In this week’s episode of The Expanse, Bobbie Draper finally took things into her own hands; Naomi makes a choice and reveals a truth about herself; Amos gets shot, and Errinwright becomes likable…well, sort of. Here’s what happened in “Here There Be Dragons.”
Major Spoilers! Major Spoilers! Major Spoilers
The episode opens with a flashback of Dr. Strickland leading Meng’s daughter Mei to a secret laboratory on Ganymede. As he leads the little girl to the oldest part of the station, he argues with another scientist, a woman, about tests and what needs to happen next in terms of their research. The entire time he talks, he is interrupted by Mei, who just wants to go home and be with her daddy. When they disappear through a door into an older part of the Station, the scene breaks to the present to Holden, Meng, Amos and Naomi. The crew of the Roci break into the older part of the station and Naomi warns Meng that it may be too late for his daughter. Upset by her suggestion that Mei is dead or worst, Meng asks Naomi if she has kids. Naomi tells Meng that she had a baby boy once and that someone took him from her. She doesn’t want him to be disappointed if things don’t work out the way he wants them to.
While the crew of the Roci hunts down Protogen scientists, Draper is getting a talking to from Captain Martens. She confronts Martens about Ganymede and he commences to tell her that her generation is soft and spoiled and unpatriotic (he can’t be talking about Draper?!). He tells her she will be discharged from the Marines for not following orders. He dismisses her and she prepares to return to Mars with a determined look on her face.
The UN scientists that set out to Venus to see what became of Eros are in a race to collect data from the planet’s surface before a Martian Destroyer can. Each time the UN ship sends a drone down to the crater on Venus, their probes are destroyed. Chrisjen’s inside man suggests a creative way of boosting their drone’s shields to withstand the corrosive nature of the planet’s atmosphere. When it works, he secretly reports back to Chrisjen, telling her that there are unnatural structures present around the crater. What the hell are Julie and Miller building down there?
In the meantime, Errinwright informs Chrisjen that he’s found a way to flush Jules Mao out from hiding. Chrisjen thanks him for the information, but tells him that he will take the fall for all of Jules Mao’s crimes if they aren’t able to apprehend him. Chrisjen tells him to atone for his sins. He asks her to put in a world for him and immediately takes back the request. Errinwright is willing to face the music.
While Errinwright prepares to face the music, Draper is daydreaming about the ocean. Her daydreaming is interrupted by Martens and he escorts her to her shuttle for Mars. However, Chrisjen issues a terrorist warning, and all airs travel is halted. Draper isn’t leaving just yet.
With all the excitement going on in the solar system, Alex is peacefully waiting in the Roci, which he has hidden behind a moon. He’s waiting to pick up his friends down on Ganymede, but a no-fly zone is issued and he has to remain hidden. Utilizing the Roci’s impressive tech, Alex figures out how to get to the station using fancy flying (he’s good at that) and some stealth-ish maneuvering using Jovian Moons. Alex is determined to be there for his crew.
Another flashback takes us to Ganymede Station with Dr. Strickland taking Mei to her likely doom (poor little girl!). When she demands to see her father, Strickland goes off on a tangent about butterflies and gives her a shot telling her not to be afraid. Fast-forward to the present, Holden and the gang have guns drawn as they travel deeper into the old section of the station. Meng finds a capsule of Mei’s medicine and Holden comments that they are on the right track. The crew also notes that the station is dying.
Draper is waiting in her room and requests to speak to Captain Martens. Draper asks him again what happened on Ganymede. When he refuses, Draper does some wrecking! (Finally!) She tosses him up a bit and finally gets him to show her data on the Seventh Man aka The Hybrid. Turns out that the whole incident on Ganymede was a test to demonstrate the efficiency of The Hybrid as a weapon. After knocking Martens out cold, Draper escapes and is chased by Martian marines. She runs to the UN embassy and requests political asylum on Earth (Dang!). She gives the data she took from Martens to Chrisjen and tells her that she was right; the Ganymede incident was a weapon’s test. Draper is done with her government’s corruption.
Holden and the crew finally make it to their destination on Ganymede Station. As they prepare to breach a door, they arm themselves and Naomi warns Meng to prepare himself for the worst. When they burst inside, the woman scientist seen in the flashbacks with Strickland asks them to talk things out. Meng sees Mei’s backpack, fires and asks where his daughter is. A firefight ensues and Amos is shot protecting Meng. The woman scientist escapes through another door and locks it. Meng notices another side room with a child sized capsule.
On Earth, a familiar face places a call to Chrisjen. Jules Mao is back on the scene. He sends a video message to Chrisjen and agrees to meet with her if she ceases punitive actions against his family. He tells her to meet him in a place of his choosing with a small escort. Chrisjen’s spy tells her it’s a trap but she’s already agreed to meet Jules.
More flashbacks play out, and man, these flashbacks are sad. The third flashback shows Strickland leading Mei into a room with other children strapped to contraptions as they receive injections of what is likely the protomolecule. Mei is strapped down and injected as well. As the scene plays out, it flashes to the present and shows Meng opening the capsule in the side room that he noticed after the gunfight. Inside is a dead child with protomolecule elements visible on its face. It’s not Mei.
Holden vaporizes the child, determined to get rid of the protomolecule. After realizing what the Protogen scientist have been up to, the crew of the Roci barely have time to figure out what to do next before a grenade is flung at them by Protogen scientists. If it weren’t for Amos’ quick thinking (he threw it back through the door it came from), our heroes would be dead. An explosion is heard on the other side of the door along with gunfire, shouting, and the screech of tearing metal. When the noise stops, the crew of the Roci enters and discovers dead Protogen scientists, a capsule that looks like something tore through it, and a breached airlock. A scientist tells them with her last breath that they made the protomolecule in their own image and that there are a lot more of “her” out there (is “her Meng’s protomolecule daughter?).
Alex (Yay!) shows up in a space suit and enters through the breached airlocks. He tells them that a black ops ship landed nearby and he figured that that’s where the Roci crew was holed up. Holden commands the crew to suit up to meet Alex outside of the airlock to board the Roci. Naomi informs her friends and Holden that she is staying behind to help the people of Ganymede. Amos stays behind with her and Meng takes Amos’ place. While they say goodbye, Alex notices a humanoid figure without a vac suit running along the rock formations of Ganymede. He informs the crew and as Holden watches The Hybrid running away from the station, he informs Meng and Alex that they are going hunting.
So many things were touched on this episode. There was some commentary on how baby boomers like to talk down to millennials (interaction between Martens and Draper); how science can be a good thing in the right person’s hands (Meng) and a terrible thing in others (Strickland and the Protogen scientists). The episode looked at how weapons dealers don’t give a f@ck about who is caught in the middle and how distractions can take the focus off corruption in government (Hmm). So much commentary and so much storytelling! Ahh, The Expanse is the best! Until next week, yam seng!
Catch The Expanse next Wednesday, April 12th on the SyFy network.
Jahkotta Lewis is a professional archaeologist, an amateur astronomer, and an aspiring writer. When she is not documenting Pacific Island archaeology, she spends her days hiking through native forests, spelunking within the depths of an active volcano, and watching/reading all things fantasy and science fiction. Follow her on Twitter @jahkotta
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