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La Brea

La Brea Review – The Fort (1×05)

LA BREA -- "The Fort" Episode 105 -- Pictured: (l-r) Josh McKenzie as Lucas Hayes, Rohan Mirchandaney as Scott Israni, Natalie Zea as Eve Harris, Nicholas Gonzalez as Levi Brooks, Veroncia St. Clair as Riley Valez, Jack Martin as Josh Harris -- (Photo by: Sarah Enticknap/NBC)

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We don’t know much more about the people living in the little manmade village, but what we do know is that they are armed and dangerous. 

On La Brea Season 1 Episode 5, Eve and Levi’s team explored the manmade fort in hopes of finding answers or literally any insight into how they might possibly get out of 10,000 B.C.

Spoiler alert – there doesn’t seem to be a way out. The “signal” they were picking up on was a to be a dead-end as it belonged to a now-dead man (one of the men that Levi was looking for as part of his mission). His death seemed to be in the same manner as Eddies, and he looks to have been used as some kind of sacrifice, which raises a lot more questions about the Vikings (I’m calling them that) in the village. 

Aside from that, they also learned the hard way that the Vikings are very territorial upon seeing people pretty much break into their homes. Go figure, 

One of the strangest parts about all of it was that these people spoke English, which doesn’t actually jive with history, as Scott pointed out. 

These people, much like our survivors that fell through the La Brea sinkhole, shouldn’t be here. 

So, why are they? And what do they know?

And why is the grandfather killing people when his little adorable nephew went out of his way to help Eve and Levi escape?

What a little boss! 

I wish they all just talked it out instead of resorting to bows and spears, but hopefully, that’ll come soon enough. 

It’s only a matter of time before we find out more about these early settlers, including the woman who gave them the A-ok to escape.

If I had to guess, they all fell through a similar sinkhole and simply assimilated.

But what does that mean for the rescue crew that Dr. Sophia wants to find? If one of those team members was found dead in the village, the outlook for the rest seems pretty grim.

There are plenty of questions being raised, but the fact that we’re not getting all the answers outright isn’t entirely a bad thing since the plot continues to move at a comfortable pace. We’re learning more, we’re seeing progress in both timelines, and we’re getting some solid character development to make up for it.

The whole show may be hinged on the mystery of the sinkhole, but the mystery isn’t carrying the show; we’re invested in multiple parts. 

The most infuriating part was how everyone decided that the best time to have deep and meaningful conversations was while they were infiltrating the fort. 

Like, really, you guys can’t talk anywhere else?

Those chit-chats got the best of Lucas and Scott, who were ambushed by two of the Viking men while coming to blows over the missing heroine.

At this point, can Lucas just let it go? Where is he planning to sell these drugs in 10K B.C? It’s one of the more absurd plots, which is a bummer because Scott and Lucas’s characters have a great vibe. They know who to play off of one another in such a way that makes them scene-stealers.

Thankfully, after the riveting adventure, everyone made it out alive and back to base camp. 

Eve and Levi got in their feelings after she said she wished she was the one to tell Gavin about their relationship. 

The guilt was consuming her, especially as she knew Gavin was doing everything in his power to bring them home. 

But while she seems to feel terrible for not believing Gavin about his visions all these years, I don’t think that they will reconcile. She’s clearly emotionally involved with Levi, and he obviously loves her back. Those feelings don’t just wither away. Am I a bad person for rooting for Levi?

Riley and Josh also bonded and a romance is on the horizon. 

I guess surviving Vikings, saber-tooth tigers, and more has a way of bonding people. 

Back at base camp, Sam and Ty tried their best to get information out of Lily about the man who murdered Eddie. 

It was very obvious that Lily knew more than she was letting on, and she wanted to tell him despite the orders Veronica was barking at her. 

La Brea Review The Fort Season 1 Episode 5

LA BREA — “The Fort” Episode 105 — Pictured: (l-r) Zyra Gorecki as Izzy Harris, Eoin Macken as Gavin Harris — (Photo by: Sarah Enticknap/NBC)

The whole dynamic between Veronica and Lily was suss the whole time, so I’m really happy Ty picked up on that and pressed further. 

Eventually, Lily realized that Ty was someone she could trust, so she came clean about the fact that Veronica kidnapped her a few years ago.

Veronica needs to go. Let her be the sacrificial lamb when the time comes. 

I know we’ll probably get some backstory about how she probably couldn’t have kids and wanted a family, so she decided to kidnap Lily,  but honestly, there’s nothing that could redeem her in my eyes. 

Kidnapping is kidnapping no matter how you splice it. 

Back at home, things were just as chaotic.

Gavin was trying to see if Izzy would be cool with him flying into the sinkhole.

The answer was obviously “no” because she’s already lost her whole family, but it was also a difficult decision to make considering that if he didn’t, she would lose any chance of possibly getting her whole family back.

It didn’t help that Dr. Rebecca Aldridge lied to them about the mission and what was at stake. 

At this point, since everything is time-sensitive, everyone needs to be upfront about the dangers. How can you expect anyone to make a life-altering decision without knowing all the facts?

Dangerous situation #1: there’s a huge probability that the government will shoot down their aircraft while they are descending into the sinkhole. 

Dangerous situation #2: there’s a threat of the sinkhole closing once they successfully make it down there. 

Again, Gavin should’ve been told that there was a small window of opportunity for this rescue mission. 

He was hesitant, understandably, considering the odds of success are slim to none, but at least he could make the choice knowing all the outcomes. 

Rebecca didn’t want to scare Gavin away but he doesn’t strike me as the kind of person to sit around and wait while his wife and son are in danger.

And after she showed him Eve’s letter that the crew dug up, there was no way he wouldn’t sacrifice everything when she instilled so much confidence in him. 

I love that Rebecca has a whole crew working to unearth items belonging to the survivors and that they’ve at least discovered a way to communicate, even if it is one-sided.  It’s a long shot for Eve since she doesn’t know if anyone is even looking for any “artifacts,” but it’s definitely clever on her part considering Gavin found her ring. 

It’s unclear how Rebecca is able to do all of this without triggering any government involvement. How does she have the funds? Or better yet, who is funding all of this?

Dr. Nathan explained that she had a personal stake in the mission, which explains why she decided to go rogue, but now that Markman figured out that she’s up to something, it’s not clear if she’ll be able to hold things down long enough for Gavin and Rebecca to successfully fly into the sinkhole. 

It makes sense as to why the government pulled out of the mission. The threat of another major earthquake could cause Los Angeles to fall off the map, and in the grand scheme of things, they have to protect the majority over the minority that fell through. 

But since this isn’t the first sinkhole to have opened up either, you would think the government would be more ardent about getting to the bottom of the mystery… quite literally. If there’s a way to do it safely, why not run all the possibilities and give it a try?

Will Gavin and Rebecca successfully travel in time? Will they provide a way out of there for all the trapped souls?

And will they locate the other rescue team? I’m sure Dr. Sophia’s fiancee is still out there somewhere!

What did you think of the episode?

And don’t forget to check out our review of The CW’s latest time-traveling sci-fi series 4400 right here

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

La Brea

Was ‘La Brea’ Renewed For Season 3?

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La Brea Season 2 Midseason Premiere Recap Episode 9 and 10 Stampede Murder in the Clearing

La Brea fans, you have something to celebrate.

NBC has given an early season 3 renewal to the prehistoric sci-fi series. The network gave the green light right just before season 2 kicked off on Jan. 31, returning from hiatus with two back-to-back episodes. (Read our review!)

Per TVLine, La Brea will get six episodes in the third season with the possibility of scoring more down the line. And if no additional episodes are green-lit, six feels like a solid number that would be enough to provide a solid conclusion for dedicated fans.

The series averaged about 5.4 total weekly viewers, including DVR audiences, in its first season run, however, its midseason return fared rather poorly with 2.1 million and 2 million for both episodes, respectively. All of that could change once playback numbers are factored in proving that the drama was worth saving after all.

The series, which premiered in September 2021—and fills the sci-fi gap left behind by shows like Timeless and Debrisfollows a group of people who fall through a mysterious sinkhole in Los Angeles and find themselves transported to 10,000 B.C.

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La Brea

La Brea Midseason Premiere Review – Stampede and Murder (209/210)

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La Brea Season 2 Midseason Premiere Recap Episode 9 and 10 Stampede Murder in the Clearing

La Brea returned from its two-month-long hiatus with two back-to-back episodes—and the wait was definitely worth it.

Both La Brea Season 2 Episode 9 and Episode 10 delivered action-packed episodes that picked up as if no time had passed—though that’s technically not true since the core group did return to 10K B.C. from 1988— and tapped into the momentum of “we have to shut this whole thing down.” The mission at hand centered on uploading the virus to shut down the portal and prevent any future catastrophes, including the sinkhole gearing up to open at the Santa Monica pier. 

What I found most promising is that for possibly the first time, I’m no longer doubting the series. The writers clearly have a plan, there’s direction, and there are plenty more stories left to tell. When La Brea first premiered, many questioned how a series about sinkholes dropping people in the prehistoric ages could/would sustain itself, but this episode has proven that there’s a roadmap built out to keep us all very entertained and knee-deep in the suspense. 

Much of the first episode, “Stampede,” focused on the 1988 group attempting to go through with their plan at all costs only for it to fall apart in the final moments.

You had one job, Gavin. Everyone put their faith in him, and yet, he somehow allowed his father to talk him into aborting the virus upload by tapping into his weakness—Eve.

I agree with Eve’s theory that James is using Gavin’s biggest fear—the possibility of losing his wife—to manipulate him into getting what he wants, but the good thing is that Gavin also seems aware. He’s not naive about the man his father is, so he’s making the decisions that are best for his family.

And it’s that glimmer of hope that maybe they can have their cake and eat it, too, that convinced him to push the button. Gavin wielded a lot of power at that moment, and it was not an easy call to make, but in his mind, if there was even the slightest chance that they can recalibrate the machine and find a way back home (while saving Eve in the process), he owes it to himself and everyone else stranded in the prehistoric ages to give it a try. Neither decision came with a guarantee, so he just trusted his gut. 

It would’ve been better if James hadn’t known about Gavin’s vision of Eve dying as I would’ve loved to see what he would’ve said to convince his son. Without that intel, James wouldn’t have had an upper hand in the situation, and we may have been able to judge him a bit more fairly. Instead, he came off as self-serving in his pleas, no matter how many times he promised to save Gavin’s wife. 

Then again, in this situation, where uploading the virus made things so final and permanent, I don’t think anyone actually needed much convincing. The moment they heard that there might be another way, everyone was eager to learn more and hope that James was telling the truth. 

No one actually wants to be stuck in 10K B.C. for the rest of their lives—they were all simply willing to make the sacrifice for the greater good. If they remained selfish, more sinkholes would open up, which would kill more innocent people, destroy timelines, and rip apart countless other families. They had no choice.

And it’s an incredibly difficult reality to accept, which is why I found myself having so much empathy for Sam. He knew what he was doing was wrong as he even admitted later on that he cracked and went down a dark path, but he couldn’t fathom the idea of never seeing his wife and son again. It’s uncharted territory for everyone and no matter how wrong it is, you can’t blame someone for having a human reaction. 

La Brea Season 2 Midseason Premiere Recap Episode 9 and 10 Stampede Murder in the Clearing

LA BREA — “Stampede” Episode 208 — Pictured: (l-r) Josh MeKenzie as Lucas, Rohan Mirchandaney as Scott, Chiké Okonkwo as Ty — (Photo by: Sarah Enticknap/NBC)

Eve and Gavin are lucky in that their whole family—grandparents and great-grandparents (they didn’t know existed)—all exist in the same timeline now, but that’s not the case for everyone else. They may not have the luxuries of the modern world, but they have each other, so sealing their fate in this era was a much easier decision for them.

It would be incredibly upsetting if James was lying to Gavin, but I also don’t understand why he would be. Everyone benefits if they work out the life-threatening kinks. 

I also don’t really understand how the Santa Monica pier sinkhole stopped opening up since they never finished uploading the virus. Maybe enough uploaded to interfere? All we know is that Caroline was definitely not lying about the dangers of the machine if the salt water rain and fish falling from the sky are any indications. 

It’s hard to trust James with his whole Bond-villain vibe. He has all of these luxuries at his disposal, and yet, he’s allowing all these “sky people” to just live out in the Clearing and fend for themselves. It feels like some twisted version of Hunger Games. While all these innocent people are foraging for mushrooms and rejoicing about a fishy doomsday moment, the dude is eating a prime steak and sipping wine. How could we trust him?

But he’s not wrong when he underscores that he and his team of scientists had years to work on the machine since Caroline left for 1988. That being said, I don’t fully trust Caroline either. She gives off the impression that she’s on the right side of things, but she’s been gone for so long, so how could she know what the present-day situation looks like? 

After James convinced Gavin to abort the virus, he informed him that they needed Dr. Howard Moore’s research to fix the machine, and since Caroline was good friends with him, he tasked Gavin with convincing her to find it. At this point, everyone is just manipulating each other as Gavin played the “you weren’t there for me as a kid, but you can be there for me now” card to get Caroline to agree.

And while she seemed eager to make amends, she wasn’t exactly forthcoming with the research once she and Riley found it in Moore’s cave bunker (the poor guy was a skeleton when they finally located him). What’s worse is that Caroline asked Riley to lie to Gavin and Josh about their findings, and while I actually think Caroline is being smart about withholding the research until she can verify that James’ intentions are genuine, I don’t like that she dragged Riley into it. Her loyalty is already being pulled in so many directions as earlier in the episode, she had to fight her father and beg him not to be reckless at the expense of the greater good. Riley is tired—leave her out of this. 

The reality is that there’s what James said, what Caroline said, and then the truth, and until everyone starts being completely transparent, we’re never going to have a full picture of the situation. And honestly, what about Silas? Why don’t they track him down? He was involved with Project Lazarus from the get-go, so I’d love to hear his input. Surely, he knows a thing or two about what’s been going on. 

The people in the Clearing were upset with the 1988 group for lying to them and not being upfront about the decision to seal their fate, which is completely understandable. They don’t have any control over what happens to them while Gavin and his family are practically 10K B.C. royalty. Heck, they even gave them flack for “relaxing in 1988” as if they weren’t all going above and beyond to find ways to save humanity.

Truthfully, it wouldn’t make sense to get everyone involved when time was of the essence. The 1988 group chose to ask for forgiveness rather than permission since it was the only option that made sense in the grand scheme of things, especially since things at the Clearing are so heated already. You can’t expect people who are that desperate to do the right thing when the stakes are so high—once again, Sam was a prime example. 

The residents of the Clearing had a lot to deal with, namely a stampede of buffalo who knew something was not right in the natural order of things followed by a murder! As if they didn’t have enough to deal with already, now one of their own is turning on them! 

One of the highlights of the episode was getting to see Lucas step up to the plate as a leader as he’s been wanting to change his life around and become the kind of guy that his mother, and Veronica, would be proud of. With Gavin, Sam, Levi, and Eve gone, this was Lucas’ chance to shine. And it was cool to see Scott put his education and knowledge to good use when figuring out a solution to save the home that they built in the Clearing from the stampede. Those two make a great team—they work well together, inspire each other, and have so much to bring to the table.

I wish Sam didn’t dismiss Lucas’ theory that Virgil was Wyatt’s killer so quickly. Lucas may not have had all the answers, but he checked off enough boxes to take Virgil in for questioning, which could’ve easily provided a motive once they broke him. Of course, once Scott confided in Sam about what happened with Tamet, Sam figured that the killer targeting members of the Clearing was surely someone from the Exiles. Lucas cut Virgil loose and apologized to him, but it was premature. Both things could be true—Virgil likely was the murderer, and he was doing it for Tamet/the Exiles. We saw him throw a handkerchief into the fire that featured the same symbol they found carved on the murder weapon and in the dirt next to Wyatt’s body. I hope Lucas still keeps tabs on Virgil despite “clearing” his name. What do we really know about Virgil aside from what he told them when they found him as a prisoner of the Exiles? He could easily be working for them. There could be a much bigger plan at play here and the truth is, they cannot just blindly trust anyone anymore. 

La Brea is such a far-fetched show, you have to go into it with an open mind and suspend disbelief, but even I couldn’t shake a few things about this episode, including how the buffalo just diverted from the Clearing’s path at such a sharp turn the moment they heard all the noise. It looked silly. Also, how did the bear not attack and kill Eve? And we’re just going to believe he casually moved the ginormous rock that entrapped her. How convenient! This whole scene was rather ridiculous, but I’ll get to that in a moment. 

But mostly, I couldn’t get over how Project Lazarus was able to get everything to build, furnish, and run the glass building in a time where there are no power grids or electricity. And how do they still have all this food and wine if they’ve been here for years? Wouldn’t getting all these materials here alone cause too many sinkholes to keep track of? I know this isn’t the point of the show, but I had to get that off my chest. 

La Brea Season 2 Midseason Premiere Recap Episode 9 and 10 Stampede Murder in the Clearing

LA BREA — “Murder in the Clearing” Episode 209 — Pictured: (l-r) Chiké Okonkwo as Ty, Zyra Gorecki as Izzy Harris — (Photo by: Sarah Enticknap/NBC)

Anyway, back to Eve, who chose to remain ignorant and pretend like nothing was wrong, which led to her near-brush with death in the cave. It was evident that this wasn’t the “moment” from Gavin’s vision as she was wearing a completely different outfit, but it was enough to scare her into confronting the real issues at hand. I was actually quite shocked that no one went looking for her despite knowing that she went missing, but it did make sense since there were more pressing matters. And as mentioned previously, it was frustrating that she was able to get out of a pretty bad jam so easily and without any assistance. Eve should be counting her blessings because she was almost a bear snack. Also, are we to believe Virgil pushed her into the cave? And why? I just have so many questions about this scene. I know it was supposed to be a wake-up call for her, but I wish they found another way to get her character to this point because this was bizarre. 

The red flowers that are part of Gavin’s vision are intriguing. Izzy noticed them at Lazarus, Eve saw them when she was trapped in the cave, and Lily/Ella and Veronica noticed them while exploring caves looking for an amethyst. Lily recalled drawing them at the request of their kidnapper, Aaron, which seemed to indicate that their arrival in 10K B.C. wasn’t random. She also recalled Aaron said that the flowers grew in his home, but James confirmed that the plant does not exist or grow outside of this timeline. Does this mean Aaron was here before? How does any of this factor in with Lily and Veronica? 

Is everyone from the Clearing here for a reason? Maybe Virgil isn’t even a random “sky person” but someone sent to infiltrate the group from day one. No one would have been the wiser. Maybe Aaron was also?

I’ve enjoyed watching Lily and Veronica evolve as characters, but this is definitely a twist I didn’t see coming. As for the flowers and how they relate to Eve’s death, I somehow think they are an omen warning them of James. I think he’s going to be responsible for her death. And if he is connected to Virgil and Aaron in any way, well, I think that tells us everything we need to know. 

And lastly, Ty’s cancer progression was heartbreaking. The terminal brain tumor caused more complications, including a scary collapse. I truly thought this was the end for Ty, but I’m glad that wasn’t the case. He tried to push himself as best he could to help his friends because he’s a genuinely good guy, but in the end, he realized that he was growing far too weak. Instead of returning to Paara’s village, he trekked over to Lazarus to see James and strike a deal with him—he wanted access to his hospital facilities in exchange for being James’ therapist.

Izzy warned him not to trust anyone in that building because they are “dangerous,” but it was a pretty naive and privileged comment considering she was talking to a man with a terminal illness. He would do anything to get better. And while working for the “bad” guy doesn’t exactly strike me as Ty’s MO, who could say no to the man who has the cure for cancer? James literally holds Ty’s life in his hands. And while I know there’s such a thing as patient/doctor confidentiality, does it really hold up in 10K B.C.? What if Ty finds out something that can help his friends?

As for the cure, I hope James isn’t lying because it would be a huge shame to lose Ty—he’s become one of the best and most loved characters in the series. I’m holding out for a Ty and Paara wedding once Lily makes the amethyst wedding ring. 

Do you think Ty is doing the right thing? Who do you think killed Wyatt? Was it Virgil? Or was his shady glance at the end purposefully misleading?

Did Gavin make the right choice by trusting his father and aborting the virus upload? Will they have another shot at getting back home? What does the key lead to that they found on Moore’s skeleton? 

Share your thoughts in the comments below! 

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La Brea

When Will ‘La Brea’ Return for Season 2?

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La Brea wrapped up the first half of its second season in November.

The bad news is that we’re going to have to wait a little longer for new episodes, but the good news is that the network is going to make it worth your while.

NBC is supersizing the return of the prehistoric drama, so when it returns on January 31, 2023, the series will air two hour-long episodes back-to-back. This means that both La Brea Season 2 Episode 8 and Episode 9 will air that Tuesday night. 

The eighth episode of the sophomore season is titled “Stampede,” and will pick up with the aftermath of the Harris family’s decision to jump through the Los Angeles sinkhole and return to 10K B.C. to upload the virus necessary to shut down the time-traveling machine, and, essentially, save humanity, even if it means stranding themselves in the prehistoric-era in the process. 

Per TVLine, the episode will see an “unlikely leader” rallying “the Clearing to face an oncoming prehistoric threat.”

Next up—there’s danger lurking everywhere, especially when the survivors begin to turn into enemies. 

The second episode of the season, titled “Murder in the Clearing,” is kind of self-explanatory in that there is a murder in the Clearing that sends everyone into a bit of a frenzy, with Lucas and Sam leading an investigation to find the killer. It seems that Woolly Mammoths are the least of their worries these days!

Weaved in through both episodes will be Gavin’s struggle with trying to prevent Eve’s death, which he saw in the vision right before they all took the plunge through the sinkhole. Will he be able to stop it? Will keeping this vision a secret from his family drive a wedge between them?

Here’s a look at the trailer for the double dose of episodes! 

You can catch up on our fall finale review now—and check out the full 2023 midseason TV schedule right here

And we’ll see you back here on January 31, Cravers!

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