And so, it’s back out into the real world for Simone and Rasmus. In this episode, it’s time for them to wake up and discover what it’s like outside 6 years after the plague killed almost everyone. But first, they have to convince the survivors who forced them out of the bunker not to leave them behind.
The episode begins by introducing us to Martin, the leader of the group of survivors who followed Simone home from the hospital. In the early days of the plague, he was a soldier who was sent to guard the edges of the quarantine zone. When his troop arrived at their assigned location, he was sent straight out, for first watch.
The guards’ instructions were:
“Anyone who hasn’t been in quarantine is not allowed to cross the safe line. We still don’t know the incubation period of the disease. If you see anyone who has been exposed to infected people or to the rain, then you must order them to keep away from you or you risk getting infected yourselves. If that isn’t respected, you’re allowed to open fire. You’re allowed to do whatever the situation requires.”
Martin is stationed alone on a highway overpass.
Meanwhile, back in the bunker, Martin and his gang drive Simone and Rasmus back down the stairs and into the back of the bunker. The survivors lock them in a small room while they ransack the rest of the bunker for food and other supplies. It’s all happening very fast, since their rule is 5 minutes in, 5 minutes out.
Simone is determined to get out. She tries to communicate with the woman who is guarding the door, first by yelling, then using a marker to write words on the glass window. They exchange names (the woman is Beatrice), then Simone asks what they are looking for. “Food” the woman answers.
Then Martin tells Beatrice that it’s time to leave. They haven’t found anything anyway. Beatrice asks Martin what they are going to do about the people they locked up and he’s says they’d be dead weight anyway. Beatrice asks when they started killing innocent people.
Before they can get out of the bunker, Simone uses the tablet to turn off the power. That gets Martin’s attention. When he gets back to the door, she shows him the map of the locations where there are bunkers full of food. But she doesn’t let him get a good look at it. Instead, she destroys it, and tells him that the information now lives in her head.
Simone is a genius.
At that moment, one of the others calls out that Lea has fainted from hunger. She’ll die soon if they don’t find food. Martin knows when he’s beat, and says they’ll take Simone and Rasmus with them. Jean asks how they if know if they can trust them.
Flashback to Martin’s first day on watch. He’s messing around with a kaleidoscope and through it he sees a woman walking down the highway holding a baby. He shouts muitple warnings, and fires warning shots around her but she doesn’t respond. He can’t bring himself to shoot her, so she walks on, into the safe zone.
Simone and Rasmus get dressed and gather a few belongings to bring with them, then leave the bunker that’s been their home for 6 years. The guys in the survivors group are hostile, but Rasmus enjoys being outside again. Patrick, in particular, doesn’t believe their story about living in the bunker for the last six years, or that they know where there’s another bunker. He and Martin continuously harass Simone and Rasmus. Rasmus becomes afraid that the survivors will shoot them.
During a rest stop, Martin asks Simone about their connection to Apollon and how they ended up in the bunker. She tells him that they don’t know anything about the plague. He snaps back at her that then maybe she doesn’t know that everybody died. The people who didn’t die quickly were highly contagious before they died. Simone asks how they survived, and who they are.
Martin doesn’t answer her. Instead, he says that his group is hungry, and they need to find food before the group gets desperate. They need to find shelter before it gets dark. She’s responsible for finding the bunker before dark.
Simone replies that her only responsibility is Rasmus. Martin takes that in stride, but say he’ll shoot them both if they endanger the group. Simone points the way toward the bunker.
While overall her first responsibility is to Rasmus, she did promise them a bunker with food. Simone and Rasmus are so inexperienced that they are liabilities in many ways right now, so I can’t completely blame Martin for keeping a close eye on her. Providing food for the group would be a trade off for dealing with their inexperience.
Martin remembers back to his post at the safe line. The woman and baby infected everyone on his team, who had all been in a tent together when she walked into it. They all died within minutes. Martin, who was the only survivor, ran away.
Rasmus and Beatrice walk together for a while. They start to chat, but she tells him that it’s better if they don’t get close, so he won’t miss her as much when she dies. Rasmus is shocked that she’d say such a weird thing.
Suddenly, a truck pulls up and two soldiers or bounty hunters get out, then toss a heat seeking drone in the air. They are searching for survivors, and, “If they catch you, you’re finished.” Patrick pulls out a foil blanket to mask their body heat and they all hide under it. The drone finds a woman running nearby, so the two men chase her.
Martin tries to quickly herd his group away before they get caught too, but Simone won’t have it. They outnumber the enemy, so she thinks they should save the woman. She doesn’t understand how civilised people could behave this way. Martin still refuses, but Beatrice joins Simone. The rest of the group follows.
When they catch up to the woman, Martin kills the men who are chasing her, but she’s already fallen into a stream as she tried to get away. Martin sees a body downstream and knows the water is contaminated. Once the woman stands, she says she just wants to go home to her family. Martin silently shoots her in the head. Then he tells the others to check the men to see if they have anything the group can use.
Simone doesn’t understand why he shot the woman. Martin explains that she was going to die, then demands to know which way it is to the bunker. Simone says they have to cross the stream. Simone and Rasmus aren’t dressed properly for the kind of hiking they’re doing, and Rasmus isn’t wearing boots. Rasmus is in shock over seeing people murdered in front of him.
Martin can see that rain is coming and starts barking out orders. He wants Rasmus to put the dead men’s boots, but Rasmus refuses to wear bloody shoes. Martin has another member of the group, Jean, tape plastic bags on Rasmus’ feet to keep them dry when they cross the stream.
Personally, I’d take the bloody boots over the killer stream. Actually, if I were either Simone or Rasmus I’d steal everything those guys were wearing. Well, to begin with, I would have taken a hazmat suit from the bunker, so this wouldn’t even be an issue. You’d think the group would have taken all of the hazmat suits. Collect enough, and the rain doesn’t matter.
They soon find a school to take shelter in for the night. Simone shields Rasmus’ eyes from the mummified bodies of children who died on the playground. Once inside, the survivors efficiently go through their daily routines of searching the place for food and supplies, distilling water so it’ll be safe to use, securing their sleeping area, setting up beds, etc.
They tell Simone and Rasmus to stay out of the way. Beatrice gives Simone sturdier clothes to change into. Jean takes Rasmus to find boots. He finds a pair on a body. Rasmus is still squeamish, but doesn’t have a choice. As, Jean says, everybody’s dead.
Patrick pulls the classic bully move of taking Rasmus backpack, taking out his stuff, and using it to mock him. Rasmus brought some of his childhood drawings with him from the bunker. Then Patrick moves on to harassing Simone in the bathroom while she pees. She asks him why he’s being such a jerk, and he says it’s because they’re either lying about being in the bunker for six years, or so inexperienced that they’ll get the group killed.
I could write a long list of apocalypse newbies who became ultimate survivors, but I’ll refrain. I’ll just note that Patrick’s brain must be really tiny if he thinks the best way to handle having new members who need training is to abuse them. And let’s hope he never has kids.
Everyone goes to bed. Rasmus has trouble settling down. The moment he’s still, Beatrice tells Martin that everyone is asleep. He follows her out of the room. Curious, Rasmus follows them. He watches them have sex from just outside of the room they’re in. As soon as they finish, Beatrice gets up to leave. Martin begs her to stay, just once, but she won’t.
She follows her own advice about not getting too close to anyone.
Rasmus has had a busy day.
The next day, he won’t look Beatrice in the eye. She tries to talk to him, but he deflects, and says that his boots don’t fit. He doesn’t watch where he’s going and steps in the Killer Puddle of Death. Martin pulls his gun out and points it at Rasmus head while Patrick cheers him on. No shock there.
Beatrice and Simone argue that they should give Rasmus a chance. Simone puts herself in front of the gun, with the muzzle touching her chest. Beatrice puts on her gloves and removes Rasmus’ boot. His foot is dry, so he hasn’t been infected. Simone looks Martin in the eye and says that Rasmus is all that matters to her.
That was an epic stare down.
Jean is proud that he found Rasmus such high quality, 100% watertight boots.
Lea is barely able to walk, even with help, but they reach the bunker before long.
The door to the bunker has a palmprint security panel that specifically allows Simone access. Martin wants to know how she has access, but she refuses to talk. Everyone runs inside to find the food pantry still fully stocked, enough to last them for years.
Simone stops Martin on the way in and tells him that she and Rasmus won’t continue to travel with his group.
Martin (finally relaxed): Well, good job. Let’s get something to eat.
Simone: Listen, we’re not going to stay with you. We’re not like you.
Martin: No, you’re naive.
Simone: Why do you say that?
Martin: You think the world’s like it was before. It’s not.
Simone: You don’t know me. I just saw you kill three people. Don’t you dare judge me.
Martin: Okay. But you won’t survive.
During that conversation,
Clarke and Bellamy Simone and Martin stood so close they were almost kissing.
Simone goes straight to the bunker’s tablet to start up the power and other systems. She discovers that her father’s phone is charging nearby. It’s probably full, so she unplugs it and takes it to Rasmus. There’s a 6 year old video message from Sten, Frederick’s boss.
“Frederick, I’m sorry this is affecting your children, but we can’t stop now. We must go on. We’ve made it to the head office in Sweden. I don’t know where you are, but you must come, no matter the cost. We must solve this, and you’re the only one who can do it. Unless we find a cure, this is the end of the world.”
Simone, ever the optimist, is sure their dad is alive and made it to the head office in Sweden. She starts making plans to follow him. Rasmus, the pessimist, wonders why Sten is sorry about Frederick’s children. It does suggest that Frederick thinks they’re dead.
Martin is a strong military leader and strategist, and he learns quickly from his mistakes, but his group has been missing an emotional center to help them bond and develop loyalty. Simone also has the makings of a good leader. Even in the short scene with her high school group, it was clear that she was at the center. She’s courageous and a natural caretaker who never gives up on her own people, and that’s already begun to affect the group of survivors.
So far, Patrick’s entire character is based on being a suspicious bully. Worrying that the newbies will screw up the group is understandable, but the constant harassment is counterproductive for any group. In such a small group it ends up being like an abusive, dysfunctional family and will threaten the group’s stability and survival.
Beatrice, on the other hand, is rapidly thawing and finds herself drawn to both Simone and Rasmus.
Why don’t they ever use any of the abandoned cars they constantly walk past? The roads aren’t blocked, and there are so few survivors that the cars can’t all be out of gas.
Was this Rasmus’ first experience with any sort of sex? We weren’t shown what sort of library the bunkers have, beyond music, or how much he and Simone may have talked about the issue (as sex education- they showed her homeschooling him in other subjects).
Post-apocalyptic sex is always worrisome to me. Were they somehow able to find a supply of birth control, even though they can’t find food? If not, Beatrice’s fear that she’s going to die soon may be more justified than we realized. This is not the time or place to get pregnant. I hate it when dystopias don’t show how couples handle birth control in dire situations. All it would take is an offhanded comment. If you can swear and depict sex, you can show how to prevent unwanted pregnancies that would kill the women in those circumstances. Characters in dystopian fictions spend endless amounts of time searching for other medications or ammunition. Birth control is just as important, especially in a world with no medical care.
Sten’s message to Frederick is worrisome. Had Frederick been back to the family bunker, found his dead wife outside, and assumed that the kids were infected too? Or did he not dare to chance getting exposed by checking on them, so he just left them behind? One night early in the plague, Simone found Rasmus half asleep and saying that a man had been in the bunker. Was that Frederick or one of his coworkers? Why did they sneak in and then leave again?
Was Sweden affected by the plague, or is it in the safe zone? If it’s in the safe zone, how did Frederick get in? If it’s in the quarantine zone, how is Apollon getting supplies?
What do you all think of The Rain so far? Are you looking forward to the group’s road trip? Which member of the group do you think will turn out to be the Rick Grimes?
Images courtesy of Netflix.