Welcome back, residents of Patience! Resident Alien debuts another solid outing this week with “The Alien Within.” It produces an extra helping of heartwarming, so-sweet-it’ll-rot-your-teeth magic with its signature cheeky humor. How fitting that Harry contemplates humanity and his inner “monster” amid the Halloween episode.
Ready to delve into “The Alien Within”? Let’s get to it.
We open with a significantly older Harry Vanderspeigle (Alan Tudyk) as he sits on his porch and contemplates life. It’s 60 years into the future, and humanity appears to be very, very extinct. Harry reveals in a voiceover that Asta died long ago, but he clings tightly to her memory. Harry stares at where the lake in front of his cabin used to be, out at the blazing fires in the distance.
Now, we’re back in the present. Harry searches far and wide for the Alien Baby, a.k.a. “Baby,” as Sahar affectionately calls him. No such luck. Meanwhile, Sheriff Mike (Corey Reynolds) and Deputy Liv (Elizabeth Bowen) test the water in Hawthorne Creek based on Liv and Asta’s hypothesis after questioning the relatives of Sam Hodges’ patients. They find the waters are 100 percent poisoned.
Next, Asta (Sara Tomko) questions Harry regarding the unknown alien race that plans to destroy Earth. However, Harry’s preoccupied with decorating for Halloween (The best season. I’ll take no further questions at this time.). Harry assuages Asta’s fears somewhat, but he, once again, gets distracted by his horniness for other extraterrestrials. Horny Harry!
Then, Mike and Liv’s findings lead them to a dumping ground in the lake water, mapping out a clear culprit in the Sam Hodges murder case. Huzzah! Too bad they’re pinning his murder on the wrong person.
My Butt Will Save the World!
Later, we see Sahar (Gracelyn Awad Rinke) and Max (Judah Prehn) standing in line for lunch in the cafeteria. Max interacts with none other than General McCallister (Linda Hamilton), who poses as the new employee on the lunch staff. Sahar notices McCallister’s swanky watch, and a wave of suspicion washes over the young girl.
At the dynamic duo’s secret camper in the woods, Sahar expresses her concerns regarding McCallister, a.k.a. Agnes. Sahar notes the military nature of McCallister’s watch. After Max clutches his stomach in agony, Sahar surmises McCallister planted a tracking device in Max’s food. She procures what looks like a suppository and urges Max to shove it where the sun don’t shine. His butt will save the world!
Meanwhile, Mike and Liv reveal the good news to Asta and Abigail Hodges (Deborah Finkel) regarding the ongoing murder case. Since they found something substantial at Hawthorne Creek, the case will move up to the FBI. Instead of sincerely apologizing to Abigail for wrongfully jailing her, Mike fumbles the ball, gifting her with a unique sheriff’s baseball cap for her troubles. Abigail storms out.
Harry’s Humanity Wins
Next, D’Arcy (Alice Wetterlund) pays Harry a visit at the health clinic. She shows him her twisted, gnarly knee, revealing she needs to be in tip-top shape to compete in an upcoming ski competition. Harry, unable to disclose the truth to D’Arcy, softens the blow by reassuring her she’ll be fine. He prescribes her some painkillers.
After D’Arcy departs, Harry wonders if he’s gone soft. Is he becoming too human, as Asta said? No, of course not — he’s an alien!
Later, Ben (Levi Fiehler) and Kate (Meredith Garretson) deliver a presentation at a town meeting to sell Patience on the idea of getting a resort. We see Asta, D’Arcy, Kayla (Sarah Podemski) and Dan (Gary Farmer) among the crowd, while Mike and Liv stand nearby. Nobody warms to the resort, with D’Arcy reminding Ben and Kate that installing a highway will make traffic unbearable. Plus, it means a special bridge in town will meet its demise.
Dan raises a very reasonable concern about small businesses suffering under the weight of this resort, as the money will only support big corporations. So far, Ben is drowning in a sea of rightful naysayers. Asta scans the room for a sign of Harry, but our fave resident alien isn’t present for the town meeting.
The Alien Within Becomes Without
We see Harry trudge through the snowy landscape on the outskirts of Patience, peeling away his clothing until he’s a naked alien. He vows to remain in his extraterrestrial form perpetually. After the meeting, we see Asta, D’Arcy, Liv and Kayla devise a plan to prevent the resort from coming to fruition. Kate doles out a pep talk for her husband as Ben spirals. He knows no one supports this idea. Kate urges him to ignore what everyone else wants, which isn’t sound advice to give to a town mayor.
Meanwhile, Harry returns to his cabin because the desolate tundra has no pizza. A montage plays out wherein Harry struggles to adapt to life in his alien form. He constantly hits his head on the ceiling and struggles to fit in his shower. Finally, Harry begrudgingly decides to remain in his human skin, citing that Earth isn’t tailored for extraterrestrials. Yeah, we’re not very accommodating in general.
Next, we see David Logan (Alex Barima) observing Max and Sahar on camera, which isn’t creepy. So, McCallister did plant a tracking device in Max. At the station, Detective Lena Torres (Nicola Correia-Damude) bids farewell to the team. Now, the FBI will handle the Sam Hodges case. Torres gifts Liv with some extra police caution tape before turning to Mike. Liv encourages Mike to ask Torres out on a date, but he folds.
Following Torres’s departure, Liv asks Mike why he dropped the ball. Mike acknowledges Torres’s attractiveness and how great she is as a person, but he wants to focus on other things. For example, Mike is thinking about leaving Patience. The city is calling to him again, and he misses drowning under a mound of murder cases. Boo! Liv stands there in shock while he walks away.
Meanwhile, Harry kidnaps Sahar to find out where Baby is. Or did Sahar “adultnap” Harry? It’s up for debate. Max runs into Baby at school, and David learns through his research that Baby is none other than Bobby Smallwood, the kid who went missing 80 years ago. Dun, dun!
Max brings Baby home to hide out. Ben and Kate burst into Max’s room, dressed as Sonny and Cher. It’s Halloween, baby. Time to don the same costumes we wear every year. They notice how peculiar Baby is but don’t comment on it.
I Got You, Babe
It’s trick-or-treat night in Patience, so Ben and Kate invite their first batch of trick-or-treaters for enamel-eroding, sugary sweetness. Ellen (Diana Bang) reveals she’s dressed as Mayor Ben and churns out her best Ben impression. Ben’s feelings are hurt, but he suppresses them. D’Arcy appears on the Hawthorne’s doorstep, asking if Kate can accompany her somewhere special. We see Asta, Kayla and Liv with her.
Unfortunately, Baby escapes Max’s room, so the latter goes hunting for the alien child. Baby wanders back to the camper. Excited to find something familiar, Baby runs toward it. However, McCallister’s soldiers await him inside, luring him with a recording of Sahar’s voice.
Taking Baby Away
Suddenly, we see a helicopter lift the camper away with Baby inside. Harry and Sahar arrive at the site to watch said camper fly away. Baby glimpses Sahar through the window while soldiers detain him. Sahar sobs, turning to Harry for an embrace. His humanity kicks in despite Harry vowing to remain an alien, so he returns the hug. Aw, this moment is so sweet.
Later, the gals take Kate to the special bridge in town. They show her a place underneath said bridge where they carved their names, memorializing the location. They encourage Kate to carve her name, which she puts beside Ben’s. Afterward, they head to the diner, where Dan serves them after hours. Asta, Liv, D’Arcy and Kayla encourage Kate to stop Ben from building the resort in Patience. This town is special and doesn’t need the taint of big corporations dulling its shine. Feeling like part of the family, Kate agrees to talk to Ben. Yay!
Next, Asta barges into Harry’s cabin, under the impression something is dreadfully wrong after he texted her “9-1-1” and some gibberish. He tells her about the government snatching up Baby. Asta notices Harry has an overabundance of unopened mail. She notes an envelope from Violinda along with a note. In the note, Violinda mentions she wants her baby to know its father, a.k.a. Goliath.
Who Is Goliath?
Inside the envelope, we see a book featuring Goliath’s artwork. Asta and Harry flip through the pages. We see this scene spliced with footage from the future, featuring who we think is Harry roaming through a fiery, desolate, post-apocalyptic wasteland. The timeline jumps from 60 years into the future to 300, then 500.
Suddenly, the alien finds a portal and steps through it into Brazil 33 years ago. He transforms into the human man who encounters him and looks like Goliath. Asta spots artwork depicting Harry and Asta standing in the snow the night he fought Jimmy. How could Goliath know about this event when nobody else was present?
Asta turns to Harry, acknowledging a genuine possibility — Harry is Goliath. Dun, DUN!
“The Alien Within” wears the show’s heart on its sleeve: its humanity. It was never about an alien; it was always about the people and how the alien became one of them. Tudyk churns in a stunning performance, deftly showcasing Harry’s struggle to hold onto his standoffish ways. At the same time, he inherently clings to humanity, finding he cares about more humans than merely Asta Twelvetrees.
This episode makes me want to reside in Patience. As someone born and raised in a small town, we had some camaraderie, but it didn’t feel as tight-knit as the Patience community. Take me there!
That massive cliffhanger might have changed the trajectory of not only this season but reframed much, if not all, of the show. Well, that’s if Harry really is Goliath. The jury’s still out on that one. If he is … talk about a whopper of a plot twist. Let’s see what the future holds in these last four episodes of the season.
Resident Alien drops new episodes every Wednesday at 10/9c on your Syfy affiliate.