For both the characters and for episode seven. There were two main plots this week, each with good bits. One was touching and the other funny. But these were not two tastes that tasted great together.

Spoilers...

So you know how last week, I was all about how we didn’t spend a ton of time learning about Three? Yeah... That was not how this week shook out.

Advertisement

In Five’s foray into her memories, she overheard Six tell One what the password was to get them into that big secret door that Three’s been obsessed with. Inside, they find guns and money and all sorts of things a band of outlaws would consider helpful. They also find a woman in stasis and another android.

The woman is Sarah, and she’s dying of a disease caused by the mining of an unobtanium that I think is called “Serillium.” She was in stasis to prevent the disease from killing her, and it turns out that the only person she knows is Three.

Sarah knows Three because she found him wounded in the woods of her planet. Her planet was a mining operation of the Ferrous Corporation, which — based on this and the pilot — are the worst of the mega space corps out there. The corporation’s doctors denied that they disease had anything to do with the work they were doing and then people died. Then there was an uprising that killed Sarah’s husband.

So she was alone when she found Three, and then nursed him back to health. He was left behind when a job on the behalf of another corporation to hijack a shipment from Ferrous went bad. In the course of his stay with Saraj, they got romantic. Which led Three to try to leave, telling her he wasn’t “the guy who stay.” Sarah starts to argue with him, but her disease has “convenient dramatic fainting” as a symptom, so she passes out.

Advertisement

Sarah tells Three that she was nothing but a burden, but he stayed for months to care for her. Eventually putting her into stasis and promising things would be okay.

History repeats itself, because as Sarah is convincing Three he’s a good man, the disease manifests again.

While this little drama is playing out, shit is going down with the other android. One gets her activated, and she’s an entertainment model named Wendy. She offers food, massages, and hair styling. Her accent is explained as a default setting of “Aussie” — a little touch that wasn’t entirely necessary, but like the Doctor Who line “Lots of planets have a North” was fun.

Hair ingratiates her to Five. Massages to Four. Food to pretty much everyone. Our poor nameless Android is feeling pretty left out, since her more functional uses don’t get the joyous reception that Wendy’s gets.

Also, Wendy fucks One. Which I had no problem with other than that it became the center of another long digression into the romance between One and Two. (We started the episode with One giving Two a status report, Two getting dressed, and One lunging at her like a thirsty alcoholic seeing a beer. She only pushes him back, while I would like to see her just shoot him in the face.)

Two sees One and Wendy in the aftermath, and he tells her she’s “Not complicated.” But because One has the opposite of the Midas Touch — everything he touches turns to shit — Wendy is secretly evil, which switches on right after their assignation. She’s been programmed by a man named Cyrus King, who the Raza wronged. She shoots the Android and locks One, Two, Four, and Six in the galley. Three and Five are getting Sarah to the hibernation pod, so they’re not locked in. She also programs the Raza to fly straight into the nearest star.

Two and Three prove that they’re awesome at communication, because Two contacts Three and tells him to get to the engines and disable them. Both Two and Three know that a) Wendy is listening in and b) Three doesn’t have the technical know-how to shut down the engines. He’s a decoy, while Five is on the bridge trying to avert death.

Advertisement

Three promises to do whatever he can for Sarah, and has a fairly entertaining beat down by Wendy. Five unlocks the doors, giving Four just enough time to slice Wendy’s head off. That’s when things get ridiculous:

  • Two needs the Wendy’s head to get the codes she used to lock them out of navigation. She does this by asking, “Is Wendy’s head damaged?” And then Four carries the head through the ship like a trophy.
  • Then the head is plugged into the ship.
  • Which causes the body to get back up and beat the shit out of Three and Six.
  • After the requisite “It can’t see us” line, the headless body dropkicks Three like a soccer ball.

So they save the ship, but being that near to the sun means that power fluctuated and, of course, Sarah died. Which was so unnecessary it was practically fridging and was emotional whiplash, since Three’s touching farewell came right after he had the stuffing kicked out of him by a headless robot.

Advertisement

And, to add insult to that injury, we ended with Two telling One that maybe “complicated isn’t such a bad thing.” This makes me long for death.

This was a mixed episode. I actually liked Three and his plot and the android bit was largely entertaining. But, wow, did they not complement each other in tone at all. Let’s play a rousing rendition of good thing, bad thing:

Good thing: I take back what I said about not wanting to know more about Three. Anthony Lemke’s been having a great time as the amoral Three, but he was surprisingly great at the emotional beats this week. Plus, he and the actress playing Sarah had real chemistry and connection.

Advertisement

Good thing: The android’s jealousy of Wendy was some great development for her. Also, the bit where she tries a bunch of comically over the top accents — Australian, Scottish, German, and Jamaican — and unzips her jumpsuit to try to emulate Wendy and get a similar response from One was pretty funny. And One’s “Just don’t” was also good. See, I can praise One.

Good thing: Five explaining why the crew likes Wendy to the Android and explaining that they still need her.

Bad thing: This speech is immediately rendered pointless by Wendy’s evil.

Bad thing: When Wendy fights Three, he says her programming is for fun. And she says she doesn’t remember fun, she remembers cooking, cleaning, and having sex. Which kind of implies she doesn’t like the things her programming makes her do, which is a whole robotic can of worms that makes the androids more like slaves than lifelike but personality-less computers.

Advertisement

Bad thing: There are a lot of unfortunate implications to beheading Wendy right after she says, “I find your view on female androids both antiquated and offensive.”

Bad thing: Those last two points confused me as to whether she was just a tool of Cyrus King’s or if she was vengeful against humans all on her own. Which, she’s going to die on the ship, too, right? There are a lot of questions that come from making her more sentient in her actions, is what I’m saying.

Good thing: I did laugh at the “Dunking the cosmic donut” “What was that?” running gag.

Advertisement

Mixed thing: One tries to take the blame for what happened to Sarah, but Three says he didn’t program Wendy or give Sarah the disease that killed her. Yes, Three is emotionally mature. And, no, One, not everything is about you.

I can’t help but think both of these plots would have been better served in separate episodes. It ended up just making it a mixed bag of a week.


Contact the author at katharine@io9.com.