not slow not bad is the fourth episode of the Prime Video series Utopia. It, along with the other episodes of the series, were released on September 25, 2020.
Synopsis[edit | edit source]
Plot[edit | edit source]
We found Grant[edit | edit source]
Jessica Hyde and Ian are in a hole that they're digging for the body of Artemis. Jessica stops, calling it good enough, and they drag over the body in a blanket and roll her inside, covering the hole with the blanket. Ian asks if Jessica wants to say a few words, but Jessica starts digging, replying only "Sunrise, shovel fast." They return to the house, telling Becky and Wilson that they found Artemis, then killed her and buried her in the woods. "It was a good grave," agrees Jessica. Ian tells them about the number tattoos under Artemis's fingernails. Ian argues with Jessica, saying that her father's virus killed all the kids they've seen on the news, and he doesn't see how her life is worth more than all of theirs. He says Artemis is a hero for stopping her father before he could make even more viruses. "She still needed to die," says Jessica, saying that the Harvest would have killed her anyway and it would have been a lot worse. She asks who's more human - her staying alive at any cost, or them with their small jobs and tiny apartments, phone screens and texts chirping at them. She says that sometimes she has to kill, and then sees Grant behind her. "You found Artemis, we found Grant," explains Becky.
Grant has a pair of scissors and seems prepared to hurt Jessica if she makes a move towards him, but Becky manages to talk them away from him. Jessica steps forward at him and he holds out his hand, revealing a starburst like hers. "Jessica Hyde?" he asks. She asks if he wants to see the real thing and she reveals it on her arm. She then lunges at him for the comic, but he barricades himself in a bathroom. He goes for a window, but Jessica breaks into the bathroom and pulls him out. He finally manages to get out the window, scattering the pages of the comic and assaulting Jessica with a lawn flamingo. They face off.
Thomas Christie reports to his father Kevin, telling him that Michael Stearns is in the St. Louis Hot Zone. Kevin is annoyed Thomas, as Thomas had said that Michael Stearns was controllable, like a mushroom. Thomas says that they didn't think Stearns had balls, but he did. Kevin calls Stearns the most dangerous man on the planet. Stearns has some pancakes on a dinner. He tells Colleen that all the hotel rooms are booked and she replies that there's a spot for him back at home. He tells her that he misses her, saying he could some answers if he could get some basic information. She tells him he needs to come home, that she's worried about his anxiety. He says he'll call her back and talks with a woman whose wife and kids are trapped in the hot zone. He tells the crowd now gathering around him that he's a virologist. He asks if he can join them and they tell him to come on over.
Vroom vroom[edit | edit source]
Kevin bikes to work with Thomas, telling him to be bold. He replies that he plans to be revolutionary. He enters a red room at the labs, where he meets with the members of the Harvest. He tells them that they have some serious issues. He writes the issues on the board - Utopia, "Where is Jessica Hyde?" He says that it's like a lyric stuck in his head, and he needs it out of his head. He gets to issues 3 and 4 - find those who have seen Utopia, and deal with Michael Stearns. A woman named Cara says that Stearns was supposed to sound the victory bell for them and Thomas agrees that was what was supposed to happen, but it didn't work out that way. She says they need to pull a duet and start manufacturing the vaccine now, that everything needs to happen now. The talk turns to Grant, and how they find him. Thomas says they need to make sure everyone in America is looking for him. They come up with a plan: get a doppelganger and stage a spree killing. Cara thinks this is extreme, but Christie asks what they've done to earn their place in their crowded world. She objects to the plan, asking if nobody else there has a problem with the unnecessary murdering of innocent families at a park. Thomas says he understands she's a mother, but she says it's not about her being weak or sentimental, but that there's a line they can't cross. He asks if she's having doubts about their larger purpose. He asks if they can continue and she nods, saying "Sure." She asks if his father knows about it and he tells her to lean in.
Jessica and Grant continue to stare at each other. She says she's not going to hurt him, but he must be a smart kid to trick the grown-ups into thinking he's one of them. He also got Utopia, the one thing that they all talked about doing. She says she looks at him and sees that his clothes are too small for him and he smells bad. So nobody will care that he's going to spend the rest of his life being hunted. She warns him that he'll end up just like her and won't like it. She asks him to look at Utopia so they can figure things out together. She tells him that she's been running forever trying to find answers and he's the kid who found them. They go back inside and she begins laying out the pages of the comic. Wilson says that something about what they're seeing feels off. He says it could take months to decode, but Jessica replies that she doesn't have months. Jessica sees an image of a carousel and it triggers something in her memory. Ian asks Jessica if she remembers the numbers from the tattoos underneath the fingernails. 7-7-3-1-5-3-7-0-7-1 recites Jessica. "It's here," Ian replies, indicating a clock on a page of Utopia with those numbers. They write it down and Becky inserts commas into it, saying that it's the world population. Ian wonders if that means everyone is going to die. Wilson, however, writes it a different way - (773) 153-7071 - it's a phone number with a Chicago area code.
They consider whether or not to call it and Jessica decides they should. The response on the other end of the line is a female voice - "Department of Homeland Security, Agent Katherine Milner." Jessica replies that she's Jessica Hyde and that Artemis told her to contact her. She replies that she knows neither name. She says that her cosplay name is Enyo and they have the wrong number and hangs up. A ringtone plays and a message comes on saying that the Harvest started moving the second they contacted her. It continues to take the 355 north for 22 miles to 1100 Durham Rd. "Leave now. Leave how Artemis taught you." Jessica starts breaking furniture, ordering the group to make her some kindling. Jessica finds some matches and paint thinner. She tries to burn Samantha's body, but they talk her out of it. She turns on the gas and they leave, the house exploding. She gets in the car. "Vroom vroom," she comments to Ian and they drive away, Samantha's body left out in the field.
Where the heart is[edit | edit source]
Cara talks with Kevin Christie, annoyed about being put out of commission. She asks if it's about Simpro and he tells her it was a good idea, that it got attention on him and came back clean, vindicating him. He tells her they were rock-solid until Michael. She asks why she's on the sidelines and he tells her she's just holding down the fort. He tells her that Thomas isn't ready, that he might never be. He asks how he was during the meeting and she replies that he has strong ideas, but he needs to be grounded. He tells her she can help him. He takes a call from Dr. Dearborn. Michael Stearns studies an outbreak map of the flu, wondering how it could be spreading. Unable to come to any firm conclusion, he throws down his tablet. He joins the hot zone protestors with a sign, and speaks with a man named Dale Warwick, who says that he's a doctor and could be helping out. He tells the man that he has a sample of the vaccine and the man is aggravated, saying he could be helping his daughter. They shake hands as Thomas Christie enters the hot zone.
On the road, Jessica suddenly demands that they stop the car and let her out. She tells the group not to trust Milner and if she tries to get them to go anywhere, to not do so. She says also to not let her know they have Utopia. Ian asks if she's not coming and she replies that it was his idea. She says to try to find out if she knows the way Home and see if she's worth trusting. She leaves with Grant, saying that if they torture them to tell them that she's dead. Wilson exits the car, saying he's cut back to one torture a month. Becky and Ian arrive outside an abandoned Toys R Us store. They enter a back room propped open with a plush toy and find a woman sitting in a chair. They sit down across from her. "Jessica," says the woman, "I'm so thankful to finally meet you." She then realizes that Becky is not, in fact, Jessica Hyde. She asks where Jessica is and Becky replies that they don't know her. She gets up, saying not to waste her time. Becky tells her that they know Utopia. They tell her they're not going to tell a stranger the secrets of Utopia because she asks. "You're Homeland, what do you know about Harvest?" asks Ian. Milner replies that they think she won't tell them, but she will because they should know. She tells them that after 9/11, the U.S. government recruited a group of scientists to beat the world with biological warfare, a new arms race. They don't want to use the diseases, but they do want to have more than anyone else. Nestled among the group were a few rogue scientists, who became the Harvest, controlled by Mr. Rabbit. They made weapons which could target people by race or even religion. Weave the virus into tampons and target by gender.
Ian asks who Mr. Rabbit is and she replies that in 2002, Mr. Rabbit made a deal with a group in China to provide them with a particularly vicious strain of flu. His clients reneged, so he went to China and killed more than 800. They finally caught him and tortured him, releasing his identity and setting him loose. "A little game - run, rabbit," to see who would kill him first. Rather than going underground, he began killing everyone who might know who he was, 65 people on 5 continents, then he went underground. She asks if this information has made them feel better. "No?" she asks. "Homeland Security doesn't tend to make people feel better." She starts to leave and Ian asks if they could at least seek asylum with her. "No," she answers, saying they don't have Jessica Hyde or Utopia. Becky asks just why she wants Jessica Hyde and she replies that it's Mr. Rabbit that wants Jessica Hyde, that she knows something that makes her very dangerous to him and she likes that about her. "Tell Jessica I can be a friend," she says and this time leaves for good. "Where's Home?" Becky asks. "Where the heart is," Milner quips.
Harder than the others[edit | edit source]
Arby enters a classroom where a teacher is giving a lesson about tigers. The teacher greets him by name and the kids all greet him and wave as well. He asks for a helper and selects a boy named Adam who looks a lot like Grant. The boy eagerly joins him. The teacher asks if he'll be back and Arby replies "If he listens." Ian and Becky drive along, discussing their bad news, when they encounter the rest racing towards them. They ask what's happening, but it turns out they're just messing with them. Jessica says they're going to Chicago. Arby meets with Kevin Christie, who says that this one is going to be harder on him than the others. "I don't see why," replies Arby and Kevin says that part of him hopes he does see why once it happens. He tells Arby that Adam is a nice one and will be happy to help. He tells Arby to do it humanely, wondering if he really knows what that means. "Not slow and not bad" replies Arby. Christie replies that it's as a good an answer as any.
Back in the car, Wilson asks Jessica what she remembers about Utopia and Home. She tells him that she was only 6 or 7 when she moved to Home. She lived in her own house, mostly alone, with her dad only visiting sometimes and that giant presents were always coming in and out. She says it was important that she never open any of the presents. There was a man who brought her cookies. They point out that Dystopia ends with Mr. Rabbit bringing her cookies, Wilson asking if she remembers the face of the man who brought her cookies. She says she doesn't remember. Wilson says that she might actually know who Mr. Rabbit is. Outside the hot zone, Dale Warwick shows Stearns a photo of his daughter Charlotte and PFC Betsy Ruskin tells Stearns that he's been cleared. He wishes luck to those outside and Warwick tells him to tell his daughter that he loves her. Stearns then declares that his "medical partner" comes with him and Warwick is allowed entry as well. They suit up and enter a tent, where Warwick's daughter is suffering from the flu. Warwick turns to Stearns, saying that his daughter is a fighter and wants to live.
In the car, Wilson shows Grant Sam's Dystopia notebook, saying he wishes Sam could have seen all of Utopia. They see a page sketched by Sam and realize that they don't have all of Utopia. Back at Alice's, she discovers a note - "I'll be back for this. Keep it safe." Under her bed, she discovers a number of pages of Utopia. Arby puts some gloves on the boy Adam, gloves with Grant's fingerprints. He dresses him in a hoodie and hands him a rifle. "No time like the present," he says, handing him a key. The boy enters a house and sets the rifle on a table, spreading the fingerprints around the house. Arby then kills everyone within the house, but not before being recognized by Cara. He then sees a young boy he previously missed. Shuddering and panting, he kills him as well. He screams.
Cast[edit | edit source]
Starring[edit | edit source]
- John Cusack as Dr. Kevin Christie
- Ashleigh LaThrop as Becky Todd
- Dan Byrd as Ian Ackerman
- Desmin Borges as Wilson Wilson
- Christopher Denham as Arby
- Javon "Wanna" Walton as Grant Bishop
- Farrah Mackenzie as Alice
- Cory Michael Smith as Thomas Christie
- Jeanine Serralles as Colleen
Guest starring[edit | edit source]
- Sonja Sohn as Agent Katherine Milner
- Hadley Robinson as Charlotte
- Fiona Dourif as Cara Frostfield
- Jessica Rothe as Samantha J.
- Camryn Manheim as Artemis
- Tim Hopper as Dale Warwick
Co-starring[edit | edit source]
- Bernard Gilbert as Steve/Christie Minion #1
- Mike Brunlieb as Minion/Doctor/Photographer Scott
- Michael Emmett Carey as Minion/Doctor Derek
- Jane Baxter Miller as Poster Lady
- Daryn Whitney Harrell as PFC Betsy Ruskin
- Cortney McKenna as Teacher
- Brady Dustin Harris as Fake Grant/Adam
- Jason Bradley as Tense Guy
- Danielle Stahl as Au Pair
- Connor Norris as Jake Frostfield
- Jada Moore as Anna Frostfield
- Richard Gallion Jr. as Sam Frostfield
- Luis Cortes as Christie Employee #1/Jim
- Kyla Wenger as Christie Employee #2
- Fallon Katz as Kid #1
- London Rome as Kid #2
- Sarah Wisterman as Teen #1
- Chloe Baldwin as Teen #2