Sarah: "First I lose you, and then I lose Walt. I must have banked up some really lousy karma."
They weren't kidding when they advertised that everything would change. I was ready for some change. Maybe not this much, though.
Sarah has again lost her man while pregnant with his child. That last scene in particular, where the dying Walt was saying goodbye to Sarah -- knowing that Johnny would see it and relay it to her -- was quite moving. It was so like Walt to be thinking of Sarah and J.J. in his last moments. It was unspoken, but in saying his final words and knowing Johnny would most likely see them, Walt was saying goodbye to Johnny as well.
They didn't really explain why the death thing shifted from Walt to Purdy and back again. Was Walt destined to die no matter what? Would he only have lived if Purdy had died instead? At least
they were consistent: Johnny didn't get a vision of Walt dying the third time because Johnny himself sent Walt to Faith Heritage to save Purdy. Johnny caused Walt's death. This is not something that
Johnny is going to find easy to live with.
Is the Stillson arc *over*? Has Armageddon been successfully averted now that Janus is dead? I also got the feeling that Greg Stillson joined the conspiracy in order to stop it. He told Johnny,
"I'm not the man you think I am." And Johnny touched him and got a whole new vision that did *not* include the end of the world. Greg Stillson causing Armageddon and Johnny finding a way to stop him was the main plot of the original Stephen King novel. I must admit I'm perturbed by the possibility that, hey, it's all over and the series is going in a whole new direction.
What Other Say !
[..]the acting is terrific, especially that of Anthony Michael Hall, who has created a likable and complex hero, and Chris Bruno, who shines as the show's other hero, Sheriff Walt Bannerman.
SCI FI WEEKLY
It takes a really big set of brass ones to go this route. I commend the producers for not only recognizing what had to be done but going through with it.
USA Networks BBoard
I was frustrated last season because the episodes seemed to have lost their focus: Johnny's prevention of the apocalypse. They seem to be on track, and as sad as Walt's death is, it certainly provides some great material for the coming season!
What bothered me even more than the possible closure of the Stillson
arc was the possibility that they wrote Bruce out. Is Bruce really
leaving to take another job? Please, no. I'm okay with losing
Walt; his death was dramatically sound and opened some interesting
plot-related doors. But Johnny's friendship with Bruce is one of
the things that really works on this show. Dammit.
Bits and pieces:
-- No saga sell, and a two-second credit sequence. That was
new. Since we just lost at least one cast member, there will
probably be a new credit sequence next week. Maybe they'll get rid
of that terrible music. One can hope.
-- There was also a new J.J. This was the third kid to play J.J.,
and I found it jarring, especially with Walt's funeral and all. Was
little Spencer unavailable?
-- Sarah said that J.J. didn't have a father any more. She said it
to J.J.'s biological father, Johnny. That was hurtful, Sarah. What
was she thinking?
-- Did I detect some re-kindling of Greg's former interest in Sarah,
despite the bowling ball?
-- What did Walt find out about Johnny from the woman on the park
-- In the season opener hair report, Sarah's was longer than it has
ever been on this show. Bruce's hair moved from his head to his
chin; I liked better on his head. Johnny's was much the same, which
was good because it's his best look, in my opinion. No more
This was a big episode, and Walt's death made me cry. Episodes that
make me cry get four out of four stars.
Bille Doux reviews episodes of 'The Dead Zone' for her website.
She reviews individual episodes of science fiction & cult TV shows
for her website, located at http://www.billiedoux.com/
Behind The Scenes:
- "We intend to play on Johnny's guilt this season"
Writer Ann Lewis Hamilton on when Johnny promised Walt not to say anything to Sarah about his death.
- "[...]The serious reason is that Scott's decision, because we wanted to bring Johnny and Sarah back togeather again. But it could not be easy, but with Walt out of the way, now suddenly Sarah is free and what's Johnny gonna do with Sarah".
Writer Ann Lewis Hamilton on the decision to kill off Walt Bannerman.
- "I think the audience will find out by the end of the season why Walt died. There was a scene with the woman who gives him an envelope. We don't see what's in the envelope and I know what's in the envelope but the audience isin't going ot know probably until near the end of the season. It's certainly a BIG surprise."
Writer Ann Lewis Hamilton about the secret envelope in this episode.
- "This season, well when you know you're doing 13 episodes of a season, it's always nice to have a like a big arcs to know where you're going, like 1 to 13. So that's the first thing we concentrated on was to figure out the big arcs. So we did know where we were going to end up. You know sort of, we did with the mysterious envelope is going to pay off in the last episode."
Writer Ann Lewis Hamilton about story-arcs this season.
- For a climactic scene in "Heritage," we also had to build the Faith Heritage Chapel – for which, as you'll see in the show, we couldn't use an actual chapel as a location. The setting is integral to the episode and to Reverend Purdy, and the fabulous design shows it. David Ogden Stiers (Rev. Purdy) walked on the set and asked to see the production designer – to personally shake his hand.
Lloyd Segan & Shawn Piller's blog (06/15)
- But that's also because the show's writers, directors, and cast have worked hard to bring The Dead Zone back to its emotional roots. In "Heritage" and in all of the upcoming season, our characters will grow together and apart, struggle and succeed, and rise and fall like never before. We're closer to them now than we've ever been.
That's a credit to Executive Producer Scott Shepherd, whom we tried for years to bring into The Dead Zone family. He was always too busy producing shows like Tru Calling, Reunion, and Angela's Eyes. But with Season Six on the horizon this past fall, kismet was kind, and after a long courtship we finally got hitched. He's a masterful storyteller, writer, and showrunner who infuses heart into everything he does, and he's galvanized The Dead Zone, bringing out a wonderful freshness. What's more, he's done so with great respect and love for the show's roots, laid down by Michael Piller.
Lloyd Segan & Shawn Piller's blog (06/15)
The last episode to feature Chris Bruno as a regular cast member.
Episode Rating: 2.12 Million Viewers.
Cast & Crew:
Written by: Ann Lewis Hamilton
Directed by: James Head
Starring: Anthony Michael Hall (Johnny Smith), Nicole DeBoer (Sarah Bannerman), Chris Bruno (Walt Bannerman), John L. Adams (Bruce Lewis), Connor Price (JJ Bannerman).
Guest Starring: Sean Patrick Flanery (Greg Stillson), David Ogden Stiers (Rev. Gene Purdy), Martin Donovan (Malcolm Janus).