Hopefully, this season finale has left Alex in a better place.
After all, he dealt with a couple of his most prominent sources of anxiety, the partner that betrayed him and his estranged daughter, on Almost Paradise Season 1 Episode 10.
When the episode opened with Alex having a flashback about the events in Barcelona 17 months ago, obviously, he was still haunted by his betrayal by Carpenter.
Did Alex really see Carpenter in the lobby of his resort?
Maybe yes, maybe no. After all, the groggy Alex hadn’t had his first cup of coffee of the day. So maybe it was a hallucination, or maybe he just saw an Aussie who looked like Carpenter.
That did set up that funny moment when the paranoid Alex almost whacked his estranged daughter Evelyn with an oar.
Maybe Alex should have been more afraid of Evelyn than Carpenter.
After all, she was the wronged party in that case, unlike how Alex was the wronged party when it came to Carpenter.
Their reunion was every bit as tense as it should have been, as both believed that they were in the right.
Evelyn felt abandoned by Alex while Alex thought he was doing the right thing to protect Alex and his ex-wife.
Neither’s emotions were less valid than the other’s.
In the year and a half since Alex had separated from the DEA, he should have made more of an effort to mend fences with Evelyn.
But then, Carpenter was still out there somewhere, and despite his best efforts, Alex hadn’t totally dropped off the face of the earth.
So by not making contact, he was still protecting Evelyn.
What was sad was that the pair didn’t see how similar they were to each other.
Each was attempting to make the world a better place — Alex, through the DEA, and Evelyn, through the Peace Corps.
Alex was thoroughly disillusioned after serving as a soldier in the war of drugs. Let’s see how much innocence Evelyn loses during her assignment in Indonesia.
Then poor Evelyn put Alex in the hospital, at least from her point of view.
After all that time apart, she had no idea about how serious Alex’s hypertension and anxiety attacks could be.
It was a good thing that Kai was there for her at the hospital.
So Kai was able to give Evelyn some much-needed perspective about having regrets about not mending a relationship with a parent.
Kai also got Evelyn to understand that Alex taught her combat skills not because he wanted a son but because he wanted to keep her safe.
Evelyn also got to discover how much Alex meant to his adoptive family as they all came to visit him at the hospital.
Especially touching was Rita giving up her prized amethyst crystal so that “Mister Alex” could get healed.
It figured that Evelyn’s naivety was what ended up getting both her and, consequently, Alex in trouble.
Rather than asking Kai about her destination, Evelyn just trotted off to Bororanco, a place she had never been before. Kai could have stopped her from going or at least gone with her.
Nope, instead, Evelyn went alone and managed to get abducted right in front of Alex and Kai, which was certainly convenient timing.
Let’s hope Evelyn does her homework before she starts running errands for total strangers while in Indonesia.
Fortunately, Alex was able to glean enough details from Diego’s very brief hospital stay to determine from where Diego had come, based on his gang tattoo, the sand on his shoes, and his belt buckle.
OK. Suspension of disbelief and all that.
Most importantly, we finally learned why that damn marlin in his gift shop was so heavy: Alex’s arsenal was hidden inside.
How did he ever get that through customs, especially since you know he didn’t have any money for the appropriate bribes?
Alex’s attack on Diego and the gang was memorable. He apparently has nothing against weapons in the right situation.
Still, this action pales compared to Ernesto’s cleaning up that gang clubhouse on Almost Paradise Season 1 Episode 2.
Of course, Alex’s old partner had tracked him down and knew exactly what Alex had been up to recently.
Carpenter wasn’t all bad, since he had a bounty on his head because he couldn’t bring himself to kill Alex in Barcelona.
Still, he was holding Evelyn hostage to make Alex kill the accountant and steal his ledger, all at police headquaters. That would allow Carpenter to get the bounty removed.
So he was mostly bad.
The solution was yet another Mactan P.D. production, in which Alex appeared to kill the accountant and steal the ledger.
Those Leverage-type touches never get old.
It was great to see that all her training paid off for Evelyn, once Alex prompted her to attack. It wasn’t enough to have the skills. She had to get past her anxiety first.
It’s amazing how Alex’s anxiety only pops up when he’s dealing with difficult people, not when he’s kicking ass.
It was believable that, after Evelyn saw what her father had been dealing with all those years, she was more forgiving of him.
Also, she realized that he wasn’t alone on Cebu.
Now, while the ratings haven’t been great for Almost Paradise, maybe WGN will stick by its original programming, especially since the networks are raiding Canada, WGN’s recent source for scripted series, for stopgrap fall programming.
To revisit Alex’s transition to Cebu, watch Almost Paradise online.
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Did this finale tie up the first season well?
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Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.