The Whispers: Whatever It Takes (recap and review)

Wes Anderson with Minx in The Whispers
In the last episode of The Whispers; The Archer, Drill showed just how powerful he could be, Sean touched the boulder and remembered everything, Frommer proved that he may be just as big a threat as Drill and Lena learned that she too could “play” with the entity through her daughter. In Whatever It Takes, this week’s episode of The Whispers, everything has been cranked up in terms of suspense and the entire episode is “edge of the seat” viewing.

Sean does remember everything and relates it to a presidential board of inquiry. Wes Anderson tell the president that the entity has to be classified as alien and Bennigan tells the assembled group that it will do “whatever it takes” to destroy mankind. Anderson explains to the president what they have learned about the the entity called Drill: It talks to children, travels through electricity and can be seen through heat imagery and that it is trying to get to the rock. Wes also tells the group that they will contain the object with a magnetic field.

The president decides he needs to see the rock.

Bennigan warns that the DoD have no idea what they are dealing with. The president’s daughter Cassandra has been contacted by Drill and she asks to play a game on her mother’s phone while they are returning home. When the first lady and Cassandra reach the end of their journey, the girl leaves her “doll” in the presidential vehicle.

Frommer threatens Captain Bennigan again, this time spelling out that if he does not cooperate in tests that he will be put in prison for the rest of his life for treason. The president and Anderson go the the facility storing the rock and he decides that the thing should be protected. Wes and the president share a patriotic moment.

Sean comes home and Henry is overjoyed. They have a touching moment where the boy tries to tell and show his dad everything. The president and Wes talk a bit more as Cassandra’s father finds the doll in the official car. Lena and Minx are playing with Drill and when Anderson comes home the game stops. Claire and her husband share an awkward moment and Sean ends up sleeping on the couch. Later, Wes calls to see how his former lover and her husband are doing. He warns Claire to be careful and as Sean uses his wife’s tablet his ankle protrudes from under the covers and he is wearing a tracking device.

Cassandra gets her doll back and the first lady asks about her cell phone. When the grownups leave the bedroom, the girl goes into her closet with the doll as the lights flicker. The next morning an excited Henry runs downstairs looking for his father. Sean is making pancakes and their short encounter ends on a sour note when the boy asks Bennigan to promise he will “come back.” When the captain does, Henry replies, “I don’t believe you,” and leaves the room.

Sean has to tell Claire about Frommer’s “offer;” prison or guinea pig. Wes warns Lena to be careful of what she says around Minx in case Drill is still there. He tells his wife that he cannot tell her too much about the rock or what they are doing for the same reason.

Bennigan and Dr. Tully talk as she begins her study. He compares mankind to ants and explains that the entity will kill the earth’s denizens unless she helps. Claire goes to Wes’ house to say how unhappy she is with the choices given to Sean. She tells her former lover that the rock should be destroyed and Anderson questions her motives. He agrees to let her see Sean.

The scientist and Sean discuss the rock and he tells her what he has seen in the blue light. His revelations are disturbing and as he talks to the woman, Claire has her partner Jessup bring her a FBI flack jacket. She modifies the jacket to put several items in the lining. Wes stops by to see Minx on his way out of the house and she is watching the Justus doll on TV and Anderson recognizes it. As he talks to his daughter, she tells him she likes the television show because the presenter knows how to talk to kids…apparently like Drill.

Lena asks Minx if Drill is there as she wants to talk to him. Her daughter replies that he is not. He is, she says, with a new important friend. Lena asks why the friend is so important. She later rings Wes to tell him about this new development and Anderson suddenly understands the relevance of the doll being left in the presidential vehicle.

He searches Cassandra’s room and finds the first lady’s cell phone in the closet, the Blackberry had a tracking application downloaded onto it that showed Drill where the rock was. Sean gets the scientist to understand how dangerous the rock is just as Wes realizes that the thing is a type of cell phone for Drill. Claire is at the facility to see Sean and takes the items that she secreted in the vest, in for her husband.

Frommer learns from Jessup about the vest and he realizes where Claire is going. When she gets in, the doctor joins Sean and Claire to destroy the rock. Tully orders the soldiers out of the rock containment room and instructs the other two on how to set up the magnets. The trio begin to rapidly set things up as Drill travels closer to the building and the object via electrical lines.

The three rush to finish as Drill arrives at the facility. Frommer alerts the soldiers who come back in. Tully refuses to stop and is shot. Wes comes in just as the electricity shuts down and Drill has reached the rock. The object begins to glow and Anderson tells the soldiers to stand down. He also orders the area evacuated.

Sean tells the DoD agent that Drill is in the rock and that Claire needs to leave the area. He explains that he forgives her for the affair and that she needs to leave. A hysterical Claire is dragged out and Sean activates the magnets. The rock implodes and then explodes shattering the glass where Wes and Claire are.

The two rush down and find that Sean has survived the blast. Anderson gives the couple his car keys and tells them to run, he says he can fix things but it will take time. Meanwhile Jessup is outside the Bennigan residence and Frommer orders him to take Henry. Minx comes in and wakes her mother. The child tells Lena that Drill knows she wants something from him and that he wants something from her. Minx sighs and then says, somewhat disturbingly, “Maybe you can make a deal.”

This week’s episode of The Whispers has been the best yet. The suspense of the action and the plot line meant some pretty white knuckle moments were called for while waiting to see how things were going to turn out at that blue rock. There were a couple of “lump in the throat” bits; Henry welcoming his beloved father home and Sean “forgiving” Claire as he prepared to possibly die saving the world.

Of course Drill has survived and as Bennigan warned everyone, the thing is a lot more resilient than they know. Frommer has managed to plumb new depths as resident baddie, versus Drill who is the non-resident baddie, and Jessup is being forced into a very bad place.

Lily Rabe continues to impress as the torn and guilty FBI agent who now has her husband back. Milo Ventimiglia was brilliant in this episode as was Barry Sloane. Perhaps a moment of silence is in order for poor Gwynyth Walsh as Dr. Tully; shot for believing in Captain Bennigan’s visions.

The Whispers continues to not only be one of the best shows on television but is also proof that ABC may just nip the other networks at the post with a winning lineup of shows. The series is currently running neck and neck with at least one other winning program on offer. Miss this brilliant show and miss some very exciting television. The Whispers airs Mondays on ABC.

All God’s Chillun Gots Phones

It just suddenly occurred to me this morning that everybody (and I mean everybody) has got a cell phone (or mobile phone if you’re English or European). Not only that, but, a good portion of these people have got an iPhone. If they do not have an iPhone, they have some other form of touch screen phone that uses the Android operating system.

I do not have either an iPhone or an Android operated touch screen phone. But I do have a mobile phone, a BlackBerry if you must know (and if you follow my blog you do know because I did a post about it) and as I said in my previous post, it’s almost too much phone for me to handle.

But here’s the interesting (or possibly disturbing) bit. Did you know that when you take a picture with your iPhone and upload via Instagram that the picture is automatically “marked” with a location code? This code is a boon to stalkers, cyber and otherwise. In essence where you take your photos is where you are. Easy to track and find.

And after checking just now, I’ve learned that Android pictures that are uploaded to the net also have the location of the picture. I also found out that you can turn off the location code part of your pictures on both operating systems.

On another track, most phones have GPS capability. I know I’ve used mine to get directions from where I am at the time. Just another great little device that also allows anyone like say a stalker find out where you are; or more helpfully the police if you are lost or missing.

In case you were trying to find me, I’m right here…

There are other ways for people to find out where you are though besides the location codes on your uploaded pictures; applications like foursquare, for example, allow you to Tweet where you are at that particular moment. If your stalker (sorry I mean friends) miss you at your current location they at least know that you frequent the place and have a good chance of catching you there (pun intended).

I seem to have a real “bug in my ear” about these modern-day communication devices that everyone seems to need. Oh and while I am on about the communication aspect of mobile phones, I’ll just mention how easy it is for a third-party to listen to your calls. I used the word party as a reference to the old “party” lines that the phone companies used in the old days. A party line meant you shared your landline with a group of other folks who could listen in on your phone calls, just like the mobile phone. Sorry, I know I’ve mentioned that twice now.

It’s no wonder that I feel like it is still 1984 and big brother is not only watching but the nosey bugger is listening as well. Modern technology is pretty great, but it is also intrusive. Not only that, but I am sure that the government likes being able to know where you are and what you are saying. Terrorist plots aside, these guys must know the best gossip about everyone who is someone.

The thing that amazes me more than the ability to find and listen to you while you have this mobile communication device on your body is the “about-face” on the “safety” of mobile phones.

A scant 10 years ago, scientists were warning about the “overuse” of mobile phones. They went on record stating that the things emitted too much radiation to be healthy (especially for the young and the elderly) and that they were basically cancerous tumours just waiting to happen. Not only that, but they were bad for your ears.

Now I don’t remember exactly but I am pretty sure the tumours were not ear related but brain related and all the information they trotted out was pretty scary. It was scary enough that I remember warning my then young daughter about using the thing too much.

But wait a minute; no one is talking about how hazardous the mobile phone is any longer.  It seems that all those tumours and ear damage have disappeared. I could not figure out why until I had a major epiphany while writing this post.

Now that's not scary...much.
Now that’s not scary…much.

People do not talk on their mobile phones nearly as much as they text on them.

Presumably that is why the scare mongering over the health threatening mobile phone has diminished. Not because the government want to keep tabs on us. (Even though we know that they really do) It is because that scant 10 years ago, the prophetic scientists could not know that texting would bypass talking on these “dangerous” devices.

I have yet to hear of one person who has gotten a life threatening tumour on their index finger from prolonged texting.

So the mobile phone continues to be a necessity for everyone over the age of 7? Presumably it is because I have seen children that young (and younger) talking on one and carrying it about; again one of the handier aspects of the GPS thing. I am sure that these young consumers even text on their mobiles, the spelling should not present a problem since texting does not require one to spell correctly.

Sorry, I really do need to wind this post up soon or it will cease being a pithy comment on mobile phones and their ubiquitous existence in today’s society and more of a paranoiac rant on stalkers and the government keeping tabs on the world’s citizens.

Besides, I need to get my Blackberry instruction book back out; I can’t seem to get foursquare to work on it properly and my Twitter has lost its link and my Facebook app won’t delete my updates. I also need to take a couple of pictures with my camera and sort out the video camera as well. And while I am at it, I may just type a new blog post on my WordPress application…

Oh no! The keys are too damn small!

Too Much Phone

I have had my Blackberry Curve for about a year now. (And yes, that is Buzz Lightyear‘s reflection in the phone.) I got a really good deal on it and only pay £15 a month on my phone plan.

Apart from the fact that the buttons are a little on the small size I’ve gotten on with it fairly well. Technologically it is not on-par with the iPhone, or even the iPad, in terms of quality of downloads (it can take ages to buffer and still gives you a choppy “outer space” video to watch.

But I decided I needed to gear my mobile communications device up into the 21st century. I could not afford an iPhone 4 or 5 and no other manufacturer could come close to them. Unless of course you want to purchase a “no brand” phone and then you just look cheap.

After looking at the other phones on offer at the Tesco’s electrical section, I opted for the Blackberry. My daughter Meg had one when she went to university and it was pretty handy. Although neither of us could figure out how to use the internet option or the Wi-Fi application, despite the fact that the city that she lived in was one huge Wi-Fi hotspot.

I didn’t have that problem with mine. I could jump on any Wi-Fi signal and could read my emails unhindered.

But…

I have only been able to email myself a couple of times. Both times were because I was too lazy to find the usb connector that allowed me to attach the phone to my laptop and upload a picture. When I attempted to email myself last night it failed each and every time I tried it. And before you say anything, it was not an email address associated with my Blackberry.

In the end I had to give up and look for the damn usb connector and upload that way. Now at least I can do my blog post about our latest Quorn recipes and our reaction to them.

But the fact that I’ve had the phone for so long and still haven’t mastered the full use of it says a lot. I am not technologically stupid or stunted. I have in my time hooked up external hard drives via a pig-tail connection to an existing computer. I have installed new graphics cards and extra memory cards for RAM.

So why can’t I come to grips with everything that my phone can do?

I only discovered last night (completely by accident, mind you) how to zoom my Blackberry camera to take close up pictures! If I hadn’t brushed my finger across the “mouse” button on the phone, I still wouldn’t know how to zoom.

Of course you might be asking, “Why didn’t you just read the instruction manual?” Good question. I did sort of read it. Which means that I skip read and probably missed loads of things that my phone can do. But that would be the total amount of “research” I would have done when I got the phone.

These days you can Google most questions you might have on your new “product” and find an immediate answer to your particular dilemma. If you can be bothered that is.

But I guess the point I’m trying to make is this. I think I “over bought” in the phone department. The Blackberry might be perfect for a businessman or the entrepreneur who wants to look stunningly professional. But I don’t really think it fits my somewhat limited needs.

There is a scene in one of my favourite westerns True Grit, I hasten to add that it is the John Wayne 1969 film that I’m referring to here, Texas Ranger La Boeuf (Glen Campbell) has just shot a turkey with his prized .56 Sharps Rifle. [Now the .56 Sharps was used to shoot buffalo, not turkeys.] As La Boeuf stands holding the dead bird, with a look of pride on his face, Rooster Cogburn (John Wayne) pauses in mid conversation and nods at the turkey. “And we’ll clean your turkey.”

Mattie Ross (Kim Darby) says, “I don’t know how, it looks all messed up.”

Rooster grins and says, “Yeah.”

Then as an aside to Mattie, Rooster says, “Too much gun.”

I kind of feel like La Boeuf right now, every time I go to do something on my Blackberry phone and get stymied or have to search for instructions I can hear Rooster in my head saying, “Too much phone.”

Rooster.
Rooster.