Halo: “Transcendence” Recap

So, the finale has come, and the general feeling toward Halo as a show hasn’t really changed. To be fair, the feeling was set before the show even premiered on Paramount+, as many fans of the games were quite vocal when expressing their doubts about how well the show would do. This episode did manage to get back to the action, kind of, but it almost feels like it was too little, too late when it came to convincing people that this show was back on track. On top of that, many folks are of the mind that it didn’t do a good enough job to bring the overall story of Halo to the small screen from any standpoint since it feels as though things simply unraveled and went in a direction that was anything but forward. It can be said over and over that the transition that video games take from their original format to that of an episodic series is going to be a rough one, but the realization of this isn’t always something that people want to admit to. People often want to keep up hope that the transition will produce the same type of greatness they’ve become used to, but that’s not always the case. 

It was believed that the finale would be the episode where Halo would snap back into the type of focus that people had been expecting. Yet, it almost felt as though something was missing, something that didn’t come together in the way it needed to. The fact that the Spartans were given the revelation about Halsey was uplifting as it pulled them back into line as a group, and made it possible to go after the artifact that was so important to the war effort. This was an upside to the episode to be fair, but it didn’t carry the type of gravitas that one might have hoped that it would. Silver Team felt more cohesive in the initial episode to be fair, but the trade-off is that the Spartans would be tools of war, versus being free-thinking individuals. 

Everything leading up to the final battle of the finale felt like it was way too much exposition, though a lot of it was needed. The general idea here is that the second season had to be built up at some point, which means that the information about the halo, the mess that became of Halsey’s attempt to run from the Spartans, and from Kai at one of the most heated moments were necessary to lead into the next season. When season 2 will come along and how it will start is unknown at this point, but looking at the finale, it’s fair to say that a lot of people aren’t going to be too convinced that things will change in a big way. It’s a bit of a downer to be certain since Halo was carrying a lot of expectations at one point, and the beginning was impressive enough that a lot of people were thinking that the rest of the season would be just as great. But the finale was the final note in this season that’s leaving a lot of people disappointed. 

The final battle wasn’t entirely hopeless since it saw Silver Team together again and up against the kind of odds that felt impossible even for the Spartans. It was actually looking a bit bleak for several seconds until John allowed Cortana to take over his body, as she’d been designed to do, which turned the tide just enough to allow the Spartans to retrieve the artifact and escape. The loss of Makee, at the hands of the Spartans no less, is kind of surprising, but the fact is that the star map pointing the way to the halo had already been revealed. Of course, without Master Chief in their possession, the Covenant forces are going to be in a hard spot as well. In other words, the UNSC is in a mess, Halsey is free after somehow replacing herself with a clone, and the Covenant forces are in disarray as well. In fact, Halsey appears to be the only one to come out of the matter in a way that feels positive in the least bit. 

There are at this time a lot of confusing feelings regarding the future of Halo, but there’s no doubt that the attempt will face a few hurdles, with the fans being one of the largest of the bunch. Somehow, video game movies and TV adaptations have a tough time when it comes to following the stories that fans have come to expect, and time and time again, the end result divides the fanbase in a big way. Halo could make a great comeback and begin to win back a lot of fans in the second season, but right now it has a lot of ground to cover. 

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