In Stitchers Roundtable 3X10 “Maternis,” we learn you should always be careful what you wish for
Fresh off the morning after glow of the Camsten union, we find the two trying to make up for lost time even on the way to the lab. Unfortunately, their oxytocin filter is put to the test immediately when Colonel Decker shows up personally to deliver their new case. Her name is Denise Nichols, and he reveals to the team that she is an ex-NASA engineer who has been assigning the cases for the program. While she passed away of natural causes, she left behind a Faraday-like room in her home. Kirsten stitches into her only to find that the filter is not working effectively. When she spots an email mentioning termination of her mother, she bounces prematurely. Confronting about what she saw, Maggie does not deny the email, but also insists it’s not going to happen. That’s not enough reassurance for Kirsten, so she heads to Nichols’s house with Fisher.
When the impenetrable room allows entry based on her voice, the two find clues that lead Camsten to the secret facility Jacqueline is in. There, Stinger appears and reveals Ivy is with him, saying he wants to reunite the family. The latter quickly corrects him, bringing both Maggie and Fisher in and revealing the termination was ploy. Unfortunately, an ensuing gunfight damages the hibernation chamber and forces the team to take Jacqueline back to the lab. Kirsten convinces Cameron and Stinger to work together to help stitch into her mother. A forced sync later, the two women have to switch roles so that Kirsten can channel her emotional energy to waking Jacqueline up. Against all odds the strategy works, but the team then gets news they never expected to hear.
Stitchers is well known for their insane cliffhanger finales, but this one definitely took the cake. Let’s have a group hug and a good sob session with our roundtable:
Jennifer (@Storytellingdoc) – Doctor, Author, and Senior Writer at TVAfterDark.
Allie (@alliejlanning) – Stitchers fandom Jane-of-all-trades.
Lauren (@laurensloves13) – Australian made, Stitchers enthusiast, cat mom.
Wanda (@WandaDeane) – Tax Administrator, Paralegal and Mom.
Tess (@CamstenCupcake) – Administrative Assistant. Watching Stitchers & Camsten feels like home.
1. We’re going to admit that we were kind of shocked about Camanda moving in together. How do you feel?
Jennifer (@Storytellingdoc): Talk about whiplash! Honestly, I was starting to think I had some temporal dysplasia after hearing that. I get that Camille really fell hard and the breakup tore her up, but I’m not totally sold on how the Amanda feels. I have to say that I haven’t seen anything on her side that tells me she’s serious about Camille, and it felt like she broke things off as a power play. Maybe I’m just like Linus – no one’s good enough for our Sass Queen! I’m definitely concerned that Camille is the one doing the moving – I mean, what will happen if they don’t work out? After all, she also thinks Kirsten doesn’t remember her, right?
Allie (@alliejlanning): That it’s too soon. But I understand Camille’s pull towards doing it. I think what Camanda went through was definitely eye opening for Camille and she grew a bit from it. I don’t agree with the decision, still, but moving in with someone can be eye-opening in other ways. This is Camille’s first real relationship that we are seeing. I think it’ll be good for her to get out and explore that. But with every big decision, there are always things to be apprehensive about.
Lauren (@laurensloves13): This is a hard ‘no’ from me. Camille is not a jump first, think about the consequences later type person, so a move like this is completely out of character, and it does not have the potential to end well. I still don’t like Amanda – she may not have an ulterior motive but she’s not in the same place as Camille emotionally and a relationship with that kind of dynamic just can’t work. Also, even if we take out what happens at the end of the episode, Kirsten and Camille have really settled into a great roommate friendship, and separating them at this point is really harsh and not at all necessary.
Wanda (@WandaDeane): Honestly it could be my age, but I really dislike this decision by Camille. I understand her emotional state and her need to connect but Camille has always been so independent and now to me it feels like she has a bit of a cling wrap thing happening. Amanda walked out on her a few weeks ago and this time it just feels like she’ll do anything to make sure that doesn’t happen again, even if it isn’t particularly a well thought out move. Further, I almost got the impression that Amanda asked as sort of a test to see if Camille is all in. I get that desire, to make sure your relationship is secure, but I dislike when partners “test” each other. To me it speaks to insecurity, and I feel like you have to be secure with yourself, before having a lasting relationship. Perhaps too it’s that we’ve only seen a few dates and that is making it seem entirely too soon. I love her and Amanda together and I hope for a greater connection next season between them either way though!
Tess (@CamstenCupcake): It is a really big step and I think it’s too soon. Camille & Amanda have been moving soon this entire season, so when you take that into consideration it makes sense. They will learn everything about each other while living together, and it could be good or bad for them as a couple. Amanda should give Camille more of a chance to deal with her struggles the next time something about Camille’s past comes up, cause Amanda gave up on her way too soon. Amanda, you better not hurt Camille again! I prefer Camille & Kirsten living together though, I’m gonna miss them as roomies!!!
2. Team Ivy was vindicated this week when she helped capture Stinger. However, when did you realize Ivy was on the right side all along?
Jennifer: I’ve been Team Ivy this whole season, so I suspected she was working with Maggie and Fisher starting last week when she told Stinger about the termination. My suspicions grew after she had Linus come over and told him what she did with his email. She could have easily lied about it or not talked to him at all. All I can say is that I was definitely cheering her on when Ivy revealed to Stinger that she wasn’t alone. That moment is only second to Linus forgiving her right away and asking her out to dinner. Poor girl deserves a hot meal and some loving after all of that!
Allie: I’ve. Been. On. Team. Ivy. The. Whole. Time. C’mon, this is Stitchers and maybe it’s because I’ve spent too much time thinking about this, but I refused to believe that Ivy would be against Kirsten. Maybe at first, her alliances were with her father, but you can see the distinct difference between Ivy from the beginning of the season to the end of it. Props to Sarah, who carried this with her the whole time and gave us these subtle clues so that we were never sure what side of the fence Ivy was truly on.
Lauren: Are we even sure that Ivy actually is on the right side? I want to love her, but all this double-agent work and switching from good to bad and back again… Ivy is a very confusing character, but she has been so pertinent to the development of Kirsten’s emotional track. It really was nice to see Ivy and Linus patch things up again too. I pray for the good in her to win out.
Wanda: Honestly there wasn’t a point where I was sure that she was on the right side, until the moment she brought out Fisher and Maggie. Normally, I am good at determining a character’s intentions which just tells you how well Sarah portrayed Ivy and also just how great the writing on this episode was. I am so truly glad that Ivy is on Team Stitchers! I hope Sarah Davenport comes back as a series regular next season!
Tess: I’ve been hoping & thinking that Ivy was on the right team this whole season, cause I really wanted Kirsten to have a good relationship with her sister. I suspected it already when Maggie & Fisher questioned Ivy and they had their plan to make Ivy work for them. Of course Ivy went way too far with trapping Kirsten into her own memory, but she really has been trying to make it up to Kirsten. I hope Ivy will continue to do so and we’ll see their sister connection slowly heal.
3. How surprised were you when you found out Denise Nichols’s connection to the stitch program?
Jennifer: When her role was first revealed, I immediately thought Stinger killed her for information. I was relieved to find out she lived a full life and just happened to pass away. Of course, I was tickled pink by the Star Trek references (obvious likeness to Nichelle Nichols with same last name, “Hailing frequencies open”) and the fact that she worked for NASA in the past. I loved her even more knowing she anticipated her death and Kirsten stitching into her for information! It’s too bad they didn’t meet while she was alive. To be a fly on the wall during that conversation!
Allie: I am an avid stitch fan. I am fascinated by the way the program has been set up and run all these years. It was a bit out of left field for me, only because I honestly thought it would be someone we’ve met before, (Les Turners ghost maybe?) but we’ve been told since the beginning that the program is top secret and there are players in this that we haven’t heard or met before. The web of the Stitchers program continues to evolve in ways that we couldn’t even have imagined when Kirsten first began the program. I’m interested to see where season four would take this, now.
Lauren: Mind. Blown. Where do the writers come up with these ideas? This could not have been more of a bombshell to drop after all of this time. The fact that the NSA only had one person that picked the cases, and that no one else knew how it was done, was such a crazy idea that fit in so well with exactly how secretive the high-end of the Stitchers program has always been. Suddenly there was an explanation as to why Maggie never wanted to reveal how the cases were picked, because she genuinely didn’t know, because her bosses didn’t know either.
Wanda: If I understood the episode correctly Ms. Nichols is basically a translator for Kirsten’s brain, and that blows my mind. I feel like I’m going to have to watch this episode 20 or so more times before that really sinks in though! She had an amazing link with Kirsten and the way that she thinks. She truly understood the way Kirsten’s mind works, knowing with certainty where Kirsten’s problem solving skills would take her – to Ms. Nichol’s house and then on to the army base.
Tess: First I was like: why this random Stitch? We haven’t heard her name before, so it will probably lead to a clue. Denise Nichols was getting information from Kirsten’s brain, which I didn’t see coming. It was a good clue to the original truth of who picked the cases!!!
4. Stinger still had secrets to reveal even after his capture. Did you like the surprise revelation about who was really picking the stitches?
Jennifer: I have to say, Jeff Schechter really impressed me with that twist. I did not see that coming at all! There was definitely some curiosity on my part when they first spotted the strange mass around Jacqueline’s brain stem. Kudos to having Camille be the one to make the connection too. The fact that she was in a room with neuroscientists but was the first to realize what might be going on really showed how valuable she is to the team. As for Kirsten picking the stitches, the doctor in me has to let go of a little bit of medical knowledge to make that work. Even so, I think it really brought things full circle for Kirsten and the whole team that she was the one calling the shots all along.
Allie: Okay, let me just say that Daniel Stinger is probably the craziest of them all, but I really see his points…He obviously still loves Jacqueline after all of this time, but his carelessness towards Kirsten is exhausting. This is a man who put nanobots in her brain! Tested on her relentlessly. Gave her temporal dysplasia. When he told us about Kirsten being the one who really chose the stitches, it definitely piqued my curiosity. Because we’ve known for two years that this program has revolved around her and it was created for her use. I feel foolish not even realizing that Daniel Stinger would trust that information with anyone else besides Kirsten.
Lauren: Stinger is a horrible human being who granted has been driven a little crazy by the situation he got himself into but the fact that he had not hesitation in putting nanobots in his own child’s brain is just not even fathomable on a scale of reasonability. It left me feeling quite sick inside. Poor Kirsten has just been an unwilling puppet this whole time.
Wanda: I loved this revelation, mostly because I never would have guessed that Kirsten or more accurately her brain, picks the stitches. For me it was a surprise that he had injected nanobots into Kirsten’s brain and I wholeheartedly agreed with Cameron that Stinger always looked out for Jacqueline even risking his own daughter’s safety to do it. I loved that line and nodded fiercely when Cameron said it!
Tess: That one was so surprising! Of course I’ve never thought about the possibility of Kirsten having nanobots in her brain to pick the cases! Such a cool twist!
5. Was it just us or did that whole emotional energy thing feel a little Matrix-like? What was your favorite geek reference this episode?
Jennifer: I definitely caught the Neo/Trinity love saving life homage, but I have to say by far my favorite geek reference was the Han Solo/Leia reference. You know the one. Cameron says “I love you,” and Kirsten says “I know.” It’s not just a geek reference. It’s Cameron and Kirsten being so in sync that she tells him she loves him in a way that shows him just how much. She may get the geek references, but he is the ultimate geek. She gave him a declaration of love he’ll never forget. Aww damn, now I have to go cry in a corner…
Allie: Everyone is going to say the “Star Wars” one and I don’t want to be like everyone else. But, please, it was the Star Wars one. We finally got an “I love you” and I was about to rip this season apart if we didn’t get one.
Lauren: Totally obvious but the Star Wars ‘Han/Leia’ reference was perfectly timed and such a sucker punch to everyone who just wanted to hear a flat out ‘I love you too’!
Wanda: The writing there was on point. I could really picture the flow of energy back and forth between Cameron and Stinger. In that same vain I liked the “Oracle” reference. Initially when I saw the actress in the corpse cassette I even thought she had a passing resemblance to the woman who portrayed the Oracle in the Matrix movie.
Tess: I really liked that the emotional energy between Kirsten and Jacqueline saved her! It was really original and it was such an epic scene! My favorite “references” weren’t so much the geek references but the references aka flashbacks to Kirsten’s connection with her squad. Those were so special and emotional and I really loved to see them.
6. It seems ripping Camsten apart is a recurring finale theme, but this time, it seriously broke us! Who do you think is forcing Kirsten to fake her amnesia?
Jennifer: This one took a little thinking, but I definitely have my suspicions. It doesn’t make sense for Maggie to be the one asking, since she wouldn’t risk the program or losing her team. We know it’s not Decker or anyone else at the NSA, because they want to weaponize the technology. So, I’ve narrowed it down to Stinger, Jacqueline, and Cameron’s mother. The first is an easy guess, since she already hates him to some degree for what he did to her. Jacqueline doesn’t make sense because she would have no motive to do so, but I’m not ruling her out entirely since we know so little about her. In the end, my money is actually on Cameron’s mother. I think she still doesn’t like that he gave up a promising career, and after seeing how much he cares about Kirsten she knows he won’t leave the lab willingly. I think she told Cameron about the abnormal EEG to set it up so it’s easy to explain her supposed amnesia. She did say “mother knows best,” so she’s definitely capable of something like this.
Allie: It’s curious, isn’t it? My money is on Daniel. If it really is Stinger behind this amnesia thing, he’s got to have some sort of powerful ammunition for Kirsten to do this. Stinger knows Cameron’s weakness is Kirsten – “your love will save her” – and he’ll use that to his advantage. Maybe he’s hoping Cameron will prove that love over again.
Lauren: So many theories!! Stinger seems far far too obvious, but is a viable option. Ivy, though I struggle to formulate a good theory, could be behind it. Could it be Maggie? She was a part of the program from the very beginning; she had ties to Ed, to Stinger, and to Jacqueline, and it still seems that we’re only seeing the tip of the iceberg when it comes to her and her back story. And Jacqueline…we do know that she was really the brains (unintentional pun) of the Stitchers program. She could have a whole arsenal of knowledge to use to her advantage.
Wanda: I think Maggie is forcing Kirsten to fake her amnesia, and I think I know why as well. I think that she is being forced to do it because now that Jacqueline is awake the only thing that the NSA has “over” Kirsten is Cameron. I think Maggie communicates to Kirsten that the mess with the oxytocin filter not correctly working during the stitch has lead the NSA powers that be to conclude that they have to get rid of Cameron to “fix” Kirsten’s ability to stitch. This solution was Maggie’s Hail Mary to save Cameron’s life. The choices presented to Kirsten are to pretend that she has forgotten Cameron or they are going to disappear/kill him. Let’s be realistic, there is a good chance that her having to lie to Cameron in such a hateful way is very likely to kill her oxytocin levels!
Tess: First of all: I am so relieved they added that last sentence, cause I can’t even imagine how I would’ve felt if Kirsten’s amnesia would’ve been real!!! The possibilities are Stinger, Maggie or Jacqueline. I don’t think it could’ve been Jacqueline because of the state she’s been in all those years, she couldn’t have been that okay to do this. I also think and hope it won’t be Ivy or Cameron’s mom, so that leaves Stinger and Maggie. I haven’t made my mind up yet, but I can’t wait to find out. I think we were all scared of Kirsten getting her temporal dysplasia back cause she stitched into an alive person, but this is even more sad & heartbreaking!
7. Speaking of which, why do you think Kirsten would even consider doing that?
Jennifer: We know it would take a lot for Kirsten to lie to Cameron like that. There had to be something major that she was told, or she was blackmailed into it. Since I think it was Cameron’s mother, it wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination for me to believe she told Kirsten this much stress on his heart would kill him prematurely. That’s definitely something Kirsten would give him up for – to literally protect his heart. The other possibility is that there’s something wrong with Jacqueline, and his mother would only agree to help if Kirsten gave Cameron up. No matter what, I have no doubt this was an incredibly difficult decision for her, and she wouldn’t do it unless she felt she had no other choice. Now, back to the dark hole I crawled out of…
Allie: Does this mean that Kirsten’s brain is now as fully evolved as Jacqueline’s? I would need to know that before being able to answer this, I think. Kirsten only does things for others’ sake. She’s not a selfish girl. She would do this to protect her mother in a moment, someone who she just got back and won’t be willing to lose again. She’d protect Cameron with no questions asked and the rest of the team without any fight. A shot in the dark here, but maybe she uncovered something while they were in the stitch. Something that could change stitching forever. I mean, they successfully were able to stitch with Kirsten in the corpse cassette, which has never been done. What secrets did this open up? What did they uncover with this event? Whatever the reason, I hope we get season four and the answers very soon.
Lauren: To keep the man she loves alive. There can be no other explanation.
Wanda: Her protective instinct is the only thing that would allow her to consider lying to Cameron. I think she would lie to Cameron to protect him, Jacqueline or Ivy. I can’t think of anything about Kirsten’s nature that she could be convinced to be deceitful except to protect someone that she loves.
Tess: Kirsten is doing this to protect Cameron and her team, she would do pretty much anything to protect her Stitchers family. But what is Kirsten protecting them from? I don’t know but I really wanna know! I feel so heartbroken for the whole squad, but especially for Kirsten and Cameron. The look on Cameron’s face just broke my heart. I can’t wait to find out why Kirsten would do something this extreme in season 4!!! This season was amazing and Stitchers deserves & needs more seasons!!!
Final Verdict: Stitchers 3X10 “Maternis” has us screaming for a season four
It seems with every season, Jeff Schechter and the Stitchers writers come up with more torturous ways to leave us hanging. This episode took us from the highest peaks of shipper joy to the lowest depths of anguish and sorrow. While we are incredibly excited for Kirsten to finally get her mother back, we are equally traumatized by the loss of Camsten so soon after they finally became canon. Things are not helped by the fact that we don’t really know who is really responsible for the two parting ways. All we are certain about is that we wish we could have protected Cameron’s heart from this latest break, and we’re worried about the future of the program. So, what’s there left for us to say? Renew Stitchers for season four, of course!