Synopsis: Things really heat up in this week’s The Barrier. Emilia (Angela Molina) insists that it’s time for Julia (Olivia Molina)to leave. Because she senses the authorities may be about to discover Julia’s real identity. Of course, this deeply concerns Hugo (Unax Ugalde). However, soon they all have reason to celebrate, or so it seems . . .
Alma (Eleonora Wexler) decides to bring Marta (Laura Quiros) back to her family. Firstly, she instructs Marta not to discuss the procedures she’s been subjected to. The warning seems to be enough, as Marta keeps her word, resisting questions from her father, Hugo. Eventually, her grandmother, Emilia, finds out the truth. This, as a storytelling device is potent. Marta is clearly scared, which means Alma’s influence has worked.
The other event that the plot of this week’s The Barrier involves a baby. Alex (Daniel Ibanez) discovers it. In last week’s episode, Alex was sent to a flat, where he met Iris (Angela Chica). She’s a member of “The Resistance”, along with her father. Also there is Daniela (Belen Ecija). It’s here that he finds the baby. The mother has died of the virus. Iris tells him that he has to take the baby, as they have arranged transport, to safety. Emilia states that this will only happen in exchange for Julia also gaining passage to safety. Iris reluctantly agrees. If Julia does disappear, this will dramatically effect Hugo’s employment status, and consequentially, Marta, too. On top of this,
The dramatic conclusion to the episode works brilliantly. Owing to some clever writing, you’re once more led to believe one thing. Another is true. Emilia’s letter to Julia really does make you think that time has run out for her daughter. This is helped by the fact it’s revealed that Colonel Enrique (Manu Fullola) seems to have worked out who Julia really is. In a brilliant twist, he enlists help (via blackmail) from a source nobody would suspect at all, exactly for that reason.
Laura Quiros as Marta shines again. A fantastic child actor, who can switch from fun loving to terrified in an instant. Her scenes with Hugo and Julia, as they’re reunited, are fine examples of her ability. When Alex sees Marta for the first time, and accidentally hurts by knocking her sore arm, Quiros shows the change in the child exceptionally.
Using real life mother and daughter, Angela and Olivia Molina, as Emilia and Julia, is an inspired move. The two women’s love for one another oozes from the screen. Not only do they look the real deal, but their emotions come over so genuinely. Angela Molina, in particular, shone this week, capturing maternal desperation and anguish.
Abel Folk’s depiction of Luis deserves praise, too. In a fine cast, his performance is sometimes overlooked. This is understandable. However, in many ways, his role holds so much together. His ability to command absolute authority, essential for the character, is critical. Folk does exactly that, with poise and skill.
CGI & Effects
There’s no real big moment in this week’s The Barrier. Yet, generally, the visual representation of the story-world is as powerful as ever. One example which illustrates this is the difference between Alma and most of the other women. Daniela, too. They look well groomed, with shiny, healthy hair and skin. Their nails are pristine, too. These details really matter, and help to make the deep divisions so clear. In doing this, themes of inequality explode onto the screen.
The weaponry of the show continues to be chilling, due to its realism. using drones this way is a perfect way to explore “societal surveillance”, and if we’re half way there. No other show does this so well.
More of the same from The Barrier, this week. This episode contained so many “almost” moments. The inhabitants of 2045 Madrid are only ever moments from doom. The idea that the rich and powerful decide the lives of the masses isn’t fiction. What The Barrier does is take the concept to the furthest logical conclusion. Once Luis, a high ranking minister, has spoken, there are no questions. His power is feared by all those he rules over. No exceptions.
As the episode that marks the halfway point of series one of The Barrier, the events in it were vital. Now that Colonel Enrique seems to know who Julia is, things will be even more gripping. especially with who he now has onside.
- CGI & Effects9.5