The Tomorrow People’s three angels: Cara the Umbilicus, Astrid the Best Friend and Hillary the Ultra Partner Ingenue. They all bring home the bacon, but who should bring home Stephen?
The Holy Grail of titillating serial sci-fi includes:
a) a compelling and novel premise rife with seemingly insurmountable obstacles and futuristic weirdness.
b) numerous alluring and sympathetic protagonists bedecked in form-fitting leather coats, pants, etc.
c) a truckload of sexual tension with a side order of angsty indecisiveness and a dash of hormone induced recklessness.
To our absolute delight, in 17 short episodes, The Tomorrow People has given us all three.
For the purpose of this discussion the greatest of these is sexual tension, er, you know, love. Fortunately for us The Tomorrow People generously provides three love interests (so far) for the tall, dark and deliciously handsome Stephen.
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Who’s On Deck
Freshly minted ‘Chosen One’ of the homo superior Lost Boys, Stephen is (and has been) enchanted with the alluring and powerful Cara since her silky voice began tickling his frontal lobe four weeks before they met in the pink. Cara’s on-again, off-again availability leaves the teen psionic free to look for love in other places. Enter longtime girl next door and best friend Astrid, and brand new Ultra partner Hillary. Who do we think the Boy Wonder should/could choose to share his happily ever after with, provided there is one … eventually?
Target Assessment and Candidate Criteria
Let’s break it down using these criteria: personality, childhood (which tells us something about personal stability), chemistry with Stephen (our target), target’s comments about candidate, and candidate’s most telling quote. Feel free to offer up your own points for comparison in the comment section below.
Before dissecting the female contestants let’s assess the temperament of our telepathic- telekinetic-teleporting-synergist-and-target, Mr. Stephen Jameson. I recently took our “Which The Tomorrow People Character Are You?” quiz (which I highly recommend, btw) from which I learned I’m a lot like Stephen and I just happen to have the following description of our paranormal super(hot)hero on tap:
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Cara: The Umbilicus
Personality: Courageous though cautious and controlled. Stubborn, loyal and tortured. Hard assed, though refined. Sometimes impulsive in her romantic life. Values honesty over fidelity but just barely. Smiles infrequently. Prefers death over loss of powers. Yearns for security a belonging.
Childhood: Deaf and mute as a child until she discovered her powers while fighting off an attempted rape. Abandoned by her father and still grieves the baby sister she left behind.
Chemistry: Decent chemistry before she and Stephen slept together. Considers their coupling a mistake. Their sizzle has turned to a fizzle.
What Stephen Says: Stephen attributes his sanity to her voice in his head and believes he’s in love with her, though he may simply be yearning for the unattainable.
The dark beauty with a troubled past, Cara was Stephen’s first contact with The Tomorrow People. Understandably, Stephen feels more attachment to her than to any of the others. They have trusted their most painful memories with each other telepathically, memories neither of them has ever shared with anyone else. Naturally, this has deepened their connection.
However, Cara and John have been tight for three years. She calls John her home, the one person she would do absolutely anything for. Also, there’s a sense in the interactions between Cara and Stephen that she views him as being young. She’s too much car for him right now, (Thank you, Dr. Jack Hodgins from Bones) More importantly, John and Cara have some boot-knocking chemistry that’s pretty darn fantastic
But there’s a twist with Cara: John may be her ‘partner,’ but Stephen is ‘THE CHOSEN ONE.’ What hot-blooded female can resist that? (That was a rhetorical question) Since Cara has some of the strongest powers of all the paranormals, it will make sense if she and the Boy Wonder end up together, ruling the roost as king and queen, right?
Things change. People change. Eventually Stephen is going to grow into his powers and mature emotionally–become the man worthy of a mantle as heavy as The Tomorrow People’s Chosen One. It’s happened before in TV land. It could certainly happen here. In American entertainment the best friend almost always gets the guy (Sorry Julia Roberts in My Best Friend’s Wedding)!
Astrid: The Best Friend
Personality: Courageous, steadfast, gentle, open-minded, fresh and liberating, emotionally stable, patient. Possessed of a rare sense of wonder yet not naive. Demands inclusion and commands respect by her mere quiet bravery. Though not telepathic, she’s intuitive in matters of the heart.
Childhood: Normal childhood as far as we know. No skeletons in the closet. Has a healthy relationship with her father, always a plus in the development of a girls sense of herself in relation to men. In short, she’s neither damaged nor tortured, but willing to steadfastly go the distance for the man she loves.
Chemistry: She’s totally whipped on Stephen–In love with him and he knows it, read it in her mind–with whom she does share chemistry, though theirs is the slow gradual and patient kind of love that shows great potential. In other words, there’s real everyday love between these two. Stephen’s not fully aware of the depth of his feelings or deep emotional attachment to this woman until her attentions are taken away from him. He calls her family, is fiercely–FIERCELY–protective of her, and will do anything for her.
To be perfectly candid, Stephen is most likely not the man worthy of a gem like Astrid …. yet. He still needs to mature, grow into himself, figure out who he is. He hasn’t rotated enough times around the sun to possess the wisdom and experience necessary for him to be able to appreciate and be worthy of the pure love of an adult woman. Caveat: Astrid is still a teen as well. Though she’s ready to love him, her love is innocent. Verdict: This relationship is still in the prepubescent stage. Keep your eye open, Tomorrow People fans, puberty and adulthood are right around the corner and capable of high speed development under the right circumstances!
What Stephen Says: Stephen says he doesn’t know what he’d do without her. Hm. He might have to experience this in order to find out … and then what will happen? We shall see, probies, we shall see.
But there’s a twist with Astrid: Astrid loves Stephen, but she pulled a bullet out of John’s gut. In the realm of stressful situations, she and John have walked through the valley of the shadow of death and survived. Later, John takes Astrid by the hand and helps her face her fears in an exciting way. The magnetic force between them is humming and could easily get whipped into a frenzy…given the chance. Remember that upon laying eyes on John at Stephen’s ‘assisted suicide for science’ dinner party Astrid immediately found John most definitely sponge-worthy (Thank you, Seinfeld), despite her comments to the contrary which were only meant to quell Stephen’s malcontent over his unrequited love for Cara. Hot, hot, hot.
Hillary: The Ultra Partner Ingenue
Personality: Hardass, smartass, yes. Dumbass, no. Fearless, desperate to prove herself, tortured, driven, Self-serving, confrontational, physically strong and beautiful. Faces Ultra with angry wonder and ambition. Ruthless in her pursuit of training to be the best of the best in the fight to rid the world of all the bad people. A true superhero in a conservative grey suit.
Childhood: Oy. Tourtured. She watched helplessly as her family was gunned down before her eyes. Probably spent her childhood in stultifying foster care.
Chemistry: There’s definitely an electric current in the air whenever these two are together. Until last week’s episode, “Superhero,” it had been adversarial, competitive, and resentful. Hillary viewed Stephen as the nepotistic Wunderkind destined to be handed the prized position as sole survival of Ultra boot camp. When they fight, it’s aggressive and argumentative. Hillary is a live wire which baffles Stephen until he learns of her tortured back story.
Slowly, because Hillary has a figurative fortress around her heart, Stephen is getting to know, understand, and respect Hillary. One thing Stephen and Hillary share is their connection inside Ultra. One can assume that eventually she’ll be joining The Lost Boys at the lair in the fight for paranormal liberty and justice for all. OR, she’ll stay at Ultra as a double agent. Either way, you know she’s gonna end up dead or one or on the side of the good guys.
What Stephen Says: “My partner is unhinged. Full disclosure, she scares the hell out of me,” he says at one point. Later he accedes she has a heart when she exclaims, “If we can’t get behind Superheros, what the hell are we doing?”
But there’s a twist with Hillary: Developmental maturity-wise, she’s wetter behind the ears than Stephen with a lot more impulsive itchiness about her. She and Stephen have locked lips in a clawing match at his house and nearly devoured each other. Their ‘debriefing’ (full disclosure – Pun intended) had to wait till later off screen. There are great things meant for both of these characters as avengers for justice, but Stephen is the center of this epic war while Hillary is a minor character. Their firecracker romance will predictably come and go as tension release requires, but they will never become more than a booty call for each.
And the Winner Is …
… Your guess is as good as mine. This is America where we believe in fairytales. The cowboy, soldier, knight-in-shining-armor, Jedi Master always rides off into the sunset on his trusty steed, harley, Millenium Falcon or simply teleports himself to greener, more fertile pastures. Does that mean we can assume Astrid is the clear winner? Well, go back and read, my friends. I think it’s a toss up between Cara and Astrid, but only time will tell.
The Magic Wand of Predictability
One thing we can do is speculate on how this will all play out. And, of course, I have a version that I could see happening, though I sincerely hope The Tomorrow People fairies shake it up and I am proven wrong.
Here’s the prediction going forward from Stephen and Hillary’s ‘I’m gonna debrief you so hard’ scene in “Superhero.” Nothing much happened, romance-wise, in “Endgame” except that Cara admitted to Astrid that they both will always have their concern for Stephen’s safety in common.
Here we go. Astrid will find out about the swapping of biologicals between Stephen and Hillary and will be irritated. Tension will build between them though they’ll shrug it off and maybe argue, but it won’t go anywhere. This could be the beginning of a frenzy of tension toward an explosive romantic end for these two, but a lot more is going to happen between now and then.
Needing a place to work off the excess sexual frustration over Stephen and Hillary, Astrid is going to grab John and kiss the hell out of him, or create enough spark that it comes dangerously close to him grabbing her and even though nothing happens, (if it doesn’t) it’s clear the attraction is strong and both are on the verge of being willing if only … blah, blah, blah. You’d think there would be no way in hell that the Astrid-John romance could end well because John’s heart and soul belong to Cara in the end, right?
Consider this: what if Cara’s gets jealous over Stephen’s sudden affinity for badass Spykid Hillary? Then, a disgruntled John, feeling rejected over Cara’s obsession over Stephen, finally thinks, ‘What the hell?’ and kisses Astrid back, but just enough to screw with her because he comes to his senses mid-grope and realizes he shouldn’t use this poor girl this way.
Who ends up hurt in the end? Astrid, And who is she gonna resent for the whole mess? John? No, Stephen, because if it weren’t for him, she wouldn’t have been so rash. She then gets all angsty over having screwed up her friendship with John.
En fin, John and Astrid part as friends, John tells Cara about what he’s done with Astrid, but rationalizes that he was jealous of her obsession with Stephen (and that makes it right, right?), and Hillary and Stephen embark upon a series of enthusiastic debriefings which both of them have needed for quite some time…until she gets killed off or they have a big fight.
What happens next? What you think? And who do you think would make the perfect mate for Stephen?
(Images courtesy of The CW)