Review: Secrets come out on this week’s ‘Halt and Catch Fire’

My review of this week’s episode of Halt and Catch Fire entitled “And She Was” is coming up, but first I have to pile drive a Zenith.

Spoilers are coming up for this week’s episode. If you have not watched it, stop reading now, go watch the episode, then come back here.

The secrets have been building up on Halt all season. Donna didn’t tell Cameron how Diane is okay with canning Doug and Craig to help her learn to get along with people who don’t agree with her. Gordon has kept his debilitating neurological condition from everyone except Donna. Cameron didn’t tell anyone she got married to Tom while in Texas. And no one knows that the inspiration for Joe’s security software actually came from Gordon. All of these secrets are now revealed to some extent.

The episode title lends itself to a Talking Heads song from 1985 about a woman from Baltimore David Byrne knew. The lyrics “And she was lying in the grass … She’s making sure she is not dreaming” exactly describe Donna as she lies in the backyard of Diane’s wine-country home, her mind altered by some sort of narcotics, imagining Cameron showing up and patching things up with her.

Cameron found out about Donna’s lie at the end of last week’s episode and passive-aggressively reveals that she knows during their team meeting and the meeting with Diane. Cameron refuses to go with Donna to the weekend retreat at Diane’s home, and I think Cam can no longer trust anything Donna says. We see from her hallucination that Donna wants to feel like Cameron needs her, but we’ve also seen that Cameron thinks she can do it all by herself.

While Cameron and Donna’s relationship is strained, the relationship between Cameron and Gordon gets stronger as they finally beat Super Mario Bros. But not before Gordon goes headlong into the television, resulting in them having to buy a monstrosity of a projection television. Gordon reveals to Cameron his condition, dancing around just how serious it is (we’re all slowly dying, he points out).

This leads Cameron to her meeting with Joe at his apartment, imploring him to give Gordon credit for his software. Joe immediately notices the wedding ring and celebrates with some champagne.

Cameron does finally tell someone (Gordon, in addition to Joe noticing) that she got married, which means it’s only a matter of time before Donna finds out. Whether this will help them patch things up and not have it be a hallucination is still to be seen.

I wondered why Cameron married Tom. I believe it was to give her something in the past to hold onto. Donna had told her she needs some grounding, and this is her way of doing it. It will help remind her where she came from and maybe, as an added bonus, it will help hold off Joe’s advances (although Joe has never shown respect for rules).

It would seem Cameron’s words to Joe were falling on deaf ears, until Ken gives Joe the “Big Head” Bighetti treatment, removing all his executive control in his own company. Joe decides he’s going to burn everything to the ground, admitting in his deposition that he flat out stole the software from Gordon. Too bad, because I was looking forward to seeing Joe hanging out on the roof a la Silicon Valley.

Some other thoughts:

  • Was Gordon actually talking to someone on his ham radio or has it been unplugged the whole time and it was all some sort of mild dementia?
  • I feel bad for Ryan with the whole NSFNET deal falling apart as he was the one most excited for it.
  • Was Kerry Bishé campaigning for an Emmy carrying the trophy down the stairs while investigating the noise?

Let me know what you thought about the episode.

Image: AMC

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