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'Motherland: Fort Salem': A look At The Series Premiere

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By Lacretia Roberts

The premiere episode wastes no time capturing viewer's attention.

It opens with a wintery, blizzard like mix of snow and wind tussling and seemingly guiding a pale blue balloon through the air, from high in the sky down to the surface of a crowd.

Kids and families are seen scattered throughout the crowd, playing and filled with merriment, as the balloon has now found it's way to a whispering woman, standing in the center of everything.

Strangely, bubbles are floating all around the area increasingly as a tense music begins.

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Whatever is happening or being said is inaudible, though it appears the balloon is reacting to the woman's whispers and expanding.

It grows bigger and bigger before inevitably popping. The explosive noise seems to simultaneously stop all action occurring in the plaza. Every person standing seems to freeze. The remnants of the balloon fall to the ground and the woman in the red coat begins to leave.

As she walks, a trail of bodies are seen falling as people rush to their deaths, running up to jump off the highest level of the plaza.

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"We are the Spree." the woman says. She then gets in a car and drives away, but not before lighting herself aflame to reveal her true self, much like a shapeshifting phoenix of some sort.

This opening is powerful and gains the audience with a shock factor that demands an equal response to this unique and horrific act of terrorism.

Enter Fort Salem, an all witch military base that trains decendent witches to combat any threats to the United States, including the Spree.

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This series focuses on characters Tally Craven, Raelle Collar and Abigail Bellweather.
Each from a different background and with different perspectives on working at Fort Salem, the trio presents 3 young women women who are highly diverse from one another but are forced to work together in a unit.

Raelle seems to have resentment for the process because her mother died in battle and she expects that end is all that can come of this experience.

Tally is eager and excited to train because she wants to make a difference in the world and save lives by stopping the Spree.

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Abigail comes from a line of powerful witches, and is a natural leader who is full of pride about her training and the mission.

The episode focuses on the units development together as their tensions emerge.

Raelle's contempt for training and the process of Fort Salem threatens the entire trio's progress and potential to graduate into War college as she walks out of a training exercise.

She is reckless and emotionally charged because she expects to die as collateral like she feels her mother did. Amid her confusion she meets Scylla, who expresses an attraction and also gets Raelle her first and second demerit.

When her father sends a bundle of letters written by her mother during her last fatal tour, Raelle learns that her mother blamed her leader; a Bellweather witch and also Abigail's mother, for her fate.

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Of course, learning this angers Raelle to her core and she lashes out against Abigail during training.

Abigail however, is already equally angry at Raelle, since she tried unsuccessfully to be reassigned after the group was reprimanded multiple times for Raell's reckless behaviors with Scylla.

The pair engage one another and wrestle around, both losing control of their powers in a scuffle that nearly brings the whole training facility down.

Abigail believes death is an inevitable and tragic part of their work, while Raelle only feels fear and frustration through her grief.

Tally feels caught up in the midst of everything and is angry that her teammates have put them all at risk including her, though she feels her heart is focused on the cause.

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Raelle turns to Scylla who encourages her, through a passionate moment of intimacy, to push through her anger and complete the training, using her pain to her advantage.

This seems to put Raelle in a new mindset and by the next training session, she has improved her performance and become rededicated.

By this point it has become clear that the witches of this time use their vocals to channel their power.

In the next vocal exercise the unit is tasked to produce a seed or vocal chord that is complicated and difficult to achieve. However, when the trio attempts it, they not only achieve it, but it grows powerfully and out of control until their leader, Anacostia shuts it down.

It is clear that somehow this unit of girls has special power that will likely be explored throughout the season.

Abigail and Raelle have a discussion and surprisingly, Abigail apologizes to Raelle about the loss of her mother. She also admits that she is uncertain what caused her death but she knows her mother cared more for her team's lives than her own.

The pair agree that they don't need to be friends but they can agree to work together as a unit.

The episode ends revealing that Scylla is the burning phoenix and member of the Spree, from the beginning of the episode.

When will Fort Salem learn that the Spree has already infiltrated their ranks? Is Scylla planning to turn Raelle?

These questions and more are burning in viewers minds after the intriguing premier.

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