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S03.E06: Immolation

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2 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

I do have one tiny criticism of the plot.  Why did the monster chase Bobbi?  When they were fighting the creature on the Rosi it was tearing up their ship trying to get to the reactor (it is obviously drawn to radiation) and it got mad when the radiation was turned off. Also that monster had stowed away on the Roci to escape.  But why did THIS monster keep chasing Bobbi?  What could it hope to gain?  It made for a nice, suspenseful chase scene in the episode but it doesn't actually make much sense that the monster would keep chasing something that kept shooting at it.  Then again, the monster chasing the earth soldiers on Ganymede (for no good reason that I can recall) is what started this whole shooting war.

 

Three different hybrids, three different motivations, I think.

Through some unspecified mechanisms, it seems the Version 1 hybrids were "programmable" in some sense. After all, a super soldier would be pretty useless if you weren't able to somehow tell it what to do. So the hybrid on Ganymede was instructed to basically kill all the marines on both sides, which it did until it was blown up while standing over Bobbie (probably the idea was to leave her alive so she could spread the terror of what she saw or something? I dunno).

The hybrid on the Rocinante, you will recall, escaped from that holding tank thingie in the Ganymede lab. So I would assume that it had no particular programming. So it just followed the instincts of the protomolecule -- investigate, collect information, accumulate biomass if you can, and seek energy. Which is what it basically did.

The Katoa Hybrid was the first successful Version 2 hybrid (made from the immunodeficient kids) and while it (he) was also sent out with instructions (wreak havoc on the intruders), it also (my fanwank, but a reasonable one, I think) was more "integrated" with its human host, so it was somewhat less robotic in its adherence to that programming and, notably, it displayed fairly human emotions. So basically, Bobbie shot it. A lot. And then ran, basically saying "catch me if you can, you <insert expletive here>." So it chased Bobbie because Bobbie was hurting it and it wanted to kick her ass in return. Basically, Bobbie pissed it off on purpose in order to get it to follow her in the opposite direction of Team Roci.

Does that work?

 

2 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

When Cotyar give his final broadcast he says "Well, Charapal . . . I guess this makes us even."  Someone remind me -- who was Charapal?

 

Charapal was Avasarala's son, whom Cotyar claims he "got killed" during some unnamed engagement when Charapal was in the UNN and Cotyar was... I'm guessing... part of some mercenary force fighting with his team. So I guess in his eyes, sacrificing his life for the greater good evens the score. A death for a death.

 

2 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

Did anyone notice that Bobbi is wearing a UNN tank top when she gets taken to med bay?  It's a little thing but it does reinforce how fluid her role is in this story. Loyalties and uniforms get co-mingled.

 

I did notice that, and was going to comment on it. You beat me to it. You're right, it was a little thing, but it's the little things (like that) that make this show so special.

 

ETA: Speaking of little (or not) things... Dan Abraham tweeted something about that scene with Holden and Naomi in bed. He basically said that, based on reactions he's seen/read, it appears that everyone was so distracted by the shiny objects on the screen (two pretty naked bodies) that they failed to notice a rather significant plot development during that short scene. It's just two lines, but they're pretty important. Holden says (something along the lines of) "So you're leaving, aren't you?" and Naomi replies "Yeah, it's time." Those may not be the lines word for word, but that was definitely the gist of it. So Naomi apparently has decided, even though she seems to have made amends with the boys, that she needs to go off and explore her Belter Roots or something. I guess she's headed either for Tycho or for the recommissioned Nauvoo (whose name I know as a book reader, but I won't spoil it). Anyway... yeah, that's pretty significant, and a departure from the books, too. What do people think of that?

Edited by btp · Reason: added Naomi stuff at the end
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On 2018-05-17 at 6:36 PM, Danny Franks said:

That dead guy floating in the background as Kotyar talked to Larsson was so creepy. I liked her, and my heart really sank when she looked down and saw the Protomolecule on her leg. And dammit, I knew Kotyar was a goner too. He was great.

 

That floaty guy was the scariest part of the episode. The whole conversation he's just hovering there in the background with his arms outstretched. I wasn't sure that headshots killed space zombies. Maybe he'd lurch back to life as they were just agreeing to team up (then we learn she was not going anywhere). So had Larson already been infected or was it just when she touched it with her fingers? It seemed to me her uniform was cut and it was already on her skin but I wasn't sure. Oh well, now they're all blown up anyway. I'm glad Cotyar at least got to find out Avasarala made it before he died.

On 2018-05-18 at 5:14 AM, WatchrTina said:

I just watched a second time (DVR viewing within 3 days of original air date -- doing my bit to bolster the numbers!) and one thing that struck me was that Cotyar finds a vac suit right after that  soldier shoots his cuff off. He'd been careful not to touch any of the blue goo so I thought he stood a chance of surviving (provided he could find a way off the ship).  But when we see him next, doing his final sabotage, he's set the suit (or at least the helmet) aside and we can see blue goo on his forehead.

 

His helmet was broken inthe last scene. Presumable he got into a fight with one of the zombies and it broke the helmet and infected him.

On 2018-05-18 at 9:31 AM, thuganomics85 said:

For a few seconds, I really thought Strickland was going to worm his way out of a bullet, by playing up his "I'm not really bad!  I tried to help!" act, but I loved that neither Prax or Amos fell for it. 

I love how ambitious his scheme was and that no one for a second fell for it. We always never see that on shows I think. Most of the time when try such outrageous faking they at least get a little bit of doubt from the people they try it on. It makes sense that Strickland would try everything before giving up.

7 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

Ooooh, another thing I love is when Holden see's Mao on the screen while he's looking for the abort codes for the proto-missiles.  He says "There's someone here who should know. Let me go ask." (His voice thickens on that last line in a way that is just fraught with menace.)  I know a few people on this board are not fans of the actor who plays Holden but that line delivery . . . that was perfect.

 

He has been growing on me this season.

Edited by Holmbo
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9 hours ago, Danny Franks said:

I didn't think she re-programmed any of them. She switched the transponders back on, so the missiles could be tracked, which is what allowed Fred Johnson to target and destroy them, with the missiles he stole from Earth last season.

I was pretty sure she reprogrammed one - told Holden it would take forever to reprogram them all, then got the transponders back when it became a moot point in any case and they had to run to get off of the Agatha King to avoid getting nuked.

7 hours ago, btp said:

Three different hybrids, three different motivations, I think.

Through some unspecified mechanisms, it seems the Version 1 hybrids were "programmable" in some sense. After all, a super soldier would be pretty useless if you weren't able to somehow tell it what to do. So the hybrid on Ganymede was instructed to basically kill all the marines on both sides, which it did until it was blown up while standing over Bobbie (probably the idea was to leave her alive so she could spread the terror of what she saw or something? I dunno).

The hybrid on the Rocinante, you will recall, escaped from that holding tank thingie in the Ganymede lab. So I would assume that it had no particular programming. So it just followed the instincts of the protomolecule -- investigate, collect information, accumulate biomass if you can, and seek energy. Which is what it basically did.

The Katoa Hybrid was the first successful Version 2 hybrid (made from the immunodeficient kids) and while it (he) was also sent out with instructions (wreak havoc on the intruders), it also (my fanwank, but a reasonable one, I think) was more "integrated" with its human host, so it was somewhat less robotic in its adherence to that programming and, notably, it displayed fairly human emotions. So basically, Bobbie shot it. A lot. And then ran, basically saying "catch me if you can, you <insert expletive here>." So it chased Bobbie because Bobbie was hurting it and it wanted to kick her ass in return. Basically, Bobbie pissed it off on purpose in order to get it to follow her in the opposite direction of Team Roci.

Does that work?

 

ETA: Speaking of little (or not) things... Dan Abraham tweeted something about that scene with Holden and Naomi in bed. He basically said that, based on reactions he's seen/read, it appears that everyone was so distracted by the shiny objects on the screen (two pretty naked bodies) that they failed to notice a rather significant plot development during that short scene. It's just two lines, but they're pretty important. Holden says (something along the lines of) "So you're leaving, aren't you?" and Naomi replies "Yeah, it's time." Those may not be the lines word for word, but that was definitely the gist of it. So Naomi apparently has decided, even though she seems to have made amends with the boys, that she needs to go off and explore her Belter Roots or something. I guess she's headed either for Tycho or for the recommissioned Nauvoo (whose name I know as a book reader, but I won't spoil it). Anyway... yeah, that's pretty significant, and a departure from the books, too. What do people think of that?

 

Worked for me. I thought I saw a little of Kotoa in it, just as there was a smidge of Julie(?) remaining on Eros. As for the shiny objects - I can multi-process and did hear Holden and Naomi's brief convo.
 

Edited by Clanstarling
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I've been fascinated by Mao this season. He flipped extremely in previous episodes, as we discussed, and in this one he did a mini flip again, deciding really quickly to give up but then changing his mind when Strickland gave him an alternative. He seems kinda depressed, going on sheer willpower.

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3 hours ago, Holmbo said:

I've been fascinated by Mao this season. He flipped extremely in previous episodes, as we discussed, and in this one he did a mini flip again, deciding really quickly to give up but then changing his mind when Strickland gave him an alternative. He seems kinda depressed, going on sheer willpower.

Don't forgot he lost a daughter. 

Spoiler

In the books, Julie has a sister who we meet later.

I waiting for him to try to escape in the Razorback.

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2 minutes ago, marinw said:

Don't forgot he lost a daughter.


Yes, I think that's one of the causes to his flip-floppyness. He probably prides himself on being a very rational person, not subjected to silly emotional decisions. But somehow he keeps coming to the conclusion that there's no point in continuing.

If my theory is correct he wont do anything until he gets some new external motivation. Though maybe the giant space jellyfish will do the trick.

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3 hours ago, Holmbo said:
3 hours ago, marinw said:

Don't forgot he lost a daughter.


Yes, I think that's one of the causes to his flip-floppyness. He probably prides himself on being a very rational person, not subjected to silly emotional decisions. But somehow he keeps coming to the conclusion that there's no point in continuing.

And since he lost his daughter to the protomolecule - the flip-floppyness makes even more sense. On the one hand, he'd want nothing more to do with it, on the other hand, if he could only learn to dominate it, he could feel like he made amends.

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On May 19, 2018 at 12:43 AM, btp said:

Three different hybrids, three different motivations, I think.  <Excellent analysis of the motivations of the three hybrids snipped.> So it [the proto-monster in this episode] chased Bobbie because Bobbie was hurting it and it wanted to kick her ass in return. Basically, Bobbie pissed it off on purpose in order to get it to follow her in the opposite direction of Team Roci.  Does that work?

Works for me!  Thanks.

Regarding Mao . . . I don't get him.  I'm loving this series but he's the character I find most difficult to fathom.  I've seen other stories containing mega-rich people who think the "rules" (laws, moral codes) don't apply to them (e.g., the self-styled "Masters of the Universe" investment bankers  in the book The Bonfire of the Vanities -- RIP Tom Wolfe). But usually greed and a desire to "win" are motivating people like that. The accumulation of mega-wealth isn't about being able to buy an extra yacht, it's about power and the feeling of being in charge. The wealth is just a way of keeping score (and being able to do whatever-the-hell they want in the pursuit of "winning.")  So, within that framework,  I'm trying to wrap my brain around Mao.  

Mao is über-rich with connections all over the solar-system.  Some time in the not-so-distant past someone stumbled upon an asteroid caught in an orbit around Jupiter that contained . . . something unknown -- probably proof of extraterrestrial life AND proof that some . . . thing launched it at our solar system for a purpose.  Mao finds out about it before the governments of Earth and Mars and he takes custody of it.  He begins experimenting with it.  Somehow that curiosity and desire to "win" more by exploiting this new "resource" morphs into a decision to let the proto-molocule "eat" Eros, thus killing all the people who live there.  WTF?  That's some zero-to-sixty evolution of evil right there.  I suppose I could fan-wank that the solar system is so over-populated at this point that the population of Eros (I think it's 1.5 million people but I don't recall why I think that) is just a drop in the bucket.  But that's still a hell-of-a-lot of people to kill just because you are curious.  Heck, Mao had to have the brains of his scientists surgically altered to remove their ability to feel empathy in order to move this project forward.  Now I find myself thinking of Nazi scientists and their house-of-horrors "science"-projects on concentration camp inmates.  Is that who Mao is supposed to be?  Is he the future version of Josef-fucking-Mengele?  If so, then his decision to use his own daughter's "corpse" as the seed-pod for the experiment on Eros makes perfect sense.  But if that's who he is then the show needs to stop showing me scenes of Mao looking at the kids and having second thoughts, but being egged on by Strickland.  I feel like the writers occasionally want me to have some sympathy for Mao.  Maybe they are rising the the challenge of trying to make the antagonist a layered character and not a one-note Bond villain.  But if that's what they wanted then they probably shouldn't have made him Josef-fucking-Mengele.

I haven't read the books (or rather I'm reading them now but I haven't caught up with the show) but I'm predicting that Mao's extraordinary wealth is going to end up being used for good. He'll be able to mobilize resources to fight the proto-molelcule  in a way that war-torn Earth and Mars cannot (a war he started as cover for his experiment, so fuck you again Mao). OMG he may end this story being hailed (publicly) as a hero.  We've already seen something similar happen with President Bobble-head being delighted to arrest Errinwright so that he can be publicly blamed for the nuke that hit South America.  Damn.  This show.

ETA: Now that I've got Nazis on my mind (thanks show), that little speech Nguyen gave about how Martians aren't even human anymore could have have been lifted right out of the Nazi playbook and their rationalization of how they treated Jews (and homosexuals, and Roma (Gypsy) people).  And if I want to travel further down this path I'm sure I could find some WWII US war-bond posters portraying German and Japanese soldiers as animals or at least sub-human.  Damn.  This show.

Edited by WatchrTina
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56 minutes ago, WatchrTina said:

That's some zero-to-sixty evolution of evil right there.

That's assuming he was at zero before Eros. I'm guessing not.

59 minutes ago, WatchrTina said:

ETA: Now that I've got Nazis on my mind (thanks show), that little speech Nguyen gave about how Martians aren't even human anymore could have have been lifted right out of the Nazi playbook and their rationalization of how they treated Jews (and homosexuals, and Roma (Gypsey) people).  And if I want to travel further down this path I'm sure I could find some WWII US war-bond posters portraying German and Japanese soldiers as animals or at least sub-human.  Damn.  This show.

Or just watch the daily news. That playbook hasn't gone out of style.

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On ‎5‎/‎17‎/‎2018 at 1:36 AM, showme said:

So, what the hell was that?

I am talking about the ending, of course.

"Miss Mao and Mr Miller are proud to announce the arrival of Eros Venus Mao-Miller. We can't wait to see what the universe has in store for him/her/it!"

On ‎5‎/‎17‎/‎2018 at 10:35 AM, shrewd.buddha said:
  • After all these weeks of waiting for Errinwright to be found out, his take-down felt a bit anticlimactic. 

I feel pretty sure that the scumbucket isn't really gone. He'll have some other evil things to do.

On ‎5‎/‎19‎/‎2018 at 1:43 AM, btp said:

ETA: Speaking of little (or not) things... Dan Abraham tweeted something about that scene with Holden and Naomi in bed. He basically said that, based on reactions he's seen/read, it appears that everyone was so distracted by the shiny objects on the screen (two pretty naked bodies) that they failed to notice a rather significant plot development during that short scene. It's just two lines, but they're pretty important. Holden says (something along the lines of) "So you're leaving, aren't you?" and Naomi replies "Yeah, it's time." Those may not be the lines word for word, but that was definitely the gist of it. So Naomi apparently has decided, even though she seems to have made amends with the boys, that she needs to go off and explore her Belter Roots or something. I guess she's headed either for Tycho or for the recommissioned Nauvoo (whose name I know as a book reader, but I won't spoil it). Anyway... yeah, that's pretty significant, and a departure from the books, too. What do people think of that?

Totally missed that. I don't get why she would leave, but, well, next episode!

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I am rewatching season 3, and one thing that's striking to me at this point in the season is how Prax hardens and wants revenge as they search for Mei. I watch Amos' reaction to this, and he seems genuinely horrified. Which of course leads up to the "You're not that guy" moment. Just beautiful writing and performances. 

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14 minutes ago, Gillian Rosh said:

Prax hardens and wants revenge as they search for Mei.

One of the reasons why his ultimate reunifacation with his daughter was so moving. He spent so long looking that the emotion of that moment felt earned. 

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23 minutes ago, Gillian Rosh said:

Which of course leads up to the "You're not that guy" moment. Just beautiful writing and performances. 

"But I am."  A superb "Yell, yeah!" moment if there ever was one.

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I love the build up to the 'You're not that guy' moment just as much as the moment itself - it was a culmination of many scenes between Amos and Prax but the most striking one happened on board the Martian ship when Prax in complete let's-get-this-done mood tosses a body out of his way like it's a piece of junk. You'd think Amos would approve since that's how he would handle that yet the camera rests on his face and you can see some genuine concern and shock on his face. Prax is one of the folks he vowed to protect and save and in this moment he realizes that that entails more than just teaching Prax how to handle himself on board of a ship or in combat. He needs to save Prax from becoming like him because that would break Prax forever.

Edited by MissLucas
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