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'The Returned' recap: 'Helen'

Helen finds some dynamite.

Posted on

Joseph Lederer

The Returned (A+E)

TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
run date:

Helen’s been very vocal about how she thinks Caldwell needs to be destroyed, and she makes some progress in this episode—but first, we find out that her destructive tendencies aren’t anything new. Twenty-nine years ago, she was in a mental hospital receiving treatment as a consequence for burning City Hall to the ground.

Unsurprisingly, Helen isn’t exactly remorseful, and she’s still hung up on how everything is doomed. “Terrible, terrible things are going to happen in this town,” she tells George. Soon after he leaves, an alarm goes off: The dam has burst. The nurses try to lead everyone to the roof, but Helen decides to make a detour and goes outside. Bad move though—the black water rushes toward the building right when she goes outside.

Back in the present, she’s trying to do something much more extreme than burn down a building: She’s trying to blow up the dam.


A couple episodes ago, that one dam worker told Helen that she could destroy the town by putting a bomb in one of the dam’s diversion tunnels. So now all she has to do is get into one of the diversion tunnels and secure some dynamite… and she sets out to do this by sleeping with someone who works for the dam and getting his keys (not before bashing his head in with a rock, though—we’ve gotta work on your bedside manner, Helen).

While he was still conscious, this worker revealed they had a bunch of dynamite locked away. By the end of the episode, Helen has found that dynamite—and has found her key to tearing apart the city.


Last time we saw Simon, he was breaking out of his cold chamber at the morgue. Now, he’s fully clothed and talking with Peter. Sidenote: How did he get to Peter’s unnoticed while completely naked? That seems like something people would notice…

Anyway, Simon asks Peter for help, but he can’t give it to him. He’s already lied to Tommy once, and he doesn’t want to screw up his relationship with him any more. But he’s not about to let Simon go away without giving him even a little bit of help. He hands him the keys to a van—after calling him “son,” which is adorable—that was donated to the center, and tells him he can leave and be whoever he wants to be. Those words of encouragement do nothing for Simon though, and he heads to Rowan’s to pick up Chloe for an adventure.

Rowan, who’s on the phone trying to square away some things for her wedding the next day, doesn’t notice Chloe’s gone until she’s getting in Simon’s van. But instead of running out there and, you know, grabbing her daughter, she watches in horror from inside. She doesn’t grab her own keys until they’re driving away, and by that time, she’s behind.

She trails them for a bit, but crashes into a telephone pole while she’s fumbling to grab her phone. Luckily though, she’s fine—or at least fine enough to get out of the car and start running while screaming Chloe’s name.

The next time we see Rowan, she’s ordering Tommy to do whatever it takes to get Chloe back. Turns out Tommy doesn’t have to do anything though: Simon calls Rowan and tells her to meet him where he left her—a.k.a. the altar. How sweet!

She finds him and Chloe in the church, and Rowan spends some time hitting Simon out of anger. But she eventually lets him speak, and he seems to be coming around to how hard all this is for them: He acknowledges that he’s been trying to find something that’s already gone. I can see where Rowan’s coming from completely, but Simon’s also in a heartbreaking place. As he says to Pastor Wright before Rowan arrives, “Now I have to watch everyone I love move on without me.” That straight-up sucks.

His monologue gets interrupted though when Chloe, who was hanging out with Pastor Wright, runs out for one last visit with her dad. He tells her that she was right, that he’s an angel. And then he’s gone. But, let’s be real: Simon’s never really gone.

NEXT: Peter has a secret.