Whee!! Because I couldn't get around to recaping last week, this recap will encompass last week's episode and this week's, with a greater focus on this week's installment.
The recap: Sarah's friend, Andy, calls back. He has rebuilt The Turk, the supercomputer that likes chess. This new computer is more childish and is subject to hissy fits. Brian Austen Green shows up and kills him. He turns out to be Derek Reese, a resistance fighter and brother to Kyle Reese, hero from Terminator and John Connor's dad, making Derek his uncle. A terminator (the one the episode before, behind the wall?) is sent to kill Derek, but Cameron pulls out a plug and he dies, but not before almost killing Derek. So John gets Charley, Sarah's old love from 8 years ago, to save his uncle.
While saving Derek, Sarah and Cameron tell him all about Skynet (!!) and why they dissapeared for years. Cameron cremates the dead terminator from last week, so he can't rebuild himself, but that left hand is still missing, and Cameron still has his life source chip, so.... he'll be back.
We also saw the future that was: Derek & Kyle Reese were good soldiers. Kyle went on a mission with John Connor and disappeared. Derek was captured by some robots, who did really confusing things involving dark rooms and other stuff that I didn't get, but whatever. Derek meets Andy, the chess nerd who wound up building Skynet. Andy's kind of sorry. A lot. The robots are building a "secret weapon," which seems pointless because it looks like this might be after the apocalypse?, so, what's the use? The robots leave, the resistance fighters act like it's Prison Break and flee. Derek wants to see John Connor, and he does, just off-screen, because goodness knows Christian Bale or Nick Stahl or whoever are too busy, and then gets sent back to the past with his crew to change the future. Where they spend forever staring at the uncorrupted city, in the middle of the street, naked. Good thing only good-looking people come back from the future, huh?
The last scene of the episode shows Derek killing Andy the Chessman, thus showing that he A) lied to Sarah, and B) changed the future. But will it save Kyle? Will it stop the robots? Uh, I don't know?
What worked: The show started off slow, but in these past two episodes it's found a footing and become real, dramatic and interesting. The show is slowly starting to get layers.
What didn't: Again, Sarah's voice-overs. But, they took up less time this episode, so, I'll give half-credit for that. And why do FOX shows think that no lighting = dramatic? No lighting just equals "can't see what's on screen." Remember when Cameron ripped skin off in sheets? That worked, sure, but that just grossed me out. Also in the gross department: getting the barcode tattoo. They're only in the "didn't work" column because they grossed me out. Seriously, TV, what are you? A Saw movie? Stop it.
Next week: Sarah break's into the detective's apartment, John learns more about his mom's stay at a psychiatric hospital, but none of that matters because Cameron starts ballet lessons. Yes, Cam taking ballet. I am so there.