Friday, October 2, 2009

Terminator: A Tale of a Mother and Son

When Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles first aired on January 13, 2008 I had the opportunity to watch it with my mom. She'd never seen the movies but for some reason she felt like watching it with me. I loved it but I wasn't really sure what my mom thought about it. The next day the second episode aired. Apparently my mom enjoyed the Pilot because she watched the second episode with me too.

Background on my mom's television viewing habits: She tends to like stuff like NCIS, Law and Order, and Dancing with the Stars. Sci-Fi isn't something she gravitates towards.

So my mom and I continued to watch TSCC... but then Summer Glau got blown up in a car and the writers started wanting more money! That was it. 9 episodes of terminating goodness.

Somewhere in the bowels of the FOX network: "Hey, let's give this Terminator show a second season."

Terminator was renewed! I was so happy but I soon realized I was going to be watching it alone. On Monday nights my mom had something she had to go to. Thus our journey was over.

I continued on without my mom and the second season was even better than the first. There were killer urinals, sorta human/robot sex, and examples of a mother's love. I'd never felt so many emotions while watching a TV show. It was a WOW-BANG-SMACK-TO-THE-HEAD kind of thing. Watching The Sarah Connor Chronicles' second season was probably the greatest experience of my life. But there was always this feeling that something wasn't right.

After the 13th episode the show went on hiatus. It eventually came back on Friday nights and FOX paired it with some girlie sounding show. I was really excited but then I realized something. I was going to be busy on Friday nights. (I blamed Skynet.) Instead of watching TSCC live, like everyone else who could watch it live, I had to wait until midnight (that's significant) to watch it online.

The first three episodes after the hiatus ended made up an unofficial trilogy that focused on the emotional and psychological well being of Sarah Connor. While watching them, online, I started to compare my mom with Sarah Connor. I thought about how my mom would react if she was in the same situation and I also thought about my mom's situation in general. I have Asperger's syndrome, which is a high funcitoning form of autism, and I've struggled with depression for most of my life. My life has been pretty difficult which in turn has made my mom's life incredibly difficult. She's had to go to bat for me a lot throughout my elementary, middle school, and high school education. The school I went to wasn't able to deal with any of my learning problems. They didn't have a lot of resources and some of the teachers were jerks. Basically my mom had to deal with a lot of crap but just like Sarah Connor she's never given up.

Anyways, eventually it came down to the last episode. I really wanted to skip out on whatever I had to do just so I could stay home and watch it. Sadly I couldn't. While I was at whatever I was doing I kept checking my watch. When it said it was 8:55 I cried a little. I was seriously heartbroken. It was over.

Then the DVD for Season 2 came out and I understood what I had to do. I had to "travel back in time" to the beginning of Season 2 and rewatch it with my mom. And so our journey continued from where we left off.

Watching the second season of TSCC with my mom was awesome. I'd get all excited when she'd commented on something. It was truly the coolest thing I've ever done with my mom.

After about 3 or 4 episodes I asked my mom who her favorite character was and she quickly said it was Cameron. Then she waited a few seconds and said she also really liked Sarah. And then she said she liked John and basically agreed that they were all cool. My mom made it clear that she didn't like Jesse though. She said she didn't trust her but she liked Jesse's toughness and the way she talked.

At one point I figured out my mom had no idea what Catherine Weaver was. That made sense since my mom hadn't seen T2. I happily explained. My mom did know something that I didn't know when I originally watched the second season. (SPOILER WARNING) She knew there was something weird going on with Catherine Weaver and her pet eel.

TSCC pulls on your heartstrings and there are many scenes that get me choked up. There's one scene though that really hits me hard. (SPOILER WARNING) At the end of the second part of "Today is the Day" John confronts Jesse about her murdering Riley, John's girlfriend. It really shows how much John has grown as a man. Afterwards we see him sitting on the couch with his mom. John breaks down and cries in his mother's arms. When that happened I immediately grabbed ahold of my mom's hand and started crying like a little baby panda.

When we got down to the last episode I knew everything was the way it was suppose to be. I was watching TSCC with my mom and it was almost over.

At one point in the last episode John is talking to his mom and he says "I love you." (SPOILER WARNING) Later John decides that the best way he can save the future is by time traveling forward. He doesn't have much time but he asks his mom to come with him but she wants to stay behind. She tells John that she'll "stop it". Then John gets sent into the future. The last thing we see is the room where John had been in the present and we hear Sarah's disembodied voice say “I love you, too.”

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