BY MELISSA HARKNESS
Last week left Tom injured and reliant on Pope to get him back to Charleston. In his absence, Marina took it upon herself to enlist Dr. Kadar's aid in figuring out what the Volm's big weapon actually does. She didn't like the answer. Hal 2.0 managed to maintain his secret identity throughout the search for Anne and Lexi. Tom woke in the hospital only to learn that Anne and his half alien daughter were missing.
Ben and his rebel Skitter contacts have found that Anne and Lexi are being held by Karen, but they don't know where. Tom immediately tries to run off in search of them, but Weaver convinces him to give the rebels 24 hours to locate the captives. Hal is not very happy with this decision and continues to try and goad his father into running off into the badlands.
Marina then pulls Tom aside and tells him what she's done regarding the Volm weapon. He becomes impressively angry with her. Sadly, he doesn't have time to continue yelling at her because Hal shows up, knocks her in the head and abducts his father at gunpoint. She does manage to scream to Maggie for help though. Maggie immediately jumps on one of the big guns and shoots their truck as it approaches. Hal manages to pull the still gimpy Tom from the flipped vehicle and drags him into an abandoned building. At this point Tom, ever the doting father, has finally gotten a clue that this might not actually be his son anymore. Hal is demanding that Tom tell him about the Volm weapon. In return, he'll give him back Anne. Not unexpectedly, the President of Charleston doesn't really go for this plan.
However, we do get to see a brief glimmer of the real Hal as he tries to fight the alien bug infesting him.
As Weaver and the 2nd Mass surround the building, Maggie confesses to Hal's “emotional” problems. This obviously leads to an uproar that Hal was the mole. Pope's voice is the loudest as usual. He harangues Maggie for a bit and then sets in on Ben. Happily, Ben punches him for his trouble. Weaver decides to try and talk it out with Hal. Marina sweetly asks him to be careful which cause Weaver to have an awkward moment. Hal demands a new humvee and passage outside Charleston. When Weaver doesn't agree he fires a few warning shots at his feet. The 2nd Mass responds with a barrage of bullets which almost kills both Hal and Tom. Since that didn't get anywhere, Ben and Maggie both want to go into the building to talk to Hal, but Weaver adamantly refuses. This is followed up by Marina warning Weaver that if he's not willing to kill Hal, then she'll replace him. Guess the romance has strings.
In true Mason family togetherness, Matt, Ben and Maggie find a way into the building that Hal can't see from his position. They all believe that Hal couldn't possibly hurt them. They're family. Inside the building, Tom lays his own family guilt trip on old Hal 2.0. He starts into a story about Hal's mother and his gun hand starts to tremble. At this point Maggie steps into the room and Hal doesn't know who to point the gun at now. Then Matt slips inside as well. Hal's in really bad shape, spinning around in circles. They all start talking at once, telling him he would never shoot his family, etc. The poor alien infested Hal appears to be in real pain now based on the expression on his face. He finally puts the gun up under his chin and almost pulls the trigger to Tom's horror. Luckily for them, Ben has remained hidden all this time, and he pops out and grabs him. Hal still manages to pull the trigger though. Fortunately for all, he only manages to graze himself with the bullet.
Pope has not been idle during all of this time. He's been in the town bar starting a betting pool on the outcome of the standoff. And when the standoff comes to an end, he proposes another one on whether or not Hal will be charged with any crime. Weaver walks in on this and the place goes silent. Pope does actually have the sense to look mildly ashamed. He tries to brazen it out and walks up to Weaver at the bar. Weaver grabs him in a “friendly” hug and threatens him with a beheading if anybody attempts to influence the odds. Showing some rare good sense, Pope sends one of his lackeys over to the hospital to stop any funny business.
At the hospital, Lourdes looks Hal over, but doesn't find any evidence of an alien bug. The rebel skitters prove good allies once again, as they have a cure for this little problem, but it's very dangerous. In typical fashion, it could kill Hal. Since they don't know for sure Hal has a bug, Tom is torn, as usual. Hal 2.0 desperately attempts to continue his evil machinations by trying to convince Maggie to free him. Fortunately, Tom sees this and the rebel skitter cure is commenced. They cut an organic pod out of some amber like resin the rebels gave Tom. It opens to reveal a whole lot of little black specks that jump out and crawl all over Hal's face and race into him through all available orifices. It was charming, really. This causes a lot of screaming, shortly followed by death. As Hal's head falls to the side, a silvery substance drips from the corner of his mouth. Lourdes sucks it up into a syringe and they torch it in a beaker. They then notice that Hal's dead and try to resuscitate him. Hey, better late than never, huh? You didn't really think Hal was going to die did you? I didn't think so. He wakes up and has no memory of anything since Hal 2.0 took over. Aww, warm fuzzies are spread around as Maggie assures Hal that he's not responsible for anything that Karen made him do.
After all this good news, the rebel skitters locate Anne and Lexi. Tom tells Marina this and hands her the complete file on the Volm weapon. He then resigns as President and hands the job over to her. I'm thinking this is a bad idea, but what do I know? The Mason's then head off into the dark in search of their missing mother figure.
The next episode of Falling Skies, “The Pickett Line” airs Sunday, July 14 at 10PM ET on TNT.