“Second Skin” chronicles the issues Kiera is having by relying on her suit (or second skin) instead of the people in her life. It’s all coming to a head, especially as she’s drawn the attention of FBI Agent Gardiner. Who can she trust? Who can she rely on when the future of the entire city is at stake? At this point, I’m not sure she can trust anyone, not even herself.
In 2077, Kiera and her partner Elena enter a building looking for their suspect, Travis Verta. He’s holding Kiera’s son hostage, and before she can react, Elena shoots him, ending the simulation. Kiera is reprimanded for hesitation, but is backed up by Elena, a very loyal partner. In 2012, Jasmine Garza hijacks an oil truck and blows it up, promoting a growing awareness, particularly in social media, of Liber8 and its message. Alec, meanwhile, has alerted Kiera to the fact that another suit like hers has come online. “You’ve got company,” he warns.
The search for the second ‘skin’ is on, with Kiera, Marcus Ingram and Travis Verta tailing it. Kiera arrives at the coordinates provided by Alec, who is temporarily distracted by a cute redhead named Emily, and meets Dan, who says his mother had a suit like the one Kiera described. After a quick back-and-forth, he agrees to pass her information to his mother, to arrange a meeting. A couple in the dry cleaning business, however, actually have the suit, after purchasing it for five dollars at a yard sale for a costume wedding.
Kiera arrives at a hospital to meet Dan’s mother, only to discover that it is her partner, Elena, who time-traveled to 1975 instead of 2012. She married, had four children and tried to forget her old life, which she admonishes Kiera to do as well. While they talk, Rex the dry cleaner attends a wedding and accidentally catches his sleeve on fire. Since he’s wearing the second skin suit, it protects him. His girlfriend is frightened by the suit, even more so when he enters a gas station that Verta’s gang is holding up and attempts to be a hero. He’s shot, but the suit protects him again.
Agent Gardiner arrives and attempts to corner Kiera, who has also just arrived on the scene. He questions her closely about a “superhero” in a “supersuit.” “You ever hear of anything like that?” he asks her, eyes narrowed. He’s closing in, and Kiera knows it. Later, he shows up at the station and calls Kiera, “our hero”. He knows she has something to do with the new suit but can’t quite put the pieces together. He insists on going with Kiera to visit Elena in the hospital, while Alec gets ready to pinpoint the location of the suit. Unfortunately, Ingram and Verta are looking for it too.
Rex the dry cleaner promises his girlfriend to get rid of the suit, but keeps it on when he spots intruders. He attempts to face them, is shot and beaten by Verta, and is rescued just in time by Kiera, who has a shoot out with Garza until police sirens sound and both factions of the splintered Liber8 vamoose into the darkness. “I thought the suit would make me a hero,” he says. “You don’t need a suit for that,” says Kiera. I don’t know if she realizes this, but it’s a piece of advice she should take to heart. The suit isn’t what makes Kiera a good cop, and right now, it’s making it more difficult to do her job well. It’s time to shed the second skin.
When Rex is taken to the hospital, Gardiner tries to get the truth out of him but is derailed, and anyway, the suit is missing. Kiera has taken it to Alec, who almost pushes her out of the apartment in order to get on with his life, which apparently now includes Emily, as they go out on their first date. It’s cute, awkward, and not anything like Alec was doing a few weeks ago at Kellogg’s place. Is he finally realizing that Kellogg may not have his best interests at heart? Or is Emily a Kellogg plant?
Kiera takes Carlos to meet Elena, but Dan meets her at the hospital and conveys the news that Elena has passed away. She left something for Kiera, another entreaty to step away from isolation and live in the present. But Kiera doesn’t know what to do. Her second skin has protected her so far, and now it has become a liability. Is she ready to lose the hope of getting back to her family?
I’m a huge fan of Carlos and Kiera’s non-romantic partnership, and every time I think they’re headed that direction, they swing away and instead bring support to the idea that Kiera and Carlos are close, but not in that way. Kiera introduces Carlos to Dan and his family, and when she gets misty-eyed thinking about hers, Carlos asks about them. He doesn’t press Kiera, but lets her know that he cares. For the first time, Kiera lets go and allows him to hug her, and hugs him back. She’s stepping out of the second skin that has kept her apart and alone.
What I want to know is, where is Kellogg? Who is Mr. Escher? What happens when Verta has enough and decides to end Ingram and Valentine? And just where is Alec headed with mysterious Emily, and will it interfere with Kiera’s job? What happens when Gardiner inevitably digs up Kiera’s non-existent past? I’m enthralled, and can’t wait to see where this is headed.