A Mother’s Touch: Karen Nadler: Devil or Pawn?

In these waning days of Guest-Writer-A-Con I decided to take a page out of Jimmy in GA of The Falling Skies Cast’s playbook and give a voice to my mother’s views on Falling Skies. I gave her the choice of Maggie or Karen, and she chose Karen! Be nice to my mother, or I will hit you a skitter shock-stick…

Karen: Do we hate her or pity her?

I really enjoy the character of Maggie, her edginess, her take on life as it is.  Great writing: in the episode we meet Maggie. She is armed to the teeth watching over the injured outlaw and guarding the recon squad for Pope’s posse.  She surprisingly asks Dr. Anne, “Will he live?” When Dr. Anne says yes, Maggie then dispatches Pope’s brother and his partner in crime, Cueball, to the Netherworld.   She then becomes a citizen soldier with the 2nd Mass.  There are many facets to the woman.  What will be her secrets to which Pope has alluded in the “Death March” promo? Keeps it all interesting!

However, I have chosen to delve into the character of Karen.  Season one Karen seems like a fairly benign member of the cast.  We do not know her background, fate of her family, are not given much to work with so we think oh, minor character; except for her budding romance with Hal, the heartthrob. Hal has to have a girlfriend to boogie with so there is a love story for the teens to follow.  Have to draw in that audience as the under 30s do not care about scruffy Daddy Tom and Anne “bussing” in the bus.

Season one, there is Karen motorcycling side by side with Hal through the destruction.  She is given scouting duties and other risky tasks, she is dependable, trustworthy.  No girlie meltdowns, no tears, for what had been lost, just doing what needs to be done in the here and now; very mature for a teenager who has lost all; no family, no anchors to the earth.  It is quite understandable she feels jealousy when Lourdes comes sniffing around Hal, inquiring about his health and sleep habits.  Karen bristles and shows she is no girlie-girl; she can tote those cans and a rifle as well.  She goes forth in her messy ponytail and smudgy face but yet seeks confirmation from Hal.  We all remember “get a room”.  Are you with me or her? 

The 2nd Mass, Hal, in particular, is became her anchor, her reason to continue the fight.  It is her family as it is for the many others.  The Mason Family goal to find Brother Ben becomes her goal as well.  She is with Hal on the mission to save Ben. No questions asked and it is there Karen is taken. A brief glimpse is given of her under the watchful eye of an Overlord.   Tom stops Hal from going after her.  We see her again as the mouthpiece of Uber Overlord at the mother ship.

So now Karen is cooperating with the enemy, gone over to the other side. We all realize that she is under their control, drugged into a follower state so we are disturbed and horrified for one we knew when. We understand this is not Karen just her outer shell, not her personal thoughts:  popular sci fi movie ploy, alien mouth control.  We are ok with this.

However, when Hal and Maggie rescue unharnessed naked Karen from the gulley of death, she seems so vulnerable yet due to “amnesia” seems relatively unaffected by her ordeal.  It seems fishy compared to all the emotions that Ben and Rick went through after harness removal.  Karen is soooo happy to be back, she is coy and charming all with batting her eyes and by her requests for food, she is soooo hungry. She conveniently can’t give any information about her time with the Overlords [and then, funnily enough she tells Ben that she can tell the Rebellion battle plans, etc –Greg].  Only the Mason Boys are taken in by this phony act; there is so much Mason guilt to be swallowed.  Ok now we all know Karen has gone over to the dark side, drank the Kool-Aid, is a pawn of the Overlords.  Do we hate her for her unharnessed devilish deeds or do we pity her because she has no will of her own or does she?

My mother can be found nowhere on the internet. 

Keep the Resistance Strong!

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~ by The Falling Skies Blog on August 3, 2012.

One Response to “A Mother’s Touch: Karen Nadler: Devil or Pawn?”

  1. I really enjoyed this take on Karen, but (and I may be wrong) didn’t Hal say in Molon Labe that Karen said she was acting on her own free will? So your questions was right at the end. Does she have free will or not. Again really enjoyed reading this.

    Jennifer

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