REVIEW: Motherland: Fort Salem – 1.08: “Citydrop”

“I see you trust your unit. That’ll get you through.”

We knew this episode was going to be intense, what with the test of the Citydrop being incredibly vital to each cadet’s training. But we had no clue just how much so, and that it wouldn’t be a traditional Citydrop. Salva up, witches, because it’s a bumpy ride.

“She told you what you needed to hear”: There were many things about Raelle finding out about Scylla’s true identity that kind of shocked me. First of all, I was a little shocked that Raelle hadn’t figured it out to begin with, since she knows Scylla has done some questionable things in the past. But I guess she was just blind by love? Secondly, I was completely thrown that Raelle found out right away and through fixing Tally. But when I think about it, I think this was the bold and best choice. Because we’re seeing Raelle slowly come to terms that Scylla is in fact Spree, as well as how it affects her unit. For instance, I don’t think I’ve ever seen Tally this “in charge” before, but gone is her smiling self, and in its place a warrior (but I’ll get into that in a bit).

Throughout the episode, we see many people tell Raelle that Scylla just did and said what she had to do for Spree purposes only. And I honestly think this has broken her. “Even if it is you,” she tells the Spree leader posing as Scylla right before she kills her. We know the Raylla confrontation that’s most likely going to occur next week is going to be heartbreaking for both parties now.

I am witch, hear me roar!

“What if it wasn’t honorable?”: As mentioned, we see a new side of Tally in this episode. Gone is her naivety and usual perky self. I think part of that has to do with the fact that the Citydrop is a very important test, and that she’s been holding the “Scylla is Spree” secret for a little bit now; that’s bound to drive a girl crazy. On top of that, she’s getting into her power of Sight and really helped lead the attack that the cadets made on the Spree. But hold your happy tears for Tally in becoming a stronger witch. I have so many feelings on the Spree attack. I think this was another great example of seeing General Alder in her true light. Do I think she’s a bad person? No, I think she’s always trying to look out for her witches and civilians. But, it’s almost like she has tunnel vision with the Spree. She wants to take them out regardless of the consequences. Like dropping the tasks of the Citydrop and forcing the cadets to handle the Spree (they’re not even soldiers yet!). Willing to destroy the second Spree truck, even though there were civilian hostages on-board. Everyone involved could see how morally wrong this was, but you don’t say no to General Alder.

I definitely think the morally grey actions of the Army/Alder will continue to play out throughout the season and in hopefully future seasons (#RenewMFS already!). What are your thoughts on the Army/Alder’s actions? I think what’s so interesting about this show, is that almost every single character is morally grey, and I can understand everyone’s point of view – including the Spree, to be honest.

When I said I wanted a heartbreaking story-line for Abigail, I didn’t mean put it on repeat.

“Get up, Swythe.”: RIP Libba Swythe. It was hinted that a character was going to die in this episode and I immediately had a feeling it was going to be Libba. She’s one of the few important minor characters (besides Tally’s friend, Glory), and her death would honestly make a lasting impression on everyone. Throughout the series she’s been incredibly confident in her skills, and we’ve even seen Abigail and Libba’s frenemy relationship turn rather sweet. So, by killing her off, it’s only that much harder.

I tweeted this during the episode (and made a few people mad), but I definitely got My Girl vibes from Abigail’s discovery of Libba’s body. Her continued “Get up, Swythe,” was heart-wrenching. Speaking of Abigail, even in the early stages of the Citydrop, we definitely saw the grief of Charvel’s death still linger within Abigail. She nearly killed a solider, for goddess’ sake! But I think that was good to see, because you don’t get over something tragic like that, in a matter of days. Now with Libba’s death, I can’t imagine what must be going through her head right now. I’m also curious from a standpoint with the Army. Will future cadets and their parents be so willing to “answer the call” and go through conscription because a young solider died? Will this plan Alder impulsively created, backfire in having more people join the Spree?

What did you think of 1.08: “Citydrop”?

The next new episode of Motherland: Fort Salem, 1.09: “Coup” airs Wednesday at 9/8c on Freeform.

The Raylla confrontation we’ve been predicting and waiting for since the near beginning. “Was any of it real?” This is going to be painful.