The Whispers is setting up a nice little mystery by whispering just enough in our ears to keep us hooked but not enough to show us an end game. Those cute little kids doing villain Drill’s dirty work are creepily busy in “Collision,” proving that they will do anything for their new friend. Sean is also a busy Drill-bot, kidnapping his doctor, taking her on a road trip and shaving off that Unabomber beard. This episode offers a few more pieces of the puzzle, revealing a picture that shows that Drill’s maneuvers are calculated, interconnected and pretty darn smart.
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A Man on a Mission
The sorry state of the Sean and Claire union is explored through a flashback, showing that the pair’s marriage was in shambles at the time of his disappearance. He’s packing for a big mission, angry and silent.
“Please, say something!” Claire pleads. “When did it get so hard to talk to you?”
“Why don’t you ask your conscience?” he responds, the affair out in the open. “Do you love him?” The infidelity seems fresh, like a just-exposed secret, with both still processing it.
The long seconds it takes Claire to answer contradicts the “no” she finally utters. Sean doesn’t seem convinced either as we watch him peek in on a sleeping Henry before taking off.
Back to the present, Claire admits to her mom that Sean’s alive, adding that they saw each other. “But it was like he was looking through me, like he didn’t know who I was.” Hints are made that Sean was not winning any “husband of the year” awards and that Claire blamed him for Henry’s hearing loss. This has all the markings of love triangle straight ahead. Again. Affair not behind anyone.
Sean is a man on a mission, driving to some unknown destination with kidnapped Dr. Benavidez. He asks the doctor about that strange woman who is after him, having no recollection that stalker lady is wifey. When he stops at a convenience store for a few supplies, doc makes her move, slipping the clerk Claire’s card and a “help me” look. Incredibly, the clerk gets the hint and actually calls the number on the card. When does that ever happen? He reaches Claire’s partner, who exclaims, “We got him!” I would postpone doing a happy dance until you actually have slippery Sean in custody.
Sean and the doctor head to the bathroom, where he starts cutting off his beard. (It’s about time, Milo.) The lights begin flashing in that “feds are on the way” signal, giving Sean time to escape.
There’s No Getting Out of Drill’s Game
Minx is at a psychiatrist’s office, being drilled about Drill. She says, “Drill needs me.” The doctor insists that Drill’s not real. “Right here, right now, it stops,” the therapist says in a very non-therapist way that kind of sounds like a command to quit hearing those voices. Works every time?
Minx says, “I don’t think Drill’s gonna like this.” No, he/it most certainly won’t.
Minx gets out of the session and mom sends her off to the car alone while she talks to the shrink. And we’re back to the alone time that these youngsters are afforded when they should probably be under some 24-hour watch. She says, “I can’t do it anymore, Drill.” He is not happy, blaring bad music out of the radio as a warning. It looks like Minx is stuck in the game for now.
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Wes Puts the Pieces Together
Wes watches some security footage from the little boy bombing a month ago, trying to see if Sean was there. He sees the boy walking down a hallway and stopping as if he’s waiting for someone. There’s no sign of Sean, but they find out whose office the boy is looking at.
The next stop is the hospital where Wes talks to Harper’s dad, showing him a picture of something one of the victims tried to send him. No connections just yet, but they are coming.
Next stop: Claire’s house. Wes thinks he knows what Sean is up to, believing he’s “turned” and is getting money from the Middle East. He’s way off on the traitor-Sean theory but does connect some of those Drill dots. He uncovers evidence of a faulty cooling pipe at a nuclear facility that has connections with all of Drill’s kiddos. The little boy’s bomb killed a tech who was trying to send an e-mail about an inspection at a nuclear facility. The inspection was called off because the inspector’s wife was almost killed in a treehouse accident. Thank you, Harper. It’s all connected, seemingly in an effort to keep those bad pipes in use, perhaps causing some kind of a nuclear meltdown.
Claire has a reveal of her own, telling Wes that every kid involved has an imaginary friend named Drill. Wes’ “oh snap” expression is priceless. “Minx has a friend named Drill.” Oh, this is getting good.
Claire questions Minx, who says, “You are the reason mommy cries.” She changes the subject quickly, trying to get Minx to tell her about Drill. “He wanted me to go on daddy’s computer and look for the treasure,” the little girl explains. “It was a funny looking picture.” The picture is of the symbol Sean drew in the bathroom! Wes and Claire have the target — it’s the logo for the Harper Point Nuclear Power Plant.
Destination: Nuclear Power Plant
Dr. Benavidez is driving Sean around, per his instructions. He’s being led by some unseen force (Drill) and will tell her when to stop, saying, “It’s just a feeling.” She decides to launch another escape attempt, speeding up and crashing into some trees on purpose. She makes it out of the wreckage and runs, soon cut off by an electrified fence. Sean is zombie-following her, walks to the fence and touches it, causing the electricity to cut off. They are at the Harper Point Plant!
Scientists at the plant call in the breach at the fence, but guess whose phone it goes to? Harper’s dad’s phone. The little brat — I mean girl — texts like a teen, saying, “Aware of the situation. Handling it.”
Her mommy immediately wakes up. What? So Drill delivers on some of his promises? Does this mean Drill is done with Harper now?
One minion Drill is just beginning to activate is Henry. The final scene shows the cute redhead crying under his covers, begging, “Find my daddy. Bring him home. I’ll do anything.” Uh oh!
The Whispers is proving to be a mystery worth hanging around for, with enough hints to start an office pool of possible theories. The characters are intriguing and flawed, fumbling along until they pull it together enough to make some important discoveries. The children doing the evil work of the mysterious Drill are also hard to look away from, kind of like a bad wreck you peer at through the slightly open fingers of your hand. More psychological than thriller, The Whispers delivers on its promise to creep us out and keep us guessing.
The Whispers airs Mondays at 10pm on ABC.
(Image courtesy of ABC)
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV