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

'12 Monkeys' fan react: Finding ourselves in 'Atari'

Season 1 | Episode 4 | “Atari” | Aired Feb 6, 2015

If last week was Cassie’s episode to shine, then this week’s 12 Monkeys definitely belongs to Cole and Ramse—and the future (2043) and futures past (2032 to 2035). Think: a Twilight Zone remixed version of Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

Here are tonight’s top takeaways.

West VII. This is the group of marauders to which Cole and Ramse once belonged. The leader is Deacon (Todd Stashwick), one bad dude. They’re coldblooded scavengers. If you have something they want, they will kill you—whether you’re an actual threat or not. Cole and Ramse join up with them in 2032, only after killing two West VII members in self-defense. While Ramse is reluctant, Cole jumps on the opportunity to belong to something that could be remotely stable. It’s clear Cole loses a bit of himself on their journey with West VII. He kills—and doesn’t appear bothered.

12 monkeys deacon

In the end, Deacon wants Cole to kill Ramse—basically because he has empathy, which does not belong in their new world. Obviously, Cole doesn’t kill him—and they flee the group.

To complicate matters, during his time with West VII, Cole develops a relationship with Max (whom we met last week). She’s been with West VII since she was 13, but she’s still only half-ruthless. She’s bitter when Cole leaves the group, but she ultimately helps him when they meet again in 2043.

West VII shows up at the 2043 facility with vengeance. They want its resources—and they want Cole. In the end, much of the West VII attackers get taken out, but Deacon manages to escape. So, he’s still out there … and he’s too bad to just disappear into TV darkness. He’ll be back.

Cole and Ramse. Ramse is Cole’s moral compass (as is Cassie)—and he’s already a favorite of mine because he appears to be an unconditionally decent man. Early in their journey, we see Cole and Ramse come across a dog, something that could be a source of food for them, but both men cannot kill the docile dog. Later, while in the mix of West VII, Cole easily kills a man. He’s changed, but Ramse is not. Ramse has never—and will never—adapt to the group’s lifestyle. When Deacon urges Cole to get rid of Ramse, Cole intends to follow through and goes to Ramse’s tent with a gun. But Ramse, being the good guy he is, reminds Cole of who they are—and that’s when they decide to leave West VII. Ramse is also the one who recognizes Cassie’s effect on Cole. Ramse encourages Cole to act on his feelings. Aww. Really, it’s just a nice little bromance.

12 monkeys cole ramse

Cole and Cassie. Cassie’s screen time is brief, but she bookends the episode nicely. At the very beginning, she and Cole are attempting to solve last week’s puzzle pieces: figuring out where the “night room” is. She starts to get personal and asks more about Cole. He skirts her questions before getting splintered back to 2043. At the end of the episode, he returns to her a different man. He opens up a little, but Cassie is preoccupied for good reason. She interrupts and tells him she found the night room.

12 monkeys cassie

Timelines. Dear lord. I hope you paid attention in this episode. It starts and ends in 2015, but the rest of the show jumps back and forth from 2043 to 2032 and 2035, and even a couple days earlier in 2043—in both a series of flashback and time travel. Phew, that’s exhausting.

As West VII attacks the facility in the first part of the episode, all seems lost and they appear to overtake it. Our heroes split up and while Ramse finds himself in “atari” (see terminology below), Doc Jones sends Cole back in time. She says she’s sending him to 2015, but really, it’s just two days prior to the 2043 events. This is all, of course, to save their mission in 2043. This is where things get very Bill & Ted/Back to the Future—and trippy. All of Cole’s actions directly affect the current timeline, but nothing changes. In truth, nothing needed to change because everything was already going to be okay—the events were already written. Did I lose you?

What we saw in the first part of the episode was just half of the story. The second half is like rereading a book where once every other page is missing, but now you’re reading the full story. Okay, I think I lost myself …

The bottom line? As I’ve said before, you MUST pay attention. Time jumps are both frequent and important. Cassie and Cole are becoming closer. Ramse is kind of the best guy ever. West VII adds a smart 2043 subplot that could reemerge and effect the overall mission. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t give a shout-out to future Doc Jones. She’s really growing on me as an interesting character, and I assume there is more to her story.

12 monkeys doc

See you next week when we learn more about the—dun dun DUN—night room.

Memorable Quotes

Jones: It’s likely we’ll never see each other again. Goodbye, Mr. Cole.
Cole: It’s James.
Jones: Katarina.

Cole: Things happen for a reason.
Ramse: If that’s true, then why undo it at all?


Atari (tonight’s episode title): Referring to the game; however, this is a game where you’ve run out of moves and there’s only one left—and it’s a bad move.

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

You May Like