‘Roswell, New Mexico’ Season 3 Episode 9 Recap: “Tones of Home”

Roswell New Mexico Season 3 Episode 9
Nathan Dean as Max Evans and Jeanine Mason as Liz Ortecho in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 3 episode 9 (Photo: John Golden Britt © 2021 The CW Network, LLC)

Season three episode nine of The CW’s Roswell, New Mexico begins with a flashback showing Nora destroying the board with the formula written on it. Skipping forward to current events, Jones (Nathan Dean) is tracking down experts who may be able to replicate the formula. Fortunately, he’s unsuccessful. Unfortunately, those who fail to help out aren’t long for this world.

Isobel (Lily Cowles) and Michael (Michael Vlamis) join Liz (Jeanine Mason) at the diner and quickly catch her up on Max’s current whereabouts. After Alex and Michael retrieved the pod, Max was freed and has been resting up for the past couple of days. Liz has learned Jones’ DNA is deteriorating and it’s urgent they swap Max and Jones back into their real bodies and sever the connection, thus healing Max and making it so Jones is vulnerable and can be killed.

They realize Jones is also racing to fill in the gaps in the formula and sever the connection. Whoever wins this race controls which body Max winds up in. Michael notes Alex is working on the Lockhart machine which should give them access to Theo’s equation. Liz reveals she hid a copy of her research from Genoryx in LA and that should give them a head start on detaching Max from Jones.

Liz throws an unexpected monkey wrench into their plans by announcing she thinks she needs Heath’s help on this. Isobel’s quick to point out Heath is Liz’s booty call, but Liz corrects that assessment – reminding everyone it was Heath who suggested Liz should retrieve the burned spores.

However, right now it’s a moot point; Heath isn’t picking up Liz’s calls.

Over at Deep Sky, Kyle (Michael Trevino) is adamant he can be helpful if they just let him. Eduardo (David DeSantos) doesn’t think Kyle’s expertise covers this sort of off-book operation, but Kyle’s sure his recent past work with aliens puts him ahead of most of Deep Sky’s employees’ level of expertise.

Eduardo’s actual reasons for wanting Kyle far away from Deep Sky are much more personal. He explains he got Kyle’s dad, Jim, killed by letting him in on this and isn’t about to make that mistake twice.

Eduardo and Kyle head to a shed in the middle of nowhere and Eduardo says he and Kyle’s dad used to go there to hide from Manes and drink. Eduardo reveals Jim was a double agent, working at Caulfield but passing info to him at Deep Sky in order to undermine Manes’ work. Jesse Manes ultimately threw Jim in with an alien who gave him a fatal disease in retaliation for Jim providing Eduardo with the Lockhart machine.

Eduardo swore a promise to Jim to keep Kyle away from this life. Kyle explains he wants to do this for himself, not to live up to his family’s legacy. He chooses to walk the same path but better than his dad did. Kyle insists he wants to remain part of the story he started with Alex. He won’t live in the past and believes Eduardo shouldn’t either.

Isobel interrupts Maria (Heather Hemmens) and Gregory’s (Tanner Novlan) reunion at The Wild Pony to get them to focus on helping Max instead of making googly eyes at each other. They discuss the machine and are sure there’s an alien out there who the authorities never knew about and who’s been hiding out among them, just like Isobel, Max, and Michael. That individual would have emerged from the pod completely confused and lost, and Isobel thinks they should search the police files (using Max’s computer) for a case about a young person who was found matching that description.

Michael rings up Alex (Tyler Blackburn) at Deep Sky to check on him, beginning the phone call with, “How’s the office, honey?” Michael reminds him to be careful with the “brain-melter,” and Alex admits they’ve learned the machine produces both visual and auditory hallucinations. Alex has limited himself to just 15 minutes of work on the machine followed by a six hour break away from it.

Michael thinks the turquoise crystals and alien tech/frequencies can open the machine so they can fix it.

Alex’s timer goes off, warning him to get away from the machine. Before they hang up, Alex assures Michael he won’t forget about their plans to go on their first real, official public date.

Instead of walking away, Alex disobeys the rules he set for himself and continues to work on the Lockhart machine. He hallucinates a conversation with Nora in which she eggs him on to keep working past his 15-minute limit.

When she insults him, Alex realizes she is in fact a manifestation from his own mind. Nora wonders why Alex didn’t tell Michael the machine’s made others harm themselves, and Alex insists he won’t follow in their footsteps. He’ll hold onto the fact he’s doing this for Michael to keep himself sane.

Nora suggests he take the machine to Michael, but Alex refuses because he’s determined to keep him safe. Nora then suggests he use his camera to see inside the machine. He does and finds his father’s inserted some tech from Project Shepherd.

Liz and Max hit the road to LA to retrieve the spores and her research. They discuss high school while Max fixes a flat tire, and Liz gets Max to admit he put together a mixed tape specifically for making his move on her.

After a bathroom break and shakes, Liz reminds Max they’re on a cannonball run to retrieve her research. Max puts off getting back on the road long enough to confess he saved all of her tapes before he burned down her lab and buried them in his yard. He wrote about them in the letter she was supposed to open when he died. He admits he was a coward but now wants to walk forward, not backward.

While the others are occupied, Jones enters the diner and looks through Liz’s work. A paper signed by Liz and Heath Tuchman grabs his attention.

And speaking of the others, Isobel keeps a watchful eye on Maria and Gregory who are obviously very easily distracted by each other and neglecting their assigned police reports research. Maria suggests she lighten up a bit and a very focused Isobel replies, “I get that cheating death made you want to embrace life. It’s just that maybe you can push it until after we have beaten Jones and saved Max’s life.”

Just as Isobel adds, “It’s not like some hot opportunity is going to walk through that door and ask me on a date,” a hot opportunity walks through the door. Anatsa (Sibongile Mlambo) explains she’s researching whether the crime at Max’s and the church fire are connected to the Roswell Regiment. Maria suggests Isobel would love to do an interview on that subject.

Isobel puts her off but accepts her business card when Anatsa suggests they have drinks together. After Maria and Gregory indulge in some well-deserved teasing of Isobel, Gregory announces he’s found a child who could be the missing alien. He was discovered on the same date the other pods opened and had the same afflictions as Isobel, Michael, and Max.

Isobel, Gregory, and Maria head over to Camp Mesa Pines, a Christian camp located on a lake. They’ve traced the spaceship’s path as it tore apart, and Isobel confirms they’ve come to the right place by raising a pod out of the lake.

Hours later inside the camp, Isobel once again interrupts Maria and Gregory’s private time and asks if they’ve found anything. Gregory explains they did – a young boy the people running the Camp Mesa Pines named Johnny Doe. In just one week he miraculously learned to talk.

Maria and Gregory show Isobel photos they’ve found of Johnny and a friend playing around the camp. The friend had the nickname Buckskin, but they’re still looking for more clues to his real identity.

They decide to spend the night at the camp, and once again Maria suggests Isobel take a break and relax. “I’m not going to let an evil alien dickwad take anything else from us,” says an irritated Isobel. Maria reminds her it’s a battle, not the war, and they have to remember what they’re fighting for.

Isobel goes off in a huff, leaving Maria and Gregory to enjoy a little alone time that includes smores, alcohol, and some very energetic, passionate sex. Anything not bolted down finds a new resting place as Maria and Gregory make good use of the blazing fire and romantic atmosphere.

Max and Liz arrive at Liz’s LA place which is full of boxes. When Max asks if she was happy there, Liz replies, “LA was a commercial for a life – the house, the view…”

“The boyfriend,” interjects Max.

She admits Heath was a commercial too, and Max knows Heath was how Liz tried to get over him. Liz reveals Heath helped her grow but Max isn’t so quick jump on the “Heath’s a decent guy” train when Liz discovers her secret lunchbox stash is empty and only Heath knew where it was hidden.

Liz confirms Heath still refuses to answer her calls and believes she needs to speak to him in person.

Liz and Max break into Heath’s place and she finds a letter revealing Heath quit Genoryx just two days after she did. Max remains unconvinced Heath’s a good guy which sparks an argument about Heath’s motivations and Liz’s research. As Liz becomes angry, the house’s electronics act up and they hear the sound of a safe’s locking mechanism.

Max uses his powers to open it and they discover Liz’s spores container inside, empty. Max’s face says I told you so, but he’s smart and keeps his mouth shut. They grab some paperwork before being forced to leave when someone approaches the front door.

Roswell New Mexico Season 3 Episode 9
Jeanine Mason as Liz Ortecho and Nathan Dean as Max Evans in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 3 episode 9 (Photo: John Golden Britt © 2021 The CW Network, LLC)

Back on the road, Max reveals yet another secret. He confesses he listened to all of Liz’s tapes as a way to feel closer to her. Liz has an epiphany and realizes Max was correct; Heath is, in fact, not a good guy. She thinks Heath played her.

Max believes this is a second chance. The road’s before them and he wants to choose with her where they go next.

Michael shows up at Alex’s place and quickly realizes Alex has been lying to him. He hasn’t been home in days.

Michael stands outside Deep Sky’s entrance wearing a T-shirt reading “Eduardo Valenti I Come in Peace.” Eduardo allows him inside and Michael explains he went to Alex’s place and learned he hasn’t been there in two days. Eduardo looks through surveillance footage and confirms Alex locked the machine away two days ago. Michael suggests maybe Alex used his hacker skills and somehow retrieved the machine without them knowing.

Eduardo is shocked to discover that’s exactly what happened.

Alex’s mental condition is deteriorating after being in close proximity to the machine for such a lengthy period. He climbs out onto a ledge and Nora tells him his father’s hatred is stronger than his capacity to love. Alex appears to be on the verge of leaping when Michael rushes up and pulls him off the ledge. They embrace and Michael tells a vulnerable Alex he’s always got him.

Alex apologizes and Michael knows he did this so they could ultimately lead a normal “picket fence” life together. Alex acknowledges he’s frightened by the rocky path ahead of them, but maybe working together on the machine is part of the solution.

“You’re here; I am here. Solving a 75-year-old mystery seems like a pretty good first date,” says Michael. (#Malex forever.)

Alex and Michael work on the Lockhart machine, and Michael uses his powers to open it up. Parts fly into the air and it’s confirmed Alex’s dad put his tech inside the machine. As they disconnect wires, the alien glass glows and the pieces return to their proper places inside the machine. Multiple lights light up on the machine’s base as Michael and Alex exchange smiles.

Morning arrives and Isobel finds Maria in the camp’s lobby. She quickly figures out Maria and Gregory took a break from research for sex and offers to give Maria a few tips. Isobel also offers to pick up stuff knocked over and discovers a cross that fell off the wall was a gift from Johnny Doe and the Lincoln Neighborhood Church.

Isobel heads over to the church which, it turns out, is also where the clues have led Anatsa. She’s found a necklace with the initials JD on the back and Isobel confirms she’s also found a lead to someone with those initials.

They search through the church’s office looking for any insight into Johnny Doe or his friend. They hear someone in the hall and Isobel opens a window, telling Anatsa to go first. Isobel squeezes in a request for a date before Anatsa disappears. Isobel doesn’t follow her and instead sticks around to question the man who steps into the office. It turns out he recognizes the necklace and confirms he restored the iron cross that hangs at Camp Mesa Pines.

Liz and Max stop their trip back to Roswell to look through the paperwork they took from Heath’s place. Liz scans a head X-ray and is about to reveal it’s not from a human when Isobel calls. Isobel explains the alien they’ve been searching for is named Dallas and he’s a preacher at the Lincoln Neighborhood Church. He was in the pod that landed in the lake and he went by the name Johnny Doe as a child.

Max rifles through some of the papers and finds an envelope addressed to “Buckskin and Johnny Doe.” Isobel confirms Buckskin was Dallas’ best friend.

Over at Deep Sky, Eduardo informs Kyle he’s discovered the paralytic he was injected with comes from Genoryx and was registered to the geneticist who created it, Heath Tuchman.

Max opens the envelope and finds photos of Dallas and his best friend Buckskin. And…wait for it…Heath is Buckskin!

Heath (Steven Krueger) has returned to New Mexico and meets up with who he believes is Sheriff Max Evans. Heath wonders why Max called and said it was a matter of life and death, and Jones reveals he’s not Max. He destroys Heath’s phone before suggesting they’ll have a fruitful partnership.