Sunday, May 26, 2024

Mara Says Despedida to Her Sanity on Reverie

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This week on Reverie, Mara helps an elderly woman feel purpose again and has to contend with her own reality.

As the episode opens, Mara wakes up to an empty bed. Chris is apparently a morning person, considering that he’s already up, and out of her line of sight.  They discuss whether their night together was a good idea, and Mara realizes she’s overthinking it.

We then cut to a shoot of woman with an oxygen tank. She’s clearly in a nursing home setting. Secluded in her room, the woman takes out her Reverie system. Suddenly, a nursing home employee enters and asks what she’s doing. The woman (who is named Pilar) enters her Reverie, going back to when she was young.

At Onira-Tech, Charlie has a visitor. Jack Selve, the Shady Pines Assisted Living director, complains about Pilar’s use of the program. Apparently, they don’t use programs like that at Shady Pines. He goes so far as to blame some of Pilar’s health issues on Reverie. This may be true, but doesn’t really come up again. Selve threatens to toss Pilar out of his facility if she doesn’t leave.

Unfortunately for Mara, it’s her job to bring this ultimatum to Pilar, who is hanging out in a barr. The ultimatum puts Pilar in between the devil and the deep blue sea. Pilar doesn’t want to leave Shady Pines, but she wants to change something about her past. The country’s military shows up before Mara figures out what Pilar wants. In the chaos, Pilar escapes on the back of a truck, and Mara is forced to regroup.

Mara discusses what to do about Pilar with Paul. They determine she was in Chile in the 1970s, and wonder about the significance. Then, Charlie makes fun of Mara and Paul not knowing about the Chilean couple. Paul is worried about Mara’s bruising, and implies that it was unprecedented. Mara’s not worried because she’s in a good mood because of Chris. Despite Paul’s worries about the Chilean military, Mara goes back in without hesitation. Pilar is hanging out with a small child, then makes out with Joaquin, who we saw earlier. Mara watches her, and believes that Joaquin is what Pilar wants. Again Pilar is ill and leaves before Mara can really confirm this, but refuses to exit the program.

Lexie and Paul discuss Mara’s bruise. Paul thinks it could be related to the fake pregnancy phenomenon. This might be just me, but it looks like Reverie is trying to indicate that Paul has a romantic interest in Mara, through his worry. Paul thinks they should talk to Oliver, though neither say his name. Lexie refuses, but calls him anyway, after Paul leaves her office.

Mara has fun flashbacks about her night with Chris. She texts him.

Text that reads “Dinner? I'll make that pasta thing you like.”
“Dinner? I’ll make that pasta thing you like.” Credit NBC/screenshot

Mara tells Paul and Charlie that Pilar must be trying to redo her relationship with Joaquin. She then suggests a romantic assignation as the way to make Pilar satisfied (Are you projecting here, Mara?).

Mara goes back in and bribes someone to tell her where Joaquin is, with fake money supplied by Paul. After she successfully collects him, she sneaks up on Pilar again. Mara tries to sell her on the romantic assignation. Unfortunately, Joaquin is supposed to be leading a raid. Pilar slams Mara for assuming she wanted Joaquin. Military trucks show up, and as Mara and Pilar try to help, a bunch of girls get taken, as Pilar is restrained. Pilar wanted to save them, not flirt with Joaquin. Not everyone’s into romance, Mara!

Pilar is at the bar, drinking, understandably. Mara asks about the girls, and Pilar explains they’re being interrogated. To her credit, Mara does apologize. In real life, Pilar saved the girls, and she wanted to try again, so she can feel alive. Mara says she could try again by restarting the program, but Pilar points out that Selve won’t allow that.

Lexie meets Oliver in a coffee shop. She explains the situation with Mara’s injury. Oliver does a bit on how he was right, and Lexie agrees with him about the need for regulations. However, Oliver ends up theorizing that the crossed Reveries caused Mara’s bruise, not the Reverie program proper. It needs to be said that we can’t trust Oliver, and he might be trying to mess Lexie up. Before he goes, Oliver works out that the military has the Reverie source code, and flips out.

The Shady Pines director resists Mara’s suggestion to restart the Reverie. Mara finds a doll that Pilar gave a young girl, and then flashes back to Pilar’s Reverie, in a similar way to her assignation flashback. She realizes that she can’t let Pilar’s dream go.

Mara insists on going back in and helping Pilar save the girls. They’re ultimately successful, Pilar reveals that she never met the girls again after they cross the border. Mara insists that the real girls wouldn’t have wanted Pilar to waste away in a digital land. Pilar says farewell, in a callback to the episode’s title, and something she didn’t get to do in real life. She then says fairwell to the Reverie program.

We’re back to a nursing home montage. This time, Mara came to visit. She’s brought Charlie, who brought one of the girls, Elvia, now all grown up. Elvia brought her granddaughter, also named Pilar. They explain that, without Pilar’s intervention, neither young Pilar nor her parents would exist. It’s very heartwarming.

Image of Pilar, Elvia, and young Pilar looking at a family album.
Pilar, Elvia, and young Pilar, credit NBC/screenshot

Oliver discusses secret plans in a bar with a shady colleague. After his shady colleague leaves, Oliver opens a Reverie, collapsing over someone’s table in the most dramatic way possible. Par for the course for him.

Mara comes home to Chris in her apartment. They start making out, but then Mara gets a call from Chris. Who she thinks is right in front of her. Turns out Mara’s hallucinating Chris and has been since late last episode. “Chris” flips into Ray, and Mara stands, panicking.

Image of Chris turning into Ray
Ex-boyfriends aren’t really supposed to do that… credit NBC/screenshot

I don’t think this WTF moment came out of left field. I think the two flashbacks in this episode were too similar to be discounted. Additionally, anyone who’s been watching the previews knew that something about Mara’s reality was going to break, and soon.

Next week on Reverie, Paul sounds far too excited about his colleague’s mental breakdown, and Mara learns a secret that “changes everything.” There are only two more episodes left, and a couple major threads to wrap up. See you next week!

Images courtesy of NBC

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