Title: The Weeping Somnambulist
Director: Mikael Salomon
Writers: based on the novels by Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham (as James S.A. Corey), written by Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham written for television by Hallie Lambert
Starring: Frankie Adams, Steven Strait, Cas Anvar, Dominique Tipper, Wes Chatham, Shohreh Aghdashlo, Nick E. Tarabay, Shawn Doyle, Chad L. Coleman, Andrew Rotilio, Elias Toufexis, Athena Karkanis, Paulo Costanzo, François Chau
Episode length: 42 minutes
Another tragic tale, among many, on the way to what happens next in the series narrative.
There’s no end to the sad stories taking place in the solar system this series portrays; not too surprising under the circumstances, but each one means another broken heart, especially when it’s as senseless as this one. The war hasn’t been started yet, but it’s already taking a toll of lives lost and bitter tears.
The story continues to show its tragic side in this week’s episode. I suppose it’s to be expected, but that doesn’t make it any easier for those caught in the deadly circumstances they find themselves immersed in, especially when all they are trying to do is help relieve the suffering of their fellow human beings.
This was an excellent episode, albeit tragically melancholy, that covered nearly every front of the series story as it has developed to this point. It took place both on Earth and in space, providing us with some of this show’s top-notch visuals of ships traveling through the vacuum, and in one instance, uncovering what happened to Eros, while politics continued to both ruin lives and work towards peace.
Here is a recap, with some comments (*Warning, spoilers follow*)
This week’s episode picks up soon after the events of last week’s, and we find ourselves visiting several locations where the story is taking place. One location is a freighter named The Weeping Somnambulist, making a run with some relief supplies for Ganymede. Their journey is interrupted by a Martian gunship making an inspection which actually turns out to be the Roci crew in disguise.
The ship’s owners, a couple, Santichai (Peter Williams) and Mellisa Suputayaporns are a study in contrasts. She is a no-nonsense tough old broad who is aggressively confrontational, while he is a lot more cooperative obviously resigned to get through any rough spots with as little fuss as possible. When she raises a fuss and gets into a brief struggle with one of the Martians, The true identity of the ‘inspectors’ is revealed as being Holden (Steven Strait) and Amos (Wes Chatham).
The Roci crew has a plan to use the ship to allow them to gain access to the colony while Alex waits with the ship hidden by a nearby moon. She’s grouchy as hell about it.but they agree to let them hitch a ride into Ganymede. Shortly after they arrive and disembark, as they enter what’s left of the colony, Holden and Amos see two suspicious characters enter the ship they just exited. These turn out to be some desperate criminal types that plan to steal all the supplies and the ship for themselves.
Meng (Terry Chen) is along in hopes of finding his daughter. He is feeling a little less happy about this situation because when he tried to send a message to the family of his friend Doris, who got spaced by the Belters last week, he was not able to do so because it would give away their cover.
Holden and Amos sneak back aboard and a firefight breaks out resulting in the death of the thieves but tragically also in the death of Santichai leaving Mellisa broken hearted and more bitter than ever. It represents the sort of senseless tragedy that takes place all the time, but in this case, it seemed especially sad and pointless.
Meanwhile, on Earth, the Martians and Earth delegations are meeting about the incident on Ganymede. It is both a hearing to ascertain the facts of what occurred and to agree to a settlement based on those findings. Roberta ‘Bobbie’ W. Draper (Frankie Adams) along with some others are shown inside a Martian lander plummeting through the atmosphere and landing. She is given several compounds to help deal with the increased Earth gravity and sunglasses to deal with increased sunlight.
The hearing is very solemn, serious, and somewhat formal. Composed of three representatives from each side, two diplomats, and one military representative each. The soldiers engage in some thinly veiled threats and sarcasm toward each other before the diplomats get down to business. On the Earth side is Sadavir Errinwright (Shawn Doyle), Admiral Nguyen (Byron Mann), and of course, Chrisjen Avasarala (Shohreh Aghdashloo). Draper is called in the testify as a first-hand witness and she says what she’s been told to say, and makes no mention of the odd entity she saw or the actual events that took place. The blame is placed on one of her soldiers who makes a handy scapegoat because he was originally from Earth.
Chrisjen senses something is off about Draper’s testimony and insists on interviewing her further, she once again shows she is a formidable woman and someone not to be taken lightly. She almost manages to get the troubled Draper to break from her carefully rehearsed testimony.
On a third front, we join the ship Arboghast, on its mission to see what happened on Venus from the collision of Eros on the planet’s surface. As they get in range of the ship’s sensors they discover there is something odd about the crash site there are signs of organic substances present where enter should be none. Implying that maybe something survived the crash.
This episode was the story in a transition from what has happened to whatever it is it has in store for us next. It was a reminder of the rich palette of themes it has to offer in its complex narrative. Adventure, action, mystery and tragedy are all well represented in this edition. Another fine outing for this series that has shown no signs of losing its edge or its ability to entertain and engage. The series has been picked up for a third season.