“Beat the Clock” is the name of the game in “Love is a Battlefield,” the 11th episode of Under the Dome‘s third season. While Christine and the Kinship are working tirelessly to protect their unborn queen and to bring the Dome down before everyone inside suffocates, Hektor from Aktaion and the Resistance are frantically trying to come up with a plan of action to prevent the Kinship from being unleashed on the outside.
Christine, who is weakening rapidly, is trying to move the Dome’s agenda along as quickly as possible. When Sam reports to her that although Joe is on board with helping to bring the Dome down and has made a few breakthroughs, his work is still in the early planning stages, she becomes worried that they’re going to run out of time because “the Dome is dying.” Sam offers to force Joe to work faster, but Christine tells him she doesn’t want to resort to violence with Joe because he’s too valuable. She’ll find a way to motivate Joe herself. She then asks Sam if he knows where Junior is. Sam steps up and says that he can take care of anything she needs done. After requesting that he help get the last remaining amethyst over to Joe so that he can continue his work, Christine praises him: “You’ve come a long way, Sam. I’m pleased.” Sam himself looks pleased at her words and departs to do her bidding.
As Sam exits, Barbie enters. Freed from the Kinship’s hold in last week’s episode, Barbie is still pretending as if he is one of them in hopes of learning enough to be able to stop Christine and save Eva. Christine asks for an update on Eva and tells him that the baby should be here within the day. Barbie tells her that he wants to go after what’s left of the Resistance, but Christine nixes that idea and says that the Resistance is the least of their concerns at this point. She tells him that their primary concerns are the birth of the new Queen and bringing the Dome down: “Inside Eva is the Queen who will lead our Kinship out of the Dome. Nothing is more important than that. Your priority is to be by Eva’s side until that baby is born.”
While Christine is actively moving forward with her agenda, Hektor, along with the help with the Resistance, is developing what he hopes will be a cure for all of those who have become infected. He tells the Resistance that all he needs is a sample of Christine’s DNA and a test subject. Julia finds a sample of Christine’s hair at the barn Eva was taken to and Junior becomes their unwilling test subject when he tries and fails to kill the remaining members of the Resistance.
Christine stops in to check on Joe’s progress and interrupts his enthusiastic off-key rendition of Pat Benatar’s ‘Love is a Battlefield.’ Although initially unimpressed that Joe is spending his time singing and listening to music rather than working on their special little project, Christine does look intrigued when Joe reminds her that he isn’t one of her drones and can’t just work until he drops and that he sometimes needs to “stop thinking in order to think.” Christine walks through the original plan with him – the seven amethysts and the egg would somehow work together to transmit a signal to the Dome. That signal would serve as a key and trigger the Dome to unlock. Joe remarks that the destroyed egg and amethysts are pretty big problems, implying that it’s basically Mission Impossible. Christine isn’t giving up though: “Come on, Joe. I know you better than that. I know you find the problem exciting.” She then takes him on a field trip to the Dome so that he can see for himself firsthand what is going to happen if the Dome doesn’t come down.
On their way to the Dome, Christine tells Joe that she needs his cooperation. When he scoffs and says that all she really wants is his submission, Christine explains to him that she and her kind did not even want to come to Earth in the first place: “Earth is a wonderful place, but it’s not that great.” Their world was destroyed by an enemy and they had no choice other than to flee and find a new home. She goes on to explain that an unnamed ‘they’ are coming and that not only the Kinship is in danger, but all of humanity. She says that whether Joe wants to admit it or not, their fates are tied together and that they need to get the Dome down so that they have a fighting chance against what is coming. Then, as if that wasn’t motivation enough for Joe, Christine drives it home a little further: “That rests entirely in your hands.” I guess it remains to be seen whether Christine’s story is true or just another clever manipulation to get what she wants. Just before she and Joe part ways so that he can get back to work, Christine has another near fainting incident. When Joe expresses his concern, Christine confesses to him that she is dying – her cycle is ending and her work is nearly done. I might be reading too much into it, but I thought Christine seemed a little more upset than usual when she discussed the end of her life.
Meanwhile, Eva has realized that Barbie has been playing her and is no longer under the influence of the Kinship. In an effort to save his baby, Barbie drugs Eva and smuggles her away out of the reach of Christine and the Kinship. He has decided that he’s going to stay with Eva until the baby is born and then he will save the baby since he can’t seem to save Eva. Knowing they need to hurry if they’re going to keep that baby from the Kinship, Barbie asks Julia for help. She meets him and together they forcefully deliver the baby from Eva and nearly escape with it until Eva tricks them into letting her breastfeed it first. Big mistake as the lifeforce immediately begins to flow into the baby and both Mom and baby start to emit a blue glow. Eva then tells Barbie that it’s not her child – it’s the new queen – and with that superhuman strength of hers, she throws Barbie through the glass window.
Clearly fatigued by her journey out to the Dome, Christine is lying down in her office when Sam comes to tell her that they have a problem – Barbie and Eva are missing. Frantic, Christine orders the town to fan out and find them immediately. Once they locate Eva, Christine asks for some privacy and then begins the most eerie scene of perhaps the entire season.
As she watches Eva continue to breastfeed the baby, Christine explains to Eva that the new Queen is “taking what she needs”. What we the viewers see happening is a little more ominous than the way Christine makes it sound. As we gaze into the mirror with Christine, we see the baby draining the life force from Eva. As if waking from a daze, Eva sees Christine holding her baby and wants to know why she has her. Christine sets the baby aside and calmly replies: “She’s not your baby. And you’re no longer one of us.” She then proceeds to smother Eva with a pillow, all the while singing a lullaby. And Marg’s singing was so wonderful. Lovely and haunting, her voice and that song were what really made this scene work for me. The episode concludes with the eerie image of Christine standing in the center of the room, rocking the baby, while Eva lies there dead. This scene really shocked me, but I guess in the Kinship, everyone is expendable once they have done their duty, even the mother of the new Queen.
I really can’t believe we’re nearly at the end of the season. It seems like just yesterday we were beginning our journey with Christine Price. As sad as I am to see this storyline come to a conclusion, I’m excited to see how it plays out. Who will succeed first? Will Christine succeed in her plan to bring the Dome down? Will Hektor and the Resistance thwart her efforts and succeed in their efforts to cure the town? Is Christine’s story about her world being destroyed true and something even more dangerous is headed their way? Anything is possible on Under the Dome!
You can view an album of screen caps from the episode HERE.