The Expanse 3×03 Review: Assured Destruction
Tensions are high in “Assured Destruction”. The first two episodes in The Expanse season 3 contained quite a bit of action. Last week basically centered around a car-chase-in-space. This week, there was a lot of talk as the series heavyweights finally came face-to-face.
It was exactly the right type of talking. It is so frustrating on a television show when the audience knows what is going on, but the characters never communicate. That’s why it was refreshing in “Assured Destruction” when everyone on board the Roci actually had a real conversation and laid everything out in the open. Chrisjen showed them the proof that Errinwright is working with Mao, and the Roci crew told her that they’re heading to Io because that’s where they’re making the protomolecule hybrids.
It’s boring to have villains who are purely evil, so I can appreciate the scene between Mao and Mei where they were clearly trying to humanize him. This is a man who recently lost his daughter. I mean, he is pretty much responsible for Julie’s death, so it’s kind of hard to feel bad for him, but still. It’s that interaction with Mei – and witnessing what happened to Katoa – that makes him second guess the experiments with the protomolecule. If only he could have arrived at that conclusion in time to save his daughter.
There was some pretty heavy stuff in this week’s episode. Cotyar killed Theo just before they were picked up by the Agatha King, because there can’t be a prisoner’s dilemma if there is only one person left. It’s a good thing that Cotyar was rescued by Commander Souther, who is probably one of the few honorable people left on this show. I suspected Admiral Nguyen was working with Errinwright from his behavior when interrogating Cotyar, but it was pretty much confirmed when he ordered the Agatha King to Io and relieved Souther of command. (Plus, don’t think I didn’t see that Agatha King pass that Mao had at the end of the episode.) How deep does this conspiracy go? Who all is involved?
I live for the moments of humor in The Expanse. They’re seeming to become fewer and far between, but they tend to all focus around Amos lately. His scene with Chrisjen where he explained that walking in the boots was like walking in pumps was priceless.
There aren’t words strong enough to describe how much I hate Errinwright. He’s become such a good villain; where Mao has seen the results of the experimentation and had second thoughts, Errinwright has seen the consequences of the war and doubled down. He’s masterfully manipulated Sorrento-Gillis and now he’s attempting to do so to Anna. I can’t wait to see how she responds to that.
As The Expanse season 3 continues, I’d really love to get some perspective from Mars. So far we’ve spent a lot of time on Earth and even gotten some glimpses of what’s going on in the Belt, but we’ve yet to really see how this whole situation is affecting Mars.
Have you seen “Assured Destruction”? What did you think?
Author: Jamie Sugah
Jamie has a BA in English with a focus in creative writing from The Ohio State University. She self-published her first novel, The Perils of Long Hair on a Windy Day, which is available through Amazon. She is currently an archivist and lives in New York City with her demon ninja vampire cat. She covers television, books, movies, anime, and conventions in the NYC area.
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