After the collections of elaborate names and references, Terminator the Sarah Connor Chronicles 2×09 Complications has a refreshingly simple name, but not a particularly refreshing plot. Instead what might pass as the main story involves Sarah Connor on a return trip to Mexico taking ill with a fever and having a series of hallucinatory dreams full of all sorts of wacky symbolism. That sort of plot is usually a terrible idea and Terminator the Sarah Connor Chronicles 2×09 Complications isn’t much of an exception to the rule.
By the time the episode drags Sarah Connor back to a shrink, I couldn’t help missing Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor who would have put three bullets through any shrink who came near her. Naturally the writers of Terminator the Sarah Connor Chronicles have already forgotten that Sarah Connor spent years locked up, drugged and tortured in a psychiatric hospital. So naturally the first place she goes for answers is to a shrink.
The far more interesting second story involves Derek getting dragged into Jessie’s kidnapping of a man she claims is one of the Grays from the future, who is collaborating with Skynet. Issues of alternate futures come up, as does Jessie’s agenda, as she clearly knows a good deal more than she’s telling, while Derek can’t seem to remember anything at all. When Fischer’s younger self is dragged in and put in the same room, it’s a great Science Fiction moment that reminds you of what Terminator the Sarah Connor Chronicles could be if it let go of all the Battlestar Galactica angst and tried telling great stories instead.
Meanwhile John and Cameron go off on a fool’s errand looking for Cromartie’s body, which has been stolen by Agent Ellison. But despite that, Cameron still steals major chunks of the episode, as Glau plays her with disturbing alien awareness, that is most pronounced when she inhumanly discusses her sensations or asks about the tortoise and then turns Ellison right side up after beating him nearly senseless. It’s a nice adaptation of Blade Runner’s famous tortoise empathy test and a chilling moment all in one.