Sarah Connor Chronicles: Goodbye To All That, an episode review

The last time I looked, Cameron is in psycho-Terminator mode, but she’s obviously learned to conceal it well. Artificial intelligence indeed.

Anyway, Goodbye To All That returns to a classic Terminator premise – the phonebook killer. When a terminator can’t locate a person down through the normal records, they’ll hunt through the local phonebook to get a name and address and work through each person of that name until they’re all dead. It happened to one Miss Sarah Connor once.

So, history repeats itself when our intrepid gang of technophobes discover a plot to kill one Martin Bedell. Bedell is a key military strategist to the future resistance, and obviously important enough to snuff out now. Thankfully, Derek Reese is a step ahead of the terminators on this one and knows Bedell is at a military training facility. So, he and John set off to infiltrate the academy while Sarah and Cameron go off to protect the other Martin Bedell – a child who’s home alone with a T-888 pulling up outside his house.

Sarah and Cameron manage to snatch the boy from his home just as the terminator peppers the front door with bullets. They elude the T-888 and take the boy back to their house where they babysit him until Derek and John can take care of the terminator. Then it will be safe to return the boy to his home.

Back at military school, Derek manages to blag a place for John, and then gets invited to join temporarily as a TAC. So much for national security, eh? It’s that easy to fake yourself off as a veteran and get your nephew into military school.

Anyway, they keep an eye on the young Bedell while Derek lapses into regular future-flashbacks of his last operation in the future with Bedell. So we spend most of the episode trying to work out if Bedell is a future traitor, but not fully trusting Reese yet, we don’t believe everything we see in the flashbacks.

Elsewhere, the unbelievably bad Catherine Weaver/Shirley Manson – is it the character or the actress? -has hired Agent Ellison to investigate the meltdown at the nuclear plant. So Ellison does a bit of poking around and sees the hand of Connor behind the incident, and (being such a bright spark) works out that a mighty battle between two metal critters has taken place there.

Ellison goes back to Weaver and reports this back, revealing that a plant official is trying to get outside agencies involved. Weaver, in the guise of a busty brunette, head to the bar this guy frequents, lures him outside for a bit of a tongue-wrestle. Except hers is the kind of tongue that can turn into a pointy metal object and stab you in the throat. (Note the symbolism indicates that promiscuosity is bad for your health. John will be wearing a promise ring in the next episode – mark my words).

As an episode…I loved it. There was a gritty symbolism in Derek Reese’s scenes that show Brian Austin Green may finally be forgiven for his 90210 crimes. Lena Headey also stepped up to the mark of being a distinctly uncomfortable mother figure to the little boy she’s protecting, especially in the moments where she realises that no-one thanks her for what she does. Maybe Sarah is starting to realise that she’s been so busy protecting her son that she’s been lacking the warmth of a relationship for years.

Cameron, on the other hand was mostly reduced to a comedic plot device, what with the lifting the kid by the scruff and then offering to read him a bedtime story. We know she’s got something short-circuited, and the scene where she appeared in the forest at the military school was slightly chilling. Was she protecting John and Derek, or was she observing them for some other reason?

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