Talking Hurts is the seventh 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]
Operation Fun[edit | edit source]
Michael Stearns comes to, hearing Colleen's voice. She tells him that she needs him to focus, and look in his laptop for a file embedded in a folder marked "Fun." He tells her he doesn't understand and she tells him again to look. He does so and is shocked - finding terrible pictures. "Two years of snuff porn traded and stockpiled by you," she explains. She says that the records and timestamps are very clear and she makes a call, saying that "Operation Fun has been deployed." He demands to know what's going on and she tells him that she didn't marry him for his good looks or his nature, that she's always looked after him. She tells him it's her purpose and that he's to do nothing at all. She's written a statement for him to greenlight the vaccine with no further testing. She tells him he's to read it to the press with a smile on his face or he's going to prison.
Kevin Christie watches a news conference with his brother, Thomas Christie about Dale Warwick. Arby shows up and he smiles at him and nods. He opens the door, asking if he's feeling better. He asks if he's back with them and Arby nods. On the news, the fake Charlotte, Lily, tells the press that she's an orphan and she's trying to think of Warwick's death as a healthier start. She tells the reporters that her relationship with her father wasn't healthy and not entirely proper. Kevin Christie is shocked and confused, wondering just what it is she's doing. He shouts, saying that they make up the stories and that she needs to be shut down. He asks if Arby can shut it down, telling him to go now. As he starts to leave, he tells him that the life they gave him is a million times better than whatever he would have had and that he's earning his place. He tosses him a box of raisins and he leaves. Back at Stearns's, Stearns tells Colleen that he thought he would never be loved and then he met her. He thought it was simple. She tells him that it was her purpose to make him love him. He tells her he showed her his real self and she tells him he shows it to everybody and that's why she was needed. She says that they made sure his vaccine is going to save the world. He finds an object that was originally at the fake house of Dale Warwick's and asks just who it is that she works for. She tells him that it's people who will change the world and that he works for them too.
Jessica Hyde and the group arrive at the house. She gets out of the car, telling them to wait for her and to ignore the screams. She opens a window and enters the house, where Stearns is reading out the speech that Colleen prepared. Outside, Alice asks if Stearns is why her mother is dead. Ian agrees that he might be. Jessica points a gun at him and she tells him that he's been doing a lot of talking, but now he's going to talk to her. Alice rushes into the house and the others rush after her. Stearns raises his hands and Colleen demands to know who they all are. Meanwhile, Lily lives it up back at her fake home, enjoying the latest in technology and accessories and planting lipstick kisses on a wall. Arby arrives, asking how much she told the police. "Nothing about Home," she tells him. He walks up to her, telling her she was told not to talk at all. He asks why she keeps talking. At Kevin's office, Thomas Christie enters, asking him if it's time for good news. He tells him that Operation Fun was a huge success. He tells him that the fact it even had to be implemented means that he failed. Thomas tells him that once the vaccine ships, Michael Stearns goes away. He'll get "the full anthrax treatment," alone in his basement lab when he infects himself. Kevin agrees it's a good idea and that he really needed him to have one. Back at the fake home, Lily tells Arby that she waited all her life to fulfill her purpose as a martyr, but that Charlotte got to do it instead. She was out in the world with people who didn't know what their purposes were. She asks if he can imagine and he tells her that he can't. She says she wanted to talk to people using words she hadn't memorized and she couldn't help it. He tells her she should have. She tells him the world is big and he asks if she likes the world. "I love the world," she replies. She asks if he's ever had Pepsi.
Enyo[edit | edit source]
Michael Stearns, shirtless is patted down by Ian, who finds no scars and says that he's not Mr. Rabbit. They examine his feet but find nothing there either. They check everything thoroughly, including his junk, but find nothing. Jessica asks for a knife, saying she doesn't give up easily. She has him sit, asking why he was in the asylum. He tells her he was in a bad place. "That was you," he says to Colleen. He tells Jessica that Colleen is a secret agent, that she said their marriage was her purpose. She takes the knife to her lip, asking if she's with the Harvest. She babbles that she's in mortgages and Stearns shouts that she's playing dumb. Jessica cuts her and demands again to know if she's Harvest. She shouts that she's just a housewife, but Jessica realizes that something is off. "Just a wife would scream." Colleen rolls over and shatters the binding on her wrists. She pulls a gun and points it at Jessica. Jessica disarms her and they fight hand to hand. As Colleen displays expert martial art skills, Ian asks who she is and Stearns admits "I don't know who she is!" Jessica tries to strangle her with her own hair, but she downs Jessica to the floor. From behind a counter, she stands up, Jessica apparently down for the count on the ground. Shocked, Alice shoots her in the chest. "Colleen?" Stearns asks hoarsely. She collapses and Jessica rises. She nods at Alice.
Arby sits, sipping a Pepsi and surrounded by stuffed animals. Lily tells him that she knows he could kill her if he wanted to and would if they told him to. She says he always does what they tell him to and he notes that she isn't. She replies that she's doing what's best, that the next generation needs to step up. She says she'll be able to provide solace, guidance and leadership ten years from now when people start to realize what's happening, that it's her purpose. He tells her she can't decide her own purpose. She says she thought that too. He asks if she thinks Christie loves her and she says that she thinks it was the most efficient way for him to train her to fulfill her purpose. He asks if she can forgive him and she shrugs. He continues that he thinks it's wrong that they made him into a monster, that every child needs love. He tells her that he doesn't want to be called Arby anymore, that his name is "John" now. She asks him what his plan is and he tells her that he's going to bring her back, that she's like a bird. Back at Stearns's place, Jessica ransacks various drawers. She has Wilson cut Stearns free of his handcuffs and has him cut his hand. Ian counsels Alice, telling her that everyone gets sad, and when that happens, he does something silly to make himself feel better. She tells him that shooting Colleen made her happy, but only for a second and she feels worse now. Grant comes up and starts jumping on the bed, getting her to smile. They jump and Ian puts on some music, drowning out the sounds of Stearns's sobs and screams as Jessica tortures him. They find a reference to "Enyo" in the comic, Katherine Milner's cosplay name. Stearns demands to know just what they are talking about. He tells them that the virus is being delivered, referencing what he learned before about the traveling petting zoo. He tells them that someone has engineered his flu, putting it inside of rabbits. The kids are going to the zoo and playing with the bunnies. It looks like an outbreak and the zoos move on. He shows them the website he discovered, showing the zoo's stops and how they all match where the outbreaks have been. He tells them that they can fight it.
Wilson tours the house, rambling about all the junk cluttering up Stearns's house. He shouts at Stearns, telling him he has way too much stuff. The group visits the newest stop of the petting zoo, dressed up in fake hazmat suits made from Stearn's shower curtains. They spray down the place with gas, then shoot the rabbits and start a huge fire, taking away single rabbit for examination. Meanwhile, John and Lily arrive Home. She asks if they're going to make her disappear and he tells her to just say what they tell her to say. He rings a bell and another bell sounds in the distance. She tells him it's not her purpose and he asks her to just pretend. A boy arrives and Arby asks if "he" is home. The boy tells him that he is and very disappointed. Lily bids him goodbye, going with the boy. She meets Kevin Christie inside a gazebo. He has a tea set laid out for her. She sits down next to him and he asks if she knows why he started home. She says that it's to raise kids to be how humans should be. He agrees that it's a society in a vacuum, where kids are raised to be brave, selfless, resilient and helpful. He says that some get special purposes and asks what hers was. She replies that it was to be a martyr, but she didn't get to be that. He shushes her, asking what she did instead. She replies that she endangered Home with her selfish and reckless behavior. He asks what they should do with her now.
Are we home?[edit | edit source]
Stearns drives the group back to his lab, asking Jessica if the rabbit is still alive. She pokes her finger into the rabbit's container and it bites her. "Yes," she tells him. Back at the lab, Jessica asks how long it will be before they can kill the rabbit. "Soon," he tells her. Becky goes to get a snack, only to find that the vending machine is out of order. Jessica asks her why she wouldn't want to die. She says that if you're alive, you have a chance to make things better but if you're dead, that's it. Jessica tells her that she'd like to just die, to just stop thinking. Becky tells her that great things could come next. "So far, nothing good has come next," Jessica replies. She says that she wants answers and revenge, but it's all she's been living for. "Then what?" she asks. Becky tells her that she can start living a wonderful life. She says that people are nice and you can talk to them. Jessica says that people just look at their phones and take selfies. Becky counters that they're making memories, but Jessica feels that people just grow old and lose those memories, so it's no good. Becky tells her that living a good life is the win. Jessica hands her some candies, telling her that it's hard to be alive and she wishes she knew if it was worth the trouble. Becky tells her that sometimes it's nice and small and those are the best times. They sit quietly and eat the candy. Jessica puts her head on Becky's shoulder. In his lab, Stearns examines some lab results. He tells them that it's not his flu and the vaccine won't work. He says he saw it with his own eyes, then realizes that perhaps he only thought he saved Charlotte because, after all, he doesn't really know anything anymore. Becky asks what the point is and Stearns says that it's Christie. He owns and sells it. Hearing this, Jessica shoots the rabbit. "Kevin Christie is Mr. Rabbit," she declares. Wilson says that Mr. Rabbit's point isn't simply money, that there has to be something in the vaccine that will kill anyone. Becky suggests that they turn to the Blue Fairy - that in the Utopia comic she's Jessica' guardian angel, but in real life, she's Homeland, Katherine Milner.
They pay a visit to Milner. Jessica points a gun at her neck, asking how she knew her father. Elswhere, Hailey Alvez interviews Kevin Christie, asking how much longer until the vaccine is ready. He tells her they're producing 200,000 vials a day and the first shipment begins at dawn. He then puts forward "Charlotte," who tells her that she's thankful for being alive and for Kevin Christie taking her in. Kevin asks Alvez to respect her privacy as the healing process continues. The interview ends and she apologizes for her previous story on the Simpro. Thomas and Kevin pat each other on the back and watch Alvez giving her report. Milner tells Jessica that her father was part of Homeland's biological crime unit and she was his partner. He had no idea how to take care of her. She asks if Jessica remembers her. She puts down the gun and Wilson says that in Utopia, Milner is Jessica's fairy godmother and gave her a blanket. Milner pulls said blanket out of a cabinet, a pattern of planets and stars upon it. She tells Jessica that she loved it, that it was hers. She continues that Mr. Rabbit had already gotten a hold of Jessica's father by the time Homeland became aware of him. Her father's work ended up becoming horror to the highest bidder and then they were gone, leaving only the blanket. "I've been searching for you ever since," she tells her. Wilson says she can protect her now, that they know who Mr. Rabbit is, Kevin Christie. Milner asks why Christie and Wilson explains about the flu and the vaccine. She notes that the FDA approved it and it's going to save people. Wilson tells her that they have to help him. She says she's met Christie many times and he's a good person and not Mr. Rabbit. "So you're not going to help us?" asks Wilson. She says she's not because they're only giving her a paranoid hunch. They leave, saying they'll do it themselves. They return to the safe house, filling in Ian, Grant and Alice on what they've been up to. Stearns covers up Colleen's body and Jessica says they need to get going. Just then, there is a ring at the doorbell. "Well, are we home?" Wilson asks. Jessica goes to the doorl and looks through the peephole. She opens it, finding a heavily duct-taped body at the door. It's Kevin Christie. Arby is standing around the corner.
Deleted scene[edit | edit source]
A deleted scene for this episode was first revealed at the virtual New York Comic Panel for Utopia on October 8, 2020. In the scene, Becky visits a man, described by show creator Gillian Flynn only as "Tallman," portrayed by Dustin Ingram. He offers Becky a deal: he will give her a large stock of pills to control her Diels syndrome in exchange for the Utopia manuscript. He explains that he is a collector of the last editions of various comics and that Phillip Carson, seen in "Life Begins," was actually his buyer that he sent to Fringecon. Upon learning that he intends to simply keep the comic in a framed case, Becky tells him that they don't have a deal. Angry, he empties the pills into a water tank. Becky then leaves with the comic and drives away, but he chases after her, determined to secure the comic anyway. Jessica Hyde then drives up and wrecks his car. He pulls him out of the car, badly injured, and demands to know why he and Becky were meeting. He tells her about the deal and she asks if Becky made the deal. He reveals that she didn't and she asks who sent him, if it was Mr. Rabbit. He realizes that she is, in fact, actually Jessica Hyde and she shoots him, then tells Becky to get in the car.
Cast[edit | edit source]
Starring[edit | edit source]
- John Cusack as Dr. Kevin Christie
- Ashleigh LaThrop as Becky
- Dan Byrd as Ian
- 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