Series 2, episode 2
Abby and Connor are in a DVD rental shop, and bickering over what to watch this week. It seems as though it’s a regular thing, and they take turns to choose, giving the first indications in series 2 of their domestic arrangements. Abby eventually decides that she can’t decide, and leaves it to Connor, with the instruction, “No horror, no action and definitely no sci-fi.” Whether she has any faith in him to actually follow those instructions is unclear.
Connor brings Caroline home for the first time, and as they arrive, Abby has a lizard sitting on her shoulder, and is feeding Rex. Abby’s immediate reaction to Caroline seems to be mostly surprise, but she does initially make an effort to smile and be nice, despite Caroline exclaiming, “What is that thing?” when she sees Rex. Abby also gives Connor a faintly approving look when he says that Rex is really cool. Although when Rex tries to bite Caroline, Abby does shrug and comment, “I suppose he’s just doing what his instinct dictates.” A slightly veiled insult if ever there was one.
Caroline, not unreasonably, asks if Abby and Connor are a couple, and Abby’s response is immediate. “No. God no. As if.” As we saw with Stephen in 1.4, she is extremely quick to put people right if they assume that she and Connor are anything other than friends.
As soon as she gets Connor alone, she immediately asks, “Who is she?” Again, a not unreasonable question. Abby doesn’t even attempt to hide her amusement at Connor’s assertion that some women find him attractive, but she does sort of agree when Connor asks her not to ‘muck it up’ for him. Abby seems both amused and relieved when they get the calls about a new anomaly, presumably because it means they don’t have to deal with the potential awkwardness of the three of them watching a film together.
This entire exchange is a new Abby that we didn’t really see in series 1. She comes across as catty, and almost territorial, both in response to a stranger in her flat, and a stranger showing an interest in Connor. At the same time, though, she continues to insist that she has no romantic interest in Connor herself. And thus begins several years’ worth of mixed signals.
Later, at the ARC, Abby is the one who suggests a garden centre when they need something to clear the fog, and Connor immediately catches onto what she means, even though neither of them actually say the words ‘leaf blowers’. It’s another nice touch to show how well they know each other now.
In the corridor when Connor sees ‘the cleaner’, now dressed as a soldier, Abby seems to dismiss his claims, although she does admit she wasn’t really looking and didn’t see the man. She does point out, why would one of Lester’s soldiers disguise himself as a cleaner, which is not an unreasonable question, although the way she says it seems more designed to get Connor to shut up about it and get a move on, rather than indicating she is giving the matter any real thought.
Connor and Abby turn up with the leaf blowers, and are the ones using them as the team head upstairs to rescue the trapped people. When Connor gets half swallowed by the giant worm, Abby stands back and lets Cutter deal with it (since he has a sword, and Abby is armed only with a leaf blower), but as soon as Cutter is out of the way she checks that Connor is okay. She doesn’t get too close, though, and seems a little disgusted by the fact that Connor is now covered in worm goo. We can only assume it smells really bad!
Cutter, Abby and Connor discuss how to clear the fog. Abby doesn’t contribute much to the conversation, but when she does speak, she gets straight to the problem and asks the relevant questions to deal with it, unlike Connor who rambles and makes sarcastic comments.
As they are heading up the stairs, Connor comments he’s going to have to start going to gym, and Abby looks amused, possibly because she is in better physical shape than he is, or possibly just at the thought of Connor in a gym. Connor continues to witter about having washed Caroline’s number off his hand, and Abby seems to be mostly amused and gently mocking, but she is also making appropriately sympathetic noises towards him.
Abby and Connor end up crawling through the ventilation shafts to get to the server room, and Abby yet again proves that she is the practical one of the pair by successfully reading the schematic map where Connor failed. Abby is also the one who drops down into the server room and kicks and punches one of the giant worms until it stops moving. After the blip of the previous episode, Abby is now shown to be the more action-oriented of the two, something which continues in 2.3.
Throughout this episode, Connor and Abby are completely at ease with each other, gently teasing and bantering the whole time. Their relationship may only be platonic at this point, but they obviously have an extremely close friendship. The same is largely true for most of series 2, particularly the first half. It is also interesting to note that in series 2 Connor seems to have stopped being so blatant about his romantic interest in Abby as he was in series 1. This could be a feature of the alternate timeline, but this may also partly explain why they appear so comfortable together now that Abby isn’t constantly fending him off.
Back home, Abby and Connor have a nice little bonding moment with the ‘high five to us’ conversation and a cup of tea. Of course, Caroline then reappears, and the smile immediately drops from Abby’s face, and she looks irritated as Caroline barges into the flat without waiting for an invite. Abby looks on, with an amused raised-eyebrow expression while Connor babbles his way through asking Caroline out for a drink, but as soon as they have gone, she becomes pensive. I don’t honestly think that she is jealous as such at this point. More that she and Connor have got into a routine together, and Abby isn’t happy at having that routine disturbed, especially when the disturbance is not on her terms.
Link to part 7 - episode 2.1
Link to part 9 - episode 2.3