Halt and Catch Fire “The 214s”

Some days I have a hard time writing because an episode goes nowhere. Then there are the times when an episode isn’t very good and I have a hard time trying to withhold the snark. And there are the episodes like “The 214s” where everything clicks and anything I say would be kind of pointless.

If I were a better educated person I could tell you why everything worked. I could disect a particular scene and walk you through it. I could discuss story structure and character development, and reference classic films and television series that use similar themes.

There are a lot of people who can do that sort of stuff, and I enjoy reading it, but for some of you it spoils the illusion. I undertand that line of thinking but, as for me, most of that stuff goes right over my head.

So… What actually happened?

It seems that Bosworth got Cameron to hack the bank’s computer in order to move some money around so that they could complete their PC. In their defense, they were going to put it back once the Cardiff Giant started to sell. Try telling that to Nathan Cardiff and the FB

Joe was plannining on attending COMDEX alone since the last time Gordon went things didn’t go so well. Needless to say, Gordon was more than a bit upset since COMDEX is basically Comic Con for compuer geeks.

Joe and Cameron head over to Gordon’s house for a pow wow that quickly turned into a massive arguement where a lot of blame got thrown around. Gordon tells Cameron about how Joe switched the discs to make it seem that her work was erased. And then Cameron punched Joe… In the face. Not a slap, but a punch. I can’t say that he didn’t deserve it. After all, Joe has what the Germans call “backpfeifgesicht”–a face that needs a fist.

Joe finds out that IBM is working on their own version because sometimes more than one person has the same idea at the same time. Just ask Nikola Tesla–it’s all about who gets the publicity first.

Joe flies to New York to confront his father about it, and eventually asks to work on the project. Just when you thought he couldn’t possibly be a bigger scumbag. And, as it turns out, Joe was telling the truth about his mother and falling off the roof. Not only that, but we find out that he spent his “missing” year going around trying to find out about his mother, whom he thought died when he was a child. Joe Sr. had her commited and it wasn’t until she really passed away that he came clean to Joe. No wonder he is so messed up.

When the FBI raided Cardiff Electric they confiscated all the computers, so Gordon had the genius idea of disassembling the Giant so it wouldn’t be taken away. Clever boy. He then broke into the office and rogued it back. Not only that, but he picked up milk on his way home.

Not knowing that Joe is in New York, Cameron and Gordon head over to his apartment to tell him that they still have the Giant. And since he was nowhere to be found, they did what anyone would do–they drank beer, ordered pizza, and talked about their first time . . . Using a computer. It was nice to see the two of them getting along. When Joe returns, Cameron and Gordon talk him down and convice him into going to COMDEX.

Donna’s boss, Hunt, resigned without telling her. At one point she was about to leave Gordon but she got distracted by the awesomeness that is the Giant. Then she found the decoder ring that Gordon bought her (long story, but very sweet), and in the end she decides to tag along with our trio to COMDEX.

Road trip!


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