weird now.

    • Jim says:

      They explained everything last episode. The time jump is legit.

      • Drew says:

        Yes, I know they explained it. I’m just not buying the explanation. Nothing that they’re doing makes sense in that context.

    • Bob Backus says:

      If that is the truth, then it really is just boring. It’s HG Wells Time Machine (with freezing instead of a time machine). There is no real reason to act all suspicious\kill people who don’t fall in line\not talk about the past, etc etc. What was set up as something interesting has fallen into a dull “it’s the future” story. By the way, I don’t believe in the same old crap we constantly hear- “If we told the people there would be mass hysteria.” What a pantload! Yes many would be angry and morn their lost loved ones, but what exactly do you think is happening here now? That’s right- the same dang thing.

      • KCC says:

        Did you miss the episode when they flashed back to Wayward Pines version 1.0 where the whole town was burning and in chaos caused by the reaction of non-volunteers learning the truth? They started the whole thing over again but this time without telling the adults about the nature of the situation they were put in because the first batch of residents couldn’t handle it. But the second batch would just go along with it and not question everything? I guess they figured ignorance would be bliss. They apparently have hundreds of volunteers and I don’t understand why they need the abducted group, unless I missed something. The volunteers are good enough to keep this whole enterprise going and support the abducted groups’ comfortable lives, but not good enough to repopulate the world? The actual residents of Wayward Pines are not doing anything to remake the world except to repopulate it. I’m enjoying the show, but I try not to think to hard about it. It’s summer fun, not great art.

  5. N says:

    I must be easy to please. I loved it!!!!!

  6. It IS the future. Many disbelieve the reveal, but it was actually the truth. Call that a spoiler is you want but I promise it’s what’s actually going on.

    I didn’t find this episode dull at all. A bit frustrating that Ethan didn’t drive the truth home and make Ben tell his mother and even the Ballingers wth is out there and why they can’t destroy the fence.

    I also disagree with the reviewer regarding Ethan’s 180. He knows the truth so of course he is going to do everything in his power to keep the fence up and people calm. I don’t think he necessarily is playing the company man as he is just doing what needs doing. He has already told Pilcher he’s not letting him kill people any longer. If he were a company man he’d have called a reckoning on the Ballingers when he learned of their activities.

    • hud says:

      How would Kate rationalize the difference between her 12 yrs. and Ethan looking the same as when she last saw him? No new cars, no planes overhead, no TV. This is the part I find confusing. These people on such a short lease because they are afraid of being reckoned? Whole families gone. The good Dr. sure picked some spineless wimps.These folks should not procreate. (Shudder).

    • goodwolfe21 says:

      I agree completely! I don’t understand why people would think it’s boring either, or don’t get why Ethan has changed. He saw the Boise ruins, the abbies and aerial views of the landscape. It obviously would cause any reasonable person to do a 180 about escaping when there is no place to escape to…however I think out of the whole town, there is this small group of rebels, maybe 10 or so. They aren’t going to stop or believe Ethan (or anyone) just by telling them. They have to gather them, take them up in the helicopter and show them what’s outside the wall. Once they’ve seen, they should settle down and be instructed not to tell the others. It might be the only way. I can’t see Kate and the others stopping otherwise. Anway, I enjoy it and don’t find it boring at all, even though the biggest reveal is out…still lots of things to work out..or not.

  7. LK says:

    I think the part about the future that doesnt make sense is… how did the computers work for 2,000 years with no one maintaining them to wake the first people up? And how did they get away with walling up a whole city without anyone suspecting or investigating? Especially once they all froze themselves.. did people just stear clear of the town?

    • RealityEngineer says:

      The computers working isn’t a big deal since silicon chips have a long lifespan and are used for disks, there isn’t physical wear and tear like with older spinning hard disks. More to the point, reliability in computer systems is achieved through redundancy. You may have stacks of backup machines that are turned on when old computers fail, and backup power supplies with separate fuel sources, etc.

      The real anti-science thing is the utter nonsense about the aberrations. The last coins were from something like 2095, it isn’t far off before we’ll have drone technology that can automatically recognize and take out such creatures. In addition they wouldn’t arise in the first place since if any such kids were born they would be locked away, and the danger would lead to genetic screening and genetically engineering out the problem if for some odd reason they couldn’t merely screen for it, with any that slip through the cracks locked away. Presumably since Pilcher is encouraging new children they must be able to screen or engineer them.

      Of course these aberrations aren’t going to appear in the first place, the claims made indicate the writers understand nothing about evolution and genetics. The claim the eart is trying to get rid of us is utter nonsense. The idea they will have all these volunteers who can know the truth, but that somehow they couldn’t get volunteers who know the truth to fill the town is also silly.


    I have to disagree with you Matt, I thought this episode was one of the well-executed episodes we had previously witnessed. It had thrills like never before and answered severely burning questions I have had since episode 2. Bravo to the writers and the spectacular directing (if anyone had noticed). Ben is very underrated. His acting goes beyond extremes, his acting in this episode let alone is “>” all of Scream’s actors in the Pilot episode. Kudos to this show!

    One side note I am very concerned about is, let’s be positive and say this show DOES get picked up for another season, the second season will obviously not be based on the books since the 10-episode first season is supposed to cover the trilogy novels written by Blake Crouch, what is going to happen next? Don’t you think that the series will go downhill when it goes off-track from the authentic plot? If this show DOES get picked up, I’d say the second season will be its last. Better just end it this season and make it the show that everyone was talking about this summer.

  9. Et al says:

    I didn’t find it dull, I just considered it a bridge to the third act. After the last two, any episode was bound to pale in comparison. The points made in the review are fair, but I’m not worried. This show hasn’t let me down yet. I’ll blindly follow like a good resident of Wayward.

  10. FreeRyde says:

    The ethnic and racial composition of ‘Noah’s Ark’ sucks.
    Sex-ed? The kid doesn’t even shave yet!

    And… If people want to leave, open the gate and lock it behind them. See ya!

  11. Despite all the answers we’ve been shown I still think Kate’s explanation of a government experiment makes the most sense I mean who unthawed Pam and the doc how do you let all that equipment sit for 2000 years and it all works perfectly plus how was Sherrif pope in 2014 if back then he was only a security guard and Adam did warn someone that Teresa was looking for Burke right before sheriff pope saved her

  12. Annie says:

    Seems pretty clear to me that they’re not just “shrugging” – they’re just terrified of ending up like Juliette Lewis strung up and bleeding out in the town square. And I don’t get all the accusations of “makes no sense” and “plot holes.” It’s a heightened, sci-fi reality. What don’t you all get? What (else) is tripping you up specifically?

  13. A says:

    I’ve been thinking about about what the end goal of this is with all the fertility talk and the distant abbie cousin Ethan found, and I think that they might be trying to create a new super race by combining human and abbie DNA. I don’t really have anything much supporting it, just a hunch, but I think it could work.

  14. Winston Wunkoffur says:

    Love the show. My most burning question is why not bring everyone up to speed and make them understand the time jump and show them the Abbie’s?

  15. craig kelsey says:

    i don’t think it was “the resistance” that planted the bomb in Ethan’s car.It was a pipe with a block of C4 explosive. They would not have access to that but someone behind the scenes would

  16. Erik says:

    Lol, cant believe some of u legitimize the dates and somehow find truth in the series premise. Its a show, and honestly a damn good one.