Hello Tomorrow! S1E8 Recap: “The Gargon Mothership” Touches Down

Jack in a suit, in profile, walking towards the left, a hovercar behind him in the frame, in Hello Tomorrow! S1E8 "The Gargon Mothership"
Apple TV+/Screenshot

The following recap contains spoilers for Hello Tomorrow! S1E8, “The Gargon Mothership” (written by Stephen Falk & Hennah Sekander and directed by Ryan McFaul)

“The Gargon Mothership” is really a breathtaking episode of television. Last week, Hello Tomorrow! left virtually everything hanging in the air: a mob was demanding refunds at the office, Buck (Frankie Faison) was galavanting around on a tractor putting the whole enterprise at risk, and in the final moments Shirley (Haneefah Wood) finally realized that Jack (Billy Crudup) had been behind the scam all along.

In S1E8, she makes him say it. These characters feel lived in now, so we know Jack is being Jack as he keeps trying to spin a pitch instead, and we know Shirley is being Shirley when she stamps her foot down (figuratively) and makes him cut the sh*t. And he finally does. He even apologizes! But it’s too late.

You’re on your own, Jack.

Shirley sits in a car, tears forming in her eyes
Apple TV+/Screenshot

Indeed, though the events that form the middle of “The Gargon Mothership” are filled with what seems like a triumph for Jack, the episode is bookended with him being rejected by those whose opinions he values most. Joey (Nicholas Podany) seemed for a moment to be ready to give him another shot before Shirley decided it was a good time to let him know that Jack’s his dad, but as the episode comes to a close, he doesn’t seem to want Jack in his life at all.

It’s not just that he’s spent his life resenting the father who left when he was a little kid (though there is that), it’s the fact that Jack has been lying to his face about it that Joey can’t stomach. And he’s not wrong about this. Jack’s trying to spin a truth out of a web of lies; I’m rooting for him and it looks like he might even succeed… but the betrayal… it’s unforgivable, really.

Joey makes a stern face, standing with his garage behind him
Apple TV+/Screenshot

Still, after Shirley walks off into the woods, leaving him for good, Jack dusts off his bruised ego and gets behind the wheel to go after Buck, who it turns out is headed to Walt’s launchpad in pursuit of what he thinks is the titular mothership.

We learn definitively here in S1E8 that this launchpad is functional, as a cargo vessel is incoming and threatens to crush/incinerate Buck as he rants and raves on the landing pad below. Jack’s humanity shines through as he manages to save him, playing along with the suffering man’s delusion in order to get him safely out of the path. I believe Jack truly operates out of compassion in this moment.

Jack has Buck by the arm with Herb smiling in the background
Apple TV+/Screenshot

But that doesn’t stop him from exploiting Buck when he finds all of the Brightside customers waiting outside the gate. Herb (Dewshane Williams) has brought them to see the rocket they’ll one day be taking to the Moon (and it’s worth noting that he himself does not know this is a lie), and the charade seems to have convinced even Myrtle (Alison Pill) that Brightside is legit. The idea that Buck has just come down to Earth for a visit is the icing on the cake.

I’m sad that this seems to torpedo Myrtle’s budding romance with Lester (Matthew Maher), and further kind of sad to see her apparently taken in by the con once again, but on the other hand maybe Jack is going to manage to make the crazy dreams a reality? If so, where will our ethical sentiments land then?

Lester and Myrtle in his small car
Apple TV+/Screenshot

Jack makes the deal with Elle (Dagmara Dominczyk) so now he’s flush. He’s maybe convinced Walt (Michael Paul Chan) to work with him. He has the land… So he just needs to delay until he can get condos built on the Moon. (What is on the Moon, though? Could this be the fruit for a Season 2?)

Regardless, I think he’s lost Joey for good. He’s almost certainly lost Shirley, who happily reunites with Ed (Hank Azaria) and seems ready to get out of dodge. I don’t think managing to make Brightside real would help Jack win either of them back. So, if he does succeed, will it have been worth it?

Hank smiles at a diner table with his family
Apple TV+/Screenshot

I have the feeling that question is what Hello Tomorrow! is on the track of pursuing as it enters the end game of Season 1, and I’m excited to see how this plays out. I feel like the show has really found its groove in the past few weeks, and before I’m done I definitely need to give a shoutout to the absolutely wonderful scoring Mark Mothersbaugh has been providing in general, and to the music in S1E8 in particular. If you haven’t been noticing how good it is, I want to say you actually have been noticing without consciously realizing it. It’s perfect.

See you next week.

Written by Caemeron Crain

Caemeron Crain is Executive Editor of TV Obsessive. He struggles with authority, including his own.

Caesar non est supra grammaticos

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *