Author Archives: char

About char

I'm Canadian, which according to movies and TV means I'm part of the group that's almost always wiped out during the apocalypse. I’ve watched too much Star Trek and Stargate over the years and spend too much time at my computer. Now, I'm waiting for the arrival of (and human enslavement by) the Borg or the Goa'uld. That is, if my computer doesn’t swallow me first. When I'm not at ICoS, you can find me on Twitter @ApocalypseMama or on my blog at Of course, you can always email me at Char(at)incaseofsurvival(dot)com.

Under the Dome Season 2, Episode 1

The one where I attempt to (unsuccessfully) live-blog the Under the Dome season premiere. (Note: Actual recap to come in the next day or two.)

30 Jun 2014 - 10:08pm (EDT)

Okay, I think I have this figured out… I’m trying something new this time, and I’m live-blogging Under the Dome’s season premiere. Should be interesting…

30 Jun 2014 - 10:16pm (EDT)

I’m expecting weirdness. This episode was written by Stephen King.

So we pick up from last season’s finale, where Barbie is about to be hung by the lynch mob and the dome is doing crazy glowing shit. Also, now it’s magnetized.

Barbie isn’t hung (obviously) (well, not in the sense that he’s going to be executed). Julia, our monarch, was by the lake and…she finds some random girl in the water. Because the lake coughs up people, I guess.

The police officer from CSI: NY is stitching up the hole in Julia’s shoulder (did she get shot? I can’t remember).

Junior finally figures out that Barbie didn’t kill anyone and his dad is the ultimate bad guy and goes after Barbie to help find Julia. Or something. Barbie goes to hijack a car, and is held up at riflepoint by the car’s owner (who sucks with weapons, apparently, because he disarms her in like two seconds).

Aside: who IS this lady? Where did she come from?

30 Jun 2014 - 10:18pm (EDT)

Metal! Is flying! And I mean ALL metal — including knives and nails from the wall! A nail spears Joe in the hand. So magnetic dome = bad.

But wait! It also drops the bomb shelter door on Barbie’s head so maybe it’s good?

Annnd…Joe’s house collapses. Um. Okay. I don’t…okay.


30 Jun 2014 - 10:21pm (EDT)

So Big Jim is trapped in the bomb shelter. (AHH sorry did I say Barbie got trapped in the shelter? It was Big Jim. Apologies.)

Guess who’s in the shelter with him. Dodee. That’s right. Dodee.

Except SHE DIED LAST SEASON. I’m guessing either ghost or hallucination.

Or I don’t know, maybe she’s alive. This is Under the Dome.

30 Jun 2014 - 10:22pm (EDT)

Dodee is very smart and attune to the dome, for a dead person.

30 Jun 2014 - 10:25pm (EDT)

The dome wants Big Jim, and won’t stop until he dies! Or something. (So says Dodee’s Ghost.) (Can’t say I’m complaining.)

New Lady with the Rifle is very knowledgeable about the dome and magnetic field. (She’s a science teacher, I guess.) They’re building a giant magnet to counteract the dome’s magnetism. Okay then.


30 Jun 2014 - 10:29pm (EDT)

CSI Guy is in a cabin with Julia, watching over Strange Girl from the Lake. Julia goes off to do something, and CSI Guy flips through this crazy scrapbook of weirdness with sketches and handprints in blood (I think?). While’s going through the world’s weirdest memory book, he realizes that Lake Girl has wandered off.

Angie sees her walking down the street, but ignores her and goes off to the diner to get a gun. Junior comes in and says “The dome was right, my dad is EEEEVIL” and offers to get her a gun from the police station.


30 Jun 2014 - 10:30pm (EDT)

Ahahahaha… Big Jim, to Dome Dodee: “Shut up and be dead!” after she tells him he’s not listening and the dome will refuse to let him go.

In reply, Big Jim blows up the door to the bomb shelter. Because of course he does.

30 Jun 2014 - 10:31pm (EDT)

So magnet experiment is now under way. Everyone but Barbie collapses. (Marty Stu alert!)


30 Jun 2014 - 10:35pm (EDT)

Okay, live-blogging is getting very tricky with the baby trying to get to my computer as well. I’m going to have to stop it here and re-watch it later, when I can pay attention. Then I will recap. Watch for it in the next couple days!

Until next time!

Interview with Joseph D’Lacey

A little while ago, I reviewed the books Black Feathers and The Book of the Crowman. They were excellent books, and the author, Joseph D’Lacey, was kind enough to take time out of his schedule and answer some questions for us. Yay!

1. The Black Feathers Duology is quite unique in its premise and themes. How did you develop it?

I’m fortunate in that ideas seem to happen to me regularly and naturally without me having to do anything. If they’re good ideas, they hang around and bump into other ideas, getting bigger and heavier. Eventually, if I can’t ignore a subject any longer, I start working – that’s the point when I happen to the idea.

Quite honestly, most of the ‘development’ happen as I write, with many notions arising spontaneously. It’s haphazard but it works for me.

2. How long did it take you to write the books?

I wrote both books as a single novel, initially. I never expected to see it split up, even though a psychic friend told me back in 2010 that that’s what would happen. The first draft took seven months and the initial editing another four.

3. I understand that you normally write horror. What made you decide to write a fantasy? Do you see Black Feathers as a fantasy?

I’m known as a horror writer because that’s how I got my break – with MEAT in 2008. But I write all kinds of things. I love humour as much as horror and there are often strong elements of SF and Fantasy in my stories.

Writing The Black Dawn wasn’t a decision to change genre, it was simply the next thing I needed to write. But, yes, I see it as either a dark or apocalyptic fantasy.

4. Let’s talk about the themes in the book for a moment. Did you actively decide to include the religious parallels, or did that happen organically? What about the technology vs nature conflict? How did that come about?

I’m fascinated by spirituality and sacrificial figureheads. I think it’s visible even in my earliest work. In The Black Dawn, I wanted to chronicle the life of a martyr from birth to death whilst exploring our broken relationship with the land that supports us. The themes worked together very naturally and I still contemplate them daily.

5. Do the book’s themes about nature, technology, and people reflect your personal views?

They reflect my concerns and I investigated those concerns as deeply as I could within the fiction at the time. Actually, I don’t feel the ‘conclusion’ I reach at the end of The Book of the Crowman is conclusive enough. I may need to write a third book to reconcile everything!

6. I was sad about Gordon’s ending, but at the same time not surprised. It seemed like the perfect ending for his character (as sad as it was), given the parallels in the book. Did you always know that was what would happen to him?

I knew his birth and I knew his ‘death’. All I had to do was take him on a journey from one to the other.

But, of course, there is no death; only a change of worlds…

6. What happened to Megan?

I think it’s more a question of what will happen to Megan. :)

7. Will you write more fantasy now?

I’ll probably keep doing what I’ve always done, which is to please myself before I think of anyone else! That said, I love the imaginative opportunities fantasy offers and the epic possibilities it lends to central characters, so the short answer is ‘yes’.

8. We have a few writers in our audience (and here at ICoS). Can you describe your writing process? Do you have any advice for beginner writers?

Having taught writing at various levels, I’ve learned that every writer is different and that they progress through many phases of development. There’s no single piece of advice that works for everyone.

I’ve spent many years flogging myself in a variety of ways in order to achieve results. I think, on some deep level, I must have believed that suffering was essential in order to write well. Nowadays, I’m not so sure. I want to be happy and I want to enjoy my life. Because so much of my life is about stories, I’m doing everything I can now to make the actual process of writing pleasurable. After all, if you’re not getting happier as you get older, something’s wrong.

Out of all of this, though, there are a few things that might be of use:

  • write in the knowledge that you will make mistakes and let yourself make a ton of them.
  • try every method you can find and quickly discard what doesn’t help.
  • don’t let other people tell you there’s a single, foolproof method. It’s bullshit.
  • that being the case, be true to yourself and find your own way. Because your own way is the only one that will sustain you.
  • consider what success really means and define it in your own terms.

9. What projects do you currently have in the pipeline?

I’m writing a series of children’s books for 5-7 year-olds and a psychological thriller screenplay. When that’s done, I plan to write a new novel; very likely a fantasy.

10. Out of curiousity (and to pad my own reading list), what books are in your Kindle (or on your bookshelf)?

Since September last year, my genre reading has been, exclusively, horror or dark fiction by women. This is a result of my ignorance becoming very public in a Halloween article I wrote for The Guardian.

Best by far, to date, is HOME by Rebekah Lattin-Rawstrone. Go and get a copy immediately if you enjoy dark, challenging fiction. I have many more female authors on my TBR pile and hope to interview some of them in my new TV slot – ‘The Vault’ on The Book Show.

You can see a list here.

11. Because this is In Case of Survival and we like the apocalypse, I have to ask: What does your apocalypse look like? (Personally, I favor an evil space monkey apocalypse, but realistically I think we as a species will find a way to destroy ourselves without interstellar help.)

Yes, our overlords are doing such a superb job of killing us and our planet, it appears their nefarious schemes are far more inventive than any fiction I could create! In the meantime, what can I do but take each day as it comes?

About Joseph D’Lacey

JDL_bio_pic_20.08.12Joseph D’Lacey writes Horror, SF & Fantasy, often with environmental themes, and is best known for his shocking eco-horror novel Meat. The book has been widely translated and prompted Stephen King to say “Joseph D’Lacey rocks!”.

His other published works to-date include Garbage Man, Snake Eyes, The Kill Crew, The Failing Flesh, Blood Fugue, Black Feathers, The Book of the Crowman and Splinters – a collection of short stories. He won the British Fantasy Award for Best Newcomer in 2009.

He enjoys being outdoors, eating vegetarian food and was recently adopted by two cats.


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Book review: The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley

the mirror empire coverThe Mirror Empire

Author: Kameron Hurley

Series: Worldbreaker Saga (book 1)

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Angry Robot

Release date: September 2, 2014 (North America); September 4, 2014 (UK)

Note: This book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley.


On the eve of a recurring catastrophic event known to extinguish nations and reshape continents, a troubled orphan evades death and slavery to uncover her own bloody past… while a world goes to war with itself.

In the frozen kingdom of Saiduan, invaders from another realm are decimating whole cities, leaving behind nothing but ash and ruin. As the dark star of the cataclysm rises, an illegitimate ruler is tasked with holding together a country fractured by civil war, a precocious young fighter is asked to betray his family and a half-Dhai general must choose between the eradication of her father’s people or loyalty to her alien Empress.

Through tense alliances and devastating betrayal, the Dhai and their allies attempt to hold against a seemingly unstoppable force as enemy nations prepare for a coming together of worlds as old as the universe itself.

In the end, one world will rise – and many will perish.

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Book review: Some Fine Day by Kat Ross

some fine day coverSome Fine Day

Author: Kat Ross

Genre: YA SF

Publisher: Strange Chemistry/Angry Robot

Release Date: July 1, 2014 (North America and digital); Jul 3, 2014 (UK)

Note: this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley


Sixteen-year-old Jansin Nordqvist is on the verge of graduating from the black ops factory known as the Academy. She’s smart and deadly and knows three things with absolute certainty.

She knows that when the world flooded and civilization retreated deep underground, there was no one left on the surface.

She knows that the only species to thrive there are the toads, a primate/amphibian hybrid with a serious mean streak.

Most of all, she knows there’s no place on Earth where you can hide from the hypercanes, continent-sized storms that have raged for decades.

Jansin has been lied to. On all counts. Faced with the truth in the form of a charismatic young survivor named Will, Jansin vows that her former masters will regret making her what she is…

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Book review: The Buried Life by Carrie Patel

the buried life coverThe Buried Life

Author: Carrie Patel

Genre: Dystopian, SF

Publisher: Angry Robot

Release Date: July 29, 2014 (North America), August 7, 2014 (UK)

Note: this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley.


The gaslight and shadows of the underground city of Recoletta hide secrets and lies. When Inspector Liesl Malone investigates the murder of a renowned historian, she finds herself stonewalled by the all-powerful Directorate of Preservation – Ricoletta’s top-secret historical research facility.

When a second high-profile murder threatens the very fabric of city society, Malone and her rookie partner Rafe Sundar must tread carefully, lest they fall victim to not only the criminals they seek, but the government which purports to protect them. Knowledge is power, and power must be preserved at all costs…

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Book review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

kiss of deception coverThe Kiss of Deception

Author: Mary E. Pearson

Genre: YA Fantasy

Publisher: Holt/Macmillan Children’s

Release Date: July 15, 2014

Note: this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley.


In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.

On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. In The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson, deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.

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Book review: Last God Standing by Michael Boatman

LastGodStanding-144dpiLast God Standing

Author: Michael Boatman

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Angry Robot

Release date: March 2014 (US/Canada/ebook); April 2014 (UK)


Creator. Supreme being. Stand-up comic…?!

When God decides to quit and join the human race to see what all the fuss is about, all Hell breaks loose.

Sensing his abdication, the other defunct gods of Earth’s vanquished pantheons want a piece of the action He abandoned.

Meanwhile, the newly-humanised deity must discover the whereabouts and intentions of the similarly reincarnated Lucifer, and block the ascension of a murderous new God.

How is he ever going to make it as a stand-up comedian with all of this going on…?

The Ultimate in Divine Comedy…

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Review: The Book of the Crowman by Joseph D’Lacey

ThTheBookOfTheCrowman-144dpie Book of the Crowman

Series: The Black Dawn

Author: Joseph D’Lacey

Publisher: Angry Robot

Genre: Fantasy

Release date: March 2014


It is the Black Dawn, a time of environmental apocalypse, the earth wracked and dying.

It is the Bright Day, a time long generations hence, when a peace has descended across the world.

The search for the shadowy figure known only as the Crowman continues, as the Green Men prepare to rise up against the forces of the Ward.

The world has been condemned. Only Gordon Black and The Crowman can redeem it.

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Review: Black Feathers by Joseph D’Lacey

imageBlack Feathers

Series: The Black Dawn

Author: Joseph D’Lacey

Publisher: Angry Robot

Genre: Fantasy

Release date: April 2013


It is the Black Dawn, a time of environmental apocalypse, the earth wracked and dying.

It is the Bright Day, a time long generations hence, when a peace has descended across the world.

In each era, a child shall be chosen. Their task is to find a dark messiah known only as the Crowman. But is he our saviour – or the final incarnation of evil?

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Review: Astral Tide

Astral_Tide_bettersizeJPGAstral Tide
Author: Anna Silver
Genre: YA/Dystopian
Publisher: Anna Silver
Release Date: February 25, 2012


London and her friends are fugitives in a reprocessed world where anything New is illegal. But as Otherborn, they’re different. They can dream and create, which hasn’t gone unnoticed. After fleeing Capital City with an assassin on their heels, the Otherborn found nothing went according to plan. Now, they are down by two and on the run in the Outroads, but the Tycoons keep mysteriously gaining on them. And seven months later, London is no closer to her promise to go back for Rye, if there is anything left to go back for. But Zen is teaching London that there may be more to her heart than the pieces she left behind, and London can’t help but feel guilty about not looking back since they fled New Eden. Should she hold on to hope that Rye is more than just a memory, or embrace a new life and love with Zen?

In their race to outrun their enemies, one thing is becoming increasingly clear: they can only run for so long. Eventually, they’ll have to face what waits when the road runs out. Eventually, their fates will catch up to them.

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Review: The Woken Gods

The Woken Gods coverThe Woken Gods

Author: Gwenda Bond
Publisher: Strange Chemistry/Angry Robot
Genre: YA
Release Date: September 2013
Formats: Paperback and Ebook


Five years ago, the gods of ancient mythology awoke around the world.

This morning, Kyra Locke is late for school.

Seventeen-year-old Kyra lives in a transformed Washington, D.C., home to the embassies of divine pantheons and the mysterious Society of the Sun. But when rebellious Kyra encounters two trickster gods on her way back from school, one offering a threat and the other a warning, it turns out her life isn’t what it seems. She escapes with the aid of Osborne “Oz” Spencer, an intriguing Society field operative, only to discover that her scholar father has disappeared with a dangerous relic. The Society needs it, and they don’t care that she knows nothing about her father’s secrets.

Now Kyra must depend on her wits and the suspect help of scary gods, her estranged oracle mother, and, of course, Oz–whose first allegiance is to the Society. She has no choice if she’s going to recover the missing relic and save her father. And if she doesn’t? Well, that may just mean the end of the world as she knows it.

From the author of Blackwood comes a fresh, thrilling urban fantasy that will appeal to fans of Neil Gaiman, Cassandra Clare, and Rick Riordan.

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Post-apocalypse new parenthood, revisited

A really, really long time ago, I wrote about having a baby and being a new parent in the post-apocalypse (and by extension, the apocalypse). In those posts, I had all sorts of fun tips about how to survive with a baby and all that during the fun post-apocalyptic period before things settle down into quaint dystopia.

I had a baby not too long ago, so everything is once again fresh in my mind. Therefore, I’m here to add one more tip about having a baby in the post-apocalypse:

Don’t do it.

Why? you might ask. After all, won’t we need to repopulate the planet after a good majority of the population are decimated by Asgardians/zombies/evil space monkeys?

Well, yeah, obviously we’ll have to rebuild. But seriously, don’t do it when the post-apocalypse is so fresh you can still see the fires burning over New York City. Wait until after things have settled and humans have all been enslaved/made to fight each other to the death on TV/turned into zombies.

Because otherwise, you will probably die. Your baby, too. And you wouldn’t want to be responsible for the death of a helpless tiny human who looks really cute, now do you? I thought not.

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Recap: Under the Dome Episode 13


Le disclaimer: This post contains spoilers about episode 13, the season finale, of Under the Dome (titled “Curtains”). Do NOT read this post if you have not yet seen the episode and plan to.

First of all, HALLELUJAH this show is DONE. Time to celebrate!

Second of all, what the holy hell WAS that?! To the writers of this show, that was a terrible season finale. Terrible. I just…I can’t even… Did everyone go batshit?

So. The episode opens with the Baby Dome Posse, plus Carolyn and Linda, standing over the baby dome. Inside, the butterfly hatches. The Baby Dome Posse are all amazed because ZOMG this means that the monarch will be revealed!

Then the butterfly tries to get out, and each time it hits the baby dome, that part of the dome turns black. And THEN the big dome ALSO turns black. As in, completely opaque. It’s like midnight in there.

Linda’s really confused, because she has no freaking clue what’s going on (which seems to be her regular mindset, to be honest). Joe and Norrie tell her that they think the egg inside the baby dome is what’s powering the big dome. Which turns out to be a really stupid thing to do, because this is when Linda decides to grow a spine and is all “This is now POLICE property! DO NOT TOUCH!” Of course then she touches the dome, which promptly zaps her into unconsciousness. Because the dome’s protective like that.

But! Before she has her little nap, she calls for backup. Which is also a stupid thing to do, because now our resident psychotic megalomaniac, Big Jim, has just discovered where the egg is. (God, Linda, you are such a terrible judge of character. You worship Big Jim, who is seriously trying to be Lex Luthor or something, and you think Barbie’s the bad guy. Really?)

The three remaining members of the Baby Dome Posse take the dome and hide it while Linda’s passed out. (Remember, we last saw Angie with Julia. She wasn’t with the Posse.) Big Jim shows up at Ben’s house just as Linda’s waking up. Linda, giddy at having discovered that the baby dome is powering the big dome, tells Big Jim that this is their chance to bring down the dome. Big Jim, of course, is like, “Yeah, no, that’s not happening.” Because if the dome came down, he’d lose his corrupt kingdom and we CAN’T have that. Otherwise he’d have completely wasted his time at the Two Dimensional School for Wannabe Archvillains. All that tuition money…

While we’re on the subject of Big Jim, he’s annoyed that Barbie gave a not guilty plea when he was looking forward to burning him at the stake (or something). Big Jim tries some lame blackmail/threatening scheme, which Barbie basically laughs at. So Big Jim threw a temper tantrum and decided to build a gallows (or a scaffold, whatever you want to call it).

A GALLOWS. Because it’s the nineteenth century, yo.

Anyway. The Baby Dome Posse hide out in the cement factory (all traces of Maxine’s fight club thing are conveniently now gone). Joe broadcasts their location to Angie over the police radio, but he does it in a way that tells Big Jim nothing, which made me happy and Big Jim really pissed off. So Angie meets them there with Barbie and Julia in tow, and Junior of course tries to shoot Barbie. (Because shoot first, arrest later.) Julia tells the truth about who shot her (crazy jealous Maxine), but Junior doesn’t believe her. Because of course he doesn’t. Otherwise the episode would be a lot shorter. You know.

The Posse touches the baby dome, which promptly turns to dust and disintegrates. Convenient, that. In the midst of the dust, they find the butterfly. Sadly, it’s dead. But wait! No it isn’t! Because Norrie touches it and she apparently has super healing abilities! The butterfly flies off to Barbie, and Joe’s all smug in his I-told-you-so speech. Junior refuses to believe it, because Junior refuses to believe anything these days. The egg starts glowing and shaking (along with the factory) because I don’t know, maybe it’s mad that the Baby Dome Posse is too stupid to realize who the real monarch is.

Who is, apparently, Julia. She picks up the spasming egg, which immediately calms down because mommy! Then the butterfly flies over and lands on her hands. Ta-da! The monarch.

Junior, of course, refuses to believe it. Because he refuses to believe anything that doesn’t revolve around him. Or something.

Meanwhile, Big Jim has sent Linda to go look for the baby dome (she makes a good peon, that one). He comes across a gathering at the church and realizes that the residents are losing their shit because the dome’s now black and opaque. The residents are all, “OMG THE BOOK OF REVELATIONS!” and they’re convinced it’s the end times, though quite possibly without the Second Coming.

Aside: I thought the apocalypse was supposed to come with the four horsemen and the seven seals and all that? But hey, maybe the apocalypse has different rules in the dome.

Anyway. Big Jim decides he’s going to be the town’s reverend because why the hell not? He’s already the police chief, mayor, and judge (he’s not doing it out of guilt because he killed the previous reverend).

Over in Joe’s barn, Linda discovers the pink stars the Posse painted a few episodes ago. She radios Big Jim and tells him that the line “Pink stars are falling in lines” has been painted into the barn’s wall. And then Big Jim remembers his wife’s paintings from before she drove into a tree.

And then, megalomaniac that he is, he’s convinced that the dome is his DESTINY. Which he also tells Junior when Junior shows up to tell him that the Baby Dome Posse want to kill him. And then he tells Junior that he killed people to protect the town, because he’s altruistic like that. And Junior, for some random reason, has decided to actually care what Big Jim says and falls for the whole destiny crap Big Jim is spouting.

Also, Junior wanted to give the egg to his dad. The others, predictably, decide otherwise. Julia throws the egg to Angie, who takes off running. Barbie decides to distract Junior by tackling him WHEN HE IS HANDCUFFED. So obviously he’s going to get turned in to Big Jim. And if he isn’t, then we’d never get that shot that was shown in the previews, with Barbie standing by the noose. So you had to know this was coming.

In the woods, Norrie asks the egg what to do. A vision of her late mom, Alice, appears. Apparently, the people who built the dome have taken on the form of someone the Posse can relate to. (Or they’re lying and Alice is really an alien.) The dome was sent to protect them from something that will come at a later date (presumably this something will be a Very Bad Thing). To bring back the light, the Posse must protect the egg. If they fail to protect the egg, then DOOM. LOTS AND LOTS OF DOOM.

So Julia tosses the egg into the lake. Hey, that way, Big Jim can’t get it.

In the town square, Big Jim is getting ready to hang Barbie. But the egg is now protected, so it starts shooting pink stars — in lines — to the dome. The stars clear the blackness from the dome, making it bright. Like, radioactive explosion bright. Or staring-into-the-sun-while-in-space bright.

Basically, it’s really bright.

And Barbie’s still standing by the noose. Not in it.

And….that’s it.

Until next summer, that is.

Recap: Under the Dome Episode 12

Under_the_Dome_title_screen Le disclaimer: This post contains spoilers about episode 12 of Under the Dome (titled “Exigent Circumstances”). Do not read this post if you have not yet seen the episode and plan to.

Also, apologies for getting this post up so late. I had a hard time watching this without wanting to throw things at my TV, I was so pissed off at EVERYBODY IN IT. (There is seriously not a single likable character in this show. Not one.)

Okay, so in this episode, we discover that Big Jim went to school at the Two-Dimensional School for Wannabe Archvillains. Honestly, I don’t really care what else I’ve read online (mostly from the actors and the people behind the show itself), but THIS CHARACTER HAS NO LAYERS WHATSOEVER. He is made of two dimensions; aka, he is a flat character with no redeemable qualities. He has no motivations other than making sure he rules his little domed-in kingdom. Frankly, he seems to be a douche just because he can. All he’s missing is a mustache to twirl around while he’s killing people and otherwise making people’s lives hell.

Yes, I despise this character. I hope the dome zaps him and makes him go all splodey along the side of the dome. (Preferably with his insane son next to him.)

Ahem. Anyway. So Big Jim declares a state of emergency to capture Barbie (remember, BJ has turned Barbie into the murderous villain of the town because I don’t know, maybe it was lesson 2 at archvillain school or something). Linda, who is arguably the stupidest cop I’ve ever seen (in person, in film, or on television) is all, “I am NOT turning this town into a police state just because YOU want to make it one!” To which BJ replies, “It’s not me, it’s the PEOPLE who want it!” and Linda’s all “Well, okay then, if it’s the people.”

OMG Linda, your idiocy astounds. IT ASTOUNDS.

(If you haven’t already guessed, this entire episode is basically about Big Jim going on an evil villain power trip and Linda being a total moron and going along with it. That’s really the best way to sum up what went on.)

Junior has some weird moment where he actually cares about his dad, and goes off to warn Big Jim that someone will try to kill him. Big Jim’s all, “Psha, whatever. No one can kill me” and that’s that, basically. Big Jim goes off to continue his audition for the villain in a Marvel movie, and Junior decides he’s going to do his dad’s bidding. Which…I don’t even know. So Junior goes off to the clinic to “keep guard” over Julia because “Barbie might come back to finish the job” when we really know it’s because Big Jim needs to kill her to shut her up, because Barbie didn’t actually do any shooting.

Over at the radio station, Dodee overhears the military looking for the baby dome and its accompanying egg. And the military’s looking for Barbie because he’s got the “necessary expertise” for the egg. (I don’t know if that means he can disarm it or talk to it. Probably both, because Barbie’s the Marty Stu of the series.) Dodee suddenly remembers she saw the egg in Joe’s barn, even though last week she couldn’t remember a thing about the baby dome. How convenient that her dome-induced amnesia disappears now, because she runs off to tell Big Jim about what she heard AND to show him the picture of the dome egg.

Because, obviously, she is an idiot. How do these people not know that Big Jim is hazardous to their health? Seriously.

The Baby Dome Posse, meanwhile, are discussing Big Jim’s Ultimate Villain turnaround and his desire to kill Barbie. Joe is still convinced that Barbie is the monarch who will be crowned (when the butterfly emerges from its chrysalis because apparently the butterfly is like a timer). While they’re discussing this, Carolyn walks in and sees the baby dome and its egg.

And because she’s the cool mom, she tells Norrie to hide the egg because Big Jim and his henchmen are searching all the houses. Obviously, the egg can’t fall into Big Jim’s hands because he will probably find some way to corrupt it and/or break it. Because Big Jim’s like that. (Aside: Big Jim and the Henchmen would make an awesome band name.)

Joe and Norrie take the baby dome to Ben’s house, where they hide it under a massive pile of blankets. Maybe Ben likes to hoard quilts or something.

Meanwhile, Angie’s doing…something when Barbie finds her. He tells her the truth about the shootings and she believes him (FINALLY someone who shows even a lick of sense in this town). Barbie then tells Angie that Big Jim will try to kill Julia. Obviously, Big Jim can’t let his town savior facade crack, and if Julia starts talking about her shooting, that facade will crack faster than a dried mud mask (with or without cucumbers).

So Angie and Barbie go to the clinic to break Julia out. But! Big Jim has put Junior as a guard! Oh noes!

Yeah, Angie puts on the “woe is me, I’m so scared” girlfriend act and lures Junior away from the room, giving Barbie enough time to move Julia. Junior catches on when he kisses Angie and she tastes like cigarettes. Because I don’t know, I guess cigarettes = Barbie or something.

Anyway, Angie makes a break for it in the ambulance (Julia’s in the back) while Barbie turns himself in to Linda, who seems more and more like the village idiot.

But where’s Big Jim while all this is happening? At the radio station, listening to the military broadcast. It’s all going well for Dodee, until someone says they can’t go to Big Jim because they have evidence (footage, I think?) of him killing the reverend.

And that’s when you know Dodee’s about to be redshirted. I can’t really say I have any sympathy, because I thought she was pretty annoying.

Dodee figures out that Big Jim did all the killing. In a last-ditch plea for her life, she’s all, “I know where the egg is! I can help you! And you can make the dome go down!” And Big Jim, trying to be ominous, goes, “Oh, but the dome CAN’T come down.” Probably because if it does, he will no longer have minions or a domain to rule. And he’ll be all sad and pathetic and shit.

And then he shoots Dodee and sets the station on fire. And predictably implies that the blame lies with Barbie. And even more predictably, Linda (our village idiot) buys it.

Honestly, I don’t think Linda’s capable of thinking for herself.

Big Jim then goes off to Joe’s barn to find the egg. Carolyn tries to stop him from going into the barn, but he’s all, “MRAH *chest thumping* MRAH I RULE THIS TOWN,” shoves her aside, and goes in the barn.

Lo and behold, there’s no baby dome. So Big Jim’s all, “WHAT HOW CAN SOMETHING NOT GOING ACCORDING TO MY PLAN” and arrests Joe and Norrie because taking things out on kids is what you do while you’re having a tantrum. Duh.

So Joe and Norrie go to jail, and Big Jim does his intimidation thing. Joe looks intimidated, but Norrie’s more like, “Screw you, asshole” so Big Jim goes into her cell and threatens her. She is unimpressed. And remains unthreatened. (And we see further evidence that Joe is basically just a useless git who’s there because the baby dome needs four people to unlock it.)

Next, Big Jim goes to Barbie. Because if you can’t intimidate the kids, you intimidate the guy you’re trying to screw over. Or something. Big Jim threatens Barbie into making a full “confession” of the murders/shootings/blah blah blah by threatening Angie, Joe, Norrie, and Julia. Barbie’s like, “Fine, you win, I’ll confess in public. Just don’t hurt anyone!”

Right, right, of course Big Jim won’t hurt anyone.

Joe and Norrie are released and Linda follows them to their next destination. Why? Because Big Jim told her to (seriously, people, this woman is incapable of independent thought). Joe, Norrie, and Carolyn go to Ben’s, where the egg is losing its shit and screaming in a high pitched electronic voice. Linda follows them INSIDE BEN’S HOUSE and is like, “What is THAT?” (OMG Linda what is WRONG with you?!)

Julia wakes up and tells Angie who shot her (hint: not Barbie). It turns out Angie’s hidden her in a storage closet in the clinic, because she figures it would be the last place people will look for them. Sure, it’s a good assumption Big Jim’s already searched the clinic, but in this town, who the hell knows. Anyway, Julia tells Angie that they’ll kill Barbie (which we already figured would be the case, right?).

Big Jim brings Barbie out into the town square to do the public confession thing, but instead of confessing, Barbie says he’s not guilty. (And I shall imitate Nelson and say “HA HA” to Big Jim.)

And…somewhere by the dome’s edge, Junior touches the dome all by his lonesome. Because I don’t know.

We’ll find out what happens next on the season finale, which airs September 16. (Apparently it’s supposed to be a cliffhanger, so maybe we won’t find out much.)

Under the Dome airs on Mondays on CBS.