The Expanse Season 2 Episode 10: Cascade

 Ganymede Station

It looks like we pick up right after the events in Episode 9. Naomi (Dominique Tipper) wanted to stay behind with Melissa. Holden (Steven Strait) rightly points out she wanted them to leave. Naomi blames them for getting Santichai killed. The thugs had Melissa and Santichai at gunpoint at the time Holden and Amos (Wes Chatham) entered. We’ll never know for sure if they had a chance to live without Holden and Amos’ interference. Holden’s philosophy on the matter, “If we do what we came here to do, I’ll figure out a way to live with it.” Prax Meng (Terry Chen) asks Amos how many people he has killed. Amos isn’t sure, but he assures Prax he isn’t a homicidal maniac. Prax does not look assured. Amos further explains he’ll have his back, but Naomi and Holden aren’t like him so they will find his little girl. They get to the heavily damaged garden Prax used to work at. A board has a list of the dead; Mei and Strickland aren’t on it. They set off to find a person who might know where to look for Mei and Strickland.

Holden and Naomi question a nurse (Sara Sahr) about Mei and Strickland whereabouts. She wasn’t in section seven when the mirror fell so she doesn’t know what happened to them. Holden asks her question about skin growths and people glowing from radiation, to cover the fact he is trying to find out if anyone has seen people affected by the Protomolecule. The nurse has not seen anyone with those symptoms and she asks him not to start a panic. Naomi doesn’t think this looks like the situation that developed on Eros. Holden isn’t as sure. Amos and Prax run into Basia (Ryan Blakely), a friend of Prax. Basia does an unfriendly act and punches Prax. He accuses him of running out when they could be looking for their kids.  Prax calms him down and explains he and Amos are looking for Mei. Basia has been looking for his child Katoa; a man named Roma (Steven Yaffee) is assisting him. He has access to surveillance tapes, so he can find people. He works for cans of chicken, but Basia didn’t have any more cans of chicken to barter. Prax tells Basia to rest, they will talk to Roma.

Prax explains to Naomi and Holden that Katoa was also a patient of Dr. Strickland. Katoa and Mei are best friends and Basia is a good father. When the group arrives at Roma’s apartment, a crying naked woman is running out with an armful of food for her starving family. The apartment is stuffed with supplies. Everyone in the group asks for his help in finding Prax’s little girl, they offer to barter for his services with energy bars, ammo. Roma only wants can chicken and tells them to leave. Amos bashes his head with a can of chicken. Holden holds Naomi so she won’t stop Amos. Prax stops Amos by reminding him Roma can’t help them if he is dead. Amos puts a gun to Roma’s head and nicely asks for his cooperation. Roma readily agrees.

Roma is looking through the tapes trying to find Mei. Prax to Amos, “You said you weren’t a homicidal maniac.” Amos back to Prax, “I didn’t kill him.” Looks at Roma, “Yet!”  Prax shamefully admits when he thought Mei was dead, he was a little relieved. She was always sick and he couldn’t help her. Amos can’t help him with his guilt. Prax goes outside to check the plants. He realizes a cascade could be happening. He explains to Amos, as one system fails, more things fail that you can’t predict. On a planet like Earth, the ecosystem can handle it. In an artificial system, it can’t. The station is dying.

On the Rocinante, Alex (Cas Anvar) is goofing off, doing anti-gravity tricks drinking fluids to amuse himself. In the middle of his fun, he hears on the radio Martian authorities announce, “A no fly zone is around the Ganymede Station.” This complicates Alex ability to pick up his crewmates.

Roma finds Strickland and Mei in the oldest part of the station. It was far away from the battle on the station. There aren’t any cameras beyond the point they are spotted.

Earth

Chrisjen (Shohreh Aghdashloo), Errinwright (Shawn Doyle), and Admiral Nguyen (Byron Mann) discuss Bobbie’s testimony on their way back to the peace summit. Nguyen thinks Bobbie couldn’t handle losing her fellow marines and lost her mind. He especially thinks the soldier not wearing a vac suit is crazy. Chrisjen would like to talk to her alone. Errinwright calls what the Martians are doing in pushing this peace agreement, “Peace as a distraction”. The Martian delegation wants to get back to business. Back at the Martian embassy, Captain Martens (Peter Outerbridge) is chewing Bobbie (Frankie Adams) out for going off script. She is sticking with her story that she saw a soldier without a vac suit. He subtly tries to sell her that the stress of the situation has clouded her judgment. The Martian authorities probably made a mistake pushing her too soon to come to Earth. That will look after her when they get back to Mars. Bobbie asks to go to see the ocean. Martens flatly refuses, she is on restrictions. Bobbie asks if she is under arrest. No, he assures her, she is a Martian and she can’t handle Earth’s environment. After he leaves, Bobbie tries to pry open her window so she can get out.

Errinwright is having Bobbie’s suit examined. He tells the UN Tech to check for biologicals not found on Ganymede. He looks worried. It is apparent the biologicals he is looking for are Protomolecule.

Errinwright enters Chrisjen’s office; she is examining Bobbie’s military record. He asks what it says; it is exemplary. She is a good soldier who follows orders. A troubled Sadavir Errinwright finally confesses his involvement with Mao’s weapon project. They found Protomolecule on the Martian moon Phoebe. He thought this new project would protect Earth. He thinks that Mao is developing a new weapon project for Mars. Errinwright can see that Chrisjen already knew he was involved. She was sure of it when he had her friend Frank murdered. He didn’t murder Frank, but Chrisjen points out he helped cover it up. (Frank was the ambassador to Mars who committed ‘suicide’ in Season 1.) He assures Chrisjen he didn’t know they were going to test Eros, if he had known he would have stopped it. He hands over all the information he has on the project. He warns that if Ganymede is a test, this could just be the beginning.

Bobbie is still trying to pry open her window. She finally uses her medal and it works. She climbs out the window and looks down. It is about four stories down. The sun and horizon make Bobbie lose her balance. She falls down the building. She is a tough girl because she gets right up and starts running. Bobbie reaches an area under a bridge where people live. She asks for directions to the ocean.

Cotyar (Nick E. Tarabay) has news for Chrisjen. The Martians are looking for Bobbie. Chrisjen wants to find her before the Martians do. She orders Cotyar to put obstacles in front of the Martians to slow them down. He asks Chrisjen are they sharing information with Errinwright now. Not yet. Cotyar asks why Chrisjen hasn’t turned him in yet. She is the only person in authority who knows what he did, endangering her. Chrisjen feels like he is more useful outside a cell. She thinks having Eros nearly hit Earth changed him and made him regret his actions. Cotyar smiles, he’s forgotten what it’s like to be on the side of the good guys.

Bobbie asks a mentally ill man for directions. He screams at her. Nico (Milton Barnes) quiets him down and offers Bobbie directions for her supply of Osteo-X. He knew she was Martian by the way she walked, as if the sky might fall on her and the ground might swallow her. She thinks he is a drug dealer. He wants to trade the Osteo-X for drugs the community could use from poisoning from a plant to polluted water they have to drink. She asks if he is a doctor. Nico applied for the medical training program when he was 17, he is 52 and still waiting for admittance to the program. He gives her tips on how to steady herself and walk on this planet. He leaves while she tries it out.

Bobbie makes it to the ocean. She looks content as she takes off her shoes to put her feet in the water. Cotyar and Chrisjen show up after she sits down on the sand. Chrisjen tells her what she saw was true and shows Bobbie a picture of the creature she saw. The Martian government was testing this new weapon. Bobbie doesn’t believe her; this would mean her government made her team sacrificial lambs. Chrisjen asks for her help. Cotyar tells Chrisjen they have to go, the Martians will be there shortly. Bobbie sits alone contemplating what Chrisjen told her as the Martians close in.

***

Kbear!

The Naomi/Holden relationship is in a rut. The only thing they do is bicker. Naomi disapproves of everything Holden does. She is right most of the time, but it makes her look like a nag. We also know she is lying to him about the Protomolecule she is hiding, so she also looks like a hypocrite. I won’t be sad seeing them breakup. Maybe they can build a real relationship once that happens. Holden is also getting colder and meaner. He doesn’t mind using Amos as his attack dog. As Naomi said earlier in the episode, the more dirty stuff you do, the easier it is to do it the next time.

Ganymede is dying. Someone is messing with the hydroponics system. It is an oxygen based recycling method; it is an air cleaning system. They are using distilled water instead of the chemicals the system normally uses. Killing the plants is killing the station. I wonder if this was going on before the battle, or if they started doing this because they didn’t have the chemicals they needed for the system.  The only good thing that has happened on Ganymede is they now know where Mei is. Knowing this show, it is going to be very messy getting her.

Bobbie is having a rough go of it. Her government made her lie and it turns out they may be the cause of her unit dying on Ganymede. Bobbie is grounded and they won’t let her go to see the ocean. Like any rebellious teenager, Bobbie sneaks out of her room and goes anyway. Except Bobbie isn’t a child even though her superiors are trying to treat her as one. Their actions might push Bobbie into joining forces with Chrisjen. If that happens, no force in the universe will be able to stop them.

Most of the scenes on Earth have been the UN or some upper class elite like Mao. This is the first time we have seen the Earth’s underclass and they look a great deal like the underclass on the belt. Poor people, even in the future cannot catch a break. I liked the Nico character, even under the harsh circumstances he lives under; he maintains his dignity and humanity. Errinwright is regaining his humanity by coming clean to Chrisjen; I hope this isn’t a trick on his part.

Grade: A-

Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Editor-in-Chief

Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Editor-in-Chief

A fan, enthusiast, and appreciator of sci-fi, comic books, and fantasy film and TV. kbeartv61@nayahscifi.com
Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Editor-in-Chief

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