Friday, May 6, 2011

Survivors - ''Genesis''

Spoiler Level: High

The only thing cooler than Survivors having "Genesis" as their second episode title is Red Dwarf's having "The End" as their first episode's title.

We're introduced to some new players, and even though the plague is over, conditions are so harsh you're still never sure if they're going to survive or not.

In this episode, the various survivors are starting to find each other.  Some want to stay alone, but most want to band together to start new communities-- and of course, there are a few who want to make sure that they're the ones in charge.

The extremes are shown on a small scale in the case of Greg and Anne.  Greg is a survivor with nowhere to go and no plan in mind; he runs in to Anne, who needs help.  Anne has been staying with Vic, where they've been setting up camp in a quarry.  They were gathering supplies when Vic's tractor fell on him.  Greg helps get the tractor off of Vic and does what he can to help set his legs, but none of them are doctors, and there's a very real chance that they won't heal right and Vic will never be able to walk again.  Anne tells Greg of Vic's plan to try and gather supplies so they'll be secure for as long as possible, but elaborates on her interpretation of the plan-- things are the new currency, and with all the things they've been gathering, they can get other people to work for them in exchange for food. Disgusted, Greg leaves, but not without going into the closest town and trying to scavenge any medicines that might help Vic pull through.  Anne, by contrast, leaves Vic to die, and when she finds Greg returning tells him that Vic is already dead.

Greg is no hero, he has no master plan to put the human race back on track-- he just sees someone who needs help and does what he can.  Anne, by contrast, is not only unwilling to help anyone else, but she wants someone else to do all the work to help her.  Life means so little to her that she'd rather let someone die than exert the effort to help him herself.

I suppose it could be that having seen so much death, one of two things happens-- you either become desensitized to it and find life to be meaningless and valueless, or you cherish the life that's still left.  And while we see a lot of the former in this episode, we also see Abby, one of the few to survive from the first episode.  Her only plan is to build a community where they can take care of themselves and each other.  Hopefully, the new world will follow her example more than Anne's.

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