**HEREIN BE SPOILERS**
There’s a T-1000 on the loose, and it’s not Robert Patrick. But she’s got some of the same tricks.
Let’s start at the beginning, which is to say the ending of season one. Cameron (Summer Glau) the friendly Terminatrix was ‘sploded by a car bomb. Guess what? She’s not dead.
Did anyone think Glau would be killed so easily? I mean, the whole show is about the “is-the-Terminator-a-human-too” premise. Plus, she brings geek cred and hottie appeal to the show (not to diminish how incredible looking Lena Headey is).
The big twist — using an old writing ploy — is that the explosion gave Cameron some programming damage. Now she’s malfunctioning and set on terminating John Connor. Like we didn’t see that coming. It’s the sci-fi equivalent of the old hypnosis device. Or KIT getting hacked on the old Knight Rider.
But Sarah Connor Chronicles has a knack for taking worn-out tropes and making them work. It’s not so much that the writers are breathing anything new into the formula, it’s more that they’re just making you care about the characters enough that you don’t care about the set-up. It’s very Buffy the Vampire Slayer that way.
The bulk of the show is a chase. Cameron (this is priceless) staples her skin back to her face and tracks the Connors’ blood to a church, then uses her iron fist to end an SUV getaway.
Three-quarters into the episode we come to the crux of the whole show. John finds a way to disable Cameron, and to stop him, she yells that she loves him. It’s clear that he loves her, too — which brings up some weird man-machine love questions. I’m sure they’ll be explored. He reprograms her and Homer holds his 300th weekly “Everything is Back to Normal” barbecue.
By the way, it seems Cromartie left Agent Allison alive in hopes that he’ll beat a path to Sarah and John. They have a nice little talk about it.
Meanwhile, Garbage lead singer (you remember that band? Only Happy When It Rains? Stupid Girl? When I Grow Up?) Shirley Manson joins the cast. She’s running the company that hired a bounty hunter to find and steal the Turk, the chess computer that will give rise to SkyNet.
She’s a shape-shifting, mercurial T-1000. She finger-knifes a mouthy employee in the forehead in her reveal as another big Terminator baddie, bringing the total number of machines sent back to the past up to 237. Want to place bets on whether she’ll be in an epic showdown with the Connors in the season finale? Time will tell, unless somebody travels back in it and sparks an alternate timeline. It’s been done before.