This is the episode where Final Space places its puzzle pieces together. Although I liked the first three episodes of the show, so much that I decided to write about every single episode, I've been feeling this whole time that the show, something was off about this show, and I didn't have a concrete feeling. I did mention in chapter three that I have suspected that the show might play better as a binge watch streaming sort of thing, and I kind of still vaguely stand by that idea, but this is finally the episode I was waiting for. Final Space now seems to know pretty much what it's doing, and it's finally starting to hit the swing of it, because it turns out, and this was maybe a vaguer suspicion than I thought it was. It turns out really these first four episodes, and possibly the fifth if they follow the '90s cartoon logic, reveal itself as one long pilot, and there's nothing wrong with that, but it just makes revealing the individual episodes a little bit difficult at times.
But anyways, so, what's new? There's a palpable joy I feel in watching episodes of television, especially new shows, when the pieces finally fit into place and the groove is found. We begin, as every episode does, with a flash forward to the end of what must be a horrific space battle with Gary about to die of oxygen poisoning, die of lack of oxygen, and finally the cookie joke, that seemed to be set up for something, really pays off, in a lower key way, but I finally laughed at the joke. I felt the set up was labored in a slight way, but it was good. Then we return the cliffhanger where Quinn's sister calls her by Gary, and he goes to save her, in what is honestly quite a beautiful piece of animation.
Have I mentioned before, maybe obsessively over and over again, how good the animation is in this show? Let me obsessively and somewhat retreat old things I said. The animation in this show is really, really, really good. Onto the Quinn and Gary relationship, and, oh, boy, was I nervous about this. I'm certainly no expert in feminist ideology, so feel free to disagree with me on this. I don't even mean that in a sort of challengey, agree to disagree. Im a no nothing idoit who is not totally in the for this type of talk. I had been worried the whole time that the Gary and Quinn relationship would turn into sort of give the nice loser a chance, which is a trope I'm not a huge fan of. There's definitely an element of this, but I really like how they played it off of all those messages that Gary's been sending, like, no, Quinn never got them and she doesn't even remember who he is.
Gary, in a move to work out his problems, and this is where I see myself in Gary, because whenever I watch these things, I always try and relate personally, and I don't know why I do this, because I'm certainly not that, Gary dances out his feelings like crazy, in a totally without music sort of way. He just goes, "Bam, bam, bam," sort of thing, and that felt realistic and something I do a lot and in public, and I'm sure people look at me like I'm crazy, and at times I look at me like I'm crazy. Those are real out-of-body experience moments for me, whereas I don't feel like I totally know what I'm doing, but I'm just looking at myself like, "What are you doing? Stop doing this. Crazy homeless people do that."
Anyway, so that felt real to me. That felt like a legitimate thing that I know people do. The old Simpsons, like that old famous television critic Fat Tony said, it's funny because it's true, and that's something that's funny. Maybe like Gary, I'm a little bit cooped up. I tend to be alone, so that's probably the same as being in prison for five years, probably. Anyway, so there's one slightly weirdo scene where Gary pokes at Quinn, but they totally handled that by her really beating him up and her continuing to do that throughout the episode any time he acts a little bit off.
Then we get to the meat of the episode and a payoff for the time traveling bit. That's a time traveler, right? Yeah, I feel that's a time traveler that gave Kevin the flash disk, where the Infinity Guard is coming to arrest Quinn for all the illegal stuff she did and takes over the ship, and Gary has to refuel the power, and this is the most Star Trekky thing in this, because it's like technobabble, technobabble, "You have to do this thing to do this thing, and you have to do this other thing to do this other thing." I never understand a word of technobabble, but the thing in the thing was established, so good for the thing in the thing. Gary has to get power from a dying star, and Kevin has to use the thing's butt hole to save Hugh from being taken over by the Infinity Guard.
God, wouldn't you know, both of them do it, and in what was one of the better scenes, because freaking Ron Perlman, man. I love that dude. I've watched so many not that great movies because he's been in it, and a bunch of really good ones. Ron Perlman in anything makes the thing better. Plays Gary's father, and we find out, and it's a tiny bit of a cliché, but honestly so many things these days are dedicated to dissecting cliches. I like it when shows can just do it well. As Gary travels to get energy from a dying star, there's a song underplaying, and I want to talk about this, because I've started noticing Rick and Morty, which is the benchmark of all great animated shows will forever be, especially space shows, will forever be mentioning it, did this at the end of season two, and this is the first instance of it. It's good and the music's appropriate and all that stuff. It's a little quiet at times, and it seems like occasionally they forget it, but that's not what exactly I want to talk about.
I find it interesting. Animated movies of course are famously obnoxious for using songs to pad out the emotional feelings. It's always some run of the mill pop song that nobody cares about, but animated TV shows, especially like this, are starting to use songs in the same way a drama would use it. Huh, what a odd coincidence, Final Space using a trope the way a drama would. Hmm. I'm digging it. It's just such a weird sensation, like, oh, right, they're playing a somewhat sad, melancholy song, and there's this action scene, and Gary is very definitely risking his life for and possibility and there's a melancholy to it. Why have these more adult animated shows been scared to do that? I don't know. I think because this is new generally, the adult animated stuff maybe taking itself more seriously. As always, that can most likely be traced back to BoJack. I like BoJack, but I'm happy the stuff is starting to hit genre fare, but we're not losing the comedic edge to it, which BoJack sometimes does.
I appreciate that, and I'm really excited to see where all this stuff goes. God, 25-year-old me is super into this stuff, but 14-year-old me would've been so happy with all this new developments going on. I was born 10 years too late. Ugh! Ugh, I say! Anyways, then you know how it ends. It's the middle of the season. Our main characters, there's a good chance they're not going to die. I guess spoilers, but come on. Basic story structure, man. Anyways, and we leave with the cliffhanger of they're most likely going to save Avacato, Little Cato, I think. That's exciting. That's where I am holding off totally on declaring this the end of the plot. What's coming off to me as it feels like a five-episode pilot. This is the type of thing that they don't do this anymore, but if this was an animated show in the '90s, they would edit this into a TV movie, and they would play that and then they would rerun it just with these episodes, which is what this feels like.
But so far, of the episodes I've seen, this is by far the best one, and I'm excited for this new phase of Final Space's career. Just, oh, my crap. No, still not a fan of that, but whatever. They seem to have dropped it even.