Plot: Darien's tearing his apartment to pieces in the throes of Quicksilver Madness, while Claire tries to keep him calm over the phone as she and Hobbes rush over. She suggests watching something nonviolent on TV, and so Darien turns to the news, where he sees Father Tom Moore at some special event for the kids, and this infuriates Darien sufficiently that he hurls the TV across the room. His friends arrive and the counteragent is administered, but surprise! that little tattoo on his arm has two sections that are still red afterward. Yes, as prophesied by Claire early in Season 1, Darien is beginning to develop an immunity to counteragent. At this rate, it may only be a matter of weeks until it fails entirely. However, she has a new version, but it needs at least a month of testing to hammer out the effects. Darien convinces her to forgo that and give it to him now, and it seems to work. Until that night, when the tattoo goes entirely red in seconds while he sleeps, pushing Fawkes immediately back into Stage 5 Madness.
Darien heads down to the park, where he leers at women, ruins barbeques, and interrupts a tough football game by invisibly running over all the players. Then he travels to a nearby church, where he disrupts a funeral by making the deceased sit up in the casket. And then he finds Father Tom, conducting a Sunday school class, and it turns out he was Darien and Kevin's pastor when they were kids. Darien's being off-putting enough the padre dismisses class early, and they get down to brass tacks. Seems Darien had a childhood friend, Callie, who killed herself because of things her father was doing to her, and Darien wants to know if the padre knew and did nothing, because of the sanctity of confession. Claire and Hobbes barge in about the time Darien is advancing on Tom with a lighter, having been alerted to what's going on by the Official receiving reports about a silver-eyed maniac at the park. Claire quickly tranqs Darien, and they hustle him back to the lab.
Curiously, the Quicksilver that flakes off Darien when he reappears isn't dissolving, which is how they tracked him (that and the people fleeing the funeral). Claire had collected it to run tests, and against her orders, Hobbes touches it. The flakes turn liquid again and are instantly absorbed, and now Hobbes is in Stage 5. He hustles off and attacks the Official, complaining about receiving no credit for all the work he does, for being saddled with a crappy van (he ahd been complaining to Claire about it getting a flat and him having no jack or spare when the Official brought news of Fawkes' rampage), and makes the Fat Man do push-ups while he gets fed the Official's Chinese takeout by Eberts. Darien arrives and gets his ass beat, but Claire is able to avoid Bobby's fist of fury long enough to administer counteragent. Oddly, Bobby awakens remembering exactly what he did, and apologizes profusely to the Official, while Darien didn't remember a thing. Well, Darien remembers one thing. Hobbes and Claire should have collected 3 sets of flakes, not 2, so it's back to the church. The flakes are gone, so they try the burial, with no success. Because the one who found them was Father Tom, and he's headed off to deal with the abusive father of one of his current students. Bobby and Darien get the story out of the kid, and they and Claire rush to his home, narrowly stopping Tom from killing the guy with a fireplace poker. Although then Darien kicks the hell out of the guy until his son tells him to stop.
There are two scenes after everything calms down. Darien apologizes to Father Tom from what happened, driving him mad and all, and tries to pretend it was God that stopped Tom. But Tom knows about the gland, because Kevin confessed to him near the end that he had doubts about what he was doing to his brother. The other development is that it's back to Original Recipe counteragent, and it's less effective than ever. And Claire has no idea what to do about it.
Quote of the Episode: Claire - 'Even if we give you this and it works, we can't be sure what the side effects will be.' Darien - 'Well, it can't be worse than me going coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs, can it?'
The "oh crap" count: 1 (39 overall).
Who's getting quoted this week? George Bernard Shaw again, noting we haven't lost faith, we just transferred it from God to the medical profession. Hey speak for yourself, I put all my faith in myself.
Times Fawkes Goes Into Quicksilver Madness: 1 (8 overall).
Other: See, Quicksilver Mad Hobbes is good scary, because all that paranoia and self-pity shifts from bravado into grudge-settling. Plus, Hobbes has mad skills, so he's not likely to get his ass kicked like Darien did by Alex that one time. Also, his line about how he pushed the van a half mile, the Official ought to be able to push himself 12 inches in the air 20 times was hilarious. And deserved. The fat man doesn't even open his own takeout boxes. What a lazy, fat bastard.
I'm still curious how, if Darien can build up an immunity to counteragent, he can't also develop an immunity to the narcotic effects of the Quicksilver. Or at least a heightened resistance. But at least they did foreshadow this occurrence way back when. And Darien hasn't really been careful about now overusing the gland, as evidenced by his and Bobby's water park escapades last week.
When the Official told Claire and Hobbes about Darien running amok in the park, Claire said, "Bloody Hell". That amused me since she usually doesn't go big for the stereotypical British slang, and that's one I'm fond of using myself. Though given the reaction "Christ on a cracker" got from Alex and his friend last week, maybe I should use that one more often.
When they introduced the Father Tom character, I winced because I was sure it was going to reveal some repressed memory of Darien's about abuse at the hands of the priest, and I haven't exactly been impressed with the series handling of things like that (especially with regards to Claire in "Perchance to Dream"). And child abuse was brought up, but as something Tom learns about, but isn't ultimately able to stop. Val's father beats Val and his mother, but Tom can't do anything about it, because it isn't the dad coming to confess, where Tom could talk to him, counsel him about finding other ways to deal with whatever causes that. It's Val telling him, so Tom is kind of stuck, just as he was for Darien's friend Callie.
I'm not sure how Tom deals with that, really. Does he live on the hope he can give these kids a safe place, and that will be enough? Is it a trust in God having a plan? How does that jibe with Callie killing herself? He can't turn away from their suffering, doesn't want to turn away, he seems to take his duties seriously, but he can't make it stop for them. His actions under Stage 5 Madness suggest there's frustration, he's aware of the limitations of what he can do as a priest, but how does he deal with it when he isn't in a frame of mind to go beat the offender up?