THE PURGE TV Season Two Finale “7:01am” – F&S Deep Dive

The Purge TV logoSeason Two, Episode Ten, “7:01am”
Written by Krystal Houghton Ziv & Nick Zigler
Directed by Tim Andrew
[All  images courtesy Alfonso Bresciani/USA Network]

 

Now, we continue the NFFA sanctioned All-American Carnage with The Purge Season Two Finale, Episode Ten, “7:01am”!

Be sure to visit Father Son Holy Gore for The Purge episode recaps, and follow FSHG for tons of in-depth TV and movie recaps, analysis, and reviews!

WARNING!

thX56VT529

Spoilers Ahead!

 

Plot Threads of the Dammed

*Ben (Joel Allen), Marcus (Derek Luke) and Michelle’s (Rochelle Aytes) storylines collide in gruesome fashion at the Triage Center.

*The Ryan Grant (Max Martini) Robbery Crew splits up after their last successful heist, and Ryan joins Esme’s quixotic quest to expose the truth about the Purge.

The Purge - Season 2
Another Purge, another poorly organized armed gang.

EPISODE NOTES

*The “Previously on The Purge” recap is a bit misleading. Ryan Grant (Max Martini) said “Let’s get our boy” at the end of Episode Eight, “Before the Sirens“,  not “Let’s get our money.”

Teaser Tidbits

1 Week Until First Annual Purge

In a secret room at the NFFA Surveillance Center in New Orleans, an anonymous “CCTV Manager” (Jody Thompson) meets with an equally anonymous “NFFA Official” (Brett Backer) in a secure communications room.

*Per NFFA specifications, New Orleans has PA speakers installed every 3.7 blocks. Instead of warning of tornadoes or nuclear attack, these broadcast the soon-to-be-infamous Purge Siren.

*While the siren tests freaked a few people out, most citizens think it’s some kind of stunt.

*The room WiFi and Cell phone systems are, according to anonymous NFFA Guy, “our only way of communicating with the public on Purge Night.” Pay Attention To This Plot Point!

*There’s a “room within a room” protected by 2-inch thick bulletproof laminate glass, with a cute old-timey “On Air” sign.

*The outer and inner rooms are secured by end-to-end rotating keycard encryption.

*Only only operators and managers have access to either room. Pay Attention To This Plot Point!

*When CCTV Guy’s key card won’t open the inner door, NFFA Guy threatens him. His threat that the NFFA will “take measures to replace you”, reminiscent of the consequences of failure in the old Soviet Union or today’s North Korea.

*CCTV Guy calls his contact at Sandlin Security. It’s none other than James Sandlin (Ethan Hawke) himself, who channels every annoying IT Tech support guy ever to suggest operator error.

*Considering how ineffective it was in the first Purge movie, Sandlin’s claim that “this is the same system I use to protect my family. You’ve got nothing to worry about” isn’t very reassuring.

The Purge - Season 2
Has Ryan leased every empty warehouse space in New Orleans?

Marcus, Michelle, and Ben Stagger Into the Medical Triage Center …

*Andre drives past some unfortunate people trapped in a wire cage set in the bed of a pickup truck. Reminds me of the Cowboy from Season One transporting victims to the Carnival of Flesh in Episode Five, “Rise Up“.

*The banner draped outside the Triage Center bears the Staff of Caduceus, familiar as a symbol of the medical profession.

*As the volunteers tend to Ben(Joel Allen), we see that Clint’s Big Pickup Truck is a Chevy Denali.

*The Center is in a current, or former, house of worship; Ben wakes up below a statue of Jesus. And then sees a small scalpel within his reach.

*Marcus readies Michelle for an emergency Theracostomy.

*The Third-Year pre-med student assisting Marcus (Hanna Hall) hasn’t taken the MCAT yet.

*Marcus send the student to find 100 mg of the anesthetic Ketamine and a bag of O Negative aka “universal donor” blood.

*This week’s gross-out moment – a double above-the-knee amputation!

*Marcus searches for Dr. Jason (Bill Martin Williams), only to find him, and several other volunteers (including the student who helped Marcus) dead in a supply closet.

*Ben closes door behind Marcus and starts monologuing. He murdered the doctors, nurses, and volunteers because they were “perverting the purpose of Purge Night, playing God … depriving Purgers of their rightful kills.” But Ben is God – or at least the God of Purge Night.

*Marcus manages to tranquilize Ben. He holds to his vow not to kill on Purge Night, choosing to dump Ben’s unconscious body outside the center.

The Purge - Season 2
Marcus finds out what’s behind the curtain.

Ryan Grant Says Farewell to the Robbery Crew

The messages displayed on Ryan’s phone include –

  • Avoid Canal (Boulevard) and Metarie (Road)
  • Reports of Class 5 Weapons (which at least at Wikipedia, includes “explosive devices such as grenades, rocket launchers, bazookas, etc., weapons of mass destruction, and viral/biological and chemical agents) in Washington Square
  • Super Dome Explosion
  • Illegal vehicle moving towards the river
  • Explosion at Super Dome

*Forced by road blockages, the Jackals (and the bank haul) are taking the Parkway.

*After trapping the Jackals’ truck, Ryan attaches some kind plastic explosive to the truck’s undercarriage.

*Ryan, Sara (Chelle Ramos), Doug (Jaren Mitchell), and Tommy (Jonathan Medina) use the military positioning-speak based on the 24-hour clock (“Tommy you have our six“).

*Why does the crew blow open the truck’s back doors instead of just driving it, and the entire haul, away?

*One of the “rando” Pugeres who attack the crew includes one wearing the LGBTQ-themed mask seen in the teaser for Episode Seven, “Should I Stay or Should I Go“.

*As the gang loads safe boxes onto a small boat, Ryan’s Purge app reports that Esme Carmona has been sighted at the “Dist. 2 Command Center Zones 3-11, Grid E7Q Camera 116“.

*Ryan leaves to join Esme at the NFFA Surveillance Center.

The Purge - Season 2
Guess we know what Marcus’ll be doing every Purge Night from going forward.

Esme’s Last Stand at the NFFA Surveillance Center

*Inside the Surveillance Center, Esme accesses the video log for Mail Truck 453 (timestamp 1:29:40:22).

*How courteous of the assassination squad to enter Olvia Hughes’s home in full tactical gear.

*Esme’s menu options for the mail truck footage – “Transfer File” “Archive” “Broadcast”.

*Why is this particular “File Not Transferable Outside System”? Wouldn’t Esme suspect or already know that a file this sensitive might be restricted?

*Esme tries and fails to film the computer monitor with her cell phone.

*The Rube Goldberg-ish/Plot Contrivance setup of the Surveillance Center system forces Esme to transfer the file to the Broadcast Room we saw in the trailer.

*Vivian (Charlotte Schweiger) agrees to swipe Curtis’s (Conner Trinneer) key card to get Esme in the Broadcast Room, even though they both know Esme will the be a “sitting duck” for the security teams.

*Vivian’s unconvincing Thank You speech to her fellow employees is odd – she thanks everyone for helping her make it through her first Purge – didn’t we see her last year (in Episode One)?

*Esme asks Curtis “What if the laws are wrong?

*Curtis may have enough doubts to let them pass by, but not enough let them into the room. Vivian puts herself in harm’s way, gets gutshot for her bravery, and gives the key card to Esme while apparently bleeding out.

*Ryan is temporarily deafened as a shotgun fires right by his ear. This noise was highlighted earlier when the Robbery Crew covering their kids’ ears before blasting open one of the lockboxes loaded on to their boat.

*Ryan accepts that he’s not making it out of the Surveillance Center alive. He asks Esme for the key card, then leaves the room and crumples it up. Ryan will give Esme enough time to make her broadcast, then make sure she’s alive after 7 am., to be arrested instead of shot. “People need to know the truth, and you need to tell them. I’m right where I need to be.”

*Esme begins broadcasting at 6:45 am. Like an Amber Alert or Severe Weather Warning, the Olivia Huges video is pushed out to every cell phone in range.

The Purge - Season 2
Esme Carmona, from Public Enemy No. 1 to Symbol of Resistance.

6:57

*Esme relates the saga of Professor Adams, the Purge Night murders of Adams and the study participants and the off-purge murder of Olivia Hughes, last surviving study participant.

The Purge doesn’t take away our anger, our hatred, our fears. It fuels them. Our system is corrupt. Start asking questions” blares over the Purge PA system; a bloodied Turner (Matt Shively) hears the broadcast.

*In a beautifully poetic scene,  Ryan stops firing at the oncoming police as the sirens blare and turns to face Esme. He places his hand on the glass and locks eyes with her as his body is riddled with bullets.

*The clock turns to 7 am. Esme tells her sister Sofia “if you can hear me, I love you” in Spanish.

*SWAT team members escort Esme out of the broadcast room. The leader (Steve Mokate) speaks into his collar mic.“Sir, we’re post 7 am” “The order stands”. The SWAT leader shoots Emse between the eyes; she falls onto Ryan’s body.

*The door to the broadcast room is still open; was that exchange also broadcast? If so, is that the basis for the Resist movement built around Esme’s off-Purge murder?

Two Months After Purge Night

*Sara, Tommy, and Doug meet at the Cafe Avenida (Avenue).

*Tommy asks Sara and Doug if they agree with his proposal for Ryan’s share. All look at his empty chair and agree it’s what he would’ve wanted.

*We find out what that proposal is in the next scene. In a New Orleans loft/factory space type setup, we see people milling about, and lots of anti-Purge flyers, buttons, and other such materials. A large banner against one wall blazes the word RESIST above a Che Guevara-like portrait of Esme Carmona.

*Vivian survived her stomach wound, and on crutches, works with a Foundation hacker on getting the protocols they need to keep their backdoor access to the NFFA mainframe open.

*Darren (Denzel Whitaker) informs Vivian that Ryan’s friends have made a wire transfer (the first of many) to fund their anti-Purge outreach to rural communities and more.

*Per Darren, the NFFA is dismissing reports of Esme’s post-Purge murder as “fake news”.

*Marcus and Michelle, along with Tonya and Andre, watch Darren speak. Sofia (Marialy Tejada) heard her sister’s final message and is also part of this new “Resistance“.

*Darren -“No amount of thought, prayers, or Grief Boxes will ever be enough! Our country deserves better!”

*As Darren rallies the anti-Purge activists, we see Ben. He’s returned to the place where his true self was born on a previous Purge Night, sharpening a blade. If the final scene between Esme and Ryan was a rare moment of high romance from The Purge, Ben in his womb is a high point of dread, at least for me.

The Purge - Season 2
I’m glad Darren’s group is getting funding because those flyers aren’t going to do the job.

The Purge hasn’t yet been renewed for a third season on USA.

Official USA network images, articles, and other Purge related goodies can be found here.
My deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and Seasons 1 & 2 of Channel Zero reside at SciFi4Me; Fang and Saucer is home to my deep dives into Season One of The Purge TV, and Channel Zero Seasons 3 & 4.

Until next week citizens, “Just remember all the good The Purge does.

THE PURGE TV S2E8 – What Happens “Before the Sirens”? – F&S Deep Dive

The Purge TV logoSeason Two, Episode Eight, “Before the Sirens”
Written by James Roland and Lindsey Villarreal
Directed by Patrick Lussier
[All  images courtesy Alfonso Bresciani/USA Network]

 

Now, we continue the NFFA sanctioned All-American Carnage with The Purge Season Two, Episode Eight, “Before the Sirens”!

Be sure to visit Father Son Holy Gore for The Purge episode recaps, and follow FSHG for tons of in-depth TV and movie recaps, analysis, and reviews!

WARNING!

thX56VT529

Spoilers Ahead!

 

Plot Threads of the Dammed

*Marcus (Derek Luke) & Michelle (Rochelle Aytes), & Tonya (Devyn A. Tyler) & Andre (Damien D. Smith) make sure Darren is safe, then prepare for the Purge Night Homeowner’s Association Home Invasion.

*The Ryan Grant (Max Martini) Robbery/Revenge Against the NFFA Crew set their Purge Night Heist in motion – with a few twists.

*Ben (Joel Allen) goes full Travis Bickle and stars in a Purge Night version of The House on Sorority Row Meets Black Christmas.

The Purge - Season 2
Ryan (Max Martini) has plans within plans within plans.

EPISODE NOTES

*Episode director Patrick Lussier has quite a resume in the horror genre, most notably with the My Bloody Valentine remake and The Poughkeepsie Tapes (both 2009). He’s also set to work with Purge guest star Dermot Mulroney in a horror thriller called Trick.

Teaser Tidbits

*The episode begins “twelve hours until the Annual Purge”.

*A trio of giggly teenage girls – Mia (Lacy Ann Hartselle), Lily (Raquel Ascension), and Scarlett (Alexa Ketchum) – play dress-up while listening to “This Baby Don’t Cry” by K. Flay (Thanks for making it easy to look up a song, Show!).

*Along with the pink tulle skirts, rhinestone-encrusted stiletto boots, bracelets, neck collars, belts and headbands festooned with lethally sharp spikes, this Girls Purge Night Out arsenal includes a barbed-wire bat, serrated-edge knives, and a chrome triple-headed flail (which may not have existed).

*If Mia’s Dad (Jason Bayle) looks familiar, that because you may have seen him as Tree’s Dad in the Happy Death Day movies, both of which were filmed in New Orleans.

*The frat bros watch the girl’s “Purge Confession” on TikTok, with “Purge!” replacing the traditional “Say Cheese”. The TikTok app has run into a fair amount of controversy lately, due it’s perceived ties to the Chinese government, and the potential to be used to monitor citizens.

The Great Purge Caper with the Ryan Grant Robbery Crew

*Ryan (Max Martini) and Esme (Paola Nuñez) both know Esme’s planning something, and both know she’s not going to tell Ryan what it is.

*The crew honors Tommy (Jonathan Medina) with their time-honored pre-heist ritual,  a combination of corporate trust-building exercise, an athlete’s pregame ritual and the knife game between Bishop & Hudson in Aliens (1986, Dir. James Cameron).

*Over at NFFA Snoop Central, Curtis (Connor Trinneer) tells Vivian (Charlotte Schweiger), “This year’s tracking to be the largest Purge we’ve seen.”

*Esme calls Vivian on their burner phone system. She needs Vivian to trigger a false tag on Esme, just far enough away from the airstrip, and just soon enough before the Purge starts to draw away NFFA security block access to the planes (and the money on the planes).

*3 Hours to Annual Purge

*Vivian passes an NFFA (military ?) recruitment poster on her way to meet Esme and Ryan.

*Esme sure likes saying Ryan is a “good person”; she told Vivian exactly what she told Ryan.

*According to Esme, Ryan knows she is working with “The Foundation” hackers, but Esme has not told her lover what the “endgame” is; Ryan would try to stop her if he knew.

*There’s more eye imagery in the graffiti in the alley. In the main image above, the eye is crossed out. I didn’t see that on the eye Vivian passes on her way out of the alley.

*Is “Stay Safe” the new “I Love You” in the Purge Universe?

*I wish we’d seen a little more of Vivian’s decision to betray the NFFA. She knows the consequences, that Curtis is watching her. Did anything else, besides her admiration for Esme and an innate sense of right and wrong, prompt her choice?

The Purge - Season 2
“Yeah, sure, we’re just dropping off a casserole at your Mom’s house – after I BREAK YOUR ARM”

*30 Minutes to Annual Purge

*Ryan glances at his trusty “Minutes to Annual Purge” app on his smartwatch, sets off the jamming device early, and (improbably) dispatches one of Ziv’s goons (Jason Dowies) via open passenger-side door collision with a truck – without losing control of his car.

*Now we see the long con Ryan’s been planning since before he gave Tommy a copy of The Count of Monte Cristo back in Episode Four, “Grief Box“.

*Ryan arranged for the Jackals, driving “Eastin Security” trucks we saw in Episode Two, “Everything Is Fine“, to drive up to the now useless planes, take out Ziv and her entire security team, and take the money.

*For Ryan, Sarah (Chelle Ramos), and Doug (Jaren Mitchell), getting a cut of the heist money is important, but not nearly as important as breaking Tommy out of NFFA custody before he’s murdered on Purge Night.

*At the episode’s end, Ryan, Sarah, and Doug follow a blue Purge Prisoner Bus in their souped-up Humvee. Tommy sees them waiting on the other side of the road, and takes a window seat. Did Ryan fill him in on the plan somewhere in that copy of Monte Cristo?

*Esme drives a motorcycle past a digital billboard offering a $500,000.00 reward for the apprehension of “Esmerelda Carmona, Domestic Terrorist, Dead or Alive”. Citizens are asked to call the New Orleans NFFA Behavioral Crimes Unit at 555-0199 with any information.

The Purge - Season 2
At least almost getting Purged brought Marcus closer to his extended family!

Marcus, Michelle & Darren – Tough Love & the Power of Family

*I haven’t seen anything on possible symbolism of the necklace we’ve seen Darren (Denzel Whitaker) wearing throughout the season. But would we see it in practically every scene Darren’s in if it didn’t have some significance?

*Darren tells Marcus (Derek Luke) that, because the NFFA made him wear a wire to “betray” Esme, maybe he deserves to be Purged.

*Marcus’s response illuminates his continuing political awakening. He tells Darren, “It was the system that betrayed us,” a system that expects citizens to obey laws except for 12 hours a year. Who does that serve?  “Not you, not me, that’s for damn sure.

*Darren thinks Marcus is taking him to spend Purge Night with his mother Tonya (Devyn A. Tyler) and Andre (Damien D. Smith).

*Instead, Marcus breaks Darren’s arm with a GIGANTIC wrench. Hospitals are off-limits during Purge, even to the NFFA; but only a “real injury” would get Darren admitted.

*Surprise! Tonya is in on “Operation Maim Darren for His Own Good” plan; she invites Marcus and Michelle to spend Purge Night at her house.

*A Prytania Security Solutions (“Your Solution for Purge Security”) van is parked on the street outside Tonya’s home. There is a Prytania Street in New Orleans that is home to a historic theater – but no security company I could find.

*Was “Sushi Bonanza” the “nasty” restaurant Michelle (Rochelle Aytes) and Marcus went to for their first date. Tonight, they enjoy high-end sushi, saki, and some clearing the air over their (possible) “last meal”.

*Michelle and Marcus still have a lot to learn and appreciate about each other, if they survive. Marcus remarks on Michelle’s new sense of humor; she replies, “I’ve always been funny.”

*This exchange set off a warning light for me. Many times, a series character (or couple) who resolve their family/mommy or daddy/relationship issues have a higher risk of dying before the last episode.  Watch a couple seasons of LOST to see this theory in action.

*Just as the Purge announcement blares from the television, Tonya and Andre join Marcus and Michelle, because “family has to stick together”. Tonya wishes she’d reached out sooner. NFFA may be a dystopian hellhole, but Marcus, Tonya, Michelle, and Andre are a great extended/blended family.

*As the sirens fade, the bounty on Marcus vanishes from Ivory Road, just as the neighbors led by Clint (David Maldonado) arrive to finish the job themselves.

The Purge - Season 2
Let’s hope Vivian is actually trustworthy.

Ben: The Purge Is Coming from Inside the Fraternity House!

*Over at “Chateau Awesome”, Turner’s (Matt Shively) fraternity brothers are more interested in drinking than Purge preparation. They’re also very nervous about spending Purge Night with Ben.

*Scott (Peyton Wich), among others, warns Turner that Ben’s been acting “weirder than weird” lately. Turner channels Captian Oblivious, excusing Ben’s increasingly odd behavior as the effect of seeing so much off-Purge death.

*Ben emulates Travis Bickle coiffure in Taxi Driver, shaving his head while listening to (what sounds like) Death Metal.

*Turner accidentally on purpose snoops in Ben’s room and find finds Ben’s Notebook of Death. Among the drawings of skulls, knives, and bleeding animals heads there’s an image of Andy Tran (Lawrence Kao) bleeding out in the dorm elevator.

*Did Ben see that image later on TV? Was it described to him by someone? Since we know Ben was on another floor when Andy’s body was found, how could Ben see it firsthand? Maybe he snuck downstairs and peered through the CRIME SCENE DO NOT CROSS tape.

*LOVE the wacked-out, 1790’s era, Pedro Friedberg designed pop-art hand chair in Ben’s room.

*Turner’s attempt at an intervention goes spectacularly off course and ends with Ben (supposedly) locked out of the house and Turner in possession of the crossbow.

*Weird. Turner calls 911 and gets an automated message: “Police and Emergency services are suspended in anticipation of the annual Purge”. When is the cutoff time?

*Ben’s souped-up crossbow features the word “dagger” etched on the side, possibly indicating it’s a “Mission MXB Dagger” model from Mission Crossbows. According to this review, it’s good for “Small Game, Deer, Elk Hunting, Moose, Bear Hunting, Target Shooting”, and in the Purge Universe, People.

*Now locked in the house, frat brother Scott is the first to follow the Horror Movie Protocol, including “Let’s Spit Up and Die” and “Picked Off One by One” as this storyline transforms into the Purge version of Black Christmas meets And Then There Were None.

*Scott finds the second-floor windows unsecured, then, in true Slasher movie tradition, find Ben Right Behind Him.

*Turner looks for Scott, gets chocked unconscious by Ben, then awakens to find himself and Scott downstairs. They’re bound and gagged on the couch, watching frat brothers Zane (Camron Jones) and Jacob (Spencer Rayshon Stevenson) playing a deadly game of Beer Pong.

*Ben shoots Jacob in the chest (right through the yellow Dixie/Solo cup!), and slits Zane’s throat in front of Scott and Turner.

*This triggers Turner’s “Apologize and Run” instinct. He blurts “Sorry” to Scott, repeating his apology when he abandoned Ben. Ben easily catches his fleeing prey.

*Instead of killing Turner, Ben smiles and says, “I have a better idea”. I don’t think this idea is better for Turner’s odds of surviving Purge Night.

The Purge - Season 2
Hope Andre and Tonya have some Kevlar vests in that duffel bag.

The Purge Season Two, Episode Nine, “Hail Mary” airs Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 9/8c on USA.

Official USA network images, articles, and other Purge related goodies can be found here.
My deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and Seasons 1 & 2 of Channel Zero reside at SciFi4Me; Fang and Saucer is home to my deep dives into Season One of The Purge TV, and Channel Zero Seasons 3 & 4.

Until next week citizens, “Just remember all the good The Purge does.

THE PURGE TV S2E7 “Should I Stay Or Should I Go” – F&S Deep Dive

The Purge TV logoSeason Two, Episode Seven “Should I Stay or Should I Go”
Written by Nick zigler
Directed by Darren Grant
[All  images courtesy Alfonso Bresciani/USA Network]

 

Now, we continue the NFFA sanctioned All-American Carnage with The Purge Season Two, Episode Seven, “Should I Stay or Should I Go”!

Be sure to visit Father Son Holy Gore for The Purge episode recaps, and follow FSHG for tons of in-depth TV and movie recaps, analysis, and reviews!

WARNING!

thX56VT529

Spoilers Ahead!

 

Plot Threads of the Dammed

*Kelen (Danika Yarosh) attempts to sneak back to campus sans Ben (Joel Allen), who graciously offers to drive her back. They hit the road!

*Marcus (Derek Luke), Michelle (Rochelle Aytes), and Darren Moore (Denzel Whitaker) find out why everyone wants to kill Marcus, then they hit the road!

*Esme’s (Paola Nuñez) and Ryan Grant (Max Martini) collect information on the Jackals gang from Episode One, then – wait for it – they hit the road!

The Purge - Season 2
Ben Gardner, World’s Luckiest Serial Killer, sees someone’s been looking through his suitcase.

EPISODE NOTES

*The episode title refers to the classic, oft-covered and played in movies and commercials 1981 single by The Clash from their album Combat Rock. “Should I Stay or Should I Go” hit #1 on the UK charts – in 1991 when it featured in a commercial for Levi’s jeans.

Teaser Tidbits

*The Merrymakers Mask Co. sales meeting. Ian (Benjamin Nathan-Serio) demonstrates a Scarecrow-like burlap sack mask, featuring the popular “Michael Myers In Halloween Point of View” technique.

*Can’t tell if the mask’s mouth is sewn or stapled shut.

*Ian notes, “Visibility is excellent. Ventilation is greatly improved from last year.”

*Ian’s boss (Craig Welzbacher) likes that news, because “We don’t need another suffocation lawsuit. Thank God that happened on Purge.”

*Linda (Lindsey Pearlman) thinks the company should “Make a push for the LGBTQ market” Repurposed on old SKU, added spangles & LED lights in the rainbow flag colors.

*They use old inventory, look like they care, and of course, will give a portion of the proceeds to a “relevant charity”.

*Jimmy has an idea for the “Inspired by True Events” line – The Campus Killer mask. No ad budget = no problem. Since “Bad taste sells“, cable news will cover the outrage the mask generates and publicize it for Merrymakers.

*“The Merrymakers Mask Co.” Company logo is a Purge-specific variation on the comedy and tragedy masks from ancient Greek theater.

*Given the rich history of masks and Mardi Gras in New Orleans, it’s not surprising this has become a booming industry under the NFFA.

*As the episode begins, it’s “116 Days to Purge Night“.

The Purge - Season 2
So begins a Purge version of “a deadly game of cat and mouse”.

Road Trippin’ With Ryan and Esme!

*In an abandoned building, Esme (Paola Nuñez) logs into the NFFA network during the skeleton crew shift and downloads information on the Jackals gang we met way back in Episode One.

*Ryan (Max Martini) wonders why Esme chose to trust a former cop. “You walked away from a system that betrayed you,” and Max chose not to harm the bank guards during the robbery at 1st Parish Bank.

*At this point, Vivian appears to be the NFFA team player, busy tracking Esme’s location – 652 Longview.

*It doesn’t sound like Ryan wants the Jackals information for Purge Night revenge; I suspect he’s cooking up something involving a double-cross of Capt. Ziv and her crooked cops.

*Esme uses her analytical skills to help Ryan visualize where his mom might be, based on her history and behavior patterns.

*Ryan’s mom wanders away from the care facility. Ryan has to present his real id to the cops who find her, and Esme bails as they approach Ryan’s truck.

*Alice Grant (Geraldine Singer) wonders why her son isn’t in class. Ryan tells her, “School was dismissed” – agreeing with Alzheimer’s patients’ reality instead of trying to correct them.

*Esme, walking back to Ryan’s loft, sees flyers for car sale “72,000 miles, $8,200.00 OBO (or best offer) Contact Drew Adams 1-800-555-0140“.

The Purge - Season 2
Esme sees Vivian’s car flyers – is Vivian helping? Or is she luring Esme out of hiding?

*Turns out Vivian (Charlotte Schweiger) arranged to have those flyers posted along dead spots on Esme’s travel patterns. Why is Vivian helping/reaching out to  Esme?

*We do see Vivian asking (and getting no answers from) Curtis (Connor Trinneer) after pulling an all-nighter of keystroke analysis on Esme’s workstation before it was wiped.

*Is Vivian just as much a true believer as Curtis, but with a bedrock filled with ideas of “right and wrong” that don’t align with the NFFA?

*Interesting in the high-tech surveillance world of the NFFA, both Vivian and Esme use flip phones.

*Esme confesses to Ryan her role in sending Tommy (Doug Vargas) to jail. His fate, along with the deaths of Professor Adams and Olivia Hughes, compels her to stay.

*Of course, Ryan kicks Esme out. As she’s leaving, Esme thanks Ryan for sheltering her; instead of running and leaving someone else to sit at her desk, pushing the same buttons, she’s not going to stop until she can “blow up this whole f*cking thing”.

The Purge - Season 2
It’s a Beautiful Day to Get Out of the Neighborhood.

Road Trippin’ With Marcus, Michelle, and Darren!

*This season’s long-plotted out revenge plot centers around Marcus.

*Five years ago, grumpy neighbor Clint (David Maldonado) took his wife to the ER at Bienville. There is a Bienville Street in New Orleans, along with a Bienville Medical Center (in Arcadia, Louisiana).

*Based on partly her respiratory distress, ER doctor Marcus diagnosed atrial fibrillation, proceed to shock her heart.

*Clint’s wife died. Marcus didn’t come out to tell Clint himself. And when Marcus and Michelle moved into the neighborhood, Marcus didn’t even recognize Clint, or remember the death of Clint’s wife.

*A neighbor notes, “You barely knew any of us.” Maybe Marcus shouldn’t have skipped all those boring Home Owner Association meetings.

*Clint owns a big pickup truck – just like the one that tried to run down Marcus back in Episode Three, “Blindspots“.

*Since Clint’s not a total jerk, the HOA will “consider” canceling the bounty on Marcus – if he and Michelle leave by midnight.

*An obviously distraught Darren (Denzel Whitaker) just happens to meet up with Marcus and Michelle outside their home.

*Why does Darren go to Marcus instead of his mom? Not willing to put her in danger?

*Darren isn’t allowed past the Louisiana/Mississippi border; he’s on a “no travel list”. Did the NFFA repeal Saenz v. Roe and the Constitution’s Privileges or Immunities Clause (Amendment XIV, Section 1, Clause 2)? Is this an NFFA version of the post 9-11 “No Fly List“?

*In telling the officer, “I’m reaching for it (ID) right now” Marcus is following advice from the ACLU, “DO keep your hands on the wheel and let the officer know what you are doing (saying) “I’m going to reach for my registration now.

*Marcus won’t abandon his son; the family turns around and returns home.

*Marcus, like Esme, reaches a point of clarity this episode. He realizes that there are guys like Clint everywhere, and “some of them are running this country.

The Purge - Season 2
Hey, Clint has a big old pickup truck, just like the one that ran Marcus down!

Road Trippin With Ben and Kelen!

*Kelen (Danika Yarosh) can’t get a ride on her phone’s Uber/Lyft app, Economy or Premium.

*Her credit card number ends in 1121.

*Ben wakes and sees the suitcase has been gone through. He insists on being a Good Boyfriend and driving Kelen back to campus.

*From this point on, Kelen and Ben play a charade of each pretending not to know what the other person knows. What does Ben’s mom (Shelly Calene-Black) know? She’s so understanding of her son; does she know Ben has done, or at least what he is capable of?

*Ben again doesn’t realize that confessing to murder with phrases like “I felt better, I felt great” tends to freak people out.

*Kelen realizes she’s a hostage, tries to fake placate Ben for confiding in her,  lull him into trusting her.

*For all his deadpan demeanor, Ben plays with Kelen like a cat tormenting a mouse.

*He hands her a knife so she’ll feel “safe”, then takes her cell phone when then they stop for gas and a bathroom break.

The Purge - Season 2
Kelen knows she’s trapped with a monster.

*Kelen scrawls a message on paper toweling, leaving it in a restroom. “HELP! I’ve been kidnapped by the Campus Killer. Green Subaru Southbound on 55

*Given how skeevy the restroom appeared, I don’t think depending on prompt restroom maintenance was the wisest course of action.

*Kelen denounces Ben as “sick”. She refuses to cut his arms and desperately attempts to escape after stabbing Ben in the leg. Kelen flees back to the highway, only to be flattened by an oncoming car.

*Ben reaches and crosses his Moral Event Horizon when he catches up to Kelen and kneels over her broken body. Kelen is mortally wounded, choking on her own blood. Ben makes a show (for himself?) of weeping over her body as he strangles her to death.

*In its moral bleakness and Ben’s affectation of weeping over Kelen as he murders her, this scene played like a cable-friendly variation on Henry, Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986).

*In effect, the Campus Killer is Ben’s true self, wearing a “Ben Gardner” mask. Oscar Wilde describes Ben’s story perfectly. “Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.”

The Purge - Season 2
The Campus Killer Formerly Known as Ben, walking amongst us.

*”Monster (Under My Bed)” by Call Me Karizma plays over the episode-ending montage. I first mis-heard the title as “Monster (Under My Back), which makes it even creepier.

Monster, monster under my bed
Come out and play cause I need a friend
You’re so damn close that I feel your breath
You’re the only one I have left

Feel you in my bones
Shiver up my spine
You’re a master of disguise
You show up when no one’s home
Are you real or just a lie
I can feel you in my mind
And my soul
But I love when you jump in
And help me feel something

 

The Purge Season Two, Episode Eight, “Before the Sirens” airs Dec.  at 9/8c on USA.

Official USA network images, articles, and other Purge related goodies can be found here.
My deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and Seasons 1 & 2 of Channel Zero reside at SciFi4Me; Fang and Saucer is home to my deep dives into Season One of The Purge TV, and Channel Zero Seasons 3 & 4.

Until next week citizens, “Just remember all the good The Purge does.