La Brea: Did NBC’s Sinkhole Drama Pull You In? Grade the Premiere! — Plus, Natalie Zea Tackles a Burning Question
La Brea: Did NBC’s Sinkhole Drama Pull You In? Grade the Premiere! — Plus, Natalie Zea Tackles a Burning Question.
With La Brea, NBC took you to a place down under — that is, deep under Los Angeles — on Tuesday night. Have you been sucked in by the sinkhole drama?
In La Brea, Natalie Zea (Justified) plays Eve Harris, an office manager,
and mother who was driving past the La Brea Tar Pits & Museum with her daughter Izzy (Zyra Gorecki) and son Josh (Jack Martin) when a massive sinkhole formed at an intersection,
swallowing a startled traffic cop and then ripping the Earth from beneath many buildings and cars.
Eve and the kids jumped out and made a break for it after driving away backward down a sidewalk (! ), but when Josh was knocked down by the rush, Eve doubled back.
As a result, despite Izzy’s best attempts to drag their mother to safety, they both plummeted into the sinkhole.
After a safe landing… someplace… Eve searched a vast area of woods, farms, and hills for Josh.
First, she ran into a guy named Ty (Chiké Okonkwo), who was brandishing a gun (for reasons revealed later).
Eve spotted flames in the distance and dashed over to a clearing,
where she saw Josh and a slew of other people, as well as cars, street signs, and construction materials.
We met stoner Scott (Rohan Mirchandaney) there, while folks attempted to make sense of what had happened/where they were… Riley (Veronica St. Clair) is an adolescent,
and her father, Sam (Jon Seda), is a psychiatrist and a former SEAL… Marybeth, a police officer who eats a lot of protein bars (Karina Logue).
Gavin (The Night Shift‘s Eoin Macken), Josh and Izzy’s father, has called in a favor to obtain a pre-interview at the Air Force Base in El Segundo – he says that he wants to be near to his kids,
who just relocated to L.A. Gavin’s 20-year career as a pilot came to an abrupt halt when he started “seeing things” after an accident in the desert.
As Gavin walks out of the meeting, word of the sinkhole breaks, which Gavin rushes out to after a frantic Izzy phones him.
Gavin finds and embraces Izzy just as a flock of huge, threatening birds flies out of the sinkhole,
apparently able to reach within a respectable distance of this L.A. traffic-jamming natural catastrophe (!) and after effortlessly scooting by barriers and a policeman (!!).
We’d seen this type of bird before, in one of Gavin’s headache-inducing “visions.”
Dr. Sophia Nathan of Homeland Security holds a news conference near the sinkhole,
stating that there is no way to locate survivors of such a disaster.
(She later scoffs to a colleague that she was not going to tell the “truth” about what occurred.) Gavin argues to Dr. Nathan that there are survivors after a fresh “vision” in which he saw Eve and Josh in the same location as the primeval bird.
Nathan pretends not to be persuaded when he recites the tailfin number of the drone that DHS flew into the aurora borealis (but crashed within the sinkhole),
but secretly nudges an Agent Markman to get the 411 on this man.
Gavin then discovers an old picture of him and Eve near the big rock from his vision, one with a handprint sign on it, in order to support his hypothesis.
He then drives out to the rock in question and starts excavating. Gavin unearths the wedding ring necklace that Eve usually wears but lost after her fall into the sinkhole,
just as Izzy and her Aunt Jessica (Ione Skye) come to see what the hell he’s up to!
Back down below….
Riley and Scott find Virgin Mary figurines and heroin bricks inside one car’s trunk while searching for supplies. Meanwhile,
Eve and Josh have just caught Marybeth stockpiling protein bars when a roaring dire wolf appears.
They dash towards camp, where they are joined by a second wolf.
As everyone scrambles for shelter, Scott loses track of Riley when she begs him to allow her inside a vehicle, so she scrambles underneath.
Before Ty uses his pistol to bring down the beast, one wolf tackles and nips at Josh. Sam does the best he can inside an inverted bus to save the severely injured Josh,
but he requires medicines, needles, and other supplies. Eve recalls seeing an ambulance fall into the sinkhole, so when it becomes dark (don’t get me started on Hollow Earth “sunsets”),
they track down the car a mile or two distant, with the aid of the suicidal Ty.
Eve looks at the outline of the Hollywood Hills in the ambulance’s emblem as they do… and notices that it resembles the hills in the distance. “I believe we’re still in Los Angeles,” she speculates, just as a saber-toothed tiger charges at them!
What happens next?
Natalie Zea previews the episode for TVLine, saying, “We run,” as Eve said in the final seconds. “We’d previously seen the wolves [that attacked the camp],
but this is the first time they’ve seen a long-extinct animal,” says the narrator. That’s when the realization that we’re no longer in Kansas sinks in.”
In the spirit of “Not Kansas,” how come Eve, Josh, Sam, and the rest of the gang seem to have landed so carefully on the earth after falling into the deep, deep sinkhole?
“The cast has a theory!” Zea said when asked about the hot question. However, it’s possible that it’s a spoiler. But, yes, we had inquired about the survival criteria, because not everyone who falls into the hole survives… We have some ideas, but I’m not sure they’re correct — and I believe the audience will have to decide.”