Television

The Purge Season 2 Episode 10: 7:01 am-Review and Recap

A perfectly bookended season came to an end, as the finale saw the execution of fan favorites and their plan.

A look inside the inner workings of the NFFA agency security on the very first purge night gave insight into the security Esme would rely on this week. Ethan Hawkes makes a surprise appearance as security expert James Sandin from the original film. His system isn’t working and a technician must call him for help. He denies the problems, chalking them up to user error and says it can’t be the system because this is the one he trusts with his family’s lives. The irony, of course, is that the system fails miserably and he is killed.

It’s an interesting way to tie the film Purge together with the series. James DeMonaco has expanded on the film world without diluting anything that makes the film series so successful. The NFFA’s America is a seemingly never-ending fount of fodder for the commentary grist mill.

Season two was about choices. The choices that are made for us and the ones we make ourselves. The easy and hard choices alike. Who do we choose to become when faced with life-altering information? For many, they chose to step up and be part of a change. For Ben, he chose to embrace his inner demon.

THE PURGE — “7:01 AM” Episode 210 — Pictured: (l-r) Jaren Mitchell as Doug Vargas, Chelle Ramos as Sara Williams — (Photo by: Alfonso Bresciani/USA Network)

All of the storylines converged as Ryan and his group came full circle. A well-executed plan by people who obviously had a great deal of time and trust packed the episode with a ton of action. Ryan’s plot beats all season long provided the adrenaline rush that a show like The Purge requires. Ten hour-long episodes of violence alone would be boring, especially with the wealth of films already out there. In order for viewers to tune in, there must be additional elements. Incredible gunfights and action heist scenes were the fresh touches that kept us coming back. By using a bus burning as a weapon the group is able to pen in the jackals and get the cases. In addition, it is a visual reminder of the Blue Flower cult from season one who drove around a powder blue buss delivering sacrifices to happy Purgers.

Marcus found his purpose and his humanity on Purge Night. He makes it to the triage center with Michelle and manages to save her life. In the process, he unwittingly unleashes Ben. Ben’s arch was complete last week and as such only, his violence remains. There is no more angst, no more hiding, only depravity. Ben became a monster and Marcus became a hero but not before a showdown between the two men. In what is easily the goriest, most horror forward scene of the season the triage center is turned into a Halloween haunted house. A well-timed Ketamine shot knocks Ben out and Marcus leaves him outside the center instead of killing him. It marks the completion of his redemptive arch and allows Ben the possibility of survival.

Esme is borrowing a page from Mr. Universe and will broadcast the proof she has found to anyone who can hear it. A company woman at heart she is a stand-in for anyone who follows the company path blindly. She was simply doing her job in the past. Her eyes have been opened and like Neo and the Matrix, she only wants to unplug everyone else.

She wants to let them have the information and choose for themselves instead of being fed propaganda designed to eliminate that choice. She and Ryan pay the ultimate price, but they do it to serve a higher purpose. Esme’s death creates a powerful martyr and thanks to Ryan’s cut of the money, a well-funded ally. Killing her off Purge may have shut her mouth, but it opened so many others. Just like the twelve hours of the Purge itself, it’s only a matter of time.

It’s a powerful political message that The Purge makes as the credits roll. The world has changed. Not everyone believes in the NFFA and their implement The Purge any longer. There are those who choose to continue Professor Adams’ fight. Esme and Ryan did not die in vain. Resist is led by Marcus’ son Darren and has many of the surviving characters including Vivian, Turner, and Marcus’ ex-wife. A sweeping span of the crowd shows a diverse group. People of all ethnicities and walks of life. They are the marginalized, the forgotten, the unimportant to the NFFA. Ben a white man of privilege, is the killer the Purge created. His grotesque mask reads God. His evil stands in sharp contrast to the resistance and their backers. Just because you think you are a God doesn’t mean you are. Fortune favors the bold. Resist is harnessing that bravery.

There will still be plenty who don’t want to believe the truth. It is easier to trust the government than accept reality. As I mentioned last week, the government is preying on the worst of humanity. The NFFA has given America a license to behave badly and there will always be those who like it. You can’t ignore the parallels to modern politics. Regardless of your beliefs, The Purge makes us think and that’s a good thing. With quality storytelling and excellent acting USA has built a leg of the franchise that deserves a season three. Read all our Purge coverage here.

Stray Observations:

How and where does the NFFA dispose of all their trash and dead bodies from Purge Night? The cost of proper, safe removal has to be astronomical. Surely someone is doing the math on that.

Please bring The Foundation into the franchise fold. This would be a very cool and powerful foil for the NFFA.

I’m dying to know how much money Ryan’s group got away with.

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