Like unicorns, Neo, and every single snowflake, Margaret is Special. She’s the Venus to Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo, and Raphael — the mutant ninja turtles, not the painters. She’s the Julia Roberts to Ocean’s Eleven. She’s the Smurfette to the Smurfs. She’s — drumroll, please — a female Abbie.
The showrunners weren’t kidding when they said this would be the season of the Abbies. When the First Generation captures the female Abbie encountered by Frank at the carousel, Megan, Jason, and Kerry are thrilled to have their first female Abbie to study. A scientist at the lab nicknames her Margaret (“Abby” would have been too confusing, I guess?) and she proves promising from day one. Not only does she help calm the other captive Abbies, but she also sports a curious mark on the palm of her hand. Though Megan and Jason believe she’s just as much an animal as the male Abbies who attacked on Invasion Day, Margaret’s glances toward them hint toward something larger at play.
Theo wonders the same thing after news travels about Frank’s encounter with Margaret. He calls Kerry in to his office — sorry, Arlene — and asks to join the team researching the creatures, arguing that as a world-class surgeon, his knowledge of medical ethics will be important when it comes to studying Margaret. Megan, of course, is immediately miffed by the idea. When Kerry introduces Theo as the new head of Abbie research, she defends her methods, insisting she doesn’t use sedatives on the Abbies when studying them because it helps them examine their pain threshold. Unfortunately, when she moves forward with extracting Margaret’s cerebral spinal fluid, Margaret barely moves. So… are Abbies immune to pain, or is this just something Margaret can do?
Whatever the case, Megan’s just stumped at the events. The tests prove fruitless so far after a day of intense studying, and by the end of the day, she finds herself speaking to Margaret, insisting that even after Invasion Day and everything she’s done, it’s a good thing she can still feel some emotions — and that she still thinks about the human-Abbie coexistence. “We were never supposed to meet. Did you know that?” Megan asks her subject. “Pilcher thought we would wake up, and yes, you’d have been here, but you’d have been gone, and the Earth would belong to us again.”
Megan should have known they’d end up having to share Earth. As right as Pilcher was about the broad strokes of the future, he was wrong about so many details: For one thing, Pilcher probably never thought children would have to be forced into having sex to repopulate. Ever an idealist, he probably figured they’d kidnapped enough people to keep the population study. Yet thanks to Invasion Day and countless screwups over the course of Wayward Pines history, kids like Frank have to head to “procreation rooms” and awkwardly remember the steps Megan taught them in class. Poor Frank just can’t, well, get himself going — and when his embarrassed procreation partner points out that maybe he’s not into girls, Frank panics and asks Theo for help. Theo wonders if Frank is gay, but Frank, having grown up in “idyllic” Wayward Pines, doesn’t understand what Theo means. Feeling disgusted and calling himself “sick,” Frank fears being killed for failing procreation, and Theo assures him he’ll protect him.
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Frank’s sister, Lucy, does the same. She makes amends with him after he spilled her secret to Megan, and the two children watch a sunset and wonder about their bleak futures. Neither she nor Frank want to do what they’re told, and it’s not that they’re bratty teenagers rebelling society — they’re simply scared of what’s to come.
Not that the adults have much hope, either. Outside the fence, Adam continues to sound defeatist, insisting they’re all headed for death no matter what they try to do, and even Theresa‘s willing to stay out of Wayward Pines so she can live and die in peace near Ben’s burial site. CJ tells her she needs to talk to Adam first, and when she does, he reveals he never meant for her to wind up in Wayward Pines with Ethan. He had hoped to get rid of Ethan, but failed at his entire plan. And as Theresa puts it, she’ll never forgive him for ruining her family, even if they’re now stuck together for the rest of their miserable lives.
NEXT: All about Rebecca…
Back in town, Rebecca fends off Jason’s inquiries about the fence’s durability. “My designs are not the problem here, Jason,” she argues. In retaliation, he wonders about “things at home,” before warning that “it’s not good to keep secrets.” (Of all people to say that…) Oddly, Xander watches from his ice-cream shop — and then winds up inside the Yedlin house, surprising Theo when he returns home from the hospital.
Finally, Rebecca spills her secret: She was matched with Xander when she woke up, and the two of them are married — and have been married for a year. Disturbed, Theo leaves behind his wedding ring and punches Xander in the face. (At least Xander’s been through worse.) He’s confused why Rebecca would keep this Pines-concocted marriage from him for so long, and he’s angry she’s telling him now.
But their marriage had been on the rocks for a long time before they wound up 2,000 years in the future. In a series of flashbacks, we see the Yedlins lived in Boston, planned a trip to Hawaii to finally take some time off together, and felt added tension because of Rebecca’s career. See, Rebecca had been struggling to keep projects her own at the architecture firm where she worked — some loser named Alex took the Peterson Project out from under her nose — and she finally found some success when Pilcher randomly showed up at her office, offering her dinner and the project of a lifetime.
The project? An ark, a community, an entire town in the vein of Henry Clubb’s utopian Octagon City — except, you know, actually used in the end. Intrigued and flattered by Pilcher’s praise (or maybe it’s just all the chardonnay), Rebecca agrees to work on his proposal. He’s sparing no expense on the vision, so why not take all the money and make something with it?
Here’s why not: It’s Wayward Pines, and it won’t be built for thousands of years. Even though Rebecca spends nights staying up until 4 a.m. working on designing the entire Idaho town for Pilcher — much to Theo’s chagrin — she regrets what she’s done after Pilcher finally tells her everything over dinner inside the base of operations constructed in the mountain near the future Wayward Pines. She claims she’s honored to Pilcher’s face, but at home, she tells Theo she may have made “an error of judgment” — and Theo, naive Theo, says she can just back out. Hey, if anything happens, he’s got her back.
Centuries later, her project is completed, and she’s introduced to Xander after waking up. As Xander drives her down Main Street, he asks whether it looks beautiful to her. “No,” she answers.
And she’d say the same in the present. While she sleeps on her couch and Theo continues to fume outside the house, the Abbies are heading back to Pines territory, this time armed with torches. They’ve learned how to tame fire, and they’re about to use it — until suddenly, we return to Margaret inside the lab, concentrating on… something. At the same time, the Abbies burning the crops outside slow down and wait. Do the Abbies operate in a hive mind? Is Margaret telepathic? Or am I reading too much into this final scene?
Whatever the case, it’s clear Rebecca’s hope of building “happiness” is no more. And as much as Jason or Megan or, to a lesser extent, Kerry, convinces themselves Wayward Pines is a necessary paradise, it looks like it’s time for the humans to either fight and kill the Abbies — or learn to understand and live with them. Guess which option the First Generation will choose? As always, tweet me your world-class thoughts at @shirklesxp.