Almost Human S1Ep13 Season Finale ‘Straw Man’ Review
After not doing a preview of this weeks episode of Almost Human I completely missed that yesterday’s episode was also its seasons finale. Almost Human is sadly one of those shows that ahs to make do a with a half season of just 13 episodes. After the partial reboot of the show after episode 9 the stakes have risen and the cliffhanger at the end of ‘Straw Man’ proofs. I will miss Almost Human, hopefully just because it’s a long way to go until its second season airs but also because with its low ratings there is a risk it may be cancelled by FOX. Lets hope it is the former because Almost Human only just managed to stand on solid footing. Reviewers were generally very positive during its first season, which makes everybody wonder why the audience isn’t tuning in. Some have suggested that mythology style series on TV are quite dead, but that doesn’t explain the popularity of shows such as The Blacklist and Person Of Interest.
This episode of Almost Human is remarkable in that it manages to seamlessly integrate a ‘murder of the week’ story with the shows mythology. John Kennex and Dorian are called to a murder scene of a young woman. The body organs have been removed and replaced with straw which John recognizes as the modus operandi of the Strawman, a serial killer Kennex’s father arrested over ten years before. Kennex and Dorian meet with Mr. Costa , the Strawman, in prison and quickly realize he may not be the perpetrator. Instead Mr. Costa who was at the time schizophrenic may have acted as a patsy. Kennex meanwhile ahs to deal with allegations that before his father may have been corrupts before he died in the line of the duty 10 years back.
The case gets a breakthrough when Rudy and Dorian discover that the body’s are not originals but replicas. As the killer couldn’t replicate the organs he made it look as though the originals were filled with straw. Kennex deduces his father may have thought so as well and was trailing a lead when he was murdered by the killer. Kennex’s father may have discovered that the replicator used by the serial killer was taken from police evidence, thus implicating corrupt police officers. When Kennex’s father tried to bait the killer with another piece of technology from evidence he was himself implicated after his murder.
Dorian, Kennex and Detective Paul stake out homeless shelters as they believe it is the killers hunting grounds. Paul makes a conversation with a man who later disappears from the shelter. After Paul sees a minivan flee the scene the hunt is on. The minivan is traced to a warehouse where Dorian and Kennex discover that the recent victims are still alive. The serial killer is also discovered, but Dorian observes in time that it is a replicated decoy with a bomb in its chest. Kennex is left alone to confront the real killer and discovers the mans superhuman strengths. After finally subduing him Dorian tells him the victims were used to discovers a cure for a neurological illness he was suffering from.
Back at the precinct Dorian is told that he approved for service with the police department. As a gift for his glowing review Dorian gives Kennex a new leg with all kinds of new advancements. In the final scene Dorian admits he can never be human, but is grateful for Maldonado having put the two of them together. The episode ends with Kennex and Dorian responding a to a robbery.
I must congratulate the person who authored the script of this episode. The continuing misdirection that allows the serial killer to elude capture is a far more effective than a plot focusing on some sort of impossible technology to do so instead. The method with which Kennex and Dorian manage to find the killer seems reminiscent of how Andrei Chikatilo was arrested in the movie Citizen X. Such small detail adds a sense of realism to the show that wasn’t always there among all the high-tech devices and weapons seen. The dénouement of the episode did sadly not have a cliffhanger and the episode makes no mention of The Syndicate as the principal villains. And we also still don’t what is behind ‘The Wall’ and that it used to be the old part of town. Despite that, the ending which shows the bonding between Kennex and Dorian seemed very appropriate. I had little against it.
The first season of Almost Human could have been better, much better. The season was good nonetheless but why on earth would they show the episodes out-of-order and why was the shows mythology absent for over half a dozen episodes. These two deficiencies should never have occurred, and they may well spell the end of Almost Human. I hope Almost Human will be back for a second season because it has a powerful message to deliver. The message is that technology is most if the time not a destructive force in a way that everyone can easily pinpoint but it is through everyday occurrences and people desires that it becomes a problem. As such the show acts as a metaphor for how technological changes can cause negative impact in our own lives. Almost Human does this better than other shows such as Continuum.
So far no word yet on season 2, better keep those fingers crossed.
Score; 9 / 10. one of the best episode of Almost Human so far. It proves the show certainly has potential for intrigue as well as for a pretty sci-fi décor.