Note: Do not read on if you have not seen Season 1, Episode 3 of CBS' "Under the Dome," titled "Manhunt."
In tonight's episode, the residents of Chester's Mill learn that their biggest threat is each other and "none of [their] secrets are safe" while they're trapped under the dome.
Last week, rogue cop Paul Randolph shot a fellow cop, which obviously doesn't sit well with the small town. Linda is escorting Paul to the police station when the crowds start to get unruly. As always, Big Jim is there to calm them down, asking them to go back to their houses and pray. Praying is clearly the way to get out of this predicament.
Deputy Linda is clearly the hero of the show so far, levelheaded and brave. Unfortunately, Officer Paul realizes this, fakes an asthma attack, locks her in the cell, and escapes with a gun. Insane cop on the loose! Cue Big Jim, who promises to save everything and arranges a manhunt to take down Paul.
While Big Jim is out there trying to save the town, telling the residents what to do and taking charge, Junior is nowhere to be found. Like any father who is constantly trying to gain more and more power, Big Jim is acutely aware of his creepo son's effect on his image. He tells him that he better step up and make his father look good.
Junior, however, is still too busy playing Annie Wilkes to Angie's Paul Sheldon. Angie somehow found a contraband radio in her fallout shelter, so she's not totally oblivious to what's happening outside her cell. When Junior comes in with food, she decides to play a new role -- maybe if she can pretend to be interested in him she can get him to do what she wants. She suggests he return to a cement factory they used to sneak away to as a couple. Apparently the tunnels are deeply rooted under the city and lead outside of Chester's Mill. Of course, Junior obliges. But more importantly, Angie has figured out how to keep her camera-ready ringlets perfect while trapped underground for two days.
Later, at the town diner, people are talking. Rumors are flying about Julia and Barbie, who are living alone together in Julia's house. Rennie shows up at the diner to tell everyone about the cop on the loose and request that the town stay on lock down. He recruits Barbie and two diners to go on a manhunt to find Officer Paul. The men set off into the forest, and find the cop who is shooting loose bullets. He fires at one of the search party men, and runs off.
While the adults are on a manhunt, the teenagers flock to Joe's house, because he's the only one with a generator (also, no parents, WOO!). It's been two days and they can't text. I'm surprised a revolt hasn't happened sooner. With all the kids showing up at Joe's house, his friend remarks that he's finally popular. Joe is supposed to be the science-loving nerd, but it's hard to reconcile that with his boy band-worthy looks. Nonetheless, things seems to spark between Joe and Norrie, which leads to a quick touch of the hand near the end of the episode. Unfortunately, our teen couple can't be together -- their touch forces both to the ground in a seizure. That's technically second base, right?
Anyway, back to Big Jim and Barbie, who refuse to give up on their manhunt. While walking in an empty forest, armed with large guns, Big Jim tells Barbie a story about his high school football past; after being taunted about his size, Rennie shattered a fellow player's pelvis to "command respect." So he's been screwed up for a while. Good to know. He seems to be telling this story to Barbie as a threat, but before it can go any further Officer Paul appears, pointing a gun at his head. Thankfully, Deputy Linda shows up and shoots Paul before he can kill either man.
Meanwhile, Junior goes to the old cement factory, with Julia trailing behind him. Unsurprisingly, the dome cuts all the way through the tunnels, so Chester's Mill is stuck with the teenage wacko. Junior discovers he has a guest, and he and Julia proceed to have a heart-to-heart. Junior admits he hates his nickname and can't please his father. Julia reveals she was disgraced at her previous journalism job and forced to leave town. When Julia drives Junior home, they discover Big Jim and Barbie discussing something outside of his house. Barbie suggests they reconvene at another time.
By the end of the episode, Julia is clearly far more skeptical of pretty boy Barbie than she was before. She confronts him before bed, asking once more why he just happened to be in Chester's Mill. He continues to claim coincidence but after he leaves the room, Julia finds a map of Chester's Mill with a red X. Julia and Barbie probably aren't going to be the show's lovers after all.
What we learned this episode
The dome may be a drag, but apparently it makes a great half pipe.
At one point in the episode, Jim tells the reverend he has the only thing that can implicate him in "this drug business." We're learning more and more what this propane scheme might entail.
Julia is trying to redeem herself after her failed "big break" in Chicago by stalking every resident in town for a news lead.
Deputy Linda is now the sheriff thanks to Big Jim. But does he really have the power to promote her? Also, can he find her a comfier jail cell to spend the night in?
The town is now down two cops and the entire fire department. Basically, Linda and Big Jim are in charge now. We'll find out if good beats evil.
What we still don't know
Why the teenagers say "pink stars are falling in lines" whenever they have a seizure.
What Barbie's military background is and still, why he was sent to Chester's Mill to murder Julia's husband. Does he have a connection to the propane conspiracy?
Norrie was on her way to a reform camp, but we don't know what lead her there. Also, where she gets her industrial sized tubes of dark lipstick.
"Under the Dome" airs Mondays, 10 p.m. ET on CBS.