La Brea’s “Don’t Look Up” Buries the Lead

We stutter to a halt here but it's not all bad.

Tuesday’s episode started strong, giving us a lot of action and drama, but left me feeling jilted. We begin in 2021 and oddly I had forgotten all about Ty, but we’re quickly reacquainted as the poor guy sits in a restaurant lamenting his situation to a bartender (Shawnee Jones) – in code of course. She gives him a little advice and wouldn’t you know, he takes it!
Cut to 10K B.C. where Sam is freaking out. Gavin is trying his best to help but Sam is having none of it. He needs to find Riley stat! Meanwhile, since the Clearing is fucked, our gang has taken up temporary residence in the Village. And, while there’s no gaslighting about the time period, there is a lady named Ruth who’s in charge of things until Paara gets back. Ruth (Chantelle Jamieson) is…strict, and not the biggest fan of Sky folk. She sees them as individualistic and competitive instead of communal and cooperative. Making matters worse someone or something is killing warriors so Ruth ain’t got no time for Sky People nonsense. She proves this when she puts Gavin and Sam in the slammer after Sam attempts to leave during her lock-down protocol. Back…er…forward in 2021 I got excited because we see Sam in his pre-sinkhole life. But, it’s no flashback, Ty has simply taken the bartender’s advice to heart and gone to find help. Our resident shrink decides that less is more and hands the doc a list of events that will happen to convince him Ty’s got valuable info for him. Let’s all be glad those auroras don’t travel to parallel universes or it would be difficult AF to predict the future.
Over in the village, Izzy is trying to learn the bow and arrow because…reasons? I have no idea why this is a thing, but it is. It does introduce us to a new character, Leyla (Edyll Ismail), Ruth’s daughter who is a warrior and doesn’t appreciate a stranger using her bow. Since warriors are dying – we find out it’s because of pterodactyls – Ruth encourages her daughter to teach Izzy archery. Along with their clashing attitudes, Ruth’s conversation with Lucas following the bird attack results in all the Sky folk getting corralled into the “Long house” – good job Lucas. On the bright side, Scott has concluded that the birds are nesting, hence the attacks. As for Gavin and Sam, they talk about daughters. In 2021 Sam goes to the restaurant demanding answers and an explanation from Ty. Ty gives him the run down, but Sam refuses to buy it, forcing Ty to pull out the big guns revealing that he knows about Sam’s impending divorce and closet PTSD. It does go well, with Sam getting aggressive and threatening Ty before heading for the door. As Sam leaves Ty drops Maya Schmidt’s name hoping it’ll break through. Ten thousand years in the past, Lucas gives diplomacy a go and manages to convince Ruth to release Sam and Gavin to solve the bird problem. Leyla even warms up to Izzy! Everything goes relatively well – there’s a little hiccup with a helicopter but when all is said and done a new nest is made and the egg is safely moved. The Village celebrates the victory with a party where Ruth gives Lucas an actual bottle rocket. She encourages him and the other Sky people to keep up the good work and assures them with time they will earn their place. Gavin wins biggest of all, making up with Izzy, and convincing Sam to trust him in finding Riley.
Finally, in 2021, shit gets real. Ty’s just about given up when Sam returns with a folder on Maya Schmidt. Oh, that’s not even the best part…Ty has the brilliant idea to rope in another blast from the past: Gavin! Overall, I enjoyed this episode for the most part. I was interested in the 2021 stuff, but I get why they parsed it out the way they did. Letting us get to know Sam better definitely paid off when Ty was trying to recruit him to the cause. Also, funny to note that every military lady on this show gets killed, so we’ve only got two men to rely on. Maya might change that or, more likely, she goes the way of every other military lady – be careful, girl! Also, also, what is it with archery!? Why is this a thing!? I mean, I get it here because it’s 10K B.C. and it makes sense, but for real is there a conspiracy with Big Archery we should be worried about? Why does every angst-fueled girl decide the bow and arrow is the key to her salvation? I give props to Bob’s Burgers here for being real about the fantasy of teen girl archers – that shit is hard, ladies! Props to the girls who can do it though. Anyway, back to the episode. Seeing Lucas evolve as a character has been interesting and I like that the series makes him work for it. It’s not like, Boom! Lucas is a perfect leader! Man has flaws. It’s a quality this show has managed despite the high stakes. Even Gavin and Sam, the traditional alpha males of the series, get to show that they’re full-fledged people. I think the only disappointment in this series, for me, has been Scott.
Easy Scott lovers, this isn’t a condemnation, but for someone who has shown himself to be a main player, Scott comes off as a one-note background character a lot. In the first season, he used weed to deal with anxiety and became a victim of Lucas’s bullying. In the second season, he’s completely anxiety-free but gets bullied by Taamet (Martin Sensmeier). This season he’s essentially a Mary Sue type – capable of doing anything and knowing everything convenient for the plot. I’m hoping he gets his due this season overall. Besides those minor gripes, and wishing there was more from 2021, I consider this a solid episode. If the previews for the next episode are any indicator, we’ll be seeing a lot more of 2021. Oh…I hope Levi gets on board! Not gonna lie, he’s my favorite of the capable hotties in this show.

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A decent follow up to the season premiere - "Don't look up" gives us some new characters, some answers to lingering questions, and of course a few more pieces to the larger puzzle. La Brea’s “Don’t Look Up” Buries the Lead