Almost Human Review: Mr. Friendly

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Where Fringe began its run with technology that was clearly the brainchild of the show's creators - like encasing an entire bus in amber or birthing rapidly aging humans - Almost Human has come up with technology that seems almost too close to reality for comfort.

Tonight's case of the self-guided tracking bullet felt like it could be something very real and very deadly. That's one of the aspects about this series which is appealing. And frightening.

Almost Human Season 1 Episode 8 was the LAST of the out-of-order episodes. Finally. 

The Self-Guided Bullet

Originally, tonight's episode was slated to appear as the second outing of the Almost Human season 1. Having seen it now, I can make a case for its inclusion here as the eighth episode but ultimately still feel it should've remained in its original place. 

For starters, there was excellent character introduction and background in the beginning of the episode. Kennex at the anger management class and his interaction with Dorian following the meeting were nice glimpses into what and who John Kennex might be.

As was his shooting of the MX who wouldn't stop talking.

That's on par with the Kennex we met in episode 1. The Kennex we've seen over the past few weeks has softened somewhat toward both the synthetics, or at least regarding Dorian, and his job as a cop. 

Tonight's Kennex didn't see the machines as officers and seemed too arrogant and brash and newly returned to the force following the ambush that cost him his partner. 

He shot the MX with no hesitation and then called the machines "bullet catchers" instead of cops. For weeks now, we've seen him take a different tack with Dorian and we've watched as Dorian has repeatedly referred to himself as a cop. 

Then, in both the second shot of the self-guided bullet and in the shoot-out with the arms dealers, Dorian takes the bullets. He is a bullet catcher. But his sacrifice causes John to look differently at his synthetic partner. 

You know, kind of like the way he's been looking at Dorian for weeks now. 

Part of me understands why the producers waited to mention the ambush again if the plan is to end the season with that as the overarching story. But this wasn't the way to do it.

It's been what, weeks? months?, since Kennex and Dorian started working together. Why Maldonado would suddenly become concerned enough about the evidence locker Insyndicate was trying to break into to do something now is just silly.

She would've wanted to pursue finding whatever it was they were looking for when the raid first happened. So while it makes sense to renew the focus and bring everything back around to the ambush, this was a clunky way to do it.

Even Rudy's simple mention of the sexbots served as foreshadowing for something we'd already seen after the point at which we 1) know the character makes use of sexbots and 2) after the character has become more than just a mad scientist in a lab. 

So much about this has worked so poorly that if Almost Human fails, the producers will have no one to blame but themselves.

But not everything about tonight was awkward.

What did work about the placement of this episode was the budding relationship between Valerie and Kennex.

The two were a little too giddy and flirty for only the second episode in, so that placement actually made sense. 

Okay, so that was the only thing that really made sense. 

Having circled back around to the story presented in the first episode, I understand why the decision was made to shuffle the episodes, but I still wish the order hadn't been messed with quite so drastically. The flow of the season has been incredibly uneven because of the asynchronous storytelling.

But now we're done with all of that and in three weeks we'll come back to dig deeper into what happened during that ambush and how Kennex' girlfriend, Anna, was involved. Hopefully the resolution to season 1 makes the frustrations worth it.

What did you think of Almost Human Season 1 Episode 18? Are you ready to get back to the ambush and Insyndicate story lines?

Do you think tonight's episode worked as the eighth in the series or should it have been the second episode as it was originally intended?

You Are Here Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (25 Votes)

Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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Almost Human Season 1 Episode 8 Quotes

Dorian: Hey, Mr. Friendly! How was Angry Class 101?
Kennex: Call me that again and I swear I'll stick my boot right in your face.

Maldonado: John, thanks for not destroying any MXs today.
John: Yeah, well. The night is young.