‘Roswell, New Mexico’ Season 2 Episode 9 Recap: “The Diner”

Roswell New Mexico Season 2 Episode 9
Jason Behr as Tripp in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 2 episode 9 (Photo: John Golden Britt © 2020 The CW Network, LLC)

Aisha Tyler directs and Roswell‘s Jason Behr returns for a guest starring appearance on The CW’s Roswell, New Mexico season two episode nine. “The Diner” begins with Walt refusing to discuss his past, even though Michael (Michael Vlamis) and Isobel (Lily Cowles) really deserve to know about what happened all those years ago. He gives in when beer is offered as a bribe.

Liz (Jeanine Mason) is absorbed in her research on alien and human DNA and the possibility of curing human illnesses when her dad calls informing her she has to cover a shift at the diner.

Max (Nathan Parsons) seems to come to with Sheriff Valenti (Rosa Arredondo) pointing a flashlight in his face. We left Max and Charlie in a hotel parking lot engulfed in a bright light at the end of episode eight, and now he’s alone and wondering what happened to Charlie. Valenti demands he stand and places him in cuffs.

Liz cooks up a burger for Kyle (Michael Trevino) and his date, Steph, who recognizes Liz as the woman she caught making out with him in a closet at the hospital. Kyle tries to explain but Steph thinks maybe he arranged to bring his ex along on their first date which is taking place after hours at the Crash Down Café. Liz is super friendly and even offers to serve them drinks from her dad’s private stash.

Still, Steph’s a little unnerved by the whole setup – as anyone would be.

Kyle excuses himself to speak to Liz. He explains Steph is sick, but he’s not supposed to know. He snooped on her medical records and after a short discussion on ethics, Liz thinks maybe Kyle should come clean and tell Steph what he knows. Kyle’s not so sure.

Liz then admits her own little secret; she’s been busy doing research in the lab and hasn’t told Max. She claims she doesn’t want to stress him out. Kyle suggests she stop experimenting on alien DNA but Liz won’t let it go. She believes Max came from a planet similar to Earth yet he never gets sick. Maybe his people have developed immunities to human diseases which means alien DNA could be used to create vaccines.

Liz excuses herself to work on her research, turning down the lights and turning on the jukebox. Kyle’s first date’s going well until he admits he knows she’s sick. Steph gets pissed and thinks it’s a pity date. She storms out and Liz returns, concerned about the yelling.

Liz is convinced she can help Steph but Kyle’s worried about this path Liz is taking. He reminds her she’ll be risking the world learning about Max, Michael, and Isobel if she doesn’t stop this now.

They’re still arguing when Isobel arrives, angry that Kyle screwed them over and got Max in trouble.

Walt, Michael, and Isobel have a drink at The Wild Pony as Walt explains his backstory. He didn’t have any parents and as a kid he ran away to Roswell. He tried to get a job mopping floors at a diner but they didn’t want him. He lucked into a job with Bronson (Gaius Charles) on the farm and he loved being there.

He remembers the night the women arrived and how he and Bronson gave them their names. The foursome became a family and Bronson fell in love with Louise (Cassandra Jean Amell). A year passed and he wanted to take her to the fair to show off the pumpkin launcher they built. Nora (Kayla Ewell) squashed that idea because they needed to remain out of sight.

Bronson was a good man but Nora was firm in her belief that they couldn’t risk being out and about in the town. Bronson knew Nora was building something – a time machine, spaceship, something important – but she wouldn’t say what. Bronson was hurt by Nora’s insistence they stay hidden and by the fact he couldn’t take Louise out dancing.

“I protect Louise because only Louise can protect the child,” said Nora.

Still, Bronson begged for Nora to come to the fair and let Louise hear music before they had to leave this planet. (Apparently, there wasn’t any music on their planet.) Walt also begged for them to go to the fair.

Michael interrupts Walt’s story convinced there’s no way Walt actually remembers any of this. Walt, incensed, swears he does because of what happened soon after that.

Walt was at the diner selling a pie when he overheard a soldier talking to Tripp (Jason Behr). The soldier, Tripp’s brother Harlan, pointed out Nora’s photo in the paper taken at the fair, angry the aliens had been in town for the past year right under their noses. Walt heard Tripp say they would raid the farm in two days and that they wouldn’t show any mercy.

Roswell New Mexico Season 2 Episode 9
Kayla Ewell as Nora in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 2 episode 9 (Photo: John Golden Britt © 2020 The CW Network, LLC)

Walt recalls Nora wanted to leave the next day but he begged for one final day together. “She caved. She always caved,” says Walt.

Michael’s heard enough and doesn’t want a blow-by-blow of the “Tripp Manes leading a massacre” story. However, Isobel wants Walt to finish his story. She wants to know how her mother died.

Walt explains they saw the soldiers approaching and Nora hid him in a crate. She tucked a note in his shirt and said, “X marks the spot.”

Bronson was the first to die when he tried to plead with Tripp that the women were just people. Tripp looked upon them as the enemy and shot Bronson. Walt remained in hiding but heard the screaming and all the gunshots. A bullet injured his eye, causing him to lose his vision. The crate had a secret exit built in that led out to the back of the farm. Walt escaped while Nora and Louise put up what he describes as a helluva fight.

The soldiers shot everyone who was on the farm that night including other innocent farmers and neighbors who came to find out what was happening. He recalls running past Louise’s dead body as he fled from the massacre.

Walt was the only one who survived. He made it pretty far from the farm and watched as a massive explosion rocked the area.

Michael can’t believe Walt didn’t tell anyone he saw the ship explode. Walt explains he had no idea what it was that blew up and he left town immediately. He didn’t want to ever return but did so because he needed to follow the map Nora stuffed in his pocket.

The map led him to their pods. He watched over the pods for years and then all of a sudden they were gone. Isobel thanks him for sharing his story and he pats her hand. “Louise was a firecracker, honey, just like you,” he says. “That’s why we all fell for her so hard.”

After Walt leaves, Michael reveals he’s convinced his mom sacrificed herself for Max – the healer/savior. Walt had said Louise protects “the child” not children, and Michael is sure that child is Max. Isobel’s so over her brother’s jealousy. “We both know the universe tilts in Max’s direction,” says Michael. “We were just along for the ride.”

As they’re talking Isobel hears Max’s voice telling her he needs help. Instead of telling Michael what she heard, she claims she needs to leave to process this new information.

Meanwhile, Alex (Tyler Blackburn) cleans up his dad’s pills and booze. When his dad joins him, Alex asks about Tripp – a relative he’s never mentioned.

A flashback shows a young Jesse meeting Uncle Tripp in the diner. Tripp’s about to share a secret and Jesse guesses it’s about the 1947 UFO crash. Before they can go into the details, Jesse’s dad arrived and sent him home.

Jesse explains his father believed an alien seduced Tripp and was able to get her ultimate revenge on their family. Jesse passes Alex a paper with alien symbols. Tripp slipped it to him under the table at the diner all those years ago. Jesse has no idea what the symbols mean.

Michael texts Alex but then is genuinely surprised when Alex actually shows up.

Sheriff Valenti has Max in cuffs in the back of her squad car when she replies to the radio saying it was just a false alarm at the hotel where she picked up Max. Max is confused as to why he’s in custody and even further confused when she takes him into a café and questions him over coffee. She demands to know if he was really in Mexico when Noah died. Max claims he was. Valenti admits she likes him but thinks maybe he snapped, given that he has a traumatic past, and did something he doesn’t want to admit to.

Max disagrees with the traumatic past assessment and Sheriff Valenti rattles off his history. She knows he was abandoned naked in the desert when he was seven. She then reveals she’s the deputy who received the call and ultimately she became obsessed with his case. She was determined to find the scumbag who did that to three little kids.

Max says he and Isobel didn’t show signs of being abused, but Valenti reveals that at the group home he was screaming and drawing on walls. Michael tried to calm him down and snatched the crayon from Max. When the Evanses came to adopt kids, it was Michael holding the crayon. They left him behind and adopted Max and Isobel instead, believing Michael had problems.

Max is becoming increasingly agitated as they talk. He tries to convince Valenti she’s wrong but while he’s doing so, he bends a utensil in half. That sort of proves her point.

Next, Valenti explains she’s seen footage of Mimi DeLuca getting out of the back of a hunting van. That same van was seen 100 yards from where Cameron’s car was abandoned. And, the van was at the hotel where she found Max and where Charlie went missing.

Max agrees he fits the profile of a kidnapper but he claims she can’t place him at the other scenes. Valenti is relentless, laying out her case. She knows he had a sexual relationship with Cameron, has rage issues, and he has knowledge of how to pull off a kidnapping.

Sheriff Valenti drops a bombshell – his passport was never marked crossing into Mexico.

She reads him his rights and while doing so he uses his powers to send a message to Isobel asking for help.

Isobel’s waiting at the station flirting with a cop when Sheriff Valenti drags Max in. Isobel attempts to use her powers to get inside Valenti’s mind and place the idea she doesn’t want to arrest Max in her head. She starts the process and then falls to the floor. She’s only out for a second and then quickly sits up, claiming to be a fainter and assuring them she’s fine.

And now we finally learn why she charged into the Crash Down Café earlier in the episode. “Do you want to tell Liz how you royally boned us, Kyle, or should I?” she asks. Liz and Kyle are both confused and Isobel explains Sheriff Valenti arrested Max for something – it could be kidnapping, murder, or kicking puppies. But when Isobel tried to use her Jedi powers, they didn’t work.

Kyle confesses he stole yellow pollen from the lab and put it in the perfume he gave his mom for her birthday. He needed to stop her from the alien investigation she was tracking. However, now she’s got Max under arrest for killing Noah.

Kyle reminds them Max did kill Noah. He’s not going to mess up her mind to convince her otherwise. But he thinks he may have a solution.

Over at The Wild Pony, Michael’s laying out what he knows about his mom sacrificing herself for Max. Alex listens patiently and then offers his own theory. He thinks Tripp and Nora were working together and had a genuine connection. Alex thinks it’s even possible Tripp was warning Walt at the diner, aware the kid was listening in.

A flashback shows the soldiers preparing for the raid one night earlier than planned. Tripp was unaware of the change of plans until he saw them getting ready. Harlan was in charge and moved it up, claiming the men were ready.

Once they got to the farm, it wasn’t Tripp who shot Bronson. Instead, Harlan came in from the rear of the barn and shot Bronson in the back. Harlan confronted Tripp about hesitating, and Tripp claimed Nora got into his head again.

Tripp joined the men holding Nora outside the barn. He turned and shot a lantern, setting the barn on fire. Louise and Nora exchanged a smile right before Louise was shot running from the barn.

Alex believes Tripp knew Nora wanted Louise protected. Michael reminds him she died and that Nora – his mom – was taken to Caulfield to be experimented on. Michael doesn’t think any of this really matters anyway since everybody’s dead. They can never possibly know the truth.

Kyle arrives at the station and asks Joe, the officer on duty, for a minute with Max. Kyle tells Max he thinks his mother needs some of the truth…but maybe not all of it. Their talk’s interrupted by Kyle’s mom who wants his assurance he’s not involved with Max’s problems.

Kyle claims Max has an alibi for Mimi and Jenna. “I had a heart problem, Sheriff,” says Max, revealing the large wound on his chest. “I was unconscious when Mimi and Cam went missing.”

He explains he didn’t tell her because he wanted to continue to be a force for good and make her proud.

Kyle confirms everything Max said was true.

Isobel’s still at the diner hanging out with Liz (she’s even filling Liz’s ketchup bottles) when Alex joins them. Alex reveals his uncle had a favorite booth and Liz points out one that the teenagers love because of how the light hits it in the afternoon. (It’s great for selfies.)

They look around the booth and Alex is searching for something out of place that no one would notice. Liz spots an X carved into a brick on the wall. She easily pries it out and withdraws a dusty envelope. It’s a photo of Isobel’s mom and Isobel becomes emotional pointing out how pretty her mom was. But then Isobel notices her mom is older in the picture than she should have been. She survived the raid!

“Thank you Tripp” is written on the back of the photo next to the three circle thing Max draws. This confirms for Alex that Tripp was helping not hunting the aliens.

Alex is unaware his dad is listening in to this conversation via his phone. Jesse leaps up and heads out, after briefly returning to grab the cane that he doesn’t actually need to get around.

Max is released from jail but before he leaves, he tells Valenti there are 14 murders in the county that he thinks Noah’s responsible for. He also explains Noah violated, abused, and used his sister for 10 years. He believes Noah deserved the bolt of lightning that killed him.

Walt and Michael have a heart-to-heart and Walt reveals that twice he attempted to adopt Michael. They wouldn’t let him but he kept watch even after being turned down. That year with Nora and Louise was apparently the best time of his life.

Michael breaks down and cries after Walt leaves.

Max meets Liz at the diner and after a reunion hug, he admits he believes Charlie was abducted by aliens. They kiss before Max heads home to catch up on some sleep.

Liz spots the milkshake Steph was sipping. She places the straw in a baggie. (That sound you heard at the end of the episode was thousands of Roswell, New Mexico fans telling her to leave it alone!)