Devs (2020) s01e03

About three-quarters through this episode, when I was wondering if Alex Garland had indeed both written and directed this episode as well because it sure doesn’t have as much of the directorial flourish as the two previous episodes, I also realized the show’s closed its open questions. Three-quarters of the way through episode three of eight. And the new A plot Garland does introduce at the end of this episode doesn’t really seem like it’s going to get good mileage.

Of course, it turns out the sensational but entertaining open—albeit entirely ripped out of Timeline at this point—is going to be the episode high point. Unless you count a Janet Mock cameo as Nick Offerman’s favorite senator, who wants to know what he’s got cooking in the Devs department. Mock brings some energy.

Though, given we find out Devs workers Cailee Spaeny and Stephen McKinley Henderson use “The Machine” for porn and it turns into a comedy thing with disapproving Alison Pill, this episode does have a lot of energy. But the main cast’s performances are still muted.

Except when lead Sonoya Mizuno has a panic attack in Zach Grenier’s office during a meeting where she tells Grenier all about dead boyfriend Karl Glusman being a spy and whatnot. It’s Mizuno’s best scene in the series so far. By far.

But then when Mizuno heads back to Jin Ha’s apartment to examine all the evidence she’s collected, they pretty quickly discover the answers to all Mizuno’s questions. They don’t have the motives and they don’t know what’s going in the Devs department, but Mizuno’s arc is basically done.

Though I’m still confused what the reversed security camera footage thing Garland does at the end (he’s seen Zodiac too, by the way). It either discounts Mizuno and Ha’s discoveries or it just turns out Offerman and Grenier are kind of dopes.

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