Checking in with Extant: The Halle Berry Saga

John and Molly roleplay a Cialis commercial on Extant.
Extant (Photo: Sonja Flemming / CBS)

That’s not really what it’s called, but it should be.  Episode 3 of this 9 episode season of Extant continues the ever-present Halle Berry dramatic conundrum, is she or isn’t she crazy?  The thing we know for sure is CBS wasn’t crazy to take a chance on a bonafide movie star. If you watch enough television you know that most televisions shows – scripted or not, drama or comedy – have an A Story and a B Story (and sometimes a C Story) running throughout the season.  Unfortunately for Extant, now that we’ve gotten past the Halle (ahem, Molly…Molly?!) reacquaints herself with civilization after being alone in space for 13 months and is mysteriously pregnant, it would be nice for someone else to have something going on, even with such a short broadcast season.  Alas, is the creepy robot-son wrecking havoc? Not with Halle Berry, he’s not.  Is the doctor working against the astronauts too? Not against Halle Berry, she’s not.  Is the husband secretly cheating with his attractive young assistant? Not on Halle Berry, he’s not.

In fact, the best moment of the series so far is said attractive young assistant’s boyfriend teaching creepy robot-kid to, well, do the dance, the “robot”.  Robot Kid: “It’s the dance of my ancestors!”  That’s gold right there.  But before we get to that.  Molly/Halle Berry’s husband has moved into his new lab at International Space Exploration Agency (ISEA) which conveniently agreed to fund his human-robot venture once their star astronaut, Molly, returned from her mission.  Dr. Woods continues to try to make their robot-son, Ethan, more and more human while trying to replicate that success, we think, again we don’t really see him doing so.  Ethan may not be entirely human, but he’s entirely intuitive and has clearly figured out his mom is hiding something as she continues to get terrible stomach pains that result in weird circular outlines on her stomach until the pain/attack stops.  Eventually, Molly realizes her son knows what’s up as he’s drawing the same circles he sees on their basement wall.  Like all kids in a battle between loyalty to mom or dad, and in a very human moment, the boy reveals his mom taught him to keep a secret, leading Molly to have to tell her husband about the pregnancy.  But by that time the ISEA director has already semi-convinced her that her genetic material was kept frozen back when she and her husband were trying for biological children and then implanted with some time-release device and she is really pregnant with her husband’s child.  Molly believes that for about a minute because this is the future, not Ignoranceville and once her doctor confirms she should flee from a moving car driven by the ISEA director, she and her family also escape their home…dun dun dun.  Molly only has one more run-in with the other astronaut sent into space only to have hallucinations and then allegedly commit suicide, but now she’s not only seeing images of her dead former husband, she sees the “ghost” of his brother too.  A brother we’re not even sure is deal, but shows up at her house for a party after several years and who no one else at the party sees.

For better or worse all roads on Extant point to Molly and therefore Halle Berry.  I’m not mad, but it does lead one to think that all of these questions about what’s really going on could have been answered in a 2 hour movie, 6 hour mini-series, but certainly we don’t need all summer.  That said, we have it, and we have a mystery, and though the writers are clearly stalling the story, I’m kind of ok with that.  My only fear is that at minute 59, right before the credits roll, the answer to everything will be, “Oh, it was all a dream.”  Thankfully Spielberg doesn’t usually do dreams.

Sandra Says: If you’ve started don’t stop, I refuse to do this alone, and you KNOW you want to know what the creepy kid knows and what’s really going on because Movie Star Halle Berry is NEVER the crazy one, right? See Gothika and Perfect Stranger



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About Sandra Smith 112 Articles
Sandra Smith is a graduate of Northwestern and Syracuse Universities where she wrote and studied and wrote. She currently earns her keep working on a variety of your favorite reality shows for HGTV, TLC, Discovery Channel, MTV and FUSE and dreaming of creating the next Law & Order. E-mail:
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  • Aaron Mucciolo

    Wait, the kid is actually a robot? CBS summer programming is just fever dreams at this point…