Utopia (2013): Utopia: Episode #2.2
July 17, 2014 1:24 PM - Season 2, Episode 2 - Subscribe

The second season of Utopia returns to the present, with Jessica Hyde in the hands of the Network. Ian is back at his boring IT job and hating it (with Grant living in hiding in his house in full sulky teenager mode). Meanwhile, Becky reunites with sleazy scientist Donaldson (recast) in a deal for the drugs that are keeping her alive.

Arby, now calling himself by his real name of Piotr, has escaped the clutches of the Network. Or so it seems until his erstwhile partner Lee returns from the dead (minus a functional left arm) to tell him the holiday's over.

Dugdale has been promoted as the front-man for the dispersal of Janus in the guise of the Russian flu vaccine, and it seems that Milner wants to think much bigger than just the UK. Wilson Wilson sits in the background, ready to do... something.

The action kicks off with a mumbling Russian, SWAT teams stalking through a derelict factory and a key Network asset deciding to switch sides. Plus, of course, a novel use for a ballpoint pen spring.
posted by Happy Dave (9 comments total)
I was super confused by the recasting, I actually convinced myself that it was the previous actor!

So apparently everyone is still alive and involved. Hmm. We'll see where this goes, but to have Dugdale and Donaldson back in the mix, oh and Wilson Wilson didn't die too! It's fine, but it rather lowers the stakes of last series to have everyone back.

I enjoyed the Lecter like behaviour of Hyde in this episode, and the added complication of the Network not knowing what the adjustment is is great. Wonderfully, we still don't know if Hyde knows about it, but maybe Anton does.

Milner is weirdly trusting of Arby.
posted by Cannon Fodder at 2:15 AM on July 18, 2014

I was also confused by the recasting, and didn't actually twig that it was the same character until I just read the recap here. Initial thoughts:

- I love that Dugdale doesn't have any more fucks to give with Geoff.
- Arby/Pietre and his new family! :')
- Lee threatening his new family! >:(
- Lee winking at Wilson! XD
- Ian's conversations with Joe at work and at the pub were pure gold. I know they did absolutely nothing to advance the plot, but I loved them.
- Grant went through puberty in the presumably short time between the events of last series and this series, but you know, whatevs...

The last scene between Milner and Jessica, I was wondering if it can be read a couple of different ways. Milner says, "What have I done to you, Jessica? What have I done?" On the one hand, she could be saying, "I've created a monster by pursuing you almost your entire life," but I almost don't think Milner has enough self awareness for that kind of sentiment, so I'm inclined to think she's saying, "What have I ever done to you to deserve this nonsense? Just give me what I want already." She was obviously in love with Jess's father, totes jealous of her mother (and tbh, I'm pretty sure the implication is that she had a hand in J's mum dying while giving birth), and just generally pissed off that Carvel's allegiance shifted away from her to his daughter; I could definitely see her feeling personally aggrieved that this chick is causing her so much trouble.

Yeah, Milner trusting Arby/Pietre was incredibly odd; surely she should've realised how telling it was that he didn't come back into the fold after the events of last series, and certainly Lee could've reported how reluctant he was to be "in" again...
posted by catch as catch can at 3:50 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

On Ian and Joe: how the hell is Ian still employed there? I guess Milner pulled some strings?
posted by Cannon Fodder at 10:47 AM on July 18, 2014

Cannon Fodder: "On Ian and Joe: how the hell is Ian still employed there? I guess Milner pulled some strings?"

Yes, that baffled me too. Given how antagonistic they were in the first series, I didn't really understand their interactions in this episode. Where's the concern come from suddenly?
posted by Happy Dave at 5:44 AM on July 19, 2014

This gets my vote for Best Looking Series on TV. Holy smokes, this is gorgeously shot.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:43 AM on July 24, 2014

It's an interesting role reversal that Jessica is now a dead-eyed killer and RB/Piotr is the spooky helper person protecting everyone.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:54 PM on July 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Sort of, although Jessica did totally murder people who didn't need to be murdered in Series 1: see the homeless dude. And yeah, it really shouldn't be underestimated how goddamn amazing Utopia looks all the time.
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:15 AM on July 25, 2014

I now think of that weird neon limey yellow as Utopia Yellow.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 7:05 PM on July 25, 2014 [2 favorites]

I could listen to Alexandra Roach swear for hours.
Reminds me of my childhood.
posted by fullerine at 4:10 AM on August 9, 2014

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