Josh gives his recap of the latest episode of Defiance, where we get to know the Irathients a little better. Violet provides commentary in the pink font. Spoilers! More after the jump.
This episode opens up to a character we haven’t had much interaction with before. He has driven out to a forest area, and puts on some running shoes. As he is doing so, we see some of the Spirit Rider Irathients riding off on their motorcycles. He puts some head phones in, and takes off for a jog in the forest. Unfortunately something has decided to pick up his trail, as we see rustling in the bushes, and he is attacked and dragged away.
I’m surprised someone would go running around by themselves in the woods, considering all the weird alien animal species we’ve seen on the show so far. Who knows what else could be out there?
Back in town, Irisa is doing a sort of martial arts, like karate or something similar, when her biker buddies roll into town. She has a butterfly land on her knife blade just as this is happening. These butterflies seem to be a recurring theme in the show. The Irathient bikers begin going through the market area of the town, and one of the female Irathients has an altercation with a human vendor. Irisa shows up and diffuses the situation however. Irisa then has a conversation with the bikers, to which they try to convince her that she doesn’t belong in the town, and that she should join “her people”.
Nolan then radios Irisa to notify her of a crime scene. She heads out there to investigate, and we learn it was the runner from the beginning of the episode. The body has been torn up pretty badly, and the marrow of the bones has been sucked clean Nolan discovers. Irisa has a weird dream/vision, that Nolan seems concerned with. Tommy is able to identify the runner by the shoes he had, but doesn’t know too much about him, other than that he traded for the shoes he has and liked to run.
The next scene has the head Spirit Rider Sukar talking with Amanda in her office. He is examining a display which has artifacts of almost all Votan races, to which he hints they are the only race not represented. The mayor says they are welcome to add a item, but he refuses. Amanda informs Sukar that the town has began to complain about the Spirit Riders. She asks them to assimilate, to which he agrees with a caveat–if the people of Defiance turn on them, they will be ready.
He also alluded to the fact that the reason they were not represented was because the town had killed so many Irathients during the Irathient uprising that was in response to the town forcing vaccines upon Irathient children, as we learned about in the last episode.
We move to the brothel next (called NeedWant), where Kenya (the mayor’s sister) is “entertaining” a client by pretending to be a chef. The client is chained down and they get into “it”. She asks him if he remembers the safe word, which is Calamari. They start getting into it (more like he does, and she is waiting for his time to be up), when he begins screaming the safe word. Next thing we see is some sort of monster ripping from the man’s torso–gross. Very gross. Nolan, Tommy, Irisa and the Doctor show up, and they discover the culprit to be hellbugs, which have the ability to chew through almost anything. Irisa seems to be still having the visions however, and Nolan is pretty concerned. It seems these visions are recurring, and Nolan reminds her that they aren’t real. Meanwhile Tommy was investigating, and brings an empty egg sack to Nolan to discuss. According to Nolan, these should not appear outside the bug’s nest. We also learn that there were pheromones of the bug planted on the clients bed. These would lead the bugs to attack wherever they were planted. Looks like we have a murder on our hands.
The episode moves to Tarr’s residence, where the Tarr family along with Christie McCawley are having dinner. Christie has prepared a traditional Castithan meal, to which the mother (Stahma) tries to compliment. Datak however insults the meal in his native language. Unfortunately for him, Christie has learned some of the language and understood she was insulted, and she gets upset and leaves. The dad has a mini-rant where he doesn’t understand why she bathes alone. Outside, Christie and Alak (Datak’s son) are talking, when they are both attacked by what must be a Hellbug. Christie tries to defend them with a long torch, while Alak lays on the ground. Datak comes to their rescue and takes care of the bug infestation.
I saw the scene where Christie is the one defending herself and Alak against the Hellbug and thought “Wow, go Christie!” I did not expect her to be so brave, but it turns out she’s the one who wears the pants in this relationship. From what we’ve seen of Alak so far, he seems to just be a whiny little brat who gets his parents to take care of everything for him.
Christie is taken home by the Tarr’s and Christie hugs her father. The Tarr’s and Rafe McCawley have civil talk, and the Tarr’s tell Rafe about the bug encounter. They also embellish Alak’s defending of Christie during the attack, since he was just lying on the ground whimpering. Christie says that he wants to stay home for a while. Nolan, Irisa Tommy and the Doctor show up to investigate the bug problem, and discover that Christie is covered in the Hellbug pheromones and tell her to burn her clothes and take a shower to get rid of them. Nolan begins to question Rafe about victims so far, to find out what the connection is. Rafe tells Nolan that he did know the victims but a long time ago, and it was regarding a property deal.
I found it amusing when they praised Alak and how brave he was for saving Christie, when Christie herself was the brave one. However, of course Christie isn’t going to say anything to contradict them, because she wants her dad to like Alak, and this might help. Very clever of Alak’s parents, as they knew that such a story would help get brownie points for Alak and his upcoming marriage to Christie. That Stahma is very manipulative.
Nolan wants to see the property records and they pull the paperwork to go through. Irisa has another vision, and locates a deed which seems to stick out to her for some reason. Nolan begins to question the legitimacy of the bought properties (feeling reminiscent of American Indian history). Meanwhile Irisa has taken off to “get some air”. Nolan asks Tommy to go with her, but Irisa makes sure that doesn’t happen by throwing Tommy off of the Roller (their name for their car). Irisa is out in the field as Nolan pulls up. She is having more visions, where she is seeing some sort of altercation between Irathients and humans, and she seems like she begin having a seizure. Nolan tries to comfort as she cries and convulses.
The paperwork scene is a reminder of the fact that they can no longer rely on computers and the internet to check on chain of title for properties, as we would in today’s world. It is truly as if it’s a new world, where everyone is starting over with claiming land as their own, and apparently a secure, reliable system has not yet been put into place regarding keeping records of such things. Kind of weird how they have technologically advanced systems for some things, but not others.
Back in town, Nolan wants to have Irisa see the doctor, but Irisa has other plans. She confronts Sukar, telling him that one of his Riders (named Rynn) is causing the hellbug infestation. He protects her, and denies it at first. Irisa reveals her visions to Sukar, and Sukar seems to sort of revere her for it. He tells Nolan and Irisa that Irisa may know how to locate her through her visions, and they begin a shamanistic looking ritual. The ritual continues for several minutes, and she goes into a vision, which is much more clear than her previous ones. She sees the Irathient’s mother at what was their previous house. She seems a roller come up, with two humans inside. These are the two men that have been killed so far. They begin killing the Irathients, but Rynn is able to escape. Irisa then sees where Rynn is currently hiding out.
Nolan apologizes to Irisa for not believing her visions, but Irisa is still upset, as it looks like Nolan had been treating her visions as a psychosis. He continues to apologize, but she doesn’t want to talk about it. They both head out to find Rynn. Sukar and Tommy have also come along, and they head down a long elevator shaft. They decide it would be best to disguise themselves from the infestation of Hellbugs by wiping the defecation of the Hellbugs on themselves. They head back into the elevator, which seems to malfunction, plummeting them to the bottom floor. There seem to be hundreds of Hellbugs nesting at the bottom, along with a really big one that is probably the queen. Sukar beings to search for Rynn, but she shoots Sukar and demands the rest of them to disarm themselves. She threatens to unleash the Hellbugs on them with pheromones, but Irisa tries to reason with her, and explains the vision she had of her parents being killed. Irisa tries to say that this isn’t what her parents would want her to do. Rynn doesn’t want to believe her it seems, and Rynn tosses the pheromone container down. Irisa throws a knife, injuring her while Nolan grabs the pheromone container and throws it at the mother Hellbug, causing the young Hellbugs to attack her. They hop in to the elevator and Nolan detonates the bomb, blowing the Hellbugs to pieces as they ride up.
Back in town, Amanda has announced that the land that the McCawleys didn’t legitimately own will be returned to the Irathients, and the Irathients will lease the land back to Rafe. This seems to appease the Irathients to some extent, trying to right the wrongs of the past. Rynn is being guarded by Tommy, when Sukar comes to visit Rynn. Tommy allows them to speak alone, however. Sukar tries to make amends with her, however Rynn is upset that Sukar is enamored with Irisa’s visions, which land her in prison. The episode wraps up with music montage, and Rafe McCawley seems a little more accepting of his daughter being with Alak Tarr. We also see Rynn sitting in her prison cell. Irisa seems to be having further unsettling visions as she attempts to sleep, and Nolan attempts to comfort her.
I like Amanda. I feel like she is a good and fair mayor, always trying to do the right thing by everyone.
I am still having some difficulty getting into this show. It is hard to put my finger on exactly why, but I think it might partially be the lack of depth the characters have so far. This may be something that is resolved as the show continues and we have more invested in them. I am not really sure what is in store this season or even next episode other than what we are shown in the preview scenes. I will continue to watch it and hope it my interest is kept!
My thoughts: This episode had a little more action than last episode, and was slightly more enjoyable. However, overall, I still don’t feel like I’m quite sucked in yet. So far, it seems like each episode is going to explore the culture of each of the eight alien races, as last week it was mostly about the Castithans, and this week was mainly about the Irathients. Who will it be next week? I don’t know, but hopefully it will be a little more exciting and intriguing than the past couple episodes have been!