Krypton: 2.04 Danger Close
Krypton has brought us back to… well, Krypton and the show returns to the boring heights of season one.
We open with a flashback scene of when Seg and Lyta first meet and this is a surprisingly well done scene, if a little on the long side. Echoing Lyta’s description of how they first met from a previous episode, we see Seg supporting a drunk Kem and stumbling on what he thinks is Lyta giving a street vendor a hard time. She’s actually buying a gift and the two flirt and chat and we’re shown they have an almost instant connection.
This might be the best Georgina Campbell has been; she’s aloofly flirtatious while Seg is unexpectedly tender underneath his confident swagger. The scene goes from classic chat up to genuine connection quite well, if a little quickly. They get interrupted by Kem who makes a vague Star Wars reference (“Aren’t you little short to be a Sagitari?”) but they then riff on this with Seg flustering about Lyta being the perfect height and it actually dissipates any naffness around the gag.
I’m glad to see Rasmus Hardiker back properly; he was a highlight of the first season, even is his character was a little predictable but in a series littered with tropes, cliché’s ad archetypes you can’t ask for much more than a good interpretation of those stock characters and his is very good. He had some of the more interesting emotional work to do in the first season and his role as conscripted soldier is an interesting contrast to his previous life as a barman – even if it does mean the good guys conveniently have someone who knows all the army door codes.
Adam continues to be more interesting this season with some good one liners (like mentioning that Zod is a dictator so evil people just let him wear a cape) but it’s a real shame when he and Seg split up as they’d started to build a good rapport, I would have liked this to lean more into their road trip/buddy movie vibe. As it is, Seg goes off to the citadel to be heroic and Adam returns to the rebels. This is a shame as I think the last couple of episodes have elevated Seg and made him more interesting. Cameron Cuffe’s performance is charming and confident and I feel like he’s trying hard to bring more than simple sexy-brooding to the art but all the cast have so little to work with its hard for them not to come across as dower. Kem and Adam do kind of take over the buddy duo vibe, which is fun but less engaging as Adam/Seg.
Once he gets to the citadel, Seg and Lyta have a passionate reunion, leading to a standard pillow talk scene – all I could think about was the fact Seg had been in the Phantom Zone for months, then traipsing around Brainiac’s forest not to mention trudging half way across Kandor to see her, then they jump straight into bed without him having a shower – he must’ve stunk!
I still don’t know quite what’s going on with Nyssa – its such a bland plot thread though a scene where Lyta is showing Seg his son with Nyssa and talking about how she holds him and thinks of Seg is suitably creepy and you do feel the desire for Nyssa to get her damn baby back. Lyta is a little bit mad and I quite like it, even if its just because she’s being controlled by Zod. Colin Salmon is great as Zod and my fan casting would have loved to see him in a movie against Brandon Routh.
A really nice moment this episode was Adam worrying that he has destroyed the universe and I felt like this episode over all offered some genuine depth to his character. There are lots of disparate characters with different plot strands running through this episode and I like the idea of building towards everyone meeting up for a finale after looking after their own corners of the narrative. The problem with Kypton is, these strands seem to stand still when we’re not with them and often when we cut back to them – Jayna and Dev for example – very little happens, its just a reminder that they’re there.
Now we’re back on Krypton things have gotten a little boring again. There is a lot of potential double crossing and changing allegiance stuff going on but nothing is very engaging and it all feels like it’ll take the easiest narrative path. The most interesting part of this weeks story is Jax trying to commit a mini-genocide after being double crossed by Nyssa (I think?) and Zod. Grandad-El stops her but I’m not sure if he should have approached things differently as his theatrical approach may have damaged a relationship that could have been nurtured for the greater good and also, may have contributed to some people dying?
I actually quite liked the scene we’re shown of Dev leaving the Sagitari, mostly because Aaron Pierre is actually a pretty good actor and his voice has a gentle Shakespearian tone to his delivery and I really enjoyed this sequence early in the episode. However, we jump around with flashbacks like this and narrators and storytelling in a very frenetic way for a 44 minute run time.
The big reveal at the end of this episode is Seg finding out Zod has been brainwashing Lyta, which isn’t much of a reveal. Zod’s attempt to brainwash Seg are thwarted by Brainiac being conveniently hidden in Segs mind. I don’t now if Lyta is gong to be given a redemptive arc are simply fall further to the darkside. Already knowing the show has been cancelled (and unlikely to be resurrected) I do wonder if plot strands will be tied up at the end.
Not the worst episode of this show but plodding and predictable having jettisoned any fun mined from Seg/Adam and Lobo it feels like, based on this, the rest of the season could be as big a slog as the first.