Well, the first season of Under the Dome didn't end quite like I hoped it would, but I'll admit, I was on the edge of my seat for those last few minutes, and actually issuing orders at my TV to Julia to move faster, because her dramatic pause was killing me. Let's insert the spoiler alert here. If you haven't seen the season finale of Under the Dome read no further!
The short and sweet recap of tonight's episode is that the cocoon hatched, the butterfly emerged and splotched black inky stuff all over the inside of mini dome, resulting in big-dome also being encased in darkness…
The butterfly hatched. Mini-dome opened up. Julia's the monarch. And someone or something that looked like Alice appeared to Julia and the kids and revealed that they need to protect the black egg that was inside the dome in order to earn the light back. She also told them that they put the dome over Chester's Mill to protect them, but she wouldn't say from what. The episode ended with Junior and Big Jim about to publicly hang Barbie while some of the townspeople watched. Then Julia dropped the egg and Barbie's dog tags into the lake, resulting in a slow explosion of pink stars filling up the sky. The darkness turned to light, only it didn't look like the dome went clear again. It looked like opaque white surrounding the dome, so does that mean they're now stuck in daylight?
We're also left hanging on Barbie's fate. Big Jim was trying to use the dome's latest event as proof that somehow they're being favored for their decision to kill Barbie. And in the final moments of the episode, he was yelling for Junior to pull the lever which would presumably drop the floor out from under Barbie, but Junior was hesitating. Will he do it? We'll find out next season. Junior seems so vulnerable to manipulation. He was on the verge of shooting his father earlier, it seemed, believing the dome wanted him to do it and thinking maybe he deserved it if he really did kill people. And then Rennie, having seen the paintings his wife did and realizing the connection between his wife's history and what's going on now, explained all that to Junior in a grand speech about their fate that turned his son around. Instead of shooting him, Junior hugged him and followed dear old Dad out to the town square for Barbie's hanging.
Does Big Jim really believe in what's happening, or is he just using it all as an excuse to make things happen the way he wants them to. Maybe both? One of the things that drove me crazy about Rennie in the book -- kind of in a good way -- is the way he seemed to justify his choices. It was like he believed what he was doing was for the greater good, no matter how dark or violent his actions were. I don't know that I've gotten that impression from TV Rennie, as he seems to be making things up as he goes along and shrugging off any remorse he might feel. But maybe that's changing.
Looking forward toward Season 2, I really hope they work on Linda as a character. I understood why she needed to be a step behind during some of the events earlier in the season, but at this point, she seems like the only one that doesn't know what's going on and it makes her look foolish. Phil's also in that boat, but he's only concerned about Barbie paying for Dodee's death, so there's just one thing that he's wrong about. And hopefully Phil finds out the truth and passes along that kick to the face to Big Jim, who really deserves it. In the meantime, it's borderline comical watching Linda try to take charge of things whenever she's in a room. Her attempts to claim the mini-dome as police property just seemed goofy, as though she could call dibs on something like that in the first place. Then she insists on touching it and gets herself zapped unconscious. These are the kinds of things I want to see happen to characters I don't like. Watching them happen to Linda just makes me cringe. I feel like she either needs to be written away from the main story a bit or brought into the fold and fed a bit more information. But as she stands now, she keeps trying to take charge in situation when she knows the least about what's going on, which makes it hard to take her seriously, or even to like her really.
I wanted the dome to come up tonight. I liked the idea of a sort of refresh happening between seasons, where Chester's Mill could replenish its resources and new characters could be brought in before the dome inevitably dropped down again. That didn't happen. But I'm not entirely disappointed, as I like the revelation that the dome is actually protecting Chester's Mill from something. What is it? Is something going on in the outside world that they're being shielded from? That's a pretty big question for us to ponder while we wait until the series returns for Season 2.