“Under the Dome” has oft been compared to the plot of The Simpsons’ movie. As fans of the film will recall, Springfield was covered in a dome after the town was deemed too environmentally toxic due to an influx of pig poo.
The other thing UTD has in common with the movie and Fox series is the fickleness of its residents. When Julia walked into the Sweetbriar Rose café in this week’s “Reconciliation” episode, she was greeted with the Lenny and Carl of Chester’s Mill. Carl was pissed that Julia had put Big Jim in jail, while Lenny was angry that Big Jim had tried to poison the town. Then, Lenny got something in his eye (and everyone knows he’s not supposed to get something stuck in his eye!).
It’s rare that we get to see the other residents’ of CM, but we certainly got our Phil this week. But more on that later.
Drop Dead Gorgeous
Early in the episode, Barbie filled Julia in on pretty much everything that had happened in last week’s episode, specifically on Melanie, the 1988 undead high school student with a connection to Lyle, Pauline, and Sam.
“I know who I am now,” said Melanie. “But why am I back?”
Since Melanie had just found out she had died, she didn’t want to sit around and do nothing. She wanted to start living again like it was 1989. To the dome!
Joe, Melanie, and Norrie took off to the woods to touch the dome, and see if they could figure anything out about the mystery surrounding the zombie-like beauty. Norrie ended up snapping at Melanie, saying she would gladly put her back in the crater she died in if it meant getting her mom back. Joe realized his girlfriend was a little over the line.
“You know I’ve defended you a lot, but sometimes you’re a real bitch.”
After Melanie ran off, Joe chased after her, and the two ended up sharing a kiss, which caused Norrie to get even bitchier when she caught them macking on each other. Melanie and Norrie had a scuffle, which caused Norrie to be thrown to the ground with pretty-much the equivalent of a paper cut.
While sitting in a jail cell, Big Jim finally realized that Rebecca Pine may be slightly insane. If he were Gob Bluth, this would be the scene where he’d say, “I’ve made a huge mistake.”
Even though the food production may have slowed down under the dome, the judicial system sped up significantly. Big Jim and Rebecca Pine were being arraigned for trying to poison the community, less than a day after being accused. But mayhem ensued, and poor Lenny was shot (not Lenny!) and killed by Phil the cop when the crowd outside of the gazebo started to get unruly with the appearance of BJ and Rebecca.
Channeling her boyfriend Barbie, Julia made herself a cop and took Phil’s badge away from him.
Hands Across Chester’s Mill
Good news for Junior: It doesn’t look like he killed his girlfriend. Bad news for Junior: His girlfriend is still dead.
Somehow, as UTD logic would have it, Junior hypothesized that Lyle killed Angie to bring down the dome. The other part of his hypothesis: The four hands that touched the mini-dome (Joe, Norrie, Junior, and Angie) need to die in order to completely raze the dome. Yikes. Although I can’t say I would miss any of these characters if they were suddenly to die.
All of this talk about the past had Uncle Sam hitting the sauce.
“You sure you wanna do this?” said Junior.
“My dead sister’s alive. My nephew’s on some nutball’s hit list. Yeah, I wanna do this.” And with that, Sam decided to rejoin alcoholism.
But Lyle wasn’t the only one who wanted to kill the four hands. Remember: He and Sam are working together on something.
Taking a pillow to a sleeping Junior, Sam attempted to bring down the dome through his own means. Unfortunately, Junior woke up before he could be suffocated.
“I love you, Uncle Sam,” said Junior, in a non-patriotic way. Sam put the couch cushion away.
Struggling with sobriety and the fact that he tried to kill his nephew, Sam ended up throwing a glass bottle against the wall in frustration.
When Junior woke up later, he and Uncle Sam found one of Pauline’s old paintings which had the number of Angie’s locker on it. Sam claimed that the number was also written in Pauline’s journal.
We Didn’t Start the Fire
Once again, Super Barbie was to the rescue, after an explosion in the building of the food share. Julia, ever the damsel in distress, was in need of rescue.
After the dust cleared and Julia and Barbie emerged from the explosion, naturally everyone assumed it was all Julia’s fault.
“Big Jim would have never let this happen,” said Phil, who earlier in the day, had shot and killed Lenny and was not being arraigned. (So much for Chester’s Mill’s expedited judicial system.)
Away from the mob, Julia admitted to Barbie that she should have checked the generators and that the explosion was all her fault. Barbie, of course, went to question the one man he knew had to be behind it, even if this man was behind bars: Big Jim.
Back at the jail, Big Jim accused Phil of being the one to start the fire, since he was angry with Julia for taking away his badge. And Big Jim was actually right.
Phil did have a hand in it, but he had moved all of the food to another room, so it only looked like they lost all of the food in the explosion. Norrie’s alive mother, Carolyn, caught Phil in the moved pantry, and was roughed up by Phil’s henchman for doing so.
Just as it looked like Norrie was going to be left an orphan, Barbie appeared at the food share and fought Phil’s henchman, and as Phil held a knife to Norrie’s mother’s neck, Barbie shot Phil in the shoulder.
Hoarders: “Under the Dome” edition
Earlier in the episode, Julia was suspicious of Andrea, the woman who had taken over Angie’s position at the Sweetbriar Rose café. When Julia asked the resident grandma where she was getting her food, Andrea claimed there was a pantry in the basement.
Figuring out that Andrea had been lying, Julia followed Andrea to her farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. When Julia pressed her again, this time Andrea asked the redhead to come inside her house. Here, Andrea had been feeding the town with food her survivalist husband had hoarded for years. With all of the food they had, the town could survive for another six months (which in UTD terms, is about 20 TV seasons). Andrea and Julia decided to partner together with all of the food, and make Sweetbriar Rose the only place in town to get a good meal. Although I bet their Yelp rating is still pretty shitty considering all of the irrationally dissatisfied residents.
At the café, Julia was once again greeted by Carl, who lamented that Big Jim should be here. And as it turned out, Julia, the biggest pushover in TV history, had invited Big Jim and Rebecca to dinner. They were officially free, even if just hours earlier they had tried killing half the community.
“You all should know,” said Big Jim of Julia. “I think she’s done a helluva job running Chester’s Mill.”
Rebecca Pine looked to be pouting because no one had died, but she actually was feeling bad for not giving Julia a chance.
Overcoming the rough patch in their two-week relationship, Julia and Barbie made up and made out. After Joe saw them sucking face, he grabbed Norrie and apologized for kissing Melanie in the woods. The one he really loved was Norrie. But Norrie was still feeling particularly bitchy. She was probably on her period, and if being on your period isn’t bad enough, just imagine having to deal with a big-ass dome over your head.
Melanie (yes, this is now a thing—she is actually a character with a name) asked Rebecca to figure out something about her. “Joe says you’re a really smart scientist.” He left the “kook” part out.
Back at the high school, as Rebecca began work on Melanie’s sample, she discovered Junior and Sam trying to break into Angie’s locker (Dude, give it up! She doesn’t love you!), where they discovered a tunnel. But to where?
What do you think is in the tunnel? What’s really up Norrie’s butt? And would you watch UTD if it lasted another 20 seasons?