As The Crossing gears up for next week’s double episode series finale, this week the penultimate episode, Hope Smiles from the Threshold, crams in as much plot as possible to prepare us for the end. There are several big reveals, more new characters introduced, and background characters given new prominence.
And it’s made clear that this world is a dangerous place for black men. The show started with 3 named black men, and has killed one (Beaumont), kept one physically safe in the current time (Caleb), so far, and has now critically wounded Bryce Foster, Emma Ren’s replacement as head of the refugee camp. Emma died from a less serious gunshot wound to the shoulder than Bryce’s shot to the abdomen, which has left him quickly bleeding out in the woods.
But don’t worry, the white folks, other than Sophie, are all physically fine. As a matter of fact, one of them, Lindauer, appears to have
stolen hidden exploited the talents of rescued Caleb and Rebecca’s missing daughter, Rachel, who is revealed to be a cryptographer. That’s a handy skill for someone trying to amass government and financial power.
Greta Eve and Lindauer Noah rescued her from Apex out of the goodness of their hearts, though. And they’ll return Rachel to her birth parents right after they fake the suicides of the refugees in the camp. Oops. This multiracial girl was kidnapped from one form of enslavement into a more subtle form of exploitation. A gilded cage is still a cage.
We also find out more details about the crossing itself, and how the refugees ended up in the water.
The episode opens with Rebecca’s memory of Rachel’s kidnapping from their home by Apex. It was the middle of the night, and Caleb wasn’t home. The two Apex who took Rachel easily subdued Rebecca long enough to get Rachel out of the house.
Rebecca is remembering this from within a flash
back forward to 2194, while she was waiting in line for the time travel trip to the Long Peace. Caleb was late, and the whole thing was unorganized. Naomi is there with her handler, Eli, who tells her not to talk to anyone. Hannah is standing nearby, holding the locket.
The homeless woman from last week is in charge of the operation. She makes a speech to the crowd, asking them to stay calm and follow directions so that everyone can make it to the Long Peace.
Caleb arrives during her speech. Rebecca is uncertain about making the trip backwards in time because she doesn’t want to leave Rachel behind. Caleb reminds her that he doesn’t have a choice. Apex is hunting down his Alpha-Zulu unit, and have already killed 90% of them. If they stay, he’ll be dead within the week. He feels there’s nothing they can do for Rachel. If they leave, they can consider starting another family in the past. Rebecca is still torn, feeling like she’s choosing between her husband and her child. Caleb tells her that he’s leaving, but it’s her choice whether she comes with him or not.
Jude and Nestor are working Emma’s murder case and investigating the suspicious homeless woman they arrested at the protest. Since this is a TV show, she’ll turn out to be important. In real life, this would be blatant police harassment.
Emma parked her car in a residential cul-de-sac in Eugene, OR for no apparent reason. Jude wants Nestor to investigate the owners of the houses along the cul de sac. As he pins their photos to the murder board, we can see that Greta is one of them.
Next up is a low key interrogation of “Mary Smith”. Jude makes no effort to hide that he doesn’t believe her name or her story, but Dr Hahn doesn’t show even a hairline crack in her facade. She’s as impressive as ever. My husband Nestor, the interrogation’s good cop, notes that he and Dr Hahn were both born under the sign of Sagittarius, meaning they are adventurous optimists.
Jude hilariously and enragingly explains to “Mary” that the only people who don’t have ID are the people who are trying to hide something. Wow. Welcome to the military-surveillance state.
“Mary” schools Jude on life as an impoverished/homeless person in America. I wish I could say she made a dent in the aura of his middle class white male privilege, but the show considers his obliviousness part of his charm, so she doesn’t. The idiocy continues with Jude trying to prove she’s not from this time period by insisting she name an NFL team or a Kardashian. (I can’t name either, when put on the spot.) “Mary” refuses to play along. She’s kind of a hero.
Jude gives up on his questions and decides to dig deeper with ID searches. He spits out acronyms and instructs to Nestor to have facial recognition searches done and whatnot. For good measure, he throws in a BLT from QMC Market for Mary’s lunch.
“Mary” flashes forward to the preparations for the time jump. She and her wife Grace stand on a tall platform over the people waiting to leave. Eli tells Naomi that they’ll live like kings in the Long Peace.
Reese and Leah rush in and force their way up to the platform holding Grace and “Mary”. Reese tells “Mary” and Grace that Apex knows about the machine and will be there in 20 minutes. They have to leave, now. Grace insists that they have to calibrate the machine first, but “Mary” feels that they have to try to save as many people as possible.
Just as they finish talking, Apex begins its attack on the building. Everyone rushes for the threshold, without regard to others. People are trampled and separated.
Rebecca tells Naomi about her guilt from leaving Rachel behind in the future, and from not stopping Rebecca’s kidnapping. Naomi encourages Rebecca to join her and to make Naomi’s purpose her own reason for living. Naomi plans to leave that night.
Bryce is spooked by Emma’s murder and arms his agents with extra supplies. The refugees are under stricter rules now, as well. They won’t be allowed to gather in groups larger than 4. Someone tagged one of the cabins with the acronym “WDTL”, so Bryce puts Roy in charge of painting over it. Anyone caught tagging will be brought to Bryce in cuffs.
Jude and Nestor try a different approach with “Mary”. Jude tells her that he knows about “Apex” and “Mantle’s Disease”, so she can trust him with the truth. She still denies everything. They release her.
Naomi asks for the leader of the camp. When Bryce meets her, she predicts a serious earthquake in Peru that day. She explains to Bryce that she’s the only refugee in the camp who learned history. She’ll share that knowledge with him in exchange for him providing services to her.
Peru experiences a 7.3 earthquake later that afternoon. Bryce notices.
Roy supervises as the tag is painted over. Hannah stops by to chat. Roy tells her that he gave Marshall the locket. Now he and Hannah can’t be seen talking so much. After Emma’s death, things are tightening up at the camp.
Caleb is upset about the tag. Rebecca tells him about how entranced she is by Naomi’s wisdom and her plan to leave the camp. Caleb tries to explain to Rebecca that Eli and Naomi were con artists, and reminds her that she’s been taken advantage of by innocent looking con artists before. Rebecca is already too involved with Naomi to hear him.
Jude and Nestor put a tracking device in “Mary’s” bag and use it to follow her back to the abandoned house she’s living in. Her real name is Diana. She came through the threshold with the rest of the refugees, but woke up further down the beach from the others. She stayed away from the rescue operations because she was afraid they’d be incarcerated, and she was right.
Diana and her wife, Grace, were the operators, and probably inventors, of the time machine. They sent the 1st wave back to stop the rise of Apex, and when nothing changed, Diana knew they’d failed. She decided to save as many people as possible by sending them back to the Long Peace. She spread the word, but had no idea so many people would show up.
It was chaos. Apex arrived, so they had to go quickly, with no time to calibrate the machine. That’s why they ended up in the water. Diana and Grace were going to stay in 2194 and continue to help, but, with Apex at their door, they had to leave. Diana set the time machine to self destruct after they left, but she can’t be sure that it worked.
Diana couldn’t get everyone through the time machine and feels terrible about the people she left at the mercy of Apex in 2194. Diana and Grace were separated in the crossing. She needs to find out if Grace is in the camp.
The 1st migration was comprised of 25 adults and one 10 year old girl. Jude and Nestor show Diana some photos. Diana recognizes Lindauer as Noah, and Greta Pryor as Eve.
Diana has built a time travel detector to alert her if anyone else comes from the future. It measures changes in barometric pressure, air, gravity. There would be a noticeable shift. Nestor wonders if that explains the unseasonable snow they’re having in the mountains. Diana thinks it’s possible. Her detector is improvised, so she’s not even sure if it will work.
No one explores the possibility of time travelers in the mountains. I’m thinking there’s an army of Apex amassing, but it could be the rest of the normals coming through.
Greta/Eve is still playing house with Paul. She brings some real raspberries for him to try, but he’s already had them at the camp. He’s more concerned with trying to get answers out of her about why she’s keeping him in hiding, and why she won’t tell him anything. He asks Eve if she heard from Emma after he talked to her about his drawing of Eve, and Eve lies and says that she didn’t. Eve finally explodes and tells Paul that she left him behind when she came to the Long Peace because he asks too many questions.
Bryce meets with Lindauer for an update. Lindauer translates the graffiti tag: We deserve to live. He also asks about Naomi. He must know that she’s an ex Apex slave. Lindauer gets a call from Eve letting him know that Jude has Diana. He tells Eve to send another 1st wave operative to retrieve Diana.
Caleb confronts Naomi, insisting that she stay away from his wife. Naomi tries to push his buttons while maintaining her own control. She’s very manipulative.
Paul calls Jude and tells him about the recording that Eve had him make stating that he and the other refugees are members of a suicide cult. But Paul refuses to say who had him make the recording or where he is. Jude does at least figure out that the recording is a preliminary step to murdering the refugees.
Hannah brings Roy a small bouquet of daisies, explaining that in her time it means, “I’m sorry.” She was in such a hurry to find a friend that she didn’t think about what he needed or wanted.
Caleb tries to talk to Rebecca about Rachel, explaining that he needs to cope by moving on. But he thinks about her all the time, and the night she was taken. He wishes he’d been home to try to stop it. He’d hoped that coming to the Long Peace would heal their failing marriage, but it hasn’t. He doesn’t know where to go from here.
Rebecca says that it’s time to leave the past, and their marriage, behind. Caleb wants to know if that’s Rebecca’s own thoughts or if it’s coming from Naomi. Rebecca walks out on him, but it’s actually a reasonable question. Rebecca’s not leaving the past behind, she’s moving from one substitute daughter to another, and this one wants to take advantage of her by appearing to be helpless and needy.
Bryce approaches Naomi to find out what she wants, now that he believes she knows the future. She lays out her terms: She needs help getting settled and protection. But first, she needs safe passage out of the camp for herself and four other refugees, tonight. In return, her predictions can make him wealthy.
Bryce is still an honorable guy, or “not ready” as Naomi puts it. (Not ready for enlightenment, or not ready for corruption?) He refuses. But his favorite goon agents are nearby and overhear the conversation.
Jude brings Diana up to speed on his investigations into the camp, Lindauer, and the refugees. He figures that Lindauer and his gang have to be the ones who have Paul and coerced him into making the recording, so that they can get rid of the more recent refugees and the risk of exposure they present.
Lindauer’s latest henchwoman arrives at the police station to collect Diana, posing as an FBI agent named Doyle. It’s possible she is an FBI agent, but, either way, she won’t be good for Diana’s health and safety. Jude plays the dorky small town cop with her, and stalls while he goes back to his office to have Diana take a peak at Doyle. Diana recognizes her as Delilah, the fixer and assassin from the 1st migration. Jude tells Doyle that Diana’s been released, and she’ll have to get a subpoena to requisition any records from Diana’s time in their custody.
Eve and Lindauer argue over emotional styles while monitoring a scientist who’s testing an experimental drug on a mouse. Lindauer thinks it’s okay to feel compassion while doing terrible things. Eve feels that one needs to get on with what’s necessary, instead of being slowed down by emotions.
Eve must be an amazing mother. 😱😱😱
Caleb writes an apology note and leaves flowers for Rebecca, but she’s already gone to Naomi’s cabin. Naomi is giving her last pep talk before her group makes their escape. She plans to be a beacon of light, save the children, bring hope to a dying world, whatever. It’s all very sincere and manipulative. Goon guard EJ bursts in to escort them out of camp, but they need to go quickly. Everyone gets up to leave, except for Rebecca. For the first time, we can see that Diana’s wife Grace is part of this group. Naomi says goodbye to Rebecca, being sure to invoke Rachel’s name, which has the intended effect- Rebecca changes her mind and follows Naomi.
The group is almost free when Bryce appears on the path and stops them. Bryce orders EJ to turn over his weapon. A shot is fired. Roy and Caleb race to the scene, and find Bryce has been shot in the abdomen. Roy calls for help, while Caleb searches for Rebecca.
Jude and Diana make plans to rescue the refugees. Jude says that they won’t be safe, even after they’re out of the camp, because they’re in the system now. Diana says that she can build a device that will somehow disappear the refugees so that the 1st wavers and the authorities can’t find them. That’s not ominous at all.
They’re meeting in Marshall’s trailer. He’s been listening, and looking at the locket. Now he says to count him in.
Nestor moves Chekov’s time travel detector into the evidence locker.
Lindauer gets home from work after a long day and finds his daughter is still up doing homework. Except his daughter is actually Rebecca and Caleb’s daughter Rachel, and she’s working on advanced cryptography- codebreaking.
No check in with Reese, Sophie, or Leah this week. Only a brief check-in with Roy, Hannah and Marshall. Of the characters who were important a mere 6 or 7 episodes ago, only a few remain, and their storylines are mostly forgotten. It’s as though this has become an anthology show, with Jude, Nestor, Lindauer and Caleb as the only through characters connecting the stories.
Rebecca’s guilt and shame over Rachel’s kidnapping by Apex is leading her to make multiple bad decisions. She hates herself for not being strong enough to stop the kidnapping, She blames Caleb for not being there to protect their daughter when Rachel needed him most, even though he would probably have ended up dead and Rachel would’ve still been taken. And she’s listening to Naomi without thinking deeply about the things Naomi is saying.
Naomi is playing Rebecca, twisting the knife of her guilt and offering the vague possibility of redemption whenever Rebecca questions Naomi’s agenda. Given the way Naomi latched onto Rebecca, she may even know about Lindauer’s adoption of Rachel, and have recruited Rebecca on purpose in order to lure Rachel away from home for her own purposes.
At the very least, we now have proof that Caleb was right about Naomi. She’s willing to use criminal methods, up to and including murder, to achieve her goals, and is no better than Greta and Lindauer. We don’t know yet if she’s acting of her own volition or continuing the plan she had with Eli. They may have had other accomplices from the future.
I thought I remembered Greta being referred to as Eve during her first, shadowy appearance. Good to know I’m not crazy.
Jude has become a much more competent investigator now that he’s partnered with Nestor full time and all of his female competition is gone.
Jude insists throughout the episode that Diana must have a driver’s license and social security number, as though learning to drive and getting a license are required of all citizens. A social security number is required for babies born since the 1990’s, but it wasn’t when “Mary” was supposedly born in 1971. Virtually all older adults have gotten SS numbers for employment and tax purposes, but the cards themselves are easily lost or stolen, as a cop should know.
Since the 1st migration failed to stop the rise of Apex, wouldn’t it have made sense for them to exploit Sophie’s cure for Mantle’s, and make sure that got passed down through the generations? As I understand it, wiping out humans through plague has been one of the main devices used by Apex to diminish the population. Having a cure, and maybe even a vaccine, ready and waiting when Apex starts to arise could make the difference early in the war.
Either there’s some twist we haven’t been told yet, like humans accidentally created Mantle’s, or the 1st migration is particularly bloodthirsty or stupid. There are alternatives to completely wiping out Apex that would still allow humanity to survive. But we know that Eve has snapped and become a sociopathic killer.
Images courtesy of ABC.