Beck and Paige as an item was not something I saw coming. We’ve seen little of Beck being casual since his life as the Renegade dominates most of his time. It was nice to see Beck being himself as he slowly tries to win Paige over to his side. It’s not easy, Tesler gave her a second chance and she still sees the Isos as the reason all of her friends are dead. What doesn’t help is Pavel bursting into the bar and claiming that Paige has betrayed Tesler and Clu.
While I’m not sure if Pavel’s growing insanity is all supposed to be explained by the steroid-like weapon, but it is explained for at least the very recent episodes. Pavel capture Paige and Beck, simply for trying to defend her, and drags them to a prison very reminiscent to the one Flynn met Tron in. He also takes Paige to a seedy lab in Purgos, where a hulking, eerily smiling program inserts a terrifying worm into her disc that plants false memories.
Those memories are shown to Tesler and he condemns Paige, but before she can be killed, she escapes with Beck. He gets away, but she’s caught and taken to the games. I still want Paige to find out what happened to Keller. She clearly knows not all is hugs and roses in the occupation and even says that her loyalty is to Clu, not Tesler, but she is part of a military machine that thinks Tesler’s tactics are perfectly fine. It’s baffling and this isn’t simply because it’s a children’s show and we don’t need complex logic.
As Paige and her superior combat skills have her decimating the grunts sent against her, but then Pavel jumps in juicing on the weapon. The Renegade swoops in at the last second and saves Paige before Pavel can finish her off. Even though death was staring her in the face, Paige is still furious at the Renegade for saving her and attempts to kill him. Beck attempts to reason with her, but it’s all for not.
As much as I’ve loved the series up to this point, and this episode wasn’t even bad, but it’s what the impact of this episode does to the series that has me concerned. Beck doesn’t convert Paige, she doesn’t think they should hang out anymore, she goes back to Tesler, name cleared and Pavel returns the weapon. Almost everything is just set back to the status quo. All that buildup and development is just thrown away. Such a waste.
The only real development in this issue is Pavel being assigned to command over Purgos after his ‘good job.’ We also saw that even without the weapon, his depravity is still in high gear and he turns the disc wiper into the same zombie-like state that the smiling man was. We have two episodes left and to set things back to ‘normal’ seems like something that would happen if there was going to be another season. It’s either a fantastic sign or a bad move that will leave us with a completely unsatisfactory end.