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August 27, 2015

'Persons Unknown' - 'Smoke and Steel' Recap

by Bob Sassone, posted Jul 25th 2010 5:35AM
Persons Unknown(S01E07) Oooooooooo, now this conspiracy is a lot bigger than we thought. We're talking 'X-Files' territory here.

I think we all guessed that it was some sort of secret experiment/test/plan/whatever, but I don't think we could have guessed that it has been going on for 50 years. So our kidnappees aren't just stuck in a small town for ransom, or because they were chosen at random for an experiment, they were chosen because each one of them could have great influence in the world.

Again: Oooooooooooooooooo.

This episode had a different tone from the other episodes, probably because Joe revealed a lot of information and because we saw Tori's father finally reveal that he knows what happened to the group of people, and that he has been part of this experiment for many, many years. It was all very mysterious, with the Ambassador wearing sunglasses while he was walking and talking with Mark and Kat and telling them what's going on, and that they have to go to South America to talk to the only person who can help them bring the organization down.

Seems like it's quite a big organization and that it's going to take quite a lot to bring them down. A lot more than anything a reporter who can get beat up easily and his lover/editor can do. Maybe this woman in South America has super powers like the water girl on 'Heroes.'

I sort of wish they weren't going to South America though. Do they really have to jump on another plane and travel all the way to a different continent and get involved in something there? I sorta wish the woman was in Rome already, or back in the States. I hope this side trip to South America doesn't become cumbersome.

I'm surprised the bad guys didn't kill Joe immediately, though he was kidnapped along with the other people who had no idea what was going on. I wonder if the people in charge actually like that Janet threw water in Tom's face (that's gotta hurt) or don't care either way because it's all part of whatever this whole thing is. There's still no real explanation as to what exactly this organization is doing. Are they bad guys? It would seem that way, but then the Ambassador said he had believed in what they had been doing all these years until they killed his daughter.

But, as I said, this is a big organization. Remember: They not only have secret towns where they send people, they also have secret cameras in public places around the country.

More thoughts:

• I think everyone should be madder at Joe than they are. I mean, if you were kidnapped and drugged, and then woke up in a town surrounded by strangers and you couldn't get out, and you were being watched and tested by someone, wouldn't you be ticked off if you found out that one of your fellow prisoners was in on it the whole time? The cameras, the invisible fence, and everything else? I know Joe was kidnapped too, but still he knew about Tom and the secret room, and that the experiment existed. And let's not forget that Tori was killed.

Speaking of Tori, the Ambassador is yet another one of these mystery story characters whose secret dealings with bad people gets his family hurt. I hope he grows a backbone and helps Mark and Kat bring them down, and not just in the shadows.

• Joe says that this secret organization "analyzes vast amounts of information about how the world is going." Oh my God: They're Facebook!

• Here's a question: do you think the show will end with the group getting out of the town with Mark and Kat's help and defeating the bad guys, or do you think that they'll actually get out of the town before the last episode and fight the bad guys out in the world? I wouldn't be surprised if it's the latter.

• I have to say I'm impressed with this show. It's about 85% better than I thought it was going to be, even if I do wish they had cast other people in the roles of Mark and Kat. I don't know if it could go to a second season -- or even if it should -- but as a long miniseries, it's a blast.

What do you think of 'Persons Unknown' so far?
It's excellent. I'm surprised how good it is.290 (62.6%)
Eh, it's OK. Not great but it's entertaining for the summer.157 (33.9%)
This is awful! How can you people watch this?16 (3.5%)

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How can anyone not like Kat? She's gorgeous!

July 25 2010 at 11:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Did you guys see what's happening next week?! We get to see what happened to Joe when he was first kidnapped...I feel like next week is going to be a GREAT episode. And I still maintain that Stockholm Syndrome has a big role in this whole process.

July 25 2010 at 5:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"....and that they have to go to South America to talk to the only person who can help them bring the organization down."

I'm wondering if, when the duo gets to S. America, they'll find out that the woman left the hospital weeks ago. Then, at a later point, it'll be revealed that the woman is Moira. Too far-fetched? I've been wrong many times before, and I'm probably wrong this
time, but it's fun guessing!

July 25 2010 at 12:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I actually think that the storyline has already been set since they only have a limited number of episodes (I don't believe that there's a full season). So the writers probably aren't making things up as they go along, like Lost did (but denied doing).

Having said that, I think the show is actually very good. I'm not
sure what show Lee is watching, but it doesn't come anywhere close to being as bad as he's described it.

Well, except for the bit involving the bumbling reporter and his editor GF. I have to agree that those two are a drag, but the other characters are interesting.

Is it comparable to Breaking Bad or Dexter? Probably not, but it's as good as anything on network TV that isn't a reality show.

If you don't compare it to any shows out there (e.g. Lost), its
storyline is pretty interesting... except for the reporter & editor. I do believe that the networks have a limited tolerance for this type of drama, and we may be seeing fewer and fewer shows like this (e.g. that have a script).

But this show is interesting. Watch it while it's still on.

July 25 2010 at 10:51 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think they are just making this up as they go along - there is nothing that makes any sense or has, to me anyway, any suspense because the writing is so juvenile. The acting is atrocious and last night was my last night. I'll follow your reivews at the end of the thing just to know how it ends but I feel like the studio had an empty back lot and decided to throw a bunch of mediocre actors into it and hired some third rate writers to come up with a bunch of gobblygook that exhibits no clever writing or storyline whatsoever - and will at the end, expose what they believe will be some "wow" reveal.

There's an obvious reason it is on a Saturday night.

July 25 2010 at 8:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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