Colony: Free Radicals
February 7, 2018 8:22 PM - Season 2, Episode 7 - Subscribe

The Red Hand escalates. Bram gets recruited. Will and Broussard both recognize their limits. The true nature of the Colony is revealed.

-Maddie knows she's been burned, but all she can do is advise Katie to try not to draw attention to herself; they both have to live with this lie now.
-Katie is back in contact with the resistance, at first for her own ends and then because to not resist now is futile.
-Two years, three months, and nine days. The Greatest Day cometh.
posted by nubs (6 comments total)
 
I have to wonder if modern terrorist cells use the same techniques to entice young men to join. Is it a matter of young women using their body as a power or is it that they themselves are being used for their bodies?

I have no sympathy for the Red Hand with the killings they've done, but seeing the kids getting executed was rough.

The exploding ship as really awesome to see!
posted by numaner at 8:46 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


I have no sympathy for the Red Hand with the killings they've done, but seeing the kids getting executed was rough.

It really feels like the show is making it clear that extremism on one side begets it in another, leaving little space for people who just want to survive. There's a clear statement that the Red Hand is like ISIS (which makes the Occupation what, in terms of historical parallels?) but where does Broussard's cell fit? It wants to be like the French Resistance, but the room for being something other than either extreme is running out.
posted by nubs at 7:44 AM on February 9


It feels like the show is trying to have it both ways, though. Because we're repeatedly told in the first season that the LA bloc is better off than all the rest, especially Santa Monica, specifically because Snyder had a different strategy than the other Proxies. Not because the Resistance in his bloc is better behaved, but because the man in charge chose to make it that way.

The success of the Resistance eventually made it impossible for Snyder to stay in a position where he could continue pursuing his strategy, but it was Broussard's cell that got him ousted, not the Red Hand. And the guy who succeeded Snyder royally fucked things up himself by simply lying to the Hosts and IGA about the scope of the problem until the scope of his lies was revealed. Had someone else been in charge, maybe the Red Hand could have been nipped in the bud by the Authority (they all hang out in one big building with a shitload of guns, for fuck's sake, you're telling me the Drones couldn't sniff them out in an afternoon?) before the shipment got blown up.

If the show wants to blame the Red Hand for the escalation, they're done a really poor job of establishing the chain of causality. And, again, Broussard's "good" resistance nearly got the whole bloc nuked at the end of last season, so why are we supposed to believe they're so much better?
posted by tobascodagama at 8:23 AM on February 9


I mean, ultimately the problem I'm having with this season is that I don't think the show has anything interesting to say. Season 1 wanted to show the complexities of living under an oppressive totalitarian state where everyone has to collaborate to some degree simply to stay alive. Season 2 just wants to tell a rollicking sci fi action story while pretending it's still as smart as season 1, and I find the pretense frankly annoying.
posted by tobascodagama at 8:25 AM on February 9


If the show wants to blame the Red Hand for the escalation, they're done a really poor job of establishing the chain of causality. And, again, Broussard's "good" resistance nearly got the whole bloc nuked at the end of last season, so why are we supposed to believe they're so much better?

Because they don't indiscriminately target civilians? I'm not really disagreeing with you; part of the success of the show is showing how compromised everyone is or becomes under totalitarian conditions. And in S1, Broussard's cell was a good example of that - resistance with some boundaries or limits; to target the oppressors and not the oppressed (which is problematic, because as the fight goes on, limits get erased in the escalation). Their big mission at the end of S1 was never intended to produce the outcome that it did IIRC - killing one of the hosts was not the plan. Things, as they say, got out of hand.

But yes, the Red Hand has apparently appeared from nowhere this season (although I thought there were indications of lots of other cells around, operating quasi-independently in S1), I think to satisfy an urge that the show writers have to try to reflect as much of the current world into the show as they can - if the Occupation gets a evangelical religion, then the Resistance gets the equivalent. And also to show how people get trapped in the middle of the sides, when all most people want to do is coexist - which is what the Bowman's were trying for this season until they learned the truth of what is going on.

The difficulty is that TV shows always have to up the stakes; it wouldn't be enough to show us the struggles and challenges the family faces in the LA Bloc, trying to survive day to day (personally, I might find that a fascinating show). But this is S2, so bigger stakes are needed! Extermination! Suicide bombers! Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion.
posted by nubs at 10:56 AM on February 9


Resistance vs Red Hand (yeah, where the hell did they pop up from?); I think the resistance has training/ideology left over from before the invasion whereas Red Hand is purely reactionary.

Frankie didn't want to kill a bunch of civilians in exchange for only a few Red Helmets, but it was that or completely waste an asset. I feel that what the writers want to convey is that Red Hand considers anyone not actively against Authority/Raps is a collaborator and enemy (people signing up at the recruitment center, people gaining entry into a collaboratist Green Zone).

At this point, I'm ambiguous on Maya's motivations. Bram's already in her pocket, sexing him purely to gain his loyalty wasn't really required. It's possible that Maya wanted a little bit of human connection before martyring herself, whereas Frankie was doing it solely to gain an asset.

I'm also getting the feeling that Maya's resistance cell in the Labour Camp aren't affiliated with Red Hand. There was insinuation from Dan that Red Hand might be an Authority (quasi-?) sanctioned organization (to give all resistance a bad name) - but that got super ambiguous when the Secret Police HQ gets bombed and Red Handed.

or is it that they themselves are being used for their bodies?

That's... interesting? iirc, there are documented cases of Western young women who were enticed to join ISIS (on mostly false/propagandised pretexts) and where instead 'given' to fighters against their will and subsequently escaped.

No doubt the Frankie/Aaron dynamic probably exists, but I think that women being used against their will is probably more prevalent.

Besides, in this narrative, Aaron was a pretty useless recruit; if he had been better indoctrinated (instead of merely being sexed) he might have been a better suicide operative.

I did appreciate that Frankie was given some agency re: suicide sticker on her foot.
posted by porpoise at 10:20 AM on February 10 [2 favorites]


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