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'Falling Skies' recap: Welcome to the funhouse

Season 4 | Episode 7 | “Saturday Night Massacre” | Aired August 3, 2014

dfb28c8e9b934879c8639310821fd74bLexi wakes up and claws her way out of the Lexicoon. She passes out, but rouses herself quickly and recognizes Tom, although she sees him as a stranger. While inside the Lexicoon, she heard all their hatred and fear of her; now she realizes humans cannot change their ways, so she’s going to leave Chinatown. Anne is confused because in her vision, Lexi promised she would always need her family—but Lexi meant her Espheni family, not her human one. Humans are too violent, and she now realizes the humans will never turn away from violence to her path of peace.

Lourdes protests that she never lost faith. Lexi stalks out in her red robe into the middle of the crowd. Pope and his posse stop her at gunpoint. Lexi pontificates—again—about how the humans meet every peaceful move with violence. Pope snarks about the Mason nepotism at work throughout the series. Lexi announces she’s leaving and Lourdes begs to go with her, claiming that her life will be empty without Lexi. Lexi asks if Lourdes wants to be set free and when Lourdes says yes, Lexi kills her. Pope aims his gun at her; Lexi forces him to point it at Hal and holds her parents back as she drains Lourdes’ life force. Lourdes: “I’m not ready.” Lexi: “You’re free.”


88ebf3f7c4f84dbccda32888ba3367d0Hal lays Lourdes down in the ashram. Anne cries over her. Hal is pissed at Tom for not listening and wonders if Lexi is still a Mason. Tom says she is. Hal storms off. Anne tells Tom Hal is wrong, but Tom reminds her he made a promise to take care of Lexi if she came out of the Lexicoon wrong. He can’t get over how Lexi looked like she enjoyed watching Lourdes beg for her life. Anne thinks it’s all the aliens’ fault, and they can still save Lexi.

In the Sunglass Hut Clinic, Anne and Tom want Doctor Kadar to come up with an analysis of what’s happened to Lexi, but he only knows she’s gone through a transformation. Anne wants to know if there’s a way to determine if Lexi is being controlled, and Tom speaks for us all when he shouts that they’re grasping at straws. Doctor Kadar reiterates that the Lexicoon is like nothing they’ve ever dealt with before. His theory is that Lexi’s human and Espheni DNA strands have conjoined to become something completely new and different: “It doesn’t explain Lexi becoming an evil thing capable of killing Lourdes.” Score one for the doctor! Anne immediately protests that Lexi isn’t evil. This is going to get old real fast. The doc admits to having a great deal of affection for Lexi, and he hates that she’s lost touch with her humanity. Anne protests—again—that the real, human Lexi is still in there and begs him to help them. It’s up to Tom to point out they have no definitive proof Lexi is able to be saved. The doc notes that the way Lexi killed Lourdes indicates she’s mastering her powers and is probably just getting started.

Tect arrives to deliver the news that Anthony has returned from security sweep and has been attacked by the Overlord that Tom burned in the ghetto. The Volm brought Anthony back, and Cochise tells Tom that a large Espheni force is now gathering north of Chinatown. Anthony didn’t escape; he was let go because the Overlord wants Tom to know he’s coming. Hal wants to bug out before the beamers start bombing Chinatown, but Tom knows there’s no running away. This time, it’s personal.

War room. Cochise shows the reconnaissance scans, and the humans and Volm strategize. Tom passes off to Weaver to call the play, and he goes into full-if-temporarily-forgotten colonel mode. Cochise agrees to blow the bridge to force the Espheni to attack from the south, giving the 2nd Mass time to set up. Tom: “Let’s go up and take a look at our cards before we decide how to play them.” So we’re done with the ball and have moved onto cards? OOOOK then. They all go topside and make arrangements. Dingaan is sent to be lookout, and he takes Ben’s harness-friend Deni with him. Pope decides to mine the street. Anne wants to sent up thermite traps to pour on the skitters as they advance.

Sara, aka Maggie 2.0, joins Pope, who waxes on about how much he’s missed blowing up skitters. Sara wants to use the gas to make a run for Florida, and Pope reminds her she was the one keen to join the 2nd Mass. Sara: “That was before I realized Tom Mason’s daughter was an alien faith healer.” Pope: “Welcome to the Funhouse!” Heh. For once, Pope is not eager to bug out on the Masons. “You want to survive? Stick with them.” Plus, he doesn’t want to miss out on the chance to kill aliens. Charmer.

Tom and Anne and the 2nd Mass set up the barricades just as Cochise spectacularly blows the bridge. Ben has a moment with Maggie as she sets the thermite charges. He gives her the ammo Matt brings over and claims to be set for recon. Matty knows better, though, and after Maggie leaves, Ben admits he’s going after Lexi. Yawn. Reluctantly, Matt promises not to tell … yet.

Maggie sets up shop with Hal and admits she doesn’t think they can hold Lexi personally responsible for what happened with Lourdes. Hal argues that it’s not about responsibility; it’s about love and how the Espheni constantly use it against the humans, who don’t make the hard choices out of love and are too forgiving. “We can’t afford to be sentimental,” he decides. From now on, anyone who gets infected by the Espheni gets terminated immediately. Maggie calls him on his crap: “It’s not love we need to kill; it’s them.”

In the War Room, Anne checks the new Volm scans and confirms the Espheni are moving south. Weaver decides everything is in place and they should all mount a last defense behind the barricade. Weaver wants to send out scouts, so Tom tells Matt to go find Ben. Matt reveals Ben’s plan to save Lexi. Anne admits Ben knew about the skitter rebellion and might know something they don’t about Lexi’s transformation too. Matt worries whether Lexi will hurt Ben, but Weaver is confident she won’t, just as the transformed Jeanne wasn’t able to harm her father: “They couldn’t change what was true inside her.”

On point, Deni and Dingaan debate jazz styles. They spy mechs and skitters advancing, and Dingaan recognizes the Overlord in the mix. Sara and Pope light the beacons. Sara wants to hide out in the War Room, which is a former fallout shelter. Pope promises she’ll have fun killing skitters. Dingaan and Deni stumble across Lexi’s remnants on their knees blocking the road. They believe they’ll be spared when the Espheni see they mean no harm. Deni drags Dingaan away just as a mech guns the remnants down. Deni and Dingaan join Maggie and Sam. The mechs advance. Maggie lights the fuses and thermite rains down from the suspended Chinese balloons surrounding the square, which successfully melts the mechs. They fall back, but Maggie stays behind to cover their retreat.

Pope and Sara shoot skitters, but Tect winds up rescuing them at the last minute. Pope smells something. Tech: “I love the smell of roasted skitters in the morning.” Pope: “Very original.” He realizes there’s a busted gas line about to explode. It blows, killing both people and Espheni. Pope can’t find Sara. Could this be the end of Maggie 2.0? Alas, no, she’s just not having the fun Pope promised her. The Masons et al show up with Hal shouting for Maggie, who is nowhere to be seen. Dingaan arrives with Deni, who sheltered him with her body, but the spikes are already healing what would have been a mortal wound. Tom realizes the upside—that at least mechs and skitters were taken out too—but Weaver reminds him that more are coming. They split up, but not before Tom apologizes to Hal for promising he could protect them from Lexi. Hal doesn’t care; he loves his father whether he turns out to be right or wrong. Anne runs up to tell Tom that everyone at the barricade took the full hit of the blast: “They’re all gone.”

Ben finds Lexi and begs her to help since the Espheni surrounded Chinatown as soon as she left. Lexi coldly tells him Tom wants to kill the burned Overlord and now will get his chance, even if he dies trying. Ben pleads Tom’s case as not being a violent man until after the Espheni invaded Earth. Lexi is amused at Ben’s evident love for his family. He insists they have to go back, but Lexi won’t let him leave. Ben’s spikes glow as she takes control of him and leads the way to a beamer.

The 2nd Mass has been reduced from 400 to 30 people, 20 of whom can’t fight. Pope is ready to turn Tom over—again. Tom realizes they now need to hide to convince the Espheni the gas main took out everyone. Pope remembers the War Room fallout shelter. They do one last sweep for survivors, and Weaver finds Kadar with a piece of glass sticking out of his side. He passes Lexi’s samples over to Anne to use to try to save Lexi. Kadar dies.


RIP Doctor Kadar

Everyone is in the shelter except for Pope and Sara and Hal and Maggie. Tom decides he’s going to take the high ground and send a message to “an old friend.” He’s plan is to kill the Overlord with his rifle. Tect and Weaver cut to the chase: Tom is not going to hit anything outside of 300 yards with that rifle. Tect’s Civil War rifle has been shooting past 700 yards for almost 200 hundred years, so Tom decides Tect can teach him how to use it in the next five minutes. “This is between me and him,” he tells Weaver.

Tect gives Tom a tutorial on 19th-century firearms. He warns Tom that he’s too emotional to make the shot. Tom doesn’t care. Tect concedes, but decides the rifle needs cleaning. He sends Tom downstairs for supplies. Pope, Sara and Hal arrive at the fallout shelter. Maggie is not there, but Weaver and Anthony won’t let Hal out since the next wave of mechs has finally arrived. Up top, The Ghost lines up his shot. The Overlord strides into view. The Ghost takes the shot and misses, but barely. The Overlord pinpoints the hiding place and waves a beamer over to bomb it. Out in the brush, Cochise fires on the beamer and brings it down, but it crashes into the building, knocking The Ghost off his perch. Skitters rush over to The Ghost’s body, but when they pull off the mask, it’s not Tom, but Tect, who is laughing. He’s rigged himself with a suicide bomb: “Boom.”

Down in the fallout shelter, Matt worries whether the plan worked and the Espheni now think they’re all dead. Weaver reassures them that Tom will prevail and show up with another plan ready to go. Up top, the Overlord looks over Tect’s burned corpse. Seeming satisfied that it is Tom Mason’s body, he leaves Chinatown. The camera pans over the undisturbed bodies of Lourdes and Kadar, and then over to show Maggie unconscious and pinned under rubble, finally ending with a long shot of The Ghost’s discarded goggles.

End credits.

Well, that pretty much knocked out a bunch of the background players and more than a few of the non-Mason-related ones too. Talk about cutting back the cast. Do you think the right people died? Is it all right to hate Lexi now that she’s officially gone over to the Dark Side? Does anyone know why Dingaan is the only other human left up top on watch? Sound off in the comments!

Falling Skies airs on Sundays at 10/9C on TNT.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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