EPISODE REVIEW: Alphas: "Original Sin" (Episode 11, Season Finale)

Jim Stiles
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In his novel The Boat of a Million Years, Poul Anderson explored the idea of select humans in history being born with natural immortality. Unlike the Highlanders of movies and television, Poul Anderson's immortals were people who simply did not get old and die; they were as prone to death by lethal accident or violence as the rest of us. Therefore, death for an immortal is a strict Poisson process, and if 2% of an immortal population dies each year due to accident or violence, then less than 2% of that population will live longer than 200 years. While a few of Poul Anderson's immortal characters did die during the course of the novel, the number who survived the period of the novel, approximately one million years, suggests that they were very careful with their lives.

The latter part of the Epic of Gilgamesh has the title character seeking out the immortal hero of flood, Utnapishtim, for the gift of eternal life. The character of Utnapishtim is echoed in this episode by the character Stanton Parish. Stanton Parish is an Alpha with apparent immortality, since he has been alive since the American Civil War. In this episode, Stanton Parish arranges for the Alphas team to receive an invitation to a Red Flag meeting where plans to reveal the presence of Alphas to the general public were to be made. Because both the US federal government does not want the Alphas secret to be revealed, the Alphas, along with a large SWAT group, kill and capture the Red Flag members, which was what Stanton Parish was planning all along.

After realizing that the raid merely kept the secret of Alphas secure and eliminated Stanton Parish's enemies within Red Flag, Dr. Rosen and Gary comes up with a plan. During a secret congressional briefing, Dr. Rosen uses a handheld television transmitter to broadcast the existence of Alphas to the entire United States.

Will conservatives and libertarians like this episode?

Maybe, some conservatives and most libertarians will appreciate the release of the federal government's secrets about the populace.