Y: The Last Man recap: Wrong turns
In the crumbling world of Y: The Last Man, it's just about impossible to keep things hidden. As Yorick, Agent 355, and Dr. Mann make their way toward the West Coast in the series' seventh episode ("My Mother Saw a Monkey"), even more people learn about their secret — including enemies in Washington, D.C.
Following the prior chapter's siege, Agent 355 remains mad at Yorick. His feeble stab at extending an olive branch doesn't work. After procuring some gasoline from an abandoned car, the trio hit the road in a camper. While driving, Yorick attempts to demonstrate his escape-artist skills to Mann by having her bind his hands, but before he can back up his cocky talk, Agent 355 passes out at the wheel and crashes their vehicle into a tree. When Mann wakes up hours later, Yorick is unconscious (but alive), and Agent 355 is missing. Three cars appear, and their passengers abduct Mann and company.
In the Pentagon's war room, Jennifer and Regina are briefed by the captain of the special forces whom Agent 355 allowed to live during the previous night's attack. She reports that Agent 355 was looking for Mann in Boston. More explosively, she claims to have seen a white, brunette man. Trying to discredit this woman, Jennifer points out that the captain's fellow agents can't corroborate this sighting, and moreover, the captain's account is compromised by the fact that she was dosed with a mysterious tranquilizer. The captain sticks to her story and then delivers a bombshell: the man she encountered had a monkey on his shoulder. To diffuse this situation, Jennifer scoffs and storms out, quietly ordering Christine to have these agents reassigned before they spread their story throughout the building. They head outside, where Jennifer plans to address the unruly crowd of protestors.
Kimberley complains to her mother Marla about Jennifer's forthcoming speech, as well as about the building's moth problem (one has ruined her favorite sweater). Marla is content to stay in bed watching M*A*S*H reruns, and chides Kimberley for badmouthing Jennifer and for praising Regina as a loyal ally, referring to the latter as a "nut job." Gathering supplies for the expectant Christine, Kimberley gets mad at her mom for wallowing in her grief. In response, Marla nastily replies, "If you shed half a tear, your boys would have to split it." When a hurt Kimberley responds by stating that she'll see her deceased kids again, Marla agrees and says she will — when she's dead.
The next morning, Yorick awakens in a strange bed beside a strange woman (whom we'll later learn is named Sonja). He sneaks upstairs in search of Ampersand and finds a group of women (and one trans man) in a kitchen. They bring him outside and ask him questions. He accidentally reveals that Ampersand is a male, and confesses that he has no answer as to why he or Ampersand survived the Y-chromosome apocalypse. He learns that this enclave has electricity, and explains that the reason he was found tied up was that he's an escape artist and was demonstrating a routine to his friend.
These women won't tell Yorick about his compatriots, but the episode swiftly cuts to Agent 355 waking up in the woods. She heads to the street and, in the spot where she crashed the camper, discovers a wrecked minivan with multiple casualties inside. One of the dead is wearing the very necklace that should be around her neck, implying — as we'll later have confirmed — that this is a dream about the fatal accident that killed her family. Agent 355 awakens to Mann banging on the door of a prison cell they're both in. Mann informs Agent 355 that Yorick was taken away and that they were placed here by armed women. Agent 355 is still angry at Mann for trying to flee with Yorick, and Mann isn't happy about Agent 355 crashing their ride, so they bicker.
Jennifer tries to convince the protestors to head to a safe settlement zone just outside the city. She interrupts herself, however, after spying a hooded figure in the crowd whom she recognizes: Beth. She brings her inside, and they chat about Beth's post-cataclysm ordeal, which is vague and involves not going into her apartment to see Yorick because she couldn't stand to see him dead. Meanwhile, Regina argues with Kimberley in front of Marla, telling her that there's no proof that Agent 355 murdered the pilots, much less that she did so on Jennifer's orders. Kimberly is nonetheless convinced. When Regina relates that the captain saw a man with a monkey on his shoulder, Marla drops her water glass — it confirms that her prior vision of seeing Yorick and his capuchin wasn't a hallucination.
Yorick provides more details to his captors, who claim he's not a hostage and mock him for saying he's not valuable enough to trade or sell. They hear about Beth (whom he mentioned in his sleep, according to Sonja), and the arsenal in the camper (Yorick is willing to give it to them). He's then brought to another group of arriving women. Back in their cell, Agent 355 is ridiculed by Mann for planning to use shoelaces as a weapon. Because it doesn't smell of the dead, and because there are fingernail marks on the walls, Agent 355 deduces that this is a women's prison and that they're being held by its former inmates. They argue more — Agent 355 spits that she doesn't need Mann, since there were many other geneticists she could have turned to, and also chastises Mann for putting dumb ideas in Yorick's head — and then Agent 355 suffers a bad headache, revealing that her family died in a car wreck when she was 12.
At this point, Yorick joins them in the cell, telling them that upwards of 50 women are keeping them captive. Agent 355 assumes that these former convicts are dangerous, and will kill them if they think they're a threat.
Knowing that Marla previously saw Yorick alive in the Pentagon, Regina and Kimberley debate how to proceed. Regina wants to confront Jennifer directly, but Kimberley cautions that Jennifer won't blink because she's supported by "atheist Ivy League ass-kissers." Kimberley says that they need evidence, and then reveals her true motivations: she wants to get proof of Yorick's existence, force Jennifer to resign, and then have the deposed president take them to Yorick because he's the key to putting the world back together again. Kimberley is sure that God chose Yorick to live, and that possessing him will allow them to "be a nation of mothers again."
Beth tells Jennifer that this catastrophe feels like the deliberate work of a person, and admits that she turned down Yorick's marriage proposal but wishes she hadn't, because then he wouldn't have died alone. Jennifer is called to the war room and Beth joins her. Beth hears from Christine that everyone has been living in the Pentagon, which is shockingly low on defenses. Jennifer is briefed on a new influenza strain that's been discovered in Greece (it's not a threat to the U.S. because there's no international air travel). Marla arrives and makes a scene, yelling that Jennifer made her think she was crazy, and that it should have been her husband, son, or grandchildren that survived. She doesn't, however, mention Yorick by name, and quickly calms down and leaves.
In the prison cell, Yorick criticizes Agent 355 for wanting to fight her way out, since she's clearly suffering from a concussion. They spar, and Agent 355 easily gets the upper hand on Yorick (with her shoelace) before suffering another debilitating headache. Sonja arrives and says that the group has agreed to let them stay, and offers medical services to Agent 355. Exiting the cell, Yorick receives a flirty smile from Sonja, who's already seen him naked (the prior night).
Kimberley berates Marla for her outburst, and Marla pleads to return to their old Lynchburg home. Kimberley makes it clear that they can't because the entire town was flooded by a burst dam. Kimberley contends that God has a plan for them, and prays. Marla believes their circumstances prove that there is no God. After taking a shower, Beth thanks Jennifer for her kindness, but says she can't stay. She rejects a jacket offered to her because it boasts the presidential insignia, which won't be looked upon kindly by the outside citizenry.
A bedridden Agent 355 warns Yorick not to trust anyone (including Sonja) and promises that this is the final time Yorick will have to care for her. He visits a crowded cookout illuminated by hanging string lights, where the group's leader Janice serves him delicious food. Sonja joins him and hears more about his (underwhelming) escape-artist career. She reveals that Janice stabbed two people to death in 1978, but now, she's a kind, harmless woman. Another group member scolds Janice for letting these interlopers live, which makes Janice's angry side briefly come out. The gathering ends when the 9 p.m. curfew strikes, and the lights go out.
In Washington, Kimberley goes to the Hall of Heroes shrine and takes down her son's picture. She subsequently goes looking for her mom, only to discover that her room is empty. As Kimberley finds a bedside note, we see Marla approach and then leap off the Pentagon's roof. Kimberly frantically runs down a hallway and collapses, her screams startling everyone, including Jennifer.
- Sonja opines that the group's decision to allow Yorick, Agent 355 and Mann to stay proves that "maybe hell isn't other people." The show, so far, has suggested otherwise.
- Apparently, reading Angela Davis (as Janice does) is a sign that someone is no longer homicidal.
- Unreasonable as it might be, Kimberley will likely blame Marla's suicide on Jennifer.
Y: The Last Man (TV series)
FX's adaptation of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra's award-winning comic 'Y: The Last Man.'