EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

'Roswell' recap: Good riddance to bad rubbish

Season 2 | Episode 21 | “The Departure” | Aired May 21, 2001

The mystery of Alex’s death was somewhat solved up to this point. Liz’s detective work led her to learn that Alex was never actually in Sweden, but instead cooped up in a dorm room in Las Cruces, New Mexico. When Liz, Maria and Michael find what exactly he was working on, it turns out to have been the translation of a book with instructions for the aliens to return to their home planet. If that sounds a little too convenient and a lot more suspicious, you’re right, because there’s more to this story.

Basically, Tess is the root of all evil. Not only did she sleep with Max and get pregnant with his baby, but she killed Alex. At the beginning of this episode, no one suspected Tess because all signs point to Alex’s fake Swedish “girlfriend,” Leanna, as the prime suspect. Her name isn’t even Leanna; she’s just an innocent human who was also presumably duped by Tess’s mind-warping.

Tess uses her powers on everyone, it seems—including Max, to make him think that the baby is suffocating on Earth and needs to be born on their planet. He instructs the four of them to say their goodbyes to friends and family before they leave from the Granilith the next morning.


Max and Liz go back to Las Cruces to “take care” of Leanna so that she won’t be any danger to those left behind. Max is lucky Liz insisted on going with him because he was about to start a fire in her dorm room when Liz saved her at the last minute, suspecting she’s not an alien after all. As usual, Liz is right. There’s a callback to the pilot episode when she and Max look at blood cells under a microscope to confirm that Leanna is a human.

Max knows his time left in Roswell is ticking down, so he needs to tell Liz everything. He starts with the bad news first: He slept with Tess and got her pregnant. When Liz is heartbroken at that, saying she can’t believe she saved herself for him, he realizes that she never slept with Kyle. He can’t ask why she had to lie right now, considering he’s about to leave Earth for good. That news doesn’t bode any better for Liz either.

Michael cooks a cute Italian dinner for Maria on Scooby-Doo plates, no less. He’s finally able to be honest with her after all this time by referencing back when Liz and Max would kiss and she’d get all those flashes of Max’s life. Apparently Max has always been so open to Liz, but Michael has had such a rough life that he couldn’t bring himself to be that open with Maria until now. In Maria’s own words, they took a “huge step in human-alien relations” that night.

Isabel visits Alex’s grave to say goodbye to him in her own way, and we’re treated to his first guest appearance since “Cry Your Name”! Of course, he’s only a manifestation in her mind, but it’s a sweet conversation between the two.


Isabel and Max can’t handle the prospect of leaving their parents. They may have just adopted these kids when they were six, but they’re the only parents they’ve ever known and remembered. They record a video saying goodbye to them, which they leave to Jim to give to the Evans family once they leave.

While all these goodbyes are being said, the human half of the gang finally solves the mystery of Alex’s murder. Kyle had been tapping his fingers, much to everyone’s annoyance lately. It isn’t until Amy DeLuca is caught tapping her own fingers that Liz puts all these clues together. She and Maria immediately go to Kyle’s house to jog his memory of whatever Tess warped his mind to forget. It turns out Alex had broken out of his own mind-warping the night of his death. Kyle walked in on Alex freaking out to Tess, demanding answers for why she did that to him. He was frantic, so Tess killed him with her mind control right there in Kyle’s room. She warped Kyle’s memory to even make him help her carry Alex’s body into his car under the impression that it was Tess’s luggage, which is just awful.

Back at the Granilith with just minutes to spare, Michael stands up to Max and tells him he’s staying in Roswell. This is definitely shocking, considering Michael was always the one out of all of them to be so desperate to go home. It’s a good thing he did change his mind because Maria and Liz catch him as he’s leaving, so they’re able to confront Tess. Max is angry as ever when Tess reveals she’s been fulfilling a deal Nasedo made long ago. She was instructed to return home with Max’s child and the three aliens in tow. Max, Michael and Isabel would be turned over to Kivar, Max’s sworn enemy, who has taken control of their planet in his absence.


All that alien royalty business aside, Max warns Tess that this isn’t over between them, even though she’s returning to their home planet. Isabel asks Max what’s next, and he answers that he has to save his son. Well, all right—that sets up the next season—but let’s take a second to celebrate that Tess is finally gone!

At the time it aired, this was thought of as the series finale since The WB canceled it. At the studio’s urging, the third and final season was picked up by UPN. You’ll see when you watch the beginning of that season how different it looks and feels.

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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