Hello Debris fans,
Well here we are at the end…or is it?
With the announcement of NBC not renewing the beloved Debris series for a second season, this episode leaves even more unanswered questions. I am, as are countless fans, a bit disappointed with the cancellation of such a fabulous show.
Word of the cancellation sent a multitude of tweet storms voicing the utter disappointment, shock, disbelief, and denial that accompanies a wrong decision by the network. Alas, if it were up to me, I would have kept the property on for another season at least. Knowing how the showrunner/creator J. H. Wyman is, he no doubt had a whole story arc planned out for a second (and possibly more) seasons.
Fans of Joel’s know that his intelligent series are never cookie cutter, formulaic series, they are always complex and cerebral. Sadly, the majority of viewers seem to not want to think when watching television. It appears that they would rather just be entertained and not have to use their brains. As in life the majority rules, so the fate of Debris series was decided by the that majority. I am hoping that another platform will pick up Debris series, perhaps Netflix or Amazon may throw their hat in hat ring. Oh well, let us begin, shall we?
This episode was written by the maestro himself and once again directed by Eagle Egilsson. Throughout the series one thing has remained constant, the incredible scenery of Canada that has served as a backdrop to the other cities it was emulating. Michael Wale is the cinematographer for this episode and his use of the natural landscape is beautiful and breathtaking. Often times the environment or city is another character in certain series, lending itself and all its beauty to the story and often helping give the viewer a better understanding of the story. This episode is no exception, the rocky terrain and mountain side provide a stark backdrop to the beginning of this episode.
With Bryan (Jonathan Tucker) and Finola (Riann Steele) being informed that Anson Ash (Scroobius Pip) has escaped from prison by teleporting out, we come to find that his body was riddled with Debris. This information definitely ups the ante regarding helping George Jones (Tyrone Benskin) to stay hidden.
George in the meantime is watching out for any strange goings in at the facility he has been hiding out at trying to figure out the latest debris. He sees a strange entity that looks like a human but is not actually fully formed. When Bryan and Finola come to pick him up, he is definitely on edge. Bryan and Finola sense this tension, leave it alone. Later we will find out this is an apparent mistake by taking no action.
George dons his now infamous tin foil cape and finally goes with them insisting that they make a very quick getaway. This new Debris incident has brought a number of people to this remote area (the beautiful mountain side) where the people are all facing East for some unknown reason. The people are absolutely still, like chess pieces but experience odd emotional outbursts like crying and laughing in unison.
George hypothesizes that they all must have come into contact with the alien objects before hand and are now instructed to come to this place for a specific reason. Bryan and Finola are worried that the same fate will befall these people as did their colleagues back at the lab who all died after two hours. The race to find the cause and fix the matter is of the utmost.
Bryan then brings up a question to Finola that she may not want to hear. Bryan asks if they can still trust her father? If George does remember correctly, or if “Influx” planted those memories, or information in his brain when he was reanimated. I can understand his hesitation especially since George has been acting strangely since Bryan and Finola tracked George down, picked him up, and saved him several Debris series episodes ago.
Next, we get to see Julia Maddox (Jennifer Copping) with her son Dario (Christian Rose) teaching him words. You can see the anguish on her face and the utter guilt that she still has because of the accident she caused putting her son in this wheelchair. We had the immense pleasure of interviewing Jennifer Copping before the finale, and I can say what a great person as well as talented actress she is!
Jennifer gave us a hint during her interview about the finale episode in as much as she said it will be emotional and she was right. Her emotion came through with such sadness that you could feel her pain in every gesture she made toward Dario. It was a harrowing scene to say the least because you were left with a feeling of dread.
Craig Maddox (Norbert Leo Butz) has been a complete enigma since the beginning of the Debris series. Viewers were never quite sure if Maddox was a good guy, or a bad guy until the “Celestial Body” episode.
Maddox always toed that line of greater good or was perceived as a spy for the enemy. This is the confirmation that Maddox has been a good guy all along and we see that at the end of this episode.
Craig Maddox meets again with the Russian operative Irina (Andrea Stefancikova) that we have seen before in the Debris series. Maddox has been seeking and wants to obtain a specific part of the alien artifacts that deals with a special type of communications. Viewers may have thought this alien object that Irina brings to their meeting dealt with electronic communications.
We will learn later in this episode that Craig Maddox knows something about this specific alien artifact that Irina is bringing to him. We do not know what that is at this point. This factor reveals the actual motivation of Craig Maddox that is both sincere and is not related to Andrea being a spy.
We witness Maddox sincerely offering “another door for you Irina”. Reading between the lines, this obviously has a meaning, a way for Irina to defect from Russia to the United States.
Andrea told us in her wonderful interview that Maddox had offered to help Irina defect in exchange for the alien object that he wants, but that part was unfortunately left on the cutting room floor.
This scene, though, again does not yet give us the full picture of what Maddox is up to, and still has us wondering if he maybe killed her agent boss after getting the alien artifacts he wanted or is it something more sinister?
We learn that the common thread is that all the people facing East at the mountain location is that they all have newborns, which George comments on as the reason they are all currently connected. He mentions “energy emotional emergence”. The heightened emotional state they are all in now that they have a newborn. The highs and lows of it, the lack of sleep, the worry, the extra added stress. The people run through a gamut of emotions from laughter to anger due to them being emotionally connected. It is a fascinating scene to watch unfold as you can see how each individual handles those emotions. Bryan is perplexed to say the least while Finola is preoccupied with helping her father.
Joel’s theme of human connection is predominant in this episode. This episode is probably the most emotionally charged episode of the season. From the people in the grips of the debris to what transpires later on certainly gave the viewers something to think about.
What made this particular episode the most epic episode in the history of television (in my opinion) is the addition of the absolutely wonderful, spectacular, brilliant John Noble as Otto.
I was beyond happy to see John be a part of this episode. Since seeing him on Fringe I have become a lifelong fan and ANYTIME John is on my television it elevates that episode or series that much higher. I am also so happy that he got to use his native Australian accent.
John Noble’s character of Otto is seen with Anson and Loeb (Ben Cotton) at a gas station where he just exited out of the station store. When Anson questions Otto about what he had done, Anson goes into the store and finds victims in twisted, compact states. It is creepy and telling about who Otto really is.
Seeing John again reminded me of the character he played on Fringe either as Walter Bishop or as Walternate. Otto is definitely neither, he makes Walternate look like a pussy cat in comparison. With the leather jacket, jeans and tattoos, Otto far surpasses Walternate in being a bad ass. I do love that Joel keeps it all in the family. That we have seen two actors from the Fringe universe in Debris, Sebastian Roché and John Noble, Joel has also brought us some Easter eggs or little signs of Fringe again in Debris series. I enjoyed it immensely.
As more and more people join the already big group of people connected by the alien artifact, Bryan suggests shutting it down to break the connection. It is the only way to save them. Finola asks her father about the recalibration. George says she can touch it; that it will not harm her. Finola’s reluctance is noticeable, but she trusts her father enough to take his word and does touch the alien artifact. It does not harm her but does glow red under her touch. I suspect this was on purpose that George instructed Finola to do that and at the end of the episode is maybe the reason why he asked her to do that.
George tells Finola that in order to release the people from the grips of the alien artifact that their memories will be wiped completely. Finola objects but George insists that she must let it happen in order for him to save their lives and allow them to be released. George says we have no choice, to which Finola replies that we always have a choice.
As they argue back and forth about regarding this specific alien artifact, we hear Finola saying that she can find a way and George insisting that there is no time. George finally tells her that Influx agents are on their way. Finola is visibly shaken at this news and then George delivers the bombshell; he called them!
This is when the episode takes a sharp turn into the meatiest part of the episode. This is where you as the viewer may question and find yourself in a quandary right along with Finola. George confesses to her that he did indeed commit suicide in order for a rebirth to happen, for which he paid the price.
Finola thinks that George is still delusional because of what happened to him, when in actuality he deceived her from the beginning. “If we cannot help people then we do not deserve this debris” George said to her. He told her that he knew she was coming to rescue him, but that she came too early.
George tells her that the United States has been weaponizing the alien artifacts and so have other countries such as China and Russia. He had mentioned that other governments cannot be trusted to be the guardians of the alien objects, it should be used for good.
What George mentioned about the debris is that specific debris in consort with others “will enable the transformation of the human mind so that humanity can ascend to a higher plane of consciousness and thought”. This last part of the episode is where, for me, “Celestial Body” gets remarkably interesting.
It reminds me of one of my father’s heroes, Nikola Tesla, who was so far beyond his time that it was his downfall. Another genius in his time this reminds me of was Leonardo da Vinci. Both men were far beyond what we consider genius, they were on a level that, dare I say other worldly? Their inventions and discoveries were for the betterment of man but have since been used for weapons and destruction. J. Robert Oppenheimer as well never intended his invention to become the atom bomb, but alas it did.
Both Da Vinci and Tesla were men that were feared by their respective governments so much so that they were almost silenced for their inventions, thoughts, and intellect. They both have often said that they had dreams or visions that were not of this world. That their knowledge or some of their ideas come from outside the realm of consciousness and maybe considered extraterrestrial. That concept those men like them have maybe had the knowledge of the universe and the ages has plagued them for centuries. So much so that both Tesla and da Vinci became recluses during parts of their lives. Tesla wanted to share his inventions with the world for free, but the government prevented him from doing so. The Shakespeare quote from Hamlet “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Also, it begs the question that there are things in this world that even though we cannot see them they are still there and always have been. That there are entities that can pass through this world, energy, spirits, connections, and that are a part of this realm whether we see them or not is amazing.
When Otto, Anson and Loeb show up things get tense. Finola is still devastated by her father’s admission to her and cannot figure out why he did this. George mentions to Otto that a telesphere was born yesterday out of a pocket universe inside Orbital and its arrival may have been triggered by the alien artifacts as a whole. Loeb tells Finola that she must be so proud of her father, that he has a vision that only he can see. He knows what we can be, what we should be…humanity. This episode turned everything on its head for sure.
Once the alien object is hooked up to the machine that Otto brought, George asks how long before the people will die? Otto informs him that it will be quick, and George asks if he can ease them off the bottle, instead. Their minds will still be erased, but things can be learned again. This part reminded me of the movie Johnny Mnemonic who is a “mnemonic courier” that transports sensitive data via an implant in his brain, but at the cost of his childhood memories. The irony of that movie is “In 2021, society is driven by a virtual Internet, which has created a degenerate effect called “nerve attenuation syndrome” or NAS. Mega corporations control much of the world, intensifying the class hostility already created by NAS.” Sound familiar? That is exactly what George is trying to prevent by trying to get the alien artifacts away from governments and corporations.
Finola is then given a blue pill (like The Matrix) to help her from having her mind erased. She vehemently protests taking it but is forced to do so by Anson. As the machine is activated it sends out a wave that disrupts the connection to the Debris causing the transfixed people to fall like dominos. Bryan is also affected by this wave blast; he barely survives but is definitely struggling when he gets to Finola and the other men.
As Bryan approaches, Otto mentions that Bryan must be the “Third Man”, that aside from Garcia and Ming, Bryan was also given the injections that may have just saved his life from the debris. What Otto says next gives the viewer a what the heck moment, Otto says “wonderful job in hiding your identity” which begs the question; who is Bryan Beneventi really? Is he perhaps an entity from another dimension that shape shifted into Bryan?
Was Bryan exposed to alien artifacts way before we get to meet him? What reality are we in and why does Otto extract, by putting his hand close to Bryan’s head, what I assume is information from him. “Wonderful meeting you” Otto finally says as he bids a farewell to Bryan.
George insists the alien artifact must stay with him. “There are things you have no knowledge of about the debris. There are things that only I know-you belong with me, your father.” Finola’s answer is a gut punch, but makes perfect sense to her “My father died six months ago; you are not him” as far as she is concerned. George then says a final word to her “This tech will be free” just like what Tesla wanted with his discoveries and tech.
As the episode climaxes, we find out that Bryan about his injury in an alien artifact incident with Garcia (Zak Santiago) and Ming, which he has to admit to Finola that he has been taking the injections since the incident. He has been taking precautions to “stave off something” but did not know what. Now we do!
I think it was preparing him for when the alien artifact was activated in “Celestial Body”. It would certainly explain why Bryan has been having a different experience regarding the debris than Finola. Why his time in the military was secretive, why he kept being in a time loop in the dual Icarus episodes.
Bryan thinks this is the first time something has happened because of the injections, when it was probably happening all along, he just never put it together. He claims he has never seen Otto before, but that does not mean that Otto is not Ming as a shapeshifter.
Bryan tells Finola that they need to inform Maddox of what just happened, but who knows if Maddox already knows or not?
Otto tells George that “it would have never worked out with the girl in any iteration”, meaning Finola I assume. As the men are driving down the scenic road, an alien “Sandman” appears and George spots it, then they all do.
Once the car passes the entity, the entity turns around and follows the car. But does it continue to do so as it disappears and becomes invisible? That is the last we see of the men, the question being where they are going with the debris and what will happen to Bryan once he recovers?
The final scenes are poignant. It made me think that Maddox is a good guy in this last time when we see with him. Craig comes home with the alien communications artifact that he received from Irina, asking Linda (Jennifer-Juniper Angeli) the babysitter where Julia is.
Linda says that she is upstairs napping as she had a headache and Linda stayed to make sure everything was okay. This scene made me nervous because when Maddox calls out to his wife who is in bed, she does not answer him right away. He tries again a few more times until Julia finally wakes up and hugs her husband tightly.
A sigh of relief came over me that Julia did not do what she intended to do. She tells Craig that she almost did something but stopped herself. He does not suspect anything is wrong thankfully but does ask her to come downstairs with him.
We see that the alien artifact that Maddox received from the Russians is set up and projecting a force field like shield around Dario.
We can see that Julia is confused about what Craig is doing. Then when Dario says “Mom” to Julia, she understands what her husband has been doing, which then makes Julia shed tears of joy.
Clearly at this point the viewer knows that the whole reasoning behind Maddox getting his hands on the debris was to heal his son.
This also makes the viewer wonder what exactly the alien artifacts are going to be used for in the future? Was this kind of thing what George meant by the greater good? The elevated humanity that the alien artifacts sent here to help people with their problems?
In the final scene of the series, we are back in Sedona, Arizona where a blue orb has arrived next to the Indigenous man that we saw in a previous episode.
The man says to the blue orb that it must have had a long journey and that his name is Dahkeya (Julian Black Antelope). The blue orb follows Dakheya into a cave where we see another Fringe alum, Sebastian Roché (Brill).
Brill mentions something about the piece of a specific alien artifact in Virginia. and then we see a clone (at least to me) of Finola.
Brill says, “Let’s begin” and that was the end of the episode. With the title of this episode being “Celestial Body”, I have no doubt that is most likely referring to not only the clone or Finola, but maybe others as well, perhaps Bryan or Otto or more people or aliens that we had yet to meet?
Unfortunately, with the cancellation of this series we will never find out what was going to happen with that Finola clone or what other things the alien artifacts can do.
What George Jones may be doing with the objects if the spheres at Orbital would ever be completed?
What would have become of Dario? Would he have been completely cured?
So many questions that we will never know because the series has ended. It pains me to no end that, yet another sci-fi show of great intelligence and story has ended because it was too cerebral for the masses.
That maybe the point of the Debris series, the humanity we have been seeking the last few millennia has slipped through our fingers once again.
I want to personally thank Joel Wyman, Jonathan Tucker, Rianne Steele, Norbert Leo Butz, Jennifer Copping, Scroobius Pip, John Noble, Andrea Stefancikova, and every single person involved in this beautiful show. I am keeping my fingers crossed that another forum would decide to pick up this property and give it the wonderful chance it so richly deserves to keep telling this amazing story of connection and humanity.
Thank you for visiting WormholeRiders News Agency. Thanks to Kenn for video embedding and adding images for my feature articles about Debris. I hope that I will be back later in future seasons to provide additional analysis about Debris as we learn more about this fabulous new science fiction series on NBC!
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Until next time,