Amy Richau reviews the ninth episode of Halt and Catch Fire season 2…
There are a lot of interesting choices and shocking reveals for the four main characters of Halt and Catch Fire in its penultimate episode ‘Kali’.
Gordon, whose storyline has been driving me to distraction this season, has the first important reveal this episode. After a harrowing day-long nightmare getting lost and trapped in a public car garage (eerily similar to the game his wife Donna helps sell in the same episode) Gordon ends up in the hospital. The reveal is that Gordon’s experience that day was not caused by his brain damage, but was the result of what looks to be a previously known mental illness. Both Donna and Gordon appeared to not be entirely surprised by this – and it makes a lot of sense that such a frightening prognosis would put anyone at risk for a recurrence of such an illness. Luckily Gordon knows he needs help, and hopefully will get a chance for an episode that doesn’t involved the police or paramedics next week.
Joe and Sara appear to be headed to California ready to start a new life at the beginning of the episode. But Sara’s desire for Joe to leave on good terms with her father not surprisingly does not have a happy ending. It’s hard to not feel for Joe this episode. He seems like he is really trying to be a better person. He tells his father-in-law how wrong he thinks he was about stealing Mutiny’s customer base, but agrees to make an appearance at his investor’s meeting to make nice and please Sara.
In the world’s most obvious bad choice, Jacob asks Joe to be the keynote speaker at Westgroup’s investors meeting. After an intense exchange (that kiss!) with Cameron right before the meeting, Cameron tells Joe that she knows he wasn’t involved in the Mutiny theft. She then gives him a disc to show “what could have been” if they had worked out together as a couple. It’s a touching moment for two complex and at times distant characters.
It looks like Joe might completely sell out Jacob and his company during his speech, but instead Joe focuses on Cameron’s genius for being the software’s originator. It’s an insult to Westgroup to mention her, but not as damning as calling them thieves. Joe’s attempt to not sell out his new father-in-law’s company while paying respect to Cameron backfires in a similar way to Gordon’s attempt to help Mutiny earlier in the season. Joe’s endorsement of Cameron rubs Sara in about a dozen bad ways – she can see that he is still in love with her. Nothing Joe says can convince Sara that Joe is anything but a costly mistake and it seems likely the final episode of season 2 might be Sara’s last appearance on the show, if she appears at all.
And then there’s the little surprise virus Cameron left on the disc Joe opens right before his speech. Just as everyone at Mutiny found it hard to believe Joe didn’t sell them out to Westgroup, it seems everyone at Westgroup will now believe Joe was behind the virus that took down Westgroup’s Westnet in front of all of their potential investors. Joe just can’t escape the image he created for himself as a cold-blooded entrepreneur.
After an episode where it looks like Cameron is about to lose both her father figure (Bosworth) and boyfriend (Tom) Cameron finally looks like she has found some peace at the end of the episode. It’s impossible to know if anything Cameron said to Joe was the truth or an elaborate manipulation to get him to unknowingly infect Westnet – but it sure looks like both Cameron and Joe will have a hard time staying away from each other for long.
Amy Richau is a freelance entertainment and sports writer. Follow her on Twitter.