We are ecstatic Roswell, New Mexico has returned to our screens and episode two, “Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space,” was a classic Roswell episode full of emotion, drama, and mystery as everyone battles their own demons.
The episode kicks off with Michael, Isobel, Kyle, Liz, and Alex meeting at an abandoned property belonging to the U.S. Government. Alex nonchalantly leads the group in as he enters a handprint scan, digital code, and retinal scan while explaining this was an Indian boarding school he learned about from his grandmother. Now property of the Air Force, it’s monitored by Alex and can’t be hacked. This will serve as the group’s base while Liz and Michael (well, more Liz than Michael) tries to resurrect Max using Noah’s organs. It’s dusty and rundown, but it’s perfect.
At Max’s place, Rosa hacks into Max’s computer (although “password” as your password isn’t exactly difficult) and asks Liz about her obituary and funeral. Liz tells Rosa the entire town attended, their mother sang, and Liz overrode Arturo’s preference of Rosa in a white dress. The two joke and Liz heads to the lab, reminding Rosa to stay indoors. She agrees to continue hiding, proving that Rosa is handling self quarantine and social distancing better than half the world right now. As soon as Liz leaves, she grabs a hoodie and her tools and leaves to put up her signature Rosa art around town.
An excellent montage of the next two weeks shows Liz, Michael, and Kyle work on cleaning their new lab while Isobel takes up kickboxing. Maria, Alex, and Liz hang up missing posters for Mimi around Roswell. By the end, the lab is pristine and Isobel is much improved.
Rosa sneaks into The Wild Pony and pours a drink but fights the urge to return to her old habits. As she’s about to drink, creepy zombie Max appears and scares her (and us). He begs her to stop Liz, but Rosa says she won’t ever stop. Max is in unbearable pain and when he lunges for her, Rosa wakes up. She asks Liz to find her old sketchbook. “Art is a coping mechanism,” she tells Liz, who promises to look again. Liz also gives her a phone so Rosa can text her and Kyle for emergencies.
In the lab, Michael continues his tests on the remnants of alien spaceship. A little extreme in his methods this time, he takes a welding torch to a small piece which turns bright red before Michael loses focus on holding it midair and it falls to the ground and shatters. The flashes of his mother tell us he’s more than a little distracted right now.
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At the hospital, Kyle and Alex (unfortunately) wake up Jesse Manes from his medically induced coma. He’s not awake 10 seconds before he starts leveling death threats. Alex shuts him down fast with surveillance footage proof that he ran Project Shepherd. Manes tries again, but it’s Kyle’s threat that finally silences Manes.
Maria shows up to the garage, also known as Michael’s home, to hang missing posters. She puts one on Michael’s door right as Michael pushes it open. Maria seems shocked Michael is there, during the day, at his home. When she tries to leave, Michael offers an olive branch, asking about the investigation to find Mimi. Maria shares she’s been missing two weeks, the sheriff’s department is doing their best but aren’t much help, and she has invested in a private investigator. When Maria confides her concerns, Michael opens up about his own mother’s hard life (leaving out the alien bit, of course). The two share a moment before Maria leaves.
At the lab, Liz draws blood from Isobel while explaining that she might be able to repair Noah’s heart by studying her cells. She also shares Michael is “engineering nanotech that will make the transplant possible” (and also drinking a lot). Isobel finds the poisonous serum, and when Liz is distracted, sneaks a syringe out of the box making us all wonder what she’s up to.
Meanwhile, Rosa visits her grave. She is upset when she sees “murderer” spray painted across the stone. She scrubs at it desperately but it doesn’t come off. Still sneaking around town she catches sight of Wyatt Long and Michael. Long uses a missing poster to clean his boot. Michael tells him to use his hands and use the gum to hang the poster back up, but of course Long doesn’t listen. Oh no, instead he throws the paper at Michael and surprising absolutely no one, the two end up fighting with Michael (rightfully) kicking his ass. Rosa runs away as a police siren wails.
Flint is reporting to Manes in the hospital, informing him Caulfield was destroyed and local papers think it was a demolition. Manes shoots down his idea to tell the truth, and instead says they need to make a bigger statement. “Justice can’t be served until disaster has struck,” says Flint, which leaves us reeling at what Manes is planning.
Back at her grave, Rosa finds Wyatt Long’s online video asking for donations in his sister’s name. In it he rants about Rosa “murdering” his sister and Rosa realizes that all of Roswell hates her. Meanwhile, Isobel struggles to come to terms with her pregnancy and finds an app that tells her the baby is the size of a lentil bean. Stressed out, she shatters a glass when her mother, Ann, knocks on the door. She asks Isobel to attend a Woman as Warrior class with her, and Isobel reluctantly agrees. At The Wild Pony, Isobel and Ann are greeted by Maria who is leading the Woman as Warrior class. Isobel wastes no time in making several sarcastic comments as Maria turns to lead the class.
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Liz uses the Find a Friend app to track Rosa, who is under the bridge spray painting her art. Liz snatches the can away, and Rosa confronts Liz about lying to her. Before Liz can reply, a cop sees her with the spray paint can. Rosa disappears and Liz is arrested. At the jail, Liz makes her one call, not to Kyle or Maria or even Isobel, but to Michael. He’s a poor choice; as it turns out, he was also arrested that morning. In the cell, she explains she hoped he could get to the lab to save her ongoing experiment. Michael tells Liz he got arrested because, “I needed to pause the work to do some punching” (on behalf of Maria). Liz tries to get him to open up, but he shuts her down with classic Guerin sarcasm. Sheriff Valenti then interrogates Liz in her office about Noah and Max’s house. Liz has to do some careful storytelling to avoid suspicion. She (mostly) tells the truth though the Sheriff thinks she’s talking about Max leaving town not dying.
Kyle gets the results of Rosa’s medical tests, which are all good except for one line with an error. As he reviews it, a very nosy someone (we later learn is Steph) reads over his shoulder and says he either discovered a new protein or got Cheeto dust in the sample. Kyle leaves to meet Rosa at the church after she sends a 911 text and tells her what happened the night of the accident. He tries to explain the racism goes far beyond the accident, but Rosa brushes him off. Standing to leave she tells him Liz got arrested and, “you might want to bail her out,” every bit the moody teenager. (In her defense, finding out everyone hates you must be rough.)
At the group, Isobel remains reluctant but joins in even when Maria instructs them to scream as loud as possible. Task two is writing down their fears. When Ann asks Isobel to take the class seriously, she contemplates and writes down “the lentil.” Ann is irritated, but it’s clear Isobel is afraid of the baby. Now evening, the group comes to their final exercise. Maria asks the group to throw their fears in the fire. Isobel unfolds her paper, but hesitates. Maria asks why she’s reluctant and Isobel tries to explain she can’t just throw the thing she is afraid of in the fire. Maria seems to be momentarily affected by Isobel’s emotion. She encourages Isobel to set herself free of her fear. Isobel stands and slowly repeats the mantra as she sets the paper in the fire.
Kyle takes notes while watching surgery when Steph interrupts his thoughts. He’s irritated with her disregard for the patient and she makes a snide comment about the healthcare system as she packs up her nail polish, and more notably her bottle of nail polish remover (do we have another alien on our hands?!). Kyle knows she’s the dean of surgery’s daughter and points out her privilege to top notch healthcare thanks to her father’s insurance coverage. She rolls her eyes and walks away as Kyle mutters, “Point, Obama.”
Alex arrives home to find Michael waiting for him. Michael’s had a change of heart and wants to know more about his mother’s life. Alex immediately tells Michael everything he knows. Her name was Nora Truman and she was taken to Caulfield on October 14, 1948, over a year after the crash. He offers to help Michael find out more information, but Michael turns him down with a quick, “I don’t think we should work together.” He adds that he likes Maria and wants to give that relationship his full attention. It’s a subtle break up, but his intentions are clear.
Liz returns to Max’s to find an angry Rosa who loses her cool and tells Liz to go save Max, the reason Roswell thinks she’s a murderer. Liz tries to reason with Rosa, pointing out Max was just a kid, but Rosa won’t listen. Their argument really highlights the age and maturity gap between the sisters. Liz wants to reason and talk while Rosa wants to rage and run away. Though she just got Rosa back, Liz makes the hard choice to help Rosa leave Roswell if she thinks she won’t relapse. Instead of answering, Rosa goes for a walk which ultimately takes her to the cafe rooftop.
Maria emerges from The Wild Pony to find Michael, Michael’s truck, and Michael’s airstream now in the parking lot. When she questions him, he says he heard she was sleeping at the bar hoping her mom might show up. He brushes it off as nothing. He’s just watching the parking lot. Taking a page from Max’s book (and Liz’s advice) he turns back to Maria and puts his heart on the line. He confesses his feelings and apologizes for how he’s been treating her. His speech moves Maria who agrees to allow him to stay and the two kiss. (Bravo to Michael Vlamis and Heather Hemmens for this scene.)
Alex returns to the hospital to look in on Manes when Flint appears and the two exchange words. Suddenly, Manes convulses and falls to the ground. Both men are troubled by the sight but it’s Flint who yells for a doctor while Alex only watches.
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At home, Isobel holds the vial of poisonous serum as she repeats the mantra, “I choose to set myself free.” She puts a single drop on her finger, and licks it in the hopes that it will be enough to abort the pregnancy but not so much that it hurts her.
Rosa has fallen asleep on the café sign. Dreaming, she yells at Max’s pod, but he appears and again begs her to stop Liz, to pull his body from the pod and let him completely die. Rosa focuses her anger on Max and decides he deserves to suffer, but he threatens to continue haunting her if she doesn’t cooperate. She’s been teetering on the edge the whole episode and it’s Max that finally makes her fall. “I never dreamed when I was using,” she says. She wakes up and downs the tequila she found in her old bedroom.
“Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space” was an emotional episode. Rosa’s rage, Isobel’s fear, Michael’s grief, and Liz’s hope all drive these characters to some extreme choices. We can’t wait to see where their journey takes them!
Season 2, Episode 2 Cowboy Hat Tally: 5
Roswell, New Mexico airs Mondays on The CW at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT