12 Monkeys S2E13 Review: Memory of Tomorrow

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12 Monkeys - Season 2

Memory of Tomorrow

Warning: Spoilers

Here it is guys, the end of season 2. It’s been a wild, excellent ride, and this episode is again another shining example of what scifi can be, if given a good script and amazing actors. So let’s get started, shall we?

We open with Olivia speaking again, about how the end is the beginning, and that we are at the beginning of the end, and that one man (Cole) can’t see another’s plan. I always love Olivia’s voice overs–her calming, soft voice has always held such ease to it, and now that we know that she is ‘rouge’ as it were, these sort of talks take on an entirely different meaning to me. She is almost like a prophet, like a secondary Witness.

It’s 1959, and we have Cole and Cassie in the strange Home again, celebrating Christmas. Cole gives her a beautiful butterfly clip, calling back to her statement about how she would always be a caterpillar that never transitioned. In turn, Cassie gives Cole some amazing, touching, surprising  news–she’s pregnant.


Cole is shocked, but happy. It’s touching, really. Here is man who lost his family at an early age, finally gifted with one when he never thought he would have one.

The next day he’s in a general store, picking some things up, when time stops suddenly–it’s unsettling, strange. No one is moving: no cars, no people, nothing…except one woman, who has a bloody wrist. She tells Cole that it isn’t over, and she suddenly disappears as time starts up once more.


Of course, Cole being Cole, he doesn’t tell Cassie, and instead goes about things until it happens again, this time in front of an insane asylum. Which of course leads him to believe that it’s being done somehow by a Primary. He’s correct of course–the woman there had killed her entire family before being institutionalized, wanting to save them from the never ending horror of what is to come. She again tells him it isn’t over, and to go into the Pine Barrens if Cole doesn’t believe her, then to return with what he finds there.

Which, he does. Again, I have to state–he’s doing all of this without telling Cassie. Lies and deception have never done any of them any good, and I don’t think it’s going to go well for them here, but hey, when has Cole ever 100% learned?

In the Pine Barrens, these desolate woods…Cole finds the Red chaos. He finds the storms, so yes, it isn’t over. If Cole doesn’t find a way to stop these, here, they will consume the world in 1959–and he and Cassie, and their child won’t have a life. So he has to do something. Grabbing some leaves, he returns to the woman, and she tells him the only way to go back in time without a time machine is to drink the tea of the leaves–to remove himself from the time stream.


He is given a horrible, impossible decision: either undo the paradoxing of the last Primary to stop the storms and turn to 2044 and save the world, and thereby undoing his time with Cassie and his unborn child…or save his time with Cassie and his child, but doom the world. She does give Cole some good advice: You can’t undo love, but you can undo death. The Primary also tells him that if he does go back to his own time he can’t go after Ramse because it will mess with the current cycle.

So with a heavy heart he returns back home, still not telling Cassie the truth; she knows something is up, though, and thinks that it is her pregnancy. Of course it isn’t, and he just…can’t bring himself to tell her what’s wrong, because Cole knows what he has to do, doesn’t he?

Cole writes the infamous, “1957-1959 this was home” on the wall, which we saw in the Witness’ memories, and he takes the tea, sacrificing his happiness (and Cassie’s, tbh–without giving her any agency/say in the matter), to save the world.

He flashes back into the facility, a strange pathway where he hears other versions of him, and jumps into different timelines here and there as he tries to find the correct one. Each time he does it he moves farther and farther down the hall. It’s creepy, haunting, and towards the end he runs headlong into the Witness–but before our head villain can catch him he ends up in 1957–

–and he does it. He stops the Paradox from happening, and saves the Primary, thereby saving the world, and ending his future timeline with Cassie

They both return back to 2044, where Dr. Jones is waiting for them, alive and relatively well. It apparently took months, but time repaired itself–and in that time Jones took some levels in badassery. Seriously. She became a badass with a gun as she protected the facility and the machine herself, and ended up with a pet dog in the bargain. Pretty damn awesome, if I say so myself.

Another really interesting thing is this: Cassie is remembering the ‘future’. You know–the future that was supposed to be erased. She starts to tear up as she tells Cole she remembers the butterfly clip that he gave her. How it’s possible, I don’t know but time always has a way of making things happen the way it wants things to happen. We don’t get to explore it further, because there is a mission to go on. What mission, you might ask?

Remember how that ‘59 Primary told Cole not to go to Titan? …guess who is going to Titan to save Ramse and the crew. Yep. Cole.


They reach Jen, where she is with the rest of the Daughters, who are simply refusing to follow. Jen tries to give a rousing speech, which combines the best parts of Independence Day, Braveheart, and Lord of the Rings–it almost works…but then totally doesn’t. I certainly loved it. The amount of passion and charm that woman has will never be matched. Frustrated, she tells all of them that they really need to just be, “excellent to each other” –and that quote? Yeah that quote worked. Wayne’s World! Excellent!

12 MONKEYS -- "Memory of Tomorrow" Episode 213 -- Pictured: (l-r) Barbara Sukowa as Katarina Jones, Aaron Stanford as James Cole, Amanda Schull as Cassandra Railly -- (Photo by: Ben Mark Holzberg/Syfy)

Remember how Titan ended? With everyone’s throats slit? So we’re back at that time, but instead of death, the Hyenas are here, attacking and generally causing awesome mayhem. They can’t find the Witness though, and Ramse, in typical fashion, is getting a bit lost in his need for revenge. I understand that this is all he has left, but he’s losing sight of the big picture. Jennifer says that time will take what is owed and that they need to leave immediately. If she is saying that they need to leave–I would listen to her, dude.


They start running and it’s revealed that 1)Titan was created by Dr. Jones’ ex husband and 2) the entire facility is a time machine. So if they don’t get off the ground they will all be transported to who knows where. Ramse, like the revenge-blind man he is, refuses to leave without finding the Witness, and is lead off by someone. Dr. Jones and her daughter, Hanna, make it out…but Cole and Cassie, who initially make it out with them, go back to try to find the others, who seem lost.


Deacon, who this entire time has been trying to protect Jennifer, finds himself having to make the ultimate, selfless decision–he sacrifices himself for her life. His last words are, “I’m sorry I killed you.” It genuinely broke my heart, and just…goodbye, ScavKing. I really hope they find a way to bring him back, but if they don’t–I think his arc was a perfect, solid one. Such an amazing, solid character, who went out in a way that was fitting for his character’s arc.


Jennifer, while escaping, gets caught in a timestream, and is jumped to a time unknown. The Messengers then grab Cassie and jump into time again, just as they almost make it to safety–so again, Cole and Cassie are separated through time once more. But this time it’s so, so much worse.
We see the man who lead Ramse off take him to…Olivia. He’s upset of course, until it’s revealed that she isn’t working for the Witness again, and that she is the one who saved his son. I have no idea what this means for the plot, but know it means something huge. I’m so excited for it! Again, you all know how much I love Olivia, and what her story could mean for 12 Monkeys in general–so this is just great for me.

In France, 1917, we see that Jennifer has been sent into the trenches of WWI France. Well Fuck. They think she is a German–let’s hope her French is up to par?


Back in 2044 Cole and Dr. Jones are doing their best to try and determine where Cassie is; it’s 2163. Well–that’s not good. Cole tells Dr. Jones that he doesn’t care how unknown it all is, how dangerous it might be–he has to try and go save her.


In 2163, however, things are very dire for Cassie. She is dragged into the center of a large room, filled with Messengers. In the center of the room is the Pallid Man, who for a minute she (and we) think is the Witness–


–but no, no he isn’t.


They needed her at Titan, all along, because Cassie is still pregnant.


And the Baby is the Witness.

What do you even say to that, guys? That’s–how will they even deal with this? The next season, the next 10 episodes…this is going to be the fight that has the most weight, because it is going to not only be about the fight for the world, but a fight about family.
Wow. Wow guys. What am I going to do until Season 3?

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