After a bold return, “Underground” continues stepping up the stakes in “Things Unsaid” (Mar. 15), thoroughly exploring the enduring theme of survival — in all its complicated, life-giving glory — in the aftermath of John Hawkes’ (Marc Blucas) death.
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For the story’s key players, motherhood is a polarizing topic: One could easily point to Rosalee (Jurnee Smollett-Bell) as the mother this movement needs. While Harriet Tubman (Aisha Hinds) has given her the necessary training to take the fight to the next level, it seems her motivation for survival has hit a new apex: Rosalee is pregnant.
“You got two choices: You got to live, or you got to die.”
It’s in these words that Rosalee’s internal struggle becomes clear… And the final image of her clutching her very pregnant belly, after getting shot by Patty Cannon (Sadie Stratton), puts everything into a very clear and urgent perspective.
When thinking of Rosalee’s pending motherhood, it’s hard not to think about the other side of that coin: Elizabeth (Jessica De Gouw) is still reeling from her husband’s death, further pining for the child she could never bear. Perhaps Rosalee chose to skip John’s funeral due to the guilt she felt for her own secret? Whatever the case, Rosalee’s unborn child adds a new component to the already difficult task at hand.
But now that Patty has tracked Rosalee down, we have to wonder if the Black Rose will escape this attack: Obviously, she’d be the perfect bait to get Harriet Tubman out of hiding — and we know there’s only a matter of time until the world’s most notorious slave catcher faces off against the most notorious runaway.
Speaking of Rosalee, it seems her mother is in the midst of her own abusive internal conflict: Acknowledging her love and appreciation for her kids is one thing… But, it doesn’t take long before she numbs the pain and assists her abusive lover in sparking another woman’s abortion, right there in her living room. The fact that it’s his baby doesn’t seem to hold much importance for either of them.
The ether she’s huffing has obviously clouded her judgment — but is all hope lost with Ernestine? If her visions have anything to say about it, it’s only a matter of time before the demons she’s trying to ignore confront her head on.
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“Things Unsaid” takes us through a lot of twists and turns, finally revealing what Cato (Alano Miller) has been up to this entire time: It seems he’s now the owner of a plantation, with a group of white men out to do his bidding. What a perfectly poetic twist: This plot turn would surely put Noah (Aldis Hodge) on a clear path to rescue Rosalee… That is, of course, if there’s no bad blood remaining between these two Macon 7 survivors.
“Underground” Season 2 airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on WGN America.