'Halt and Catch Fire's "Giant" Is an Emotional Acting Showcase for Mackenzie Davis


You know how I've been complaining about how I don't really care about any of the characters on Halt and Catch Fire ? I'm sure you're getting tired of reading it, and frankly, I'm getting tired of writing it! Thankfully, all of that changed on Sunday evening with "Giant," the series' seventh episode. Believe it or not, I actually think that I'm starting to give some real, honest-to-goodness cares about computer programmer Cameron Howe (beyond that one time I felt kinda bad for her earlier this season). So, what's different?

Well, it's starting to feel like wild child Cameron has fallen in L-O-V-E with mystery man Joe MacMillan, and I've got a hunch that he doesn't feel the same way. I just can't stand seeing people (even fictional characters) being rejected! Sure, Cameron and Joe's relationship may have begun as a series of random, late-night hook ups, but it's become more than that. Well, for Cameron, anyway.

Sure, as we saw at the beginning of "Giant," Joe is willing to electrocute himself in an attempt to turn Cameron on (naturally, she loved it), but he's not willing to be truthful with her about his past. Actually, he's not really willing to be truthful with her about anything — but Cameron still cares about Joe. She wants to get to know him. Will he ever let her? I'm not sure.

I mean, after their bizarre, electrically charged office sex romp, Joe was all too eager to get right back to work, pretty much forgetting about Cameron entirely. There was no tender, post-coital cuddling. On the flip side, after learning that Joe wants to work with Simon, a computer case designer who he was romantically involved with in the past, Cameron begins to feel a little...jealous. Yup, Cameron's got it bad — Joe doesn't.

Joe tells Cameron that Simon left him, and that their relationship was nothing more than a fling, but you can tell that she doesn't really believe him. Later in the episode, Simon tells Cameron a different story. Apparently, Simon told Joe that he loved him — but Joe didn't feel the same way. Simon left the next day in order to avoid any further embarrassment.

Simon says that he thinks that Joe "just got bored" of their relationship. Simon warns Cameron that one day, Joe's going to do the same thing to her. A look of worry washes over Cameron's face — if she told Joe that she loved him right now, would he say it back? Unfortunately, she already knows the answer to that question.

In the episode's final scene, a crying Cameron asks Joe, "Are you gonna get bored of me?" His response? "...I don't know." Well, that's reassuring!

Cameron, you just gotta wash this man right out of your hair! Joe is no damn good and you're just going to end up getting hurt. What about that one software programmer? Yo-yo? He seems like a nice young man!

All kidding aside, I am thrilled that Halt and Catch Fire is finally starting to make me care about its characters — it's just a shame that it's taken this long. Kudos to actress Mackenzie Davis on a fine episode this week.

Images: AMC; gif-weenus/Tumblr