The police hunt down a copycat of a murderer that Kennex’s father put behind bars ten years earlier. Meanwhile, Dorian is under review and is worried about being decommissioned.

The Breakdown

A young woman stands in a crowd of people, lined up to get meal supplement pills from an automated machine. A young man approaches her and asks her if she wants to share a pod for the night, since the facility is running short. She says no thank you, but the young man is insistent and aggressive when she tries to ignore him. A man in a wheel chair approaches the pair and tells the young man to leave the woman alone. He reluctantly stalks away. The facility has run out of pods, so the man suggests that they go to a nearby shelter together to see if they have any beds to offer. The girl accepts and tells him her name is Abbey. She takes her pill and they leave. Eventually, the girls begins to pass out as they enter an alley and the man in the wheelchair stands and catches her, putting her in the back of a van and driving away.

A committee interviews Maldonado, Kennex, Rudy, and eventually Dorian about Dorian’s performance and acceptability as a police officer. Dorian is pleases with his performance, but Kennex makes him worried by teasing that the interview took way longer than usual.

Kennex and Dorian investigate Abbey’s death, her body having been dumped in an alley way. She was opened up and stuffed with straw, the MO of a serial killer that Kennex’s father caught years earlier. Michael Costa, aka the Strawman, is still serving his time in The Cubes. Kennex tries to access his father’s files on the case, but they’ve been sealed. He asks Maldonado to help and she says she’ll take care of it. Dorian and Kennex go to see Michael Costa at the prison.

Costa is a paranoid schizophrenic and blacked out a lot during the time when he was suspected of the crimes. He maintains his innocence and says that Edward Kennex believed in his innocence as well, and that he was uncovering new evidence related to stolen robotics sold on the black market.

Maldonado gives Kennex the classified files. He goes home to look them over while Dorian goes to see Rudy about the bodies. The files state that Edward Kennex believed that Costa was innocent, but before he could bring new evidence to light, he was killed in the line of duty. Meanwhile, Rudy has a theory that the bodies are actually bio-printed copies of the actual bodies, since there’s no dirt or particles under the fingernails. The older model printer would not have copied the organs correctly, so the killer stuffs them with straw instead. The killer actually keeps his victims alive and replaces them with a copy to avoid suspicion.

They know that he’s targeting the homeless, so they send MX units to most of the shelters to flush the killer out to the shelters that are being patrolled by undercover police. Paul discovers traces of a young man he talked to earlier and a van leaving the scene. They follow the van to the man’s lab and infiltrate the premises. They discover coffins with bodies hooked up to bio-robotics. The killer makes a decoy copy of himself and rigs it with an explosive. The real killer and Kennex have a fight where Kennex ends up shooting and killing him.

When they go through his files they find out that another man in the police department had been supplying him with stolen robotics from police evidence and that the killer had been running experiments on the bodies in order to incorporate bio-mechanics into his own body to slow the progress of a disease he had. The dirty policeman was killed three weeks after Kennex’s father was, leading Maldonado and Kennex to believe that the killer murdered both of the policemen.

Dorian’s term is renewed, especially due to Kennex’s glowing review. Dorian goes to find Kennex, who is eating at his favorite noodle bar, and gives him a cutting edge prosthetic leg to say thank you.

The Analysis

While the episode itself was engaging, intense, and entertaining, I think it was probably the wrong kind of episode with which to end a season – especially the first season of a show that is fighting to be renewed. What we want, and what we’ve gotten precious little of, is a big old chunk of mythology that will leave the viewers screaming to know more. This episode certainly gave us a lot of that Dorian/Kennex magic we love so well, but seeing them run off to handle a random case after just solving another random case doesn’t exactly open up compelling possibilities.

I suppose it works well enough for either a season or a series closer – either way, we can imagine Dorian and Kennex eating noodles to Blade Runner music after a long day of solving crimes together, for basically ever. What we have a hard time imagining is all that other stuff they might come up against in between the noodles and case solving. What’s the Wall all about? Who is messing with Dorian’s brain and what kind of malfunctions will it cause? What is Dr. Vaughn going to do with his robot army? What’s the deal with the Syndicate (or Insyndicate, I still can’t quite tell what they’re saying)? What is the Syndicate’s connection to Dr. Vaughn? Etc.

There is still no news regarding the possible renewal or cancellation of Almost Human. FOX seems to be mulling it over pretty thoroughly and taking into account the relative popularity of The Following. When it comes down to it, which mildly popular cult show do you keep? One? Both? Neither? I guess anything could happen. We’ll just have to wait and see. If only Almost Human looked like it was going somewhere. As it is, it seems more and more like a simple procedural that happens to take place in the future, and that is slightly disappointing.