‘Almost Human’ Photo Recap 1×02: “Skin”
Leave it to Fox to pull the sex card in the second episode of a new series. If the pilot assured viewers that they were in for a thrill ride of action, violence, and futuristic special effects, episode 2 was a not-so-subtle reminder that Almost Human also offers oodles of sex appeal. Personally, I was just grateful they didn’t go the other predictable route and find some excuse to have Minka Kelly go undercover as a prostitute or something. If you’re going to portray women as nothing more than sexual objects, at least make them actual objects. Of course, this show operates on the idea that some robots have the capacity for human emotion, but nonetheless, I’d rather see actual robots than female characters who act like robots. But enough about the morality of using sex bots as a ploy to garner ratings…
Let’s talk about sex (bots)!
The episode started off with a woman taking her clothes off. (Naturally.)
The twitchy guy she was, um, entertaining seemed more interested in shining a blue light all over her body than actually touching her.
But before things could get too weird, some well-armed dudes busted in and shot Mr. Blue Light several times before making their escape with their lady friend in tow. Nice manners, guys. It’s called a “gentlemen’s club” for a reason, you know.
This week’s baddies had some really cool “flash mask” technology that seemed like something straight out of Fringe, so even though they walked right past the security cameras, they just looked like one of the vampires from Twilight.
They also had some fancy fairy dust bomb thing that wiped the room clean of prints or evidence or whatever. Neat! Also, inconvenient for our fearless heroes.
On their way in, John and Dorian ran into some kids who were really interested in Dorian.
Dorian told John that children can sense his unease around them…like cats. This did not sit well with John, who apparently sees himself as the world’s “fun uncle.”
After their little squabble, the two partners shared a romantic elevator ride.
Poor Minka Kelly… I think her character is great and all, but honestly she could shave her head and walk around with a parrot on her shoulder and I doubt anyone would notice. (Sorry Minka, I love you!)
In a parking garage not too far away, this kid’s day took a turn…
Poor kid… One second you’re going to town on a Slurpee, and the next thing you know your mom has been abducted by some creeps who want to use her DNA to make sex robots. And as if his day wasn’t bad enough already, the poor boy was stuck with the worst babysitter ever: John Kennex.
John was actually surprisingly good with Victor, and it was unbelievably adorable to see them bond over John’s tiny animatronic giraffe. What did we learn from this, John? You win over children by bribing them with toys, not by stabbing yourself in your prosthetic leg. John did manage to coax some helpful information out of the kid, which led them to the dead guy’s business partner—a sex bot manufacturer. This meant they had to pay him a visit at his place of business, meaning more scantily clad women! But on their way over, John and Dorian had a deep philosophical conversation about life and death and humanity, because that’s just how they roll. Say what you will about the sex and violence on this show, but they really do a good job of balancing it with some genuinely profound themes. But also, boobs:
Not that I’m condoning the idea of sex bots in any way, but if they were going to be mass-produced, Michael Ealy is a pretty good model to base one on. Just sayin’. Oh, and can I just ask if the cinematographer or director or whomever was actually trying to see how close John and Dorian could get without actually making out with each other in this episode? Seriously:
After visiting a nightclub full of sex bots and suspiciously friendly Albanian mobsters, Dorian and John found the redheaded android from the opening scene—minus her skin. Watching Rudy the lab tech dissect the skinless robot was so cringe-inducing that it made me heartsick for Fringe. (What would Walter say about these androids? Something inappropriate, I’m sure.)
I still can’t get over the fact that Rudy was in Pirates of the Caribbean as that pirate with the wooden eyeball. And now he’s poking at a robot’s fake eye…HA. You’re a funny guy, Rudy. You’re no Walter Bishop, but you’re funny.
OK, so the best scene in the entire episode was Dorian and John in the car talking about the online dating profile Dorian made for John. I can’t tell you how much I laughed hearing John say, “Don’t scan my testicles.” ALL THE EMMYS FOR THIS SCENE.
This was the point at which I knew how completely and utterly smitten I am by this show. There’s no going back now.
Almost as if the writers were trying to call “no homo” after this scene, it was interrupted by Stahl, calling to tell them to go investigate another sex bot with human DNA from an abducted woman. WAY TO RUIN THE MOMENT MINKA KELLY. (Just kidding Minka, really, I love you.)
For every bromantic scene of humor or profound introspection, there must be one with a half-naked woman, lest some viewers start to worry that they might actually be watching a show that’s well written and thematically complex…
John was decidedly worse at questioning a sex bot than he was at entertaining children, which is saying a lot. Dorian had to try to remind him that while Vanessa might not be human, she does have human qualities, including the ability to make astute observations about the nature of human connection and the different ways people seek it out. More importantly (well, that’s up for debate), her microchip signal helped them track down the lab where the Albanians were keeping the missing women. But only after several hilarious accidental sexual innuendos between Rudy and Vanessa.
They finally made it to the right place, and John started taking out his sexual frustration on all of Yuri’s slimeball lackeys while rescuing the victims who were still alive.
At least Victor’s mom survived. And when she opened her eyes to find John beside her, she reached for his hand, desperate for that human connection that Vanessa was talking about.
I swear every time Dorian smiles at John, it somehow seems more sexual than all the sex bots in this episode combined.
Yay for saving the day + emotional growth!
Seriously folks—The Good Wife is incredible. If you’re not watching it, you’re missing out on the best drama on television that doesn’t involve robots.
Lili Taylor popped by for one last reminder that Vanessa had to be, uh, disassembled (anyone else remember Short Circuit?) since they can’t have androids with human DNA running around. Thanks for the weekly reality check, Maldonado.
After some soul-searching and thinking about what Dorian said about remembering the dead being the only proven form of an afterlife, John did the thing he’d been putting off since he got out of his coma: he went to talk to his partner’s widow and son. Time for round 2 of “John Kennex and Youths.”
Awww, see? John really is good with kids! Although, those ones that saw him stab his leg might need some therapy later, but overall I’d still call it a win. It’s amazing how much Dorian has helped John open up in the short time they’ve known each other. That’s the mark of a true soul mate partner.
I still can’t get over the, “You scanned my balls” scene. That was easily the funniest thing I’ve seen on television since last year’s Super Bowl. (And, no, I’m not talking about the commercials.)
What did you all think of the second episode of Almost Human? Is it everything you hoped it would be? Does it make you miss Fringe even more? Would anyone notice if Minka Kelly floated off into space like George Clooney in Gravity? Are you loving this season of The Good Wife as much as I am? Leave a comment below!
As always, thanks to TV.com’s brilliant Price Peterson, whose hilarious Vampire Diaries photo recaps were the inspiration for mine. And thank you for reading!
*All images are property of FOX Broadcasting