Not the strongest of episodes

Junior (Alexander Koch) might be insane but he’s by far the most interesting character in Under the Dome, but there are others who appear to have some skeletons in their closet, that no doubt we’ll find out about. Reverend Lester Coggins (Ned Bellamy) is one man who has lots to hide and is another of King’s great characters, I mean, who else would come up with a junkie preacher but the King of horror himself.

During a stand off with Deputy Paul, he fires his gun and the ricochet kills Freddy. He is disarmed easily by Barbie (Mike Vogel) and now Paul (Kevin Sizemore) is under arrest. He tricks Linda (Natalie Martinez) into entering his cell, by pretending to choke. He assaults her then locks her in his cell, and now heavily armed, he makes for the woods, but he’s now deranged and shouting about how the dome is causing everyone to go mad.

Big Jim Rennie (Dean Norris) sees the swollen eye Junior has and enquires to how it happened. His son tells him that Barbie attacked him for no good reason and that he is crazy. Big Jim tells Junior to man up and not to disappoint him. Junior then goes to a still chained Angie (Britt Robertson) but she attempts to manipulate him into looking for a way out. She asks about underground tunnels they used to visit, and if perhaps they may be deep enough to have escaped the dome.

Big Jim visits Lester in hospital where they have a very interesting conversation, as Jim tells Lester that now the only proof of their dealings in drugs is in their heads. The same sex couple can’t find their daughter and Carolyn Hill (Aisha Hinds) is asking about her everywhere, but her lifestyle is frowned upon by the locals. Norrie (Mackenzie Lintz, The Hunger Games) has a crush on young Joe (Colin Ford) so ask him if she can charge her player at his generator powered home, to which he reluctantly agrees (due to shyness), but not long after they settle in, his door starts getting busy thanks to foolish, but well meaning Ben Drake (John Elvis). It doesn’t take long for the house to fill with undesirables who want to cause trouble.

While at the radio station, Julia Shumway (Rachelle Lefevre) looks out of the window and sees Junior walking along with a backpack and a spring in his step, so she follows him to the tunnels he means to investigate. Eventually she makes herself known and together they must try to find the way back out as the flashlight he was carrying explodes because of the batteries being close to the dome. While this is going on, Jim, Barbie and another couple of volunteers catch up to the escaped former deputy, who shoots one of them in the leg. He is finally stopped by the future new sheriff, Linda. The officers are dropping like flies in this show, aren’t they?

At Joe’s house, Norrie has been found by her mother but as the young couple hold hands, they both have a fit and start spouting nonsense like “stars are falling.” Julia is now suspicious of Barbie. Angie is planning something by pretending to like Junior. Jim is up to no good by increasing his power in Chester’s Mill, but to what end? Linda is now wearing the Sheriff hat and young Joe has a new enemy. Gripping stuff!

I enjoyed pretty much all of this episode but we need more horror and some more character development, like with Barbie’s background, or just what drugs were Jim and Lester referring to and how did it happen in the first place. My only problem is the show feels padded out and because of this we’ll get some episodes that will be very slow indeed.

Grade: B

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Junior Rennie’s Profile:

James “Junior” Rennie is the son of “Big Jim” Rennie, a local councilman, car dealer and imposing presence. Junior is in Chester’s Mill for the summer from college, where he had a scholarship to play football, but he has recently decided not to return so he can be closer to Angie McAllister, his date to the junior prom who he has known since at least third grade.

They have a physical relationship, but when he tells her he loves her, she rejects him and a violent side of Junior emerges. He becomes jealous and carries a knife to threaten any man who talks to Angie, including the mysterious stranger Dale “Barbie” Barbara.

Junior is capable of anything when it comes to Angie.

[Taken from IMDb]