"Now, I finally feel like things are getting on the right track." -DanielI was disenchanted with the last several episodes of "Caprica," but I had hopes that "End of the Line"(*) would pull the series out of its stupor. If there was one thing you could count on from Ron Moore and company on "Battlestar Galactica," it was that the cliffhanger episodes (either at mid-season or the end of seasons) tended to pack the strongest punch, even during stretches when the show overall was struggling. (Case in point: the visit to the algae planet after a really tedious string of episodes midway through season three.)
(*) The title has been alternately listed in some places as "End of Line," which was the Hybrid's catchphrase on "BSG," but my contact at Syfy insists that the official title adds the "the."
But "End of the Line" was just as uninspiring as the episodes leading up to it - if not moreso. After all, there were certain parts of recent episodes that might have proven interesting, depending on the payoff, like the identity of Joseph's mysterious guide through New Cap City. But when it turned out to be his lovestruck secretary, deliberately manipulating events to keep Joseph and Tamara's avatar apart and to drive Joseph into her loving arms, I rolled my eyes and mentally checked out on that corner of the series, forever. Wake me when Esai Morales and Eric Stoltz are going at it again, okay?
Other than Alessandra Torresani's work as Zoe, and the horrorshow scene where Zoe finally revealed herself to Philomon, then accidentally killed him in a moment of panic, there was very little to grab onto here in terms of compelling character or story moments. And the threat of Daniel erasing Zoe's personality from the chip made no sense. Even if Daniel has decided to take the dog-shooting test as proof that Zoe's not in there, he still knows that the anomalies are the only thing that make the chip work, given that the chip did not work for Vergis.
The whole hour felt like the writing staff needed to build to a series of cliffhangers and then worked backward to see how they could justify a lot of frantic explosions, shoot-outs and suicide attempts. And they didn't even have the courtesy to blow up Sister Clarice(**) when they had the chance to ditch a character who's not working.
(**) Though I would be very amused if Nestor were to somehow survive the car bombing, lose the use of his legs, and try out for the Caprica City wheelchair Pyramid team.
Ideally, a cliffhanger is supposed to make the viewer so invested in what happens next that they'll have trouble waiting for the next episode (either in a week or, in this case, several months). At the end of "End of the Line," though, I found myself not caring if Amanda managed to land in the river without breaking her neck, if Joseph will be able to kick his Amp addiction, who will win the war for the heart of STO, or any of the rest of it. That is not a good sign. I'll see how my mood is when the second half of the season begins, but right now I'm not sure "Caprica" is a show I need in my life.
What did everybody else think?