TV Recaps

‘Under the Dome’ Review: ‘Exigent Circumstances’ sets the tone for a major battle


Exigent Circumstances” was the episode we’ve been waiting for since Under the Dome aired its fantastic pilot. The hour was filled with action, terror, plenty of ‘hold your breath’ moments and it perfectly set the pieces in motion for next week’s season finale.

If there was anyone left who doubted that Big Jim was the worst, his actions this week cemented all the reasons the dome wants him to die. He’s on a major power trip and once again manipulated the town into giving him what he wanted: permission to search everyone’s homes for Barbie without any kind of warrant or due process.

But that was hardly the worst thing he did. Poor, misguided (and annoying, let’s be honest) Dodee called Big Jim to the radio station so he could hear the military conversations about Barbie. It turns out that they know about the mini dome and said Barbie was the only one who had the power to operate it. Dodee told Big Jim the kids have the dome, but then the military (conveniently) mention that Big Jim killed the reverend.

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Suddenly Dodee doesn’t trust him, but it’s too late for her. Big Jim shoots and kills her without a second thought, sets the radio station on fire and proceeds to blame it on Barbie (of course he does). He goes after the kids and Carolyn tries to stop him, but he claims ‘exigent circumstances’ and has his goons hold her, Norrie and Joe while he searches the barn. Thankfully, the kids had already moved it, but Big Jim has them hauled off to jail.

Barbie grabs Angie and begs her to believe his innocence, which she does after about 2.5 seconds. Needless to say, she has no problem believing Big Jim is the bad guy. Barbie is worried about Julia since she is the only one who can prove his innocence and he thinks Big Jim will kill her to make sure that doesn’t happen. Angie agrees to help him rescue her from the clinic. When they arrive, they see it’s Junior guarding her (earlier, he’d run to his dad, hugged him and warned him that he was in danger).

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Angie slips on her candy striper uniform and pretends she was there volunteering to convince Junior to leave Julia’s room long enough for Barbie to slip her out. Angie sells Junior on the idea that she wanted to give him another chance – right up until she kisses him and he tastes the cigarette in her mouth (whoops). Angie rushes to warn Barbie, who already has Julia in the ambulance.

Junior radios Linda for help and Barbie knocks him out and rushes into the back of the ambulance where he kisses an unconscious Julia and tells her that he loves her (sweet, but still not buying this instant deep love). Barbie stays behind while he has Angie get Julia to safety. Linda arrives and arrests him and the radio guy punches him (ugh), but Linda wants this to be a clean arrest.

Again, is she the town’s biggest moron or does is she just biding her time to find a way to stop Big Jim? As much as I’d like to hope for the latter, it very much feels like she is just that naïve, which is one of the biggest faults I have with the characters on this show. They never learn despite being trapped by some supernatural force.

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Norrie stands up to Big Jim in her jail cell and nearly gets herself killed in the process because someone that evil obviously would have no problem killing a teenager. But Barbie makes a deal with Big Jim: he will confess to everything and anything in front of the town as long as Big Jim lets the kids go and promises to call of the search for Angie and Julia. He agrees, but then tells Junior that he wants them found right away. This gives Junior pause and suddenly he’s back to think that his dad might not be the good guy after all.

Julia wakes up and Angie has hidden her in the basement of the clinic, figuring that was the last place anyone would think to look for them. Julia confirms that it was a woman who shot her and Angie is clearly relieved that she picked the right side. Both women worry that the town will kill Barbie.

Meanwhile, Norrie, Joe and Carolyn return to Ben’s house where they stashed the egg and it’s having some sort of meltdown as the cocoon starts to break. Is it freaking out because Barbie is in trouble? Is it mad that Big Jim is still alive? I have no idea, but Linda had followed them back so she got her first glimpse of the mini dome. Maybe there is hope for her yet, but let’s not get too excited.

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Big Jim brings Barbie out on the front steps of the police station and addresses the town (or at least the people who have gathered for the public shaming). He reads off the list of charges that Barbie is accused of (murdering Julia’s husband is in there so he’s got one thing right, even if it was self-defense). He asks Barbie how he pleads and the former military man gives him an ice cold look and replies, “Not guilty.” BAMF.

That’s probably not going to go over well with Big Jim in next week’s season finale. Hopefully, this is the beginning of the end for his reign of terror, but admittedly, I have no idea what this show is going to do next. It seems like they’ve set it up for Junior to be the one to kill his father, but Barbie definitely deserves that honor too. Could Big Jim actually survive the finale? That doesn’t seem completely outside the realm of possibility.

Will we finally learn what the dome is and if the egg is truly its heart like the kids think it is? So many questions…hit the comments and share your theories with us!

Mandy Treccia
Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that.

‘SNL’ Taps Tina Fey to Host Season Premiere; Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry to perform in October

Previous article

‘Sons of Anarchy’ Season 6 Premiere Review: ‘Straw’

Next article

You may also like

1 Comment

  1. loving under the dome

Comments are closed.

More in TV Recaps