The episode started encouragingly, with Clea and Martin investigating the strange circumstances surrounding Arthur Teller’s final moments. Looking back over the security tapes, they notice that he gave Jake a key before he died. Teller must have known that he wasn’t long for this world, because the key bearing the number 1188 would lead to his workshop containing a potential treasure trove of information on the numbers.
Of course, Teller’s information wasn’t complete, otherwise he would have known that Amelia’s room number (#6) followed by the door to his own workshop (#1188) are the next digits in the sequence. This raises the question of whether it’s coincidence that the numbers are in plain sight, or are Jake, Martin, and others on the roadmap, somehow creating the sequence as they go along?
Finding Teller’s workshop is certainly progress for Martin and for the show’s overarching mystery. One that continues to associate the numbers with the ‘mind of God’ — a deterministic algorithm, as Teller’s professor friend called it. The episode’s gambling metaphor may not have been the most engaging, but it does help illustrate the numbers’ ability to “distill” probability “to its essence”. While it’s easy to throw a lot of gimmicky words up in the air in hope that they intrigue the audience, we’re beginning to see the wider scope of the numbers and their potential to be used for altruistic or nefarious purposes. Should the numbers get into the wrong hands, they could perhaps provide god-like powers to the enforcer, perhaps bringing into focus the role of fate and freewill.
The conclusion of the Teller arc hinted at a larger conspiracy involving Jake’s institute. ‘Noosphere’ confirmed that Teller wasn’t just seeing the ‘ghost of Amelia,’ as Clea manages to find the missing footage on the security tapes, meaning that Amelia is still at the institute in some shape or form — or that they have others like her hidden away.
It also looks like another overarching story is brewing with the arrival of Jake’s aunt Abigail, who wants to take custody of Jake (over Martin’s dead body). It remains to be seen whether she’s also connected to the larger conspiracy, but her arrival offers another ongoing element for serial fans to chew on.
I still find Touch overly syrupy, and perhaps too much story is crammed into each episode. I’d happily do away with the many standalone threads to focus more on the main serialized arc, but at the same time the LOST-esque connections theme — however tenuous — is part of the premise. Hopefully the show finds a way to make these self-contained elements more arc relevant moving forward, but it’s pleasing to see that Touch is starting to evolve into something more sustainable.
7/10 Seriable Stars