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Sarah Connors Chronicles [Season 1, Episode 1]
Shown 13 Jan 08
Shown th February 2008 [Wednesday]
It starts in 1999, 2 years after the events of Terminator 2 . Sarah Connor has gotten younger, and now looks like Lena Headey . She thinks her boyfriend is getting too clingy, so she decides to make a run for it. Unfortunately, he reports her disappearance to the police. The FBI sends an investigator, and when it registers in the offender database someone else picks up on it ...
15-year-old John attends his new school, and meets a beautiful girl, Cameron [ Summer Glau ]. Unfortunately, the school doesn't have metal detectors - if it did, people with guns (and metal skeletons!) wouldn't be allowed in. Luckily, the future John Connor from 2027 has sent another friendly Terminator back to help.
To escape the Terminators and the FBI, they make a time-jump 8 years forward, to 2007. The good side is that this erases Terminator 3 from the timestream. Unfortunately, the plan itself wasn't that well thought out. The technology they are facing is now 8 years more advanced - camera-phones and YouTube are now everyday words, and the arrival of 3 naked people in a public place attracts unwelcome attention. Virtually the instant they arrive, their cover is blown. The FBI and the Terminators are on their trail again - and the time-travellers don't know enough about the post-911 world to fit in seamlessly.
However, they have a mission. Soon, Skynet will be reactivated. And if they can stop it, they can reset the timeline. Also, Sarah has six years before she'll die of cancer. Can she save herself. Perhaps most importantly of all ... a 15-year-old heterosexual boy has Summer Glau as his personal servant. What will he do once his mom's out of the house?
Sarah spends her time with the female Terminator, which answers the obvious question about the teenage boy and the fembot. It seems that the story is about the title character, rather than the future leader of mankind - evidently the creators really hated the third film!
There's a cell of Resistance fighters somewhere in the city, but they're being hunted by Terminators.
Sarah needs to buy fake IDs. She finds out things have changed. Her contact [Tony Amendola - Stargate: SG-1 ] has retired, though he puts her in touch with his replacement. This allows for some wonderful interplay between the female Terminator and a Latina gang-girl.
Meanwhile, John's at a loose end, caged up in the house. He does some Net searching - he seems oddly ignorant, even though graphical browsers like Netscape were in common use back in 1999. Then he looks up an old friend, for no apparent reason.
Meanwhile, at a nearby junkyard, a terminator skull is unearthed. The FBI never bothered reverse-engineering this one, they just threw it in the trash. But it can remote-control its skeletal body!
Worse, the FBI are still on the lookout for trouble-makers.
Sarah makes contact with the Professor's widow. She identifies Andy, one of her husband's students. Sarah goes on a date with Andy, and discovers he's built The Turk - an AI designed to win at Chess matches.
The Terminator steals blood bags from a hospital, then gets a scientist to grow it a new skin!
Someone is stockpiling a special alloy used in the manufacture of Terminator exoskeletons. Sarah and the kids track down a gang of mercenaries who're involved in more than they know.
Meanwhile, the Terminator forces a plastic surgeon to help him. The FBI are closing in ...
Andy invites Sarah to a chess tournament. He's rebuilt The Turk, and uses it to compete against a Japanese team for a U.S. Military contract. Sarah isn't out to kill all robotics experts - just the ones the Resistance put on their Death List in the Safe House. Unfortunately, someone else is on a rampage. The Fourth member of the Resistance cell is alive and kicking!
The Terminator (Garrett Dillahunt - Deadwood) interviews Sarah's Ex and his new wife ( Sonya Walger ).
The kids make new friends at school.
Sarah recruits the surviving Resistance member.
The Psychiatrist from the Movies makes an appearance. He looks like a different actor, however. And his obsession with doomsday makes him seem a bit ... unstable.
Cameron takes Ballet lessons.
John and Cameron try to get info out of the remaining brain-chip. Unfortunately it has the ability to access teh Interwebs.
Our heroes go after the thugs who stole The Turk.
The FBI close in on Cromartie. They send in the Hostage Rescue Team, a 20-man super-SWAT unit. The result? Well, there's a soundtrack with a great Johnny Cash song.
After the fiery conclusion to last Season, the thugs pop up for a clean-up. They aren't much of a threat - but the explosion reset Cameron back to her basic settings. She's a Terminator again, and she has John Connor in her sights!
The two men in Sarah's life meet up. They drive around LA, following the trail of destruction in an effort to save her.
Cromartie is still on the Connors' tail. And The Turk is now in the hands of Cyberdyne. Worse, a shape-shifting T-1000 is on the loose!
Another Resistance fighter comes back from the future. He's badly wounded, but has a message. Sarah and Cameron go undercover as lady janitors at a nuclear power plant.
Cyberdyne's Agenda is becoming clearer. It cleverly puts the Resistance in a lose-lose situation.
John meets a nice girl named Riley. He brings her home, but things don't go well when she meets his family.
The FBI Agent visits Dean Winters. The smart thing for them to do is to get out of town before Cromartie gets hold of them.
Cromartie finally makes his play for John Connor. He kidnaps Sonya Walger , wife of Dean Winters, and keeps her hostage. Naturally Sarah and the others try to save her ...
John's relationship with Riley keeps him distracted.
The FBI Agent is approached by the Cyberdyne Boss. She tries to hire him ...
Sarah looks after a hospitalised neighbour.
Cameron gets amnesia. She thinks she is a real girl named Allison. She also has memories of the real Allison, who was captured by Skynet in the future ...
A new Terminator is in town, after the childhood version of a future Resistance leader. John and Derek go undercover at a Military School.
Sarah and Cameron rescue a child who has the same name as the target. They hide him in the Safe House, and Sarah starts to bond with him. She lends him a copy of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz for his book report.
The ex-Fed investigates the incident at the nuclear power plant in Automatic for the People . He discovers more than he expected to.
The Family discover that Cyberdyne has its eye on a local psychiatrist. They go undercover as a dysfunctional family, with John pretending to be a suicidal teen. However, he still hasn't gotten over what happened in the first episode of this Season. We finally see how the gangster died ...
The Cyberdyne CEO is has a pre-teen daughter. She takes the girl to the shrink, for family therapy. It turns out that the shrink is the key to teaching AIs how to act more human ...
Derek discovers that his GF from the Future is in town.
The Safe House is burglarised. Sarah and Cameron hunt down the thieves.
Cromartie finds out that Cameron was hospitalised with amnesia. He closes in on the Safe House ...
The FBI Agent is arrested on suspicion of murder. Someone saw a naked lookalike of him emerge from an energy bubble, and kill a man to steal his clothes ... What Skynet's agenda is (bearing in mind that TWO current Terminators are protecting him) and how Skynet is using time travel (since Connor destroyed the transporter after Derek went back) will probably never be explained!
We get a climactic story, each chapter told from the perspective of a different major character. It also ties up a few plot points, so the next plot arc can begin.
John says goodbye to Riley, and Sarah's glad to see the girl go. But while Sarah clears up the mess from the previous episode's robbery, she learns of a mistake she made.
Cameron tries to persuade John not to see Riley again. She seems to have her own agenda in the matter ...
John and Riley hop the border down to old Mexico. He makes a mistake of his own - he visits an old haunt, and gets recognised!
Cromartie goes after John. How he got across the border with a hostage in his trunk and a submachinegun in his shopping bag are never explained.
Sarah Connor is sick. She's vomiting and having nightmares, so she goes to the Shrink for help.
John and Cameron go to destroy Cromartie. But he's not where they left him. They decide to interrogate the FBI agent ...
Derek gets a call from his GF. She has kidnapped a man (Richard Schiff - West Wing) and claims he is a collaborator from Skynet. She also claims that Adam Busch ( Buffy: S6 ) is his younger self.
A couple of questions are raised by this episode. Are humans morally superior to the machines? And can they change the future, or is it predetermined?
Sarah and Cameron go undercover, posing as investors in order to derail cybernetic research.
John hangs out with Riley the irritating blonde. And we get to learn a lot more about her than John does.
Although the show is named after Sarah, she doesn't have much to do in this episode. But we finally get to see what Cameron does in her spare time. She goes to the library and researches things. By strange coincidence she stumbles across a photo of a Terminator in the 1920s. She tracks him through the decades using the library's resources.
John gets a call from the irritating blonde, who wants him to come get her.
Derek, absent for the last few eps, gets a solo mission this time. He has to protect a heavily pregnant woman and her teenage daughter.
In flashbacks to six months earlier, Sarah and Cameron attempt to protect the family from a Terminator that looks like a beefy version of Kurtwood Smith.
In Derek's flashbacks to the future, he went on a solo mission to save the lone survivor of a plague.
Sarah goes off to a UFO Convention, in the hope someone can help her discover what the three dots mean. She follows a lead - someone claims a mysterious blogger wrote about a secret hi-tech project involving an indestructible metal and advanced robotics.
The former Fed is offered the chance to teach morality to the AI, John Henry. Yes, the villains are running rings around the small band of rebels.
We see some flashbacks of Riley's past. She wasn't always an irritating blonde: she used to be brunette!
Riley's in hospital. John and Cameron wait for her.
Sarah is in hospital, under police guard. Escape is easy to someone like her, although getting medical treatment is another issue. She takes a lady doctor guestage. Sheriff Trip Tucker [ Enterprise ] is on her tail.
The Fed is trying to teach John Henry, who's a fast learner. In fact, the AI discovers a lot about both the Fed and the boss lady. Of course, he just doesn't care. A pity nobody in this show seems to have heard of Asimov's Laws of Robotics!
Sarah and her team go to the company town where the factory workers lived. They have to blend in with the grieving families, and work out how the factory was linked to Skynet.
It's the anniversary of the CEO's death. The FBI Agent and the T1000 both reflect on human mortality.
Sarah is still troubled by the man she killed. She can't sleep, so she checks into a sleep clinic.
Sarah's nightmares are about her being abducted and interrogated by her victim.
Derek has a plan to kidnap the suspected SkyNet lawyer. he tries to get his GF to help, but she has her own plans.
Cameron is conflicted. There's some nice plot development as John realises Cameron has been holding out on him. And Cameron realises that Riley is a threat ... Riley feels the pressure. Sarah tries to find out more about the girl's background, and suspects something is amiss about her. Riley suspects that her so-called friend is setting her up ...
Cameron is the main suspect in the killing. She has been hoarding spare parts, against Sarah Connor's direct orders. But Cameron doesn't obey Sarah's orders - she has her own agenda, which she claims was given by Future John.
Jessie has flashbacks to her last mission. She follows John Connor's orders, even though the Captain is a (supposedly reprogrammed) robot and she has to trust him blindly. But the level of paranoia grows, and the sub becomes more and more claustrophobic ...
John Henry plays hide-and-seek with the shapeshifter's daughter.
John goes after Riley's killer.
We get the conclusion of the back-story aboard the submarine. Things end badly, as predicted.
John Henry realises that the CEO has special plans. Will he tell his FBI pal?
The team abandon their old safe house, and head off to a new one. Sarah takes John to see Dean Winters. She also has to get checked out for breast cancer ...
Cameron and Derek pick up the cargo. They discuss Jessie - well, Cameron tells Derek something he never realised. Is it too late for Jessie, or will she come back for her jacket?
Someone hacks John Henry's system. Whoever it is, they have a small army of well-prepared goons who are hunting Sarah and her Resistance cell!
The main season arc of Riley and Jessie is over. With only two episodes to go, the new story arc goes into overdrive. Skynet sends a Terminator after Savanah Weaver, daughter of the Cyberdyne CEO. But Sarah and the Resistance intervene.
Sarah's in jail, and the FBI interrogate her. She doesn't get a lawyer, though the priest from Samson & Delilah is a useful conduit for info.
John and Cameron have a plan. Finally they come face to face with Catherine Weaver. But Cameron has an agenda of her own.
The ending is a cliffhanger on the scale of Sapphire and Steel .