Containment – Season 1 Episode 7
In its 7th episode, Containment focuses primarily on Jana, her stronghold, and the increasing threat from a group of tweakers who have been living in the building’s car park.
With the hooligans down stairs terrorizing the folk upstairs, Jana needs to fortify the area they’ve been calling home. First of all, they need to stop Paisley Gang member Cinco from killing Teresa’s mother. With a gun at her head, Cinco demands the phone back from Teresa. But that’s not all, he wants to take Teresa and her mum back to the grocery store. Cue Jake. Somehow he’s here (we’re reminded kindly, this is because he’s here to hand over the USB stick to Jana for her sweet uncoding skills). With a gun now pointed firmly at Cinco, they give him the phone and ask him to leave.
I’m struggling here with most of the characters and their behaviours. They’re so muddled and have become so unconvincing, partly due to their inability to commit to any particular stance, it isn’t enjoyable to watch. It just creates confusion. Responses to critical environments are strange and not one we might anticipate, which I’m sure the writers are happy to hear. But it doesn’t sit well onscreen, or with me.
Watching the tweakers infiltrate the building in a quest for chemicals leads to the group trying to solve the problem of keeping them out of their pristine, clinical space. The next twenty minutes are so nonsensical there is no point in even trying to unravel it. Tony goes stir-crazy, gets himself murdered by the tweakers after he gets in the lift…AND despite everyone watching the lift go to the ground floor then begin its ascent AND having a key which could immobilize the lift, they decide to let it come back up to them, in case he changed his mind. Please. In this situation, would you really do that? Cue a murdered Tony dramatically falling out of the lift covered in blood. When we see the first tweaker make it to Jana’s floor, he is quickly consumed by the infection and expires.
Easy. So now we know they’re infected.
With a permanent threat from the gang, we see a wee bit more action as Jake and accomplice kill two members on their way to seal the roof. With more guys breaking in through vents and using power tools to get through coded doors, they make it into the floor the group occupies. For some reason it is easier to blow the gang up in a chemical explosion, than to shoot them. WHAT?! How is that the best way? Does it not go against keeping the area safe, clean…This is honestly outrageous. So they can’t use the vents because infected people have been in them them, they’ve just burnt up the oxygen, endangered themselves with reckless behaviour, and two of them are supposed to be cops and scientists.. How do they not know better?
In the meantime Lex has reconnected with his father who has some words of wisdom for him. Having been booted out of his house, as the National Guard move in to create a 100ft barrier between the cordon and the outside, Lex’s father finds himself put up in a church, and it’s not even the ‘right’ denomination. An offer to stay at Lex’s prompts his father to pluck some advice from the air and tells Lex about a time he punched some guy and lost his pension. Moral, don’t lose your cool and fall into traps when you know people are out to get you.
Wise words. Lex has people out to trip him up, the Chief for one, and now a National Guard officer who has done some research on Lex the mouthpiece. The phone from the start at the episode turns out to be military, we learn this after Jana calls Lex from it desperately asking for help.
Lex seeks out the weakest spot and makes a feeble attempt to get over the cordon. Not quite sure if this is something Lex has planned (to get caught), or if he is actually that dumb. Naturally the National Guard happily cart him away.
This episode refuses to focus on the kid that Katie and Jake found who could hold the cure, and instead focuses on the continued breakdown and development of Jana’s group. Which is interesting, but is it as interesting as finding a potential cure? And why is everyone so mental? This show is pretty good at cliffhangers but isn’t that great on filler.
With Teresa’s mum getting put in her place by Xander who’s read all the baby books, we feel a wee bit sorry for her when she’s bitten by one of the infected guys. So now it’s like World War Z. Teresa’s mum departs after a tearful goodbye (Lawrence is really good at these) which is perhaps the best scene in the episode. The relationship between these two characters has been fraught with difficulties and misunderstandings, but both here understand that despite the ‘see you in 48 hours’, that this is probably the last time they will see each other. Thinking they are side by side, we slowly see that they are separated by one of the few glass partitions still standing after the shitty explosions. Conveying the pain of a mother and daughter seeing each other for the last time is especially heartbreaking when the characters are denied the warmth of an embrace. Lawrence does a convincing job sobbing away as her mother leaves her. Oddly beautiful, but again, this scene is, for me, the only saving grace for the whole episode. I struggled to pay attention this episode, and even missed the scene where Jana discovers Cinco’s body in the stairwell. AND! Apparently throughout all the drama and destruction Jana has managed to decode the flipping USB. Aye, alright then pal.
I’m not sure what I make of this show any more. I have begun to dread reviewing it as it is grossly an unenjoyable watch. How are there still more episodes to go? Maybe next week will be better, but I’m not holding out for much.
I’m rating this a six out of 10. Why? I was going to go with blah 5 Terea’s scene with her mother was such watching that I had to give it an extra point.
- the scene with Teresa and her mother
- Jana punching a bad man in the face with phone
- terrible explosions
- worse fire extinguishers. Really?!
- awful action in the stairwell with Jake and Badmen.