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S02.E08: Pyre

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Since this is my absolute favorite show of all time, of course I loved this episode.  Drummer is just awesome, and I hope she has a major part on-going in this (I read the books, but I can't remember her as a separate character).  Everyone is such a full and complete character, visually it's amazing, and the plot, while not simplistic, is easy to follow.  I thought it was interesting how everyone turns on Fred, telling him that his time is over and he no longer has a role to play, while it is pretty clear (no spoilers) that he'll still be standing.  Another thing I like - Holden and Naomi's relationship is so understated.  The only thing I didn't like - no Chrisjen, and her beautiful outfits.  Without her, it really is a drab universe. 

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And here comes another "Hey, it's that Canadian Actor!", with Terry Chen (Curtis from Continuum, among other things), as this botanist, Meng.  Seems like his daughter's pediatrician is connecting to all of this as well, and has his daughter for whatever reason.  At least she might not be dead like he originally thought!  On the other hand, I totally knew Doris was going to die.  I guess the Belters are getting radicalized to the point of willing to just space Earth and Mars refugees for no good reason.  Yikes!  This is getting ugly real fast!

Holden might not be right about a decent amount of things, but he is so on point that Fred might not even be in charge of Tycho, by the time they get back.  They might have survived this attack (mainly thanks to Naomi tracking the missiles and Team Roci doing what they do best), but he is in the fire now.  There will probably be more Belters who feel the same way those guys did, and it is only a matter of time before another attack.  It certainly doesn't help that Anderson is still there, taunting him and giving speeches.  He is so slimy, but slimy in a way where I can see why others will fall under his spell.  I just can't see Fred being able to counter that.

Drummer taking out the two guys at the end was awesome.  Glad she survived, and hopefully we'll be getting more of her character.  Have to think there is reason there has been so many scenes between her and Naomi.

Despite both of them saying they love one another, why do I have a feeling Holden and Naomi's relationship is probably going to get even worse?

Amos is getting even more unhinged.  Curious to find out more about this Lydia.  Also glad they are bringing back up Alex's family, since I noticed he has said much about them this season.

Welcome aboard the Roci, Meng!  Hopefully you'll fare a bit better then some of other past temporary Roci crew members of the past!

No update on Chrisjen/Earth or Bobbie/Mars, but I'm sure that's all coming to ahead soon. 

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When that belter sc#m shot Drummer I kept thinking TWD's Lucille or Thor's Hammer wouldn't be enough retribution. But Our Girl settled scores before the blood dried. Awesome!!

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Holden, don't go up against Drummer, she'll kick your arse seven ways from Sunday. What a wonderful surprise her character is, given that she doesn't really exist in the books. She's got so much presence, and her teary-eyed recollection of first meeting Fred Johnson was just as convincing as her taking 'judicious action' against those two mutineers. Also, I think Alex just got a crush on her, right there in that moment.

Dawes is trying to create a schism in the OPA. This is the problem with purity-style movements, there's always someone who thinks he's more righteous than his rivals. It's crazy how this show just keeps hitting such relevant beats. And now with the refugees from Ganymede as well.

Spacing the Inners is something that has to blow up, big. Prax witnessed it, and I'm sure that Belter is going to regret letting him live. Jeez, that scene of Doris and the others quietly dying in the vacuum of space was horrible. Prax didn't really have the best day, did he? Being told his daughter is dead, watching his friend and a load of other people be casually murdered, and then he gets accosted by two idiots on a mission. And finally, he gets to join this bunch of lunatics, at least for a bit.

Lucky escape there, Naomi. The protomolecule on Ganymede, as opposed to the stuff you didn't destroy when you were supposed to. I appreciated her sentiment that Holden is not a murderer, but them declaring love feels way too soon. I'm not happy with the way the show has rushed them into a relationship. I think the books did a much better job, and approached it in a much more honest and believable way. Obviously, things will take a turn for the worse when Naomi's secret protomolecule sample is revealed. I don't see any of the crew reacting well, unless of course it coincides with them desperately needing a sample of the stuff for something.

Alex seems to be the one guy who isn't being distracted by petty shit, dark history or soul-searching. He's on point, and stuck being the dad of the crew, by the looks of things.

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just put Drummer and Amos together, solve two problem personalities.  I wish they would leave Amos alone, he's the only person in the whole show that makes sense.

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4 hours ago, Danny Franks said:

Alex seems to be the one guy who isn't being distracted by petty shit, dark history or soul-searching. He's on point, and stuck being the dad of the crew, by the looks of things.

 

This is one of the reasons why Alex is one of my favorite characters. He has baggage, but isn't weighed down by it. He also sets off my gaydar, but I have no evidence to back that up.

Could Fred Johnson be anymore ungrateful? Nice way to thank the Roci crew for saving your sorry ass.

That Refugee ship looked so crowded and squalid, I could almost smell it. And that scene where they spaced some of the Gamenydians with Earther or Martian heritage was so brutal and horrible, but so beautifully shot.

I hope poor Meng gets to stay on the Roci crew. Miller left a bunk free.

I heard on "The Churn" podcast that the actress who plays Drummer deliberately speaks like English is her second language. Can't place that accent though.

This show is outstanding.

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I am getting bored with the belters and their "we be so oppressed " bullshit.  It's not like THEY had to deal with things like slavery, Jim Crow and segregation.  And why do they all talk like they learned English phonetically?

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19 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

I totally knew Doris was going to die. 

Despite both of them saying they love one another, why do I have a feeling Holden and Naomi's relationship is probably going to get even worse?

I thought Doris had been infected by the protomolecule -- I expected blue scrystals to shoot out of her.

Well, Naomi's got this wee, teeny, tiny lil' secret that just might put a crimp in their lovie-dovies...

31 minutes ago, Neurochick said:

I am getting bored with the belters and their "we be so oppressed " bullshit.  It's not like THEY had to deal with things like slavery, Jim Crow and segregation. 

In this universe, the Belters are the oppressed -- shunned by the Inners, being told, on a societal and individual level, what they can and cannot do, and begging for the supplies that keep them alive.  Is it as bad as black oppression was and is in America?  Of course not, but that doesn't mean they're not oppressed.

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I don't get the belters.  Everyone originally came from Earth.  I guess some settled on Mars, and some settled in the belt.  I watched last season but I never got why and how belters came to be oppressed.  Are they descended from people who were blue collar laborers on Earth?

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Pretty much.  The people originally sent to work the mines of the Belt were basically unskilled laborers looking for an opportunity for a life. Lots of resentment. 

Danny Franks could give you a more detailed history, but we're getting into book talk. 

Edited by Haleth

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In almost any sci-fi that deals with the asteroids, the Belters are lower-class, and largely unskilled.  These are the people living in cramped quarters, eating syntho-food (and definitely no meat), risking their lives every second to the harsh reality that  is vaccuum.  Think coal or diamond miners times 100.  Even Mars, with its bio-domes isn't so harsh.  They may not be descended from blue-collar workers (like Julie Mao) but they are the bluest of the collars in the system. 

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The belters are another version of a working class that's exploited for their labor by an upper class that then charges them through the nose for food and shelter, with the added bonus of starving them of water and oxygen when they object too loudly. Not to mention that they can't even visit Earth or Mars because being born and raised in the belt means that they can't withstand the gravity. I actually really like that they've given them a sort of Creole language of their own; it makes sense.

They've done an excellent job with casting this series imo.

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The language helps give them an identity different from Inners.  There's a reason why it's annoying to our ears.

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Alas, it looks like we will always have some sort of working class to exploit. Unless you are into the Utopian Star Trek vision, which is post-scarcity.

Other visions of the future have robots as the oppressed working class. (See: Battlestar Galactica) Because robots never rise up and rebel agiant their human masters! The Expanse isn't really exploring that too much. In fact, I recall seeing no robots on this show at all, at least not those recognizable as such.  Robot workers  do not require food, water, or oxygen and would thus be more appealing to the corporations back on Earth.

Although the Belters are sypathetic as an oppressed working class and distinct enthnic group, this does not justify many of thier actions, like spaceing some the Ganymede refugees. This show explains this behaviour but doesn’t justify it. Another strength of this show.

Edited by marinw
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2 hours ago, Haleth said:

The language helps give them an identity different from Inners.  There's a reason why it's annoying to our ears.

To me it sounds like a bad impression of a Creole dialect, but maybe that was what they were going for.

I guess my problem is whenever they show Earth, they show NYC and the UN building, which looks no different than it looks today (I also spot the Freedom Tower), so I guess I have a hard time seeing this world as centuries in the future.

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1 hour ago, marinw said:

Robot workers  do not require food, water, or oxygen and would thus be more appealing to the corporations back on Earth.

And Von Neumann machines would be far more effective at mining the belt anyway.

 

21 minutes ago, Neurochick said:

To me it sounds like a bad impression of a Creole dialect, but maybe that was what they were going for.

I imagine creating a full-bodied, realistic-sounding language (for use in a cinematic production) from scratch would be challenging.  Even a derivative language, such as used by the belters.  Few even try, so, I tip my hat at the attempt.  Remember A Clockwork Orange?

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1 hour ago, Netfoot said:

And Von Neumann machines would be far more effective at mining the belt anyway.

This  whole robots issue raises another interesting point: Just because you have technology doesn't mean it will be implemented. For example, in 2017 we have the technological ability to vastly reduce our use of fossil fuels, but we are not doing so fast enough for reasons that are beyond the scope of this forum. Likewise, if a large human workforce is already in place, supplanting them with robots may not happen for a number of social and economic reasons. Also, the Belters could well take exception to being replaced by robots workers, no matter how dangerous and low-paying their jobs may be.

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4 hours ago, Haleth said:

The language helps give them an identity different from Inners.  There's a reason why it's annoying to our ears.

It's interesting how the language has developed over the show - in the first season, Belters spoke an entirely different language (the "speaker's corner" guy playing to the crowd that Miller interacts with in the first or second episode - very little of what he says is in English). I remember thinking "huh, they are going for Firefly" but it's changed since then.

Now it is more of a pidgin, which is what you'd likely get when the very "working class" of many cultures with many languages gets thrown together and English is picked as the basic language. That implies a separation/isolation of at least a couple hundred years in culture, which is probably a little longer than the timeline gives them. I thought the use of the word "for" as a replacement and the mixup of personal pronouns sounded good. This is just a TV show, but someone's trying and I appreciate that.

Dawes always sounds South African to me, but the rest of the Belters seem to speak with a more unified accent. Dawes' backstory (as given in the TV show, I haven't read the books) has him born a Belter, to an asteroid mining family, and they are even more separated than the people who live on the stations or moons, so maybe it makes sense that his accent is stronger and different from others.

Edited by WildPlum
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2 hours ago, Neurochick said:

I guess my problem is whenever they show Earth, they show NYC and the UN building, which looks no different than it looks today (I also spot the Freedom Tower), so I guess I have a hard time seeing this world as centuries in the future.

I think it looks quite different. Including a TransAmerica Tower clone and a tower where city hall currently sits. 

new-york1.jpg?w=672&h=372&crop=1

But my favorite detail is the dike system that surrounds the island to stave off rising ocean levels.

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There are just a lot more buildings.  That still looks like the Freedom Tower in the middle and three of those smaller buildings exist in front of the tower today.  The taller buildings look like something I've seen in Dubai.

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I'm also tired of the whole "Belter" bullshit.  Boring, annoying and the show could be fantastic without that whole annoying ass group.

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54 minutes ago, Nukester said:

I'm also tired of the whole "Belter" bullshit.  Boring, annoying and the show could be fantastic without that whole annoying ass group.

I like that they're annoying.  Oppressed people agitating for better treatment are supposed to be annoying.

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15 hours ago, marinw said:

This  whole robots issue raises another interesting point: Just because you have technology doesn't mean it will be implemented. For example, in 2017 we have the technological ability to vastly reduce our use of fossil fuels, but we are not doing so fast enough for reasons that are beyond the scope of this forum. Likewise, if a large human workforce is already in place, supplanting them with robots may not happen for a number of social and economic reasons. Also, the Belters could well take exception to being replaced by robots workers, no matter how dangerous and low-paying their jobs may be.

It's interesting you mention that.  Not sure if you've watched it but one of the most interesting and entertaining panel discussions I've seen for The Expanse was the recent event where Caltech hosted: "The Science Behind the Expanse" which was comprised of cast, crew and also Caltech and JPL researchers like Jessie Christiansen, Bobak Ferdowsi etc.

There's one bit where they ask the researchers on the panel to name places where they think the Expanse gets the science wrong etc and Jessie Christiansen, a staff scientist at the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute at Caltech asks a question about the ice hauling and she wants to know why it's so manual as opposed to more mechanised.  The exchange after that (like the whole panel discussion to be honest) is pretty hilarious - and interesting.

Neurochick: Sounds like you're not enjoying the show.  It's not for everyone.  For me I find the political/Belter dimension to be quite fascinating because it's not unlike the colonialism that we have witnessed here on Earth.  Even today, it's made in jest but the Brits frequently regard Australians as being inferior - colonials descended from their unwanted convicts rather than a people who have grown and developed their own culture and complexities :)   I can imagine that if/when we do colonise the stars, there will be a new underclass created that will need to fight to find its way in the new power paradigm.  

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Thank you so much for this link, @koalathebear! I don't have time to watch the whole thing now, but it is great to see Cas Anvar, Wes Chatham and Shohreh Aghdashloo-they are all so lovely! 

I wonder what Neil deGrasse Tyson thinks of this show, or if he even watches it.

Edited by marinw
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6 hours ago, koalathebear said:

it's not unlike the colonialism that we have witnessed here on Earth.  Even today, it's made in jest but the Brits frequently regard Australians as being inferior - colonials descended from their unwanted convicts rather than a people who have grown and developed their own culture and complexities :)

The argument can be made that colonial expansion is usually performed by the vital, forward-thinking, vigorous-minded members of society, leaving the more staid, unimaginative and unadventurous behind.

As far as the Australian convicts are concerned, when Transportation ended in 1868, population stood at about 1 million, while only a little over 160,000 POME had ever been transported in the entire 90 year span during which Transportation occurred.  And many of those were transported for political reasons.  I doubt anyone could seriously think Australia was in any way inferior as a result of Transportation.  Any more than anyone could think the Caribbean region was inferior as a result of the Triangular Trade.  

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1 hour ago, Netfoot said:

The argument can be made that colonial expansion is usually performed by the vital, forward-thinking, vigorous-minded members of society, leaving the more staid, unimaginative and unadventurous behind.  

The question of whether the ends justify the means and result in a greater good for the colonised is perhaps something the show will explore at some point. And I have to say, it's a shame these societies weren't always so 'forward-thinking' when it came to the treatment of the people they were 'civilising'.

The Belters are a clear allegory for oppressed minority groups, controlled by a foreign power. I'm happy to view them as such and sympathise with their cause, even while abhoring their potential descent into violence and terrorism. To ignore them in favour of focusing totally on the Inner politics would be an injustice to the world that has been created here.

I also like that these divisions and ever more clearly drawn lines between the factions are starting to affect the Roci crew. Naomi is making her Belter loyalties clear, Alex has been vocal in the past about Mars being righteous. Holden tries to play every side, but fails to understand them, and Amos just doesn't care. He'll follow Holden or Naomi, or at least he has up to this point.

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2 hours ago, Danny Franks said:

I also like that these divisions and ever more clearly drawn lines between the factions are starting to affect the Roci crew. Naomi is making her Belter loyalties clear, Alex has been vocal in the past about Mars being righteous. Holden tries to play every side, but fails to understand them, and Amos just doesn't care.

This is one more reason to love the Roci crew. (Not that we need more reasons to love them!) Up until now, they have acknowledged that they literally come from different worlds, but can still work and live together. I am interested in seeing how Meng adds to this dynamic.

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I like that there is conflict even within the OP inhabitants. Even those who grew up being taught how oppressive the Inners were, not all of them agree with a revolutionary response. The writing is good in that there is a variety of opinion. Drummer, from a military point of view and someone who knows Dawes, clearly rejects the more hard core OPA.  Shoot (no pun intended), she took a bullet for her stance. Prax Meng is a gentle man who would never condone a violent action.  Naomi is conflicted but has a conscience that will push her toward peace.  Just like with Earth and Mars there are good guys and not so good ones.

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I see Drummer as a soul of conflicted loyalties...she wants justice, not necessary the revenge that most every belter demands for this or that injustice we'av seen.  As is the case of most every sentient being since the beginning of time...

... she wants to live in a just world/system.

She threw in with Johnson because he seemed to be an honorable man and deeply regretful of the massacre he was duped into ordering. But he misplayed his coveting of the strategic information of his proto-moluculed controlled scientist.

The belters, for all their deficiencies,  had more skin in the game and should have been included. In their worldview they have been abused and lacked basic human rights for so long they can see no other existence. Their motivated only by revenge and refuse to see just how fragile their existence is. Their only an episode away from being irradiated away completely by a gamma ray burst from either mars of earth, so they better get their act together.

I think there's a definite and intentional reason why they're portrayed as such a contemptible people but ...I dunno.

Now Anderson dawes, not knowing the dangers/calamities that lay ahead has stirred the hornets nest for all of humanity. While it's entirely probable he may have been the 1st to call for the mad scientists execution had he been invited to Johnsons inner circle.

Drummer shot those 2 terrorists only to protect her position as the one who leaked the 'secret weapon' to Dawes.

Johnson still has a lot to contribute, Drummer still sits on the fence. The crew of the Roci are just regular Joes caught up in events way over their heads.

As far as the love interest go...meh.

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On 3/18/2017 at 1:34 AM, Nukester said:

I'm also tired of the whole "Belter" bullshit.  Boring, annoying and the show could be fantastic without that whole annoying ass group.

"Boring" is subjective, of course. But I'll tell you this: It would be a completely different show without the Belters. They are one of the foundations of the story. Honestly, if you find them that annoying, I'm not sure this show is for you. That's not my call, obviously, but I can pretty much guarantee you a 100% chance there will be more Belter stuff for as long as this show exists. Just saying...

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4 hours ago, btp said:

"Boring" is subjective, of course. But I'll tell you this: It would be a completely different show without the Belters. They are one of the foundations of the story. Honestly, if you find them that annoying, I'm not sure this show is for you. That's not my call, obviously, but I can pretty much guarantee you a 100% chance there will be more Belter stuff for as long as this show exists. Just saying...

Yeah, maybe not.   I love sci-if and the show was showing some really cool things in the story.  The belter thing is so cliche it just feels out of place.  There is enough story in the mars/earth/alien category to make it interesting.  Maybe it's the accent, the tattoos or the haircuts, but it just distracts from the show.  

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2 hours ago, Nukester said:

The belter thing is so cliche it just feels out of place. ... Maybe it's the accent, the tattoos or the haircuts, but it just distracts from the show.  

Well.... I mean, I could give you a list of things about the Belter story that I love, and tell you why I don't find it cliche in the least, but I wouldn't be surprised if the list of things I love about the Belter story and the list of things you hate about the Belter story had a lot of items in common.

Knowing the source material as I do, though, I can tell you for certain that the Belter story remains a pretty important part of this thing throughout. There are times when it gets back-burnered for a bit, but it's never that far. Which is too bad, because there are a lot of great stories left to be told in this show, but if the Belter thing prevents you from enjoying it, you're kind of screwed.

Different strokes, I guess.

Edited by btp
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19 hours ago, WildPlum said:

In case you wonder about death by being spaced out the airlock:

http://www.space.com/30066-what-happens-to-unprotected-body-in-outer-space.html

So they mostly got it right but decided not to show the immediate bloating (or decided not to pay for the Fx and leave it). I am actually surprised that you have a minute or so to be pulled back in.

I sort of knew that you could survive breifly, thanks to an episode of Farscape, where John had to make the jump from one ship's airlock to another. I think they might have specified that he could survive for "sixty microts".

2 hours ago, btp said:

Knowing the source material as I do, though, I can tell you for certain that the Belter story remains a pretty important part of this thing throughout. There are times when it gets back-burnered for a bit, but it's never that far. Which is too bad, because there are a lot of great stories left to be told in this show, but if the Belter thing prevents you from enjoying it, you're kind of screwed.

Different strokes, I guess.

It's funny, this is a story where I've never really picked a side to support, even after reading all the books. Everyone has their valid points, and everyone has their bullshit. The Belters do get the worst end of most deals, but the way many of them react to it makes me unable to sympathise with their cause that much. There are plenty of real world allegories for their various methods of coping with what they feel is oppression, but I never felt like the authors wanted me to feel sorry for them.

But the show mostly takes place in the Belt, so it's always going to have a high Belter content. The only characters we've seen who aren't out in the Belt are Avasarala and Bobbie.

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2 hours ago, Danny Franks said:

I sort of knew that you could survive breifly, thanks to an episode of Farscape...

I learned you could survive briefly, when Simon Jones & David Dixon were spaced by the Vogons but rescued by the Heart of Gold 29½ seconds later.

Yes, I am that old! 

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9 hours ago, Nukester said:

Yeah, maybe not.   I love sci-if and the show was showing some really cool things in the story.  The belter thing is so cliche it just feels out of place.  There is enough story in the mars/earth/alien category to make it interesting.  Maybe it's the accent, the tattoos or the haircuts, but it just distracts from the show.  

There are so many different elements to sci-fi, that I think all of us who love it will be drawn to different kinds of stories. For example, though I work in tech, I'm not particularly drawn to tech oriented sci-fi. I prefer culture based sci-fi. The Expanse is very political, and politics are a definite part of culture, particularly when it comes to how certain points of view develop due to space colonization. And lately, I prefer my politics fictional and set in a far distant time period. Partly because it means Earth has survived.

Personally, I love the accents - I grew up in an area of the world where the local dialect is practically unintelligible by the people who speak the same language, so Belter speak resonates for me. Also, dialects and accents are a distinct result of distance and colonization, so, it tracks for me. But mileage varies.

Drummer shooting the Belters was viscerally satisfying for me. Guess I'm bloodthirsty at heart.

Edited by Clanstarling
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One question that has been bugging me:

When Meng wakes up on the Refugee ship, Dorus tells him he's had brain surgery, and Meng has the scar to provove it. Yet this ship dosn't even have adequate food or space for all the refugees, so I find the idea that advanced medical care is aviaible a bit inconsistant. 

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3 hours ago, marinw said:

One question that has been bugging me:

When Meng wakes up on the Refugee ship, Dorus tells him he's had brain surgery, and Meng has the scar to provove it. Yet this ship dosn't even have adequate food or space for all the refugees, so I find the idea that advanced medical care is aviaible a bit inconsistant. 

I'd suggest that maybe he had Brain Salad Surgery, but he didn't look that happy..

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Poor Meng! I have to give that actor credit, he has made me care about him within the space of one episode. What I find interesting is that he displays more stereotypical “feminine” qualities. He is a very gentle person, his main concern is is daughter, and although he is not passive, he is not nearly as aggressive as many of the female characters. This is impressive as I heard on The Churn podcast that the actor Terry Chen has played plenty of badasses.

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2 hours ago, marinw said:

Poor Meng! I have to give that actor credit, he has made me care about him within the space of one episode. What I find interesting is that he displays more stereotypical “feminine” qualities. He is a very gentle person, his main concern is is daughter, and although he is not passive, he is not nearly as aggressive as many of the female characters. This is impressive as I heard on The Churn podcast that the actor Terry Chen has played plenty of badasses.

He also played a major macho jerk in Van Helsing.  It is very interesting to have him in such a nurturing role - but perhaps they wanted to kind of head off some of the hate of Book Meng who people criticise for being a whingey sook but who, to be fair, is actually is a super awesome dad who never gives up on his kid ....

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This has got to be the best show I watch, and I watch a lot of TV.

I love the Belters! Well, I love that the Belters are part of this story. Earth, Mars, and all the places in between built and maintained by the Belters, right? I love how the politics of this show have been put in the story so far. It's got a great mix of politics, action, drama, character development and science fiction story.

Man, Naomi got lucky with that stuff being on Gamawhatever. MVP of this one has to be Drummer though, with her recollection of meeting Fred, and of course her swift punishment of the mutineers.

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On 3/18/2017 at 1:34 AM, Nukester said:

I'm also tired of the whole "Belter" bullshit.  Boring, annoying and the show could be fantastic without that whole annoying ass group.

Star Trek and other scifi shows have long been criticized for making everyone uniform. Everyone in Star Fleet looks, acts, and dresses alike. Everyone in the Federation looks and acts alike (except one quirk for that planet), and everyone on each planet looks and dresses alike (same facial prosthetic or bad hair day for the entire planet). Personally, I give props to this show for showing something closer to reality: The Belters as a group are several generations removed from Earth or Mars, they have their own creole language, their own dress, etc. but with differences among them. The neck tattoos as solidarity with the earlier Belters who have electrical burns from the defective early helmets is an awesome idea. The writers actually put EFFORT into making a culture that is human, but different, and the differences are based in logic.

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6 hours ago, CigarDoug said:

Star Trek and other scifi shows have long been criticized for making everyone uniform. Everyone in Star Fleet looks, acts, and dresses alike. Everyone in the Federation looks and acts alike (except one quirk for that planet), and everyone on each planet looks and dresses alike (same facial prosthetic or bad hair day for the entire planet). Personally, I give props to this show for showing something closer to reality: The Belters as a group are several generations removed from Earth or Mars, they have their own creole language, their own dress, etc. but with differences among them. The neck tattoos as solidarity with the earlier Belters who have electrical burns from the defective early helmets is an awesome idea. The writers actually put EFFORT into making a culture that is human, but different, and the differences are based in logic.

I think this is one of the strengths of the show. I hate it when scifi creates cultures with no logic reason for their way of life. Our cultures changed as we moved around on Earth, stands to reason there'd be even bigger changes moving into space.

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I was also struggling with the Belters and feeling somewhat guilty because clearly they are at the bottom of the food-chain and deserve at least some sympathy. I appreciate how the show made clear that they developed a different culture and identity and how they are clearly between a rock and a hard place between Earth and Mars. And yet I don't really care - I think part of the problem is that so far the show hasn't given us a strong, likeable Belter character who really stands for the Belt and the Belt alone. (YMMV with regards to Miller - whom I never found particularly likeable.) Naomi's Belter identity is there, always looming the background but it's clear she's harboring ambivalent feelings and her loyalty is wavering. She's a strong, likeable character but she's not exactly standing for the Belt. Just like Holden is not standing for Earth or Alex for Mars. Drummer might work but she's not a main character. Diogo is comic relief, Dawes is anything but likeable. Maybe Meng can play that part - I dunno.

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6 hours ago, MissLucas said:

I think part of the problem is that so far the show hasn't given us a strong, likeable Belter character who really stands for the Belt and the Belt alone.

What about Fred Johnson?

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2 hours ago, jhlipton said:

What about Fred Johnson?

Fred Johnson is an Earther.  He's now with the Belters, but he's from Earth.  It's part of what convinced the more extreme Belters to follow Dawes.

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The conflict among the three groups is pretty central to the entire series.  I don't want to risk spoiling anything, but the conflict is never not important.

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I never disputed her loyalty to the belt but she's not constantly proclaiming it and starting ideological arguments like other characters - she's keeping it in the background. That's why she can work with Earthers and Martians.

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Drummer shot those two belters because a) they were very much on an opposing side to hers and b) getting shot hurts.

Also c), she takes the onus of the response off Fred Johnson, to whom she has chosen allegiance.  She's a belter, the optics (if you well) are much better.
 

Edited by kassygreene · Reason: grammar

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