THE EXPANSE – Season 2 Episode 10 – SPOILERS
Amos (Wes Chatham) asserts that he is not a homicidal maniac. Prax (Terry Chen), who has led a sheltered existence, is quietly amazed at the short-sightedness of those around him. Errinwright (Shawn Doyle) admits his involvement with Mao and the proto-molecule. And no one at all is killed in this episode.
Alex is alone and bored and monitoring things from Cyllene. We find him surrounded by empty floating beer cans and singing along to Hank Williams’ I’m So Lonely I Could Cry. (One wonders if there are any whippoorwills left in the time of The Expanse.) His zero gravity somersault in pursuit of beer droplets is interrupted by the Martian announcement of a no fly zone over Ganymede. Even if Holden manages to locate Strickland and Prax’s daughter, The Rocinante won’t be much help to them.
Bobbi Draper, in some disfavour with her superiors after her testimony at the peace talks, escapes from her quarters at the Martian Compound and goes looking for the ocean. On her way she meets Nico (Milton Barnes) who trades her directions to the water for her calcium supplement. Nico is an engaging fellow, and seems like someone who should turn up again in future episodes. Avasarala finds Draper at the edge of the ocean, shows Bobbi evidence that what she saw on Ganymede was real, and proposes that they work together. (The evidence Avasarala shows Draper came from Errinwright. We see a picture of a humanoid creature labeled Project Caliban. Caliban is the name of the half-human son of the witch Sycorax in Shakespeare’s The Tempest.)
The best line of the episode is from Cotyar (Nick E. Tarabay) who tells Avasarala: “I’d forgotten how it felt to be fighting for the good guys again. I like it. It’s nice.”
Naomi is not quite sure which side she’s fighting for these days. She admonishes Holden: “Every shitty thing we do makes the next one that much easier, doesn’t it?”
The title of the episode comes from this conversation between Prax and Amos, and is very relevant to present day problems.
AMOS: “What’s the cascade?”
PRAX: “In real nature there’s enough diversity to cushion an ecosystem when something catastrophic happens. Nothing that we build, our ships, our stations, has that depth. Now, in an artificial ecosystem, when one thing goes wrong, there’s only a certain amount of pathways that can compensate for it. Eventually, those pathways get over-stressed, and then they fail. Which leaves fewer pathways, and then they’ll get over-stressed, and then they fail.”
AMOS: “So it’s not the thing that breaks you that you need to watch out for.”
PRAX: “Exactly. And Ganymede is a simple, complex system. Because it’s simple, it’s prone to cascades, and because it’s complex, you can’t predict what’s going to break down next, or how.”
The writers might be pointing out that industrial agriculture has caused the Earth to lose about 75% of plant genetic diversity since 1900, and that the introduction of genetically modified organisms threatens to intensify the problem. A simple, but complex, artificial ecosystem is being created right now.
Ryan Blakely (Basia) will be Marc Desjardins in the miniseries BAD BLOOD, based on the book Business or Blood: Mafia Boss Vito Rizzuto’s Last War, by Antonio Nicaso and Peter Edwards. Filmed in Montreal and Sudbury, the series deals with events following Rizzuto’s arrest in 2004, and the revenge killings that followed his release from prison in 2012 and led to Rizzuto’s own death a year later. BAD BLOOD will be broadcast in the fall in English on CityTV and FX, and in French on Radio-Canada.
Allison Hossack (Umea) is the newly elected Mother Superior of the Abbey in the thriller SOMETIMES THE GOOD KILL. One of her first acts as Mother Superior is to assign Sister Talia (Susie Abromeit) the job of discretely investigating a murder. Nora Mclellan (KILLJOYS) and Amanda Brugel (ORPHAN BLACK) are among others in the cast, and a trailer is available on Vimeo. SOMETIMES THE GOOD KILL should be released in Canada later this year.
Steven Yaffee (Roma) will be Mikhail Demidoff in two episodes of THE MIST, a re-imagining of the Stephen King tale that will include several distinct story lines set in a variety of locations (as opposed to the single storyline and location used in the novella and in Frank Darabont’s 2007 movie). Filmed in Bedford, Nova Scotia, the ten episode series will premiere on SPIKE TV in the US on 22 June.