Tuesday, October 11, 2016

TV Show Review: Halt and Catch Fire (Season 3)

The third season saw the company Mutiny led by Cameron Howe (Mackenzie Davis) and Donna Clark (Kerry Bishé) move to San Francisco from Houston and the show follows them there. Meanwhile, Joe MacMillan (Lee Pace) has stolen security software from Gordon Clark (Scoot McNairy) and used it to make a new company named after him. Mutiny grows as a chat and game service but also ventures into distribution and trading as Cameron discovers the potential.

Cameron and Donna clash over the future of the company as they search for funding to move forward with their ambition and develop new features for their services. Gordon sues Joe for his intellectual property as he battles brain cancer and plays the first Nintendo. Joe builds his company giving away the security service free but charging large corporations for its use.

John Bosworth (Toby Huss) is one of my favorite characters as the business developer who operates sales. He's come a long way since the asshole boss in the first season to a likeable part of Mutiny. A new character that has a great season arc is Ryan Ray (Manish Dayal) who first tries to improve Mutiny's network and functioning but moves to work with Joe when his business gets shutdown. His storyline is one of the more interesting parts of the season.

The reason that Halt and Catch Fire is so intriguing is to watch the development of computers and the denial of so many that the future was coming back then. The creators are knowledgeable of what the future holds but also explore the past to see how we got here with characters that bring us into the story. Cameron has the wild new ideas and thinks outside the box while Donna plows ahead as an entrepreneurial woman in a sexist world. Gordon faces the consequences of drug usage while Joe innovates, fails and repeats.

As I watched the last few episodes, I worried that the flash forward would signal the end but it looks like they will push forward past the 80s and into the 90s as Cameron become a game developer, Joe lapses into depression and Donna and Gordon get a divorce. AMC has this subtle hit under the radar but I've enjoyed it since the first season and will continue to tune in to see where these characters go as the future races towards them and they plan for it and embrace it. 

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