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'12 Monkeys' fan react: The times are a-changing (literally)

Season 2 | Episode 2 | “Primary” | Aired Apr 25, 2016

In this week’s “Primary,” the 12 Monkeys team finishes one very big task. Spoiler: They destroy the virus! Of course, we can’t pop the champagne just yet. Something is not quite right, as the virus still happens at some point in the past. But there is hope. They achieved change; they just need to do more.

Once again, character is prominent this week, as “Primary” opens with a self-reflective voiceover from Cassie in 2044. And it just rolls from there. Let’s get to it!

The Gist (2016)
Ramse awakens (from getting knocked out in last week’s story) and rushes to find the standoff between Cassie and Cole/Jennifer. Deja vu! After some back-and-forth, Cole convinces Jennifer to hand over this dosage of the virus.

12 Monkeys - Cassie and Ramse

After we all take a collective sigh of relief, the foursome hurries to find — and destroy — the rest of the deadly poison at an airplane hangar. Cole drops a Zippo onto the pile and burns it all. Just as the tubes begin popping from the heat, everyone gets nosebleeds from the shifting timelines … including Jones in 2044, who witnesses her world change around her. And yet, Jones’ daughter’s baby blanket remains.

Back in 2016, Cole is still there — and he shouldn’t be. The crew needs some answers, so Cassie splinters Ramse and herself back to 2044. Just before leaving, she tells Cole that he forgot the mission. Ouch.

Cole and Jennifer are left alone and confused. Well, Cole is confused — and Jennifer is still crazy, worrying about the number 607. It’s time to call present-day Jones for possible answers.

12 Monkeys - Cole and Jennifer

After hearing voices, Jennifer makes Cole stop at the Emerson Hotel. They get a room and call Jones, who wants nothing to do with Cole’s queries — she doesn’t want to mess with the course of the timeline. Jennifer gets frustrated and angry with Cole’s dismissals and attacks him.

Jennifer is just so fragile — needing/wanting a purpose and in search of some sort of other human connection. She kisses Cole — who doesn’t respond — before being interrupted by the next story wrinkle.

The manager of the hotel enters and knows Cole by name and face. He tells Cole he’s got the wrong room. And off to 607 they go! It’s a permanent residence, last inhabited in the ’40s — by Cole!

Jennifer finds a dated photo of Cole and Cassie. She’s disheartened and cuts her wrist. Thankfully, Cole is who he is, and stops the wound — and offers a bit of a pep talk. Cole ensures she has a purpose — but that purpose is not killing the world. He insists that she leave it all behind to find her way.

The Gist (2044)
And here’s what we know in 2044: Destroying the virus changed some things and saved some lives. But the virus still happens (via the Messengers, presumably). Those who have been injected with the time machine’s magic juice are impervious to the shifting changes. That means they remember everything, while everyone else changes for the time — remembering nothing of the previous timelines.

Despite his spot-on impression of Kirk Acevedo’s Ramse, Deacon’s torturous attempts to gather info prove unsuccessful. In the end, Ramse gets the best of Deacon by relaying a story from the past. A story where Ramse witnessed Deacon’s father beating his mother — and Ramse called the cops. He wanted to know just how Deacon could become such a bad dude.

12 Monkeys - Ramse

Deacon rushes to torture Ramse again, but Cassie intervenes with another plan.

Jones has a catch-up meeting with the facility’s people to fill them in on the time changes. And as it turns out, there’s a new, unfamiliar guy on the team, Dr. Vance Ecklund (Michael Hogan, Battlestar Galactica). Oh, and he’s also Jones’ boyfriend!

And in another effort to get intel — specifically, on the Messengers — out of Ramse, Cassie brings in Sam, Ramse’s son, for leverage. Truth be told, Cassie flashes a quick Jennifer-like crazy smile here. But in the end, it’s clear Ramse knows nothing of the Messengers.

All is interrupted when some Ninja-style lady warriors enter the facility and kidnap Jones! They are the Daughters, of course, and they’re looking for Cole. He’s needed to return to the future — and the mission. So they assist the process by handing Jones a note.

12 Monkeys - The Daughters

Cassie splinters to 2016 (briefly) and gives Cole the paper. On the Emerson Hotel letterhead, Jennifer has written, “I found my purpose.” She just helped in getting Cole back to 2044 — and she’s leading the Daughters in 2044. Cole splinters back to the mission.

After discussing what exactly has changed — including the existence of 2044 radio broadcasts — Jones convinces Cole that there is hope. Now they just need to get to the Messengers. First stop: 1944.

While looking at the wall of clippings, Cassie and Cole see how much has changed. Cole gives a heartfelt speech stating it wasn’t all the killing that changed anything for him (and the world), it was the saving — of Cassie. He leaves her the 1944 snapshot of them.

The Takeaways
Ramse.
Technically, Ramse is back. He’s back in 2044, in the time-travel facility with the rest of the gang. He’s not working for the bad guys. But really, he’s not working for anyone. When it came time to destroy the entire lot of the virus, he refused to be a part of it. He said he wasn’t going to stop them, but he wasn’t going to help them either. Right now, his biggest concern is Sam. So when tough decisions have to be made, can we trust Ramse to do the right thing?

Jones’ new beau. This leads me to my next theory … but first, I couldn’t help but geek out a little upon seeing Colonel Saul Tigh as Jones’ love interest! And back to the story … as of right now, Jones has zero feelings for this guy. But the guy, Vance, noted that he’s excited — once again — to break down her walls. This relationship has the potential to seriously mess with Jones. She’s trying to fix the past to get her daughter back, but if she falls in love in the process, how hard will it be to flip that switch when the time comes?

12 Monkeys - Jones and Ecklund

Love triangles? Cassie and Cole are meant for each other, right? Well, sort of. More like ill-fated “lovers,” à la Romeo and Juliet, or Buffy and Angel. Their paths were meant to cross; the emotions fly; but they aren’t destined to stick together. In this episode, Jennifer did say, “Being single is no end of the world; you [Cole] and her [Cassie] is.” Let’s remember that.

12 Monkeys - Cassie and Cole

Which brings us to Ms. Goines. I’m sure Jennifer’s feelings for Cole are honest, but I’m also sure she’d latch on to anyone who’s willing or nice. Case in point: Olivia. Cole gave Jennifer ample reasons to love him. And let’s face it, he’s got a soft spot for her, too.

And then there’s Cassie and … Deacon? Is that a thing? Cole alludes to everyone getting “cozy” with Deacon. And Cassie didn’t deny anything. So could there be something there, or are we overanalyzing? Deacon is pretty charismatic, after all.

Cole’s motive. How much of Cole’s heart is truly in the mission anymore? He was just some scavenger fighting his way through the post-plague world. And yet he’s the one meant to save it all. As he said, it wasn’t the killing that changed him; it was the saving. More specifically, it was the saving of Cassie. She brought new meaning and life to his world. Who else thinks that ’40s photo of him and Cassie sealed the deal and brought him back into the fold? Speaking of which …

The Poll

Last week’s poll shows that you trust Cole the most to save the world, but …


Memorable Quotes
“And sometimes you have to accept, not every caterpillar becomes a butterfly.” –Cassie

“Please trust me a little. Just a little?” –Cole (to Jennifer)

“I am time.” –Jennifer

“Why do I always have to do bad things to get your attention?” –Jennifer (to Cole)

“Primary” included timelines from 2016 and 2044, and photos from 1944.

12 Monkeys airs Mondays at 9 p.m. on Syfy.

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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