People just aren’t themselves anymore on BrainDead

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Something is definitely afoot as Laurel starts to realize that people are definitely changing in DC, thanks to (1) getting the news that Senator Wheatus’ right hand man “had a stroke” while on a talk show, and (2) getting a visit from FBI agents, including the flirty Onofrio, who wanted to know what she knows about these incidents. But thinking Gareth has just died, she races over to the office only to learn it wasn’t him, but the Chief of Staff. A job now bestowed on Gareth. The FBI agents returned to question Laurel again, this time at their offices and against her will, wanting to know what she knows about CHIs (Catastrophic Head Injuries).

Laurel doesn’t just have the FBI and exploding heads to contend with. She’s got her dad on her back for being seen at the Tax Prom drinking and dancing with Gareth, and her brother’s position as Whip is threatened by a colleague, Ella Pollack, who believes it was his ineptitude that lost them the majority. Laurel, and Luke, have much more to contend with when Pollack suddenly regains her health and stampedes over him in an attempt to take his position by a political coup. Of course, she has some little alien parasites to thank for that.

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While that drama plays out, Wheatus and the Republicans are lapping it up and trying to come to some agreement on how to reach out to the voters, and support their presidential nominee (yes, The Donald), but Wheatus is hesitant to bring in a coalition to manage the whole thing. He’d rather do it all from the ground up, much to Gareth’s displeasure. But a sudden change of heart puts Gareth back in charge to do things his way.

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One interesting thing we learned this week about the infected is that they can read lips. While trying to brainstorm a plan to take down Pollack, Luke’s assistant Scarlett (whom Laurel saw talking earlier with Pollack) stood rigid outside his office and watched what they were saying. The plan was to smear Pollack with a story that she had euthanized her dog so she could go on a holiday to Paris. Laurel got the story leaked (with a little assist from Gareth), but Pollack exposed Luke’s affair with Scarlett to the media because, as she told him, she was prepared for his attack. That put his bid to remain Whip in jeopardy with the other female senators, but Laurel worked some magic and got their support. Pollack is down, but is she out?

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The real meat of this week’s episode went deeper into the strange behavior by those infected with the bugs. Laurel finally met Gustav, an overly paranoid man who witnessed his chess buddy’s head explode last week. He’s pretty sure the government is watching and listening so talking to Laurel about the bugs is difficult. But after a meeting with her friend Stacie, whom we met last week and then saw her being trapped in a room with the bugs, Laurel began to realize Gustav’s claims about bugs eating people’s brains may have some merit. Laurel worked hard to make Stacie remember things from their past, so much so that it caused blood to leak from Stacie’s ear.

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Laurel and Gustav met with Dr. Daudier to look at the CAT scan of Gustav’s friend once more and he was convinced the black spots on the image had mandibles. But the doctors still thought it was just a digital artifact. Hoping to catch some of the creepy crawlers in his own apartment, Gustav set dozens of traps and duck taped Solo cups over his ears while playing “You Might Think” loudly (interestingly, Gustav did not know the infected all played that song over and over again until Laurel told him). Unfortunately, all he caught was a roach, but there was one other living creature in the apartment when the bugs arrived. His cat. And we are to assume it is now infected, although we thankfully did not have to see it explode. But can animals be infected and controlled like humans?

The series takes a week off next Monday for the July 4th holiday, so we’ll be left to ponder what’s happened to Gustav’s cat, will Stacie’s head explode (and we still don’t know why exactly that happens but Gustav attributes it to bug farts), will Wheatus (and Gareth) bring the voters over to their side, and will Luke retain his position while his marriage falls apart.

This week’s episode had much more humor, which was good, and another round of the catchy “Previously on BrainDead” song that opened the show. It’s a really clever way to recap the previous episodes and this week’s ended with a great punchline that the song had to end because the show ran too long. Looks like they’re finally starting to really have some fun with the show.

What did you think of this week’s episode of BrainDead? Tell us in the comments below!

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2 Comments

  1. I gave this show the old college try but, 30 minutes in, I was ready to shoot myself.

    And from the previews, et al I really wanted to like the thing.

    Can’t be all things to all people is the lesson here …

    • I think this third episode has been the best so far, nicely balancing the humor and the political wrangling.