'Project Blue Book' Season 2 Episode 8 Review: Susie's fierce loyalty may be what saves Hynek, Quinn and Mimi
This episode focuses on the women of Blue Book once again, as their individual loyalties rival each other and we are reminded how empty the show would be without them
Spoiler alert for Season 2 Episode 8 'What Lies Beneath'
With claims of aliens and UFO sightings swarming in from every direction, Dr J Allen Hynek and Captain Michael Quinn's trials and tribulations revolve mostly around out of town investigations.
Back home, their work is supported by Mimi's strenuous and impassionate efforts to protect her family, alongside protecting Hynek's entire legacy in the aftermath of the Robertson Panel.
Yet in all of this, the arc that touches the most is Susie's consistent loyalty towards the people she has grown to care for — something that allows her to look beyond her desperate need to be reunited with her child, thereby offering a speck of hope for our golden trio, who couldn't need her more than they do now.
When episode 8 titled 'What Lies Beneath' kicks off, we see Hynek and Quinn having followed leads from a stranger who showed up at Quinn's office and claimed to know of a secret basement warehouse under the Ohio airbase where the government is reengineering flying saucers from debris obtained during the UFO crash at Roswell.
This man, John Banks, claims he officially doesn't even exist but speaks of a Hangar 18 aka the warehouse, where the craft being engineered is way beyond what any Russian threat could ever come up with.
The man also presents them with the same chip that the duo had found surgically inserted in the head of another witness we saw in Season 1, and things turn even more suspicious when they actually follow up with the lead.
Hynek and Quinn end up meeting a man called Agent Garner who has files documenting the ongoings at the rumored mysterious Hangar 18. Aidan Gillen's portrayal of Hynek's childlike glee upon finally discovering substantial evidence is rivaled by Michael Malarkey's discomfort as Quinn trying to adjust to the idea that maybe his superiors in the Air Force aren't as full of integrity as he assumed them to be.
Ever since the pilot, there has been this impeccable, not at all subtle tension between the two partners that have kept the audience on their toes, almost as if eagerly anticipating a blow-up between the two, and even though they vocally express their trust in each other now, the ticking time bomb of differences sees its explosion when the government decides to shut Blue Book down indefinitely, thanks to stolen classified documents. And this is when Susie steps into the picture, to save the day.
Amid conspiracies and cover-ups, what this episode also offers — much to the fandom's delight — is the long-awaited Susie-Mimi reunion that we have missed so dearly since the culmination of the first season.
After teasing us with beyond perfect chemistry between Laura Mennell's Mimi and Ksenia Solo's undercover Russian spy, Susie, it always felt as if that was a prospective relationship taken away from us too soon.
And while one might continue to debate what Mimi and Susie had was curbed by her need to be a faithful wife to Hynek, it's good to see the two back to sharing screen space, and how!
Susie has been on dangerous territory ever since she murdered Rizutto. With Generals Harding and Valentine tailing her under suspicion, she plans a great escape, only to be interrupted by her undeterred loyalty towards Quinn, and somewhat towards Mimi too, no matter how hard she tries to deny it.
So she shows up at the Hynek residence — all water under the bridge between the two women who had almost sparked off an affair — but the spiraling tragedy continues. Susie is being tailed by more than just the US Air Force as we soon learn when Hynek returns home, only to be followed by Quinn.
The latter's assistant Faye is dead sure Mimi was the one who stole the classified, sensitive documents — the same ones that Hynek and Quinn were offered by Garner, and when confronted, Mimi admits she did it to protect her family, specifically Hynek's legacy.
On one hand, we have a devoted wife willing to risk it all for her husband's laborious efforts into making a groundbreaking discovery, but at the same time, Susie's fierce loyalty comes into play when Mimi thinks all is lost and nothing can be fixed.
Remember we said Susie is being followed by more than just the air force? Turns out the Russians are not done with her, neither can anything stop them from breaking into the Hynek residence and threatening everyone looking for Susie — thus outing her real identity as a Russian spy.
Heartbreaking as it might be for Quinn to be on the brink of losing the woman he had grown so invested in, the only respite proves to be Susie's impassionate urge to let her help them out.
Susie takes the fall for stealing the classified documents as a Russian spy, thus letting Hynek, Mimi, and Quinn off the hook. But she also mentions something about being an invaluable source of information for the Americans, which might prove to be the only thing saving Quinn from being branded "sloppy" as General Valentine didn't waste time to remark.
Earlier in the episode, when Quinn sees Susie at the Hyneks' he assures her whatever trouble she is in, they'll get through it together. So when the time comes for Susie to reassure him, Solo's portrayal of that stoic but resilient conviction she harbors for both Mimi and Quinn is what gives us the hope that not all is lost.
Even with Hangar 18 turning out to be an empty warehouse, possibly cleared off by the Air Force just in time before Hynek and Quinn make it to the venue, maybe there is some way out of this mess after all!
'Project Blue Book' season 2 airs on Tuesdays at 10 pm on History.