Andor: Narkina 5
October 26, 2022 2:13 AM - Season 1, Episode 8 - Subscribe

The Empire catches up to Cassian but are as yet unaware of his true identity.
posted by EndsOfInvention (79 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
Was not expecting Andy Serkis.

The conversation between Karn and Meera did not end as I thought it might; but I guess it keeps Karn and Andor on equal terms, both prisoners in their own ways with no clear way out.
posted by nubs at 4:11 AM on October 26, 2022 [3 favorites]


Every episode has me admiring Genevieve O’Reilly more as an actor. You could tell in the cocktail reception scenes that she was keeping six different thoughts at once in her head. Her performance is at once subtle and easy to follow.

Also, I find the worldbuilding just incredibly compelling. The gamified prison is just incredibly horrifying, especially those moments when the prisoners seem satisfied with their work. It’s Camus’ myth of Sisyphus idea, that we must imagine him happy at his repetitive task, turned back into a horrible punishment. The Empire is horrifying in ways I didn’t expect.
posted by Kattullus at 5:15 AM on October 26, 2022 [21 favorites]


Yes, it made me think of Alec Guiness's character in Bridge on the River Kwai and how committed he was to the success of the bridge.

I wonder whether Blevin will try to get back at Meero using Karn in some way. Surely he's planning some kind of revenge; that's how office politics works.
posted by orrnyereg at 5:20 AM on October 26, 2022 [7 favorites]


Rogue One reference that could be a minor spoiler for this show if you haven't seen the film or don't remember it well (in rot13):
Gur cevfbare Zryfuv vf bar bs gur erory pbzznaqbf jub tbrf ba gur Fpnevs zvffvba jvgu Pnffvna, Wla Refb, rg ny, va Ebthr Bar.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 6:00 AM on October 26, 2022 [13 favorites]


Hmm. Blevin kept information from the official report. He fired Karn. He really wanted to keep the Ferrix investigation for himself. Was he trying to keep Meero from effectively investigating the stolen components across the Empire because he doesn't want them properly investigated? Is he a rebel agent?
posted by EndsOfInvention at 6:07 AM on October 26, 2022 [17 favorites]


It's interesting that the rebel (separatist, partisan, neo-Republican, etc) groups are very separate from each other currently - not as a security feature but because a lot of them hate each other. Perhaps unsurprising - if you wanted to take down the Empire to restore the Republic, would you be able to ally yourself with a Separatist who you'd just beaten in a war to stop them leaving, and someone who already thought the Republic was too authoritarian and the Empire is just a slightly worse version? The fact that it's a Rebel Alliance seems pretty key to how they eventually win (getting lucky finding farmboy Jedi not withstanding), and I wonder how much work Luthen puts into getting them to work together.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 7:01 AM on October 26, 2022 [7 favorites]


Now I’m wondering about which ideological faction the Rebels cell belongs to, since they’re active at the same time as this show.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 7:43 AM on October 26, 2022 [6 favorites]


It's interesting that the rebel (separatist, partisan, neo-Republican, etc) groups are very separate from each other currently - not as a security feature but because a lot of them hate each other.

Like the KPD and SPD in 1930s Germany. Look how that turned out for them.
posted by orrnyereg at 7:48 AM on October 26, 2022 [2 favorites]


I liked this episode, while the previous didn't leave many impressions. There's a slow and tense grind to the series overall which can be exhausting at times, but it does a good job of illustrating what all the sides are doing and that it's only black and white on the large scale (EMPIRE BAD), but the nitty gritty is definitely shades of gray, which can be a hard pill to swallow for our plucky heroes.

Take in point Luchien, who's deliberately poking the Empire to get it to over react, which winds up getting perfectly good people killed. That's some horrible math, but it's math that we know works.

The setup for how how they're going to escape out of the prison was nice. The conversation with Karn didn't go the way I expected and I really appreciate that. I though creepy blonde imperial lady would immediately get him on her team, but nope, she thinks he's a bit of tool also, which further illustrates the problem with the Empire. She's still playing for HER team, not the Empire, which happens in pretty much any job. That's a nice subtle touch.

I would very much like to know what they're building and whether something important or just, say landing lets for shuttles.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:19 AM on October 26, 2022 [5 favorites]


I would very much like to know what they're building and whether something important or just, say landing lets for shuttles.

I thought for a minute they were making the chassis for KX droids (and maybe this linked to Cassian reprogramming K2-SO) but it's the wrong shape.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 11:14 AM on October 26, 2022 [1 favorite]


he conversation with Karn didn't go the way I expected and I really appreciate that.

I loved it; I have all kinds of thoughts now on what happens with Karn going forward. In their own ways, each of the characters we've been following is their own kind of rebel - Meera is challenging the structures and mindset of the ISB and even has the insight to know that the direction the Empire is taking is fueling the Rebellion, rather than suppressing it. I think I said in the last thread, her background as an investigator means she thinks differently than everyone else there - she can understand things from a criminal's perspective.

Karn is rebelling against his mother, and the fact that his vision for what he can be is apparently at odds with the rest of the universe...and I can only see his personal rebellion ending tragically in some way, and I think the delicious irony of it might be that it ends in a way that furthers Andor's arc while ending his own.
posted by nubs at 11:20 AM on October 26, 2022 [5 favorites]


I would very much like to know what they're building and whether something important or just, say landing lets for shuttles.

I think it is very thematic for this show that whatever it is, we never find out. The prisoners are mere cogs in the Imperial machine.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 11:34 AM on October 26, 2022 [13 favorites]


Great scene between Saw Gerrera and Luthen. And agreed that Genevieve O'Reilly continues to shine as Mon Mothma. The level of ruthless decision-making within the Rebellion that they think they need is hard to watch when we know they should be working together. It was gutting to see how easily Bix was picked up. The Gilroys certainly know how to ratchet up the tension!
The music also continues to be both excellent and unobtrusive, supporting all the other excellent things going on :-)
posted by domdib at 1:07 PM on October 26, 2022 [1 favorite]


Love the inconsistency of character displayed by Dedra in her interaction with Karn. Logically you’d think she might admire a fellow rule-breaker fuelled by zeal for the Empire. But maybe the urgency of the times or the gulf in status blinds her?
posted by domdib at 1:38 PM on October 26, 2022 [2 favorites]


Dedra sees Karn for just what he is with clear eyes.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 1:48 PM on October 26, 2022 [21 favorites]


I didn't think Dedra was inconsistent at all - she didn't care about anything to do with Karn except in so far as he could further her investigation into identifying "Axis". When he didn't have anything new to add beyond "grey cloak", she was done with him. We can look at that and note that while she's different from the Blevins of ISB, she still has her own set of blinders...but I also think she can see that while Karn might be a rule-breaker, he's not shown himself to be effective in any way to this point.

I had thought we'd get a brief team-up between the two, with Dedra using Karn for what little he was worth in helping her find Andor; I think this was even better. Karn keeps getting the message - from the Empire, from his mom, from the universe at large - that he's really not anything special, despite his ongoing belief that he is. That has the potential to create its own kind of radicalization.
posted by nubs at 1:58 PM on October 26, 2022 [10 favorites]


Damn, Cinta is going to ice Vel in a few episodes when Vel’s wavering makes her another loose end.
posted by rodlymight at 6:27 PM on October 26, 2022 [5 favorites]


Andor is the new Battlestar.

("Sprint" made me physically wince.)
posted by minervous at 6:41 PM on October 26, 2022 [13 favorites]


I think this was my favorite episode yet.

Its portrayal of casual & systemic & layered cruelty made me think of Octavia Butler's Parable books. The sign language scene was perfect and unexpected and heartbreaking. have to google to see if there's a transcription or if it was even in ASL.

Over and over we see people with the same interests be divided; the revolutionaries are scattered and weak; the prison teams are forced to compete; Vel learns that the Cause divides her from Cinta; Meero needs to watch her back.

I love how the show doubles down on Meero's competence by having her coldly dunk Karn's teamup pitch. A lesser show would have made his Ahab thing compelling to her instead of foolish. But I suspect that secret police are not eager to join working groups with mediocre ahabs who pester them for redemption quests.

There's this wonderful thwart moment where she dismisses him, and he repeats his pitch with clarity and directness, and there's a musical cue that teases a story turn. But no, she repeats her dismissal and puts some menace on it, instead of saluting the writer and doing her duty to a tired teamup angle.
posted by Sauce Trough at 7:26 PM on October 26, 2022 [20 favorites]


That has the potential to create its own kind of radicalization.

Everyone has their own rebellion. Perhaps Karn's rebellion is "I'll show them all!"

I would very much like to know what they're building

Desks for the Imperial Standards Bureau?
posted by Sauce Trough at 11:10 PM on October 26, 2022 [8 favorites]


Delicious episode. Still really love the dialogue, acting, and all the visual design of this show so much. Really loved the overlaid shots of Vel looking into the light and Cinta looking into the dark, looking at each other but past each other, in different directions. That may be the most romantic moment in Star Wars since the OT.

Loved the little bit of dinner party, though nothing much came of it. Leida acting literally shifty. The true horror of socializing with the genteel right winger fuckfaces.

Floor-is-lava prison is a bit silly (and the dramatic lift right down 15 feet was amusing, maybe unintentionally). It's interesting how clean it is. Lots of people talked about Karn's mom's place being depressing public housing, though to my eye it is attractive and spacious. But the aesthetic choices for the prison make it hard to ignore. The Empire has within it a true, monumental, inhuman attainment of Law going on with itself.. The show lets it have its terrible beauty.
posted by fleacircus at 11:12 PM on October 26, 2022 [8 favorites]


Vel responded to Cinta’s proposed cover story of a rich girl running away from her family with “that’s low…”—I assume that speaks to Vel’s own background?
posted by hototogisu at 12:35 AM on October 27, 2022 [14 favorites]


It's interesting how clean it is.

And how every prisoner is Human. If I were making this show, I would have demanded that it lean into how the Empire is machine-like and racist. What better way to hit both targets than with an extended look at its prison-industrial complex? This might be my favorite episode so far.
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 3:32 AM on October 27, 2022 [3 favorites]


The setup for how how they're going to escape out of the prison was nice.

I must have missed that. What is the setup ?
posted by Pendragon at 3:33 AM on October 27, 2022 [2 favorites]


Off the top of my head I saw the prisoners using sign language to talk to others prisoners in other parts of the prison. I also saw Cassian paying very close attention to what the guards were doing and saying when they put him in his section. Also now I think of it there might be something about a delay in the floors coming back on after they electrocute someone, but I'm not sure about that. I am very hype for seeing how they manage it.
posted by invisible_al at 3:52 AM on October 27, 2022 [4 favorites]


It's the Death Star. Gotta be.
posted by cooker girl at 4:16 AM on October 27, 2022 [11 favorites]


What is the setup ?

Cassian seemed to be paying very close attention when he was first brought in and there was a delay waiting for one of the guards. He's been in prison before and I bet he's good at figuring out weak points in guard patrols and general prison operations.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 5:25 AM on October 27, 2022 [4 favorites]


One of the guards said something about an "override" because of the irregularity. I suspect Cassian plans to use the next opportunity to his advantage.
posted by Fleebnork at 6:31 AM on October 27, 2022


Huh I totally missed the idea that an effective prison plot was already in the works. Of course Cassian is looking for weaknesses, he's a scoundrel type, a survivor. But he's also totally fucked and seems pretty resigned to it. I particularly like that he's there under a fake name no one knows; his Ferrix friends aren't coming, even Vel can't find him to murder or rescue him.

I loved the floor conceit. It's such a great visual effect, the empty spaces of uncrossable floor, the invisible danger, the little lights to make that visible. And the barefoot prisoners vs. the jackbooted guards. The bare feet are an unusually intimate and physical look. Seeing Cassian's toes was a little like seeing him naked: a revealed part of the body usually concealed, weird and nobbly and personal.

It is a little strange that all the prisoners are human. Also male. Perhaps that's an Empire thing, to keep prisoners segregated by gender and species.

(Given all the other totalitarian architectural details in the Empire in this show I was expecting at least one panopticon room.)
posted by Nelson at 6:45 AM on October 27, 2022 [8 favorites]


Perhaps that's an Empire thing, to keep prisoners segregated by gender and species.

I was curious why the guards were separating prisoners based on planet of origin....I think that's what they were doing between sentencing and final transport? They asked each prisoner (some were female for sure, I think some were not human??) what their name and home planet was and then split them up.
posted by cooker girl at 6:48 AM on October 27, 2022 [4 favorites]


It's interesting how clean [the prison] is.

It reminded me of THX-1138. I only watched that film once, some twenty-five years ago, but something in this episode sparked my dim recollections.
posted by gauche at 6:51 AM on October 27, 2022 [7 favorites]


I was also really struck by the species segregation of the prison, and by the fact that they did give the prisoners a way to shave. I'm guessing that it's a way to continue enforcing the racism of the Empire by preventing the prisoners from teaming up across species?

And we know by way of Rebels that at this point the Empire is sending Wookiee prisoners to work in the spice mines of Kessel. Man I would LOVE to see this show look at what some non-human resistance cells look like...

Back to the prison: hard to believe nobody has figured out how to jump across the hallway when the floor is live, though: an athlete could do it with a running start. But then that guy said the system can tell, so never mind.

I suspect Mon Mothma gets turned in by her daughter. Just a guess at this point, but we know (again, from Rebels) that when she runs, she runs alone.
posted by suelac at 7:36 AM on October 27, 2022 [1 favorite]


I suspect Mon Mothma gets turned in by her daughter.

The daughter is totally sus and 100% spying for her dad. Vibes are way off.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 7:54 AM on October 27, 2022 [7 favorites]


Back to the prison: hard to believe nobody has figured out how to jump across the hallway when the floor is live, though: an athlete could do it with a running start. But then that guy said the system can tell, so never mind.

There was something said about the system knowing if there was more than one person in a cell, although maybe that's what you meant.

What fascinates me about the prison is that whatever they are building (I suspect parts for the Death Star, but I would die laughing if Karn gets a desk with a sticker on it saying "Proudly made by prison labour on Narkina 5") it seems like a process ripe for automation and the use of droids; this way of doing it seems inefficient for production, but great as a means of punishment. Perhaps another segment of the prison just labours away at disassembling these things, in a wild Sisyphean loop.

I suspect Mon Mothma gets turned in by her daughter.

I had really, really bad vibes from both Leida and Perrin this episode. Mon needs to watch her back with those two, though I'm wondering if the suspicion is more about an affair than Rebel sympathies. Perrin strikes me as the type of dude who is out there philandering himself, but wouldn't stand for it from Mon - or at least not Mon having an affair with banker man, because there's some history there. Or maybe Perrin's been draining family funds for his own purposes (gambling debts? What does this man do besides wear high fashion Jedi apparel?) and is worried Mon is on to him. But Leida is big suspicious energy in this episode, whatever is up.

The conversation between Luthen and Kleya is also interesting - they are about to "go loud". What does that mean? Another big operation in the works, I'm guessing. Maybe a raid on a prison factory facility.
posted by nubs at 8:26 AM on October 27, 2022 [2 favorites]


It's an interesting maybe-coincidence that the ISB calls Luthen "Axis" when the codename for Rebel spies among themselves seems to be "Fulcrum".

And speaking of spies, Leida is absolutely up to something and has zero chill about it. Clearly hasn't been taking the right lessons from her mom's behavior.
posted by orrnyereg at 8:41 AM on October 27, 2022 [2 favorites]


I think the prisoners at that facility are uniformly cismale looking humans because the prisoners are components, not staff.

In the Empire, components are standardized, to promote consistency and efficiency. They have a whole bureau for it.
posted by Sauce Trough at 9:01 AM on October 27, 2022 [18 favorites]


Mon Mothma is this weird exemplar of how fractal genre entertainment has become. As the OG Mon Mothma, Caroline Blakiston appears in one scene of The Return of the Jedi. She delivers six or seven lines and has less than a minute of screen time. She was likely on the set for one day.

Genevieve O’Reilly has played the character in two movies and three different series so far, with who knows how many more in the offing. She’s been playing the character for coming up on twenty years.

She’s not alone here; Malcolm Sinclair is playing Wulff Yularen. This character (played by an extra whose name is not even recorded) first appears in an non-speaking role in the original 1977 movie in one scene. He doesn’t even get a name until some twenty years later in the customizable card game. Now he is a recurring supporting character in multiple series, both animated and live action.

If non-genre shows did this, I think we’d have had, I dunno, the barber who shaves Al Capone in The Untouchables (1987) played by two generations of actors and with a Wikipedia page longer than that of the Canary Islands.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 9:10 AM on October 27, 2022 [16 favorites]


The daughter is totally sus and 100% spying for her dad. Vibes are way off.

Mon Fotha and Mon Kidda are definitely sus.
posted by rodlymight at 9:43 AM on October 27, 2022 [8 favorites]


Mon Kidda! ❤️

regarding her.... the ep specifically established that Chandrillans marry young and are weird outliers in the galaxy for doing so. Mon Kidda appears to be at or approaching marrying age. So maybe something gonna happen in that direction?

it seems like Mon M. is the third wheel in the Mothma household. it would be unexpected if Leida was using Lightweight Beach Dad as a foil to keep Senator Mom's nose out of her secret radical anti-imperial politics.
posted by Sauce Trough at 12:02 PM on October 27, 2022


Mon Kidda appears to be at or approaching marrying age. So maybe something gonna happen in that direction?

My headcannon is that she runs away with a dashing young pilot from the Imperial Academy named Biggs Darklighter.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 12:08 PM on October 27, 2022 [5 favorites]


My headcannon is that she runs away with a dashing young pilot from the Imperial Academy named Biggs Darklighter.

Then she brings him home for dinner and he meets his weird high class in-laws.

and young Biggs very quickly figures he's better off running 60-to-1 odds in an x-wing or bleaching his bones on Tatooine than deal with their weird guess culture shit.

Darklighter, man, what a jacked-up name. like "drywetter" or "downupper."
posted by Sauce Trough at 2:51 PM on October 27, 2022 [2 favorites]


Mon Fotha

Mon Fathpa, surely?
posted by Grangousier at 3:51 PM on October 27, 2022 [2 favorites]


All the Rebels we're meeting are human too, aren't they? And like the Aldhani stuff was some real white people ethnicity stuff. The show is really putting humans in the center in general. I'm not sure I want to credit it with saying deep things about stuff using species and gender. I think it's more likely that they've decided to tell a story that is relatable to us RL earth humans and assumed some kind of post- attitudes all of which just happen to make it easy for them to cast white actors from TERF island and not have to work out anything about aliens etc. Like I think the other edge of this analysis leads back to RL earth empires, rump or otherwise.
posted by fleacircus at 4:22 PM on October 27, 2022


And like the Aldhani stuff was some real white people ethnicity stuff.

There were multiple people of color among the Aldhani. I'm pretty sure the reason they went with the Highland Clearances metaphor was because it was white, and they wouldn't look like they were pillaging another ethnic group's tragedy for their story.

Additionally, they have repeatedly cast black actors as Imperials, which pushes back against the racists who like the Empire because it's racist.

I'm not stoked that the show focuses almost entirely on humans, but I do think they do so because they are so invested in the reality of everything on screen, and because they are clearly making the point that this is all extremely relevant to our current lives. When the fascism is being inflicted only on Wookiees and Pantorans, it doesn't hit nearly as hard.
posted by suelac at 6:57 PM on October 27, 2022 [10 favorites]


I too would like to see more aliens, but Star Wars has a track record of depicting aliens as ethnic caricatures, so in a show that is focused on showing the development of a fascist & colonialist system, I'm ok with seeing humans.
posted by nubs at 8:03 PM on October 27, 2022 [6 favorites]


Boring, but the low alien count also is at least partly caused by this all being shot in the UK through lockdown, I think??
posted by ominous_paws at 5:57 AM on October 28, 2022


We do see some non-humans - there were a few at Mon Mothma's reception - but I think we're meant to notice that Coruscant is a lot less multispecies than it used to be after twelve years of the Empire.

I suspect that this prison is male human only because the Empire wants to treat the inmates as interchangeable parts, whilst at the same time not wanting any factors such as speciesism to disrupt the regime. The establishing shot of Narkina 5 showed multiple floating factory units; perhaps the next prison over is full of Twi'lek.

No doubt the Empire could manufacture whatever those components are by automation, as we saw an automated battle droid factory on Geonosis in Attack of the Clones. The work is likely the technological equivalent of picking oakum, in that it's nominally useful but really exists to keep prisoners occupied and to encourage fear of imprisonment.
posted by Major Clanger at 6:06 AM on October 28, 2022 [7 favorites]


That and it saves on CGI.
posted by kingdead at 10:22 AM on October 28, 2022 [7 favorites]


There's a tight shot of a chill anteater alien hanging with a beverage-sippin Keith Richards type right at the beginning of the Niamos segment in E07.

given the way the franchise works, in twenty years Boomnose Jandi and Yozz Yotta will be key supporting characters in Star Wars: Ponda Baba
posted by Sauce Trough at 12:23 PM on October 28, 2022 [6 favorites]


A sliding metal door slamming shut is the recognised Star Wars symbol for imminent torture.

Bloody hell, this is good.
posted by Grangousier at 1:43 PM on October 28, 2022 [7 favorites]


A-and a Hollywood Reporter interview with Toby Haynes, who directed this block of episodes.
posted by Grangousier at 2:32 PM on October 28, 2022 [2 favorites]


I'd really like a post-RotJ show about Major Partagaz and the ISB during the fall of the Empire. Are they struggling to hold the remains of the Empire together? Or are they government bureaucrats who keep doing the same work even when the government turns over? Galactic Empire or New Republic, your Uncle Harlo can still get you a boring job sitting in a space cubicle.
posted by Gary at 3:00 PM on October 28, 2022 [6 favorites]


> I'd really like a post-RotJ show about Major Partagaz and the ISB during the fall of the Empire.

you can see a few of the luckier / slimier ones leveling up to remnant warlord.

> A sliding metal door slamming shut is the recognised Star Wars symbol for imminent torture.

The silent dude in the interrogation room was wearing a lab coat and fiddling with something offscreen. Pure nightmare food.
posted by Sauce Trough at 4:09 PM on October 28, 2022 [3 favorites]


I suspect Mon Mothma gets turned in by her daughter. Just a guess at this point, but we know (again, from Rebels) that when she runs, she runs alone.

Would be amazing if the entire household was all secretly rebel sympathizers hiding it from one another to varying degrees, and they end up turning the rest of the household to further their cause, Curse of the Magi style.
posted by pwnguin at 11:52 PM on October 28, 2022 [11 favorites]


This is my statement: I won't watch a show about cops, nor a show about prison, but I watched this even knowing after last week that it was going to be that. That is how good this program is.
posted by ob1quixote at 5:46 AM on October 29, 2022 [13 favorites]


Leida's definitely suspect but at that rebellious age it'd be odd if she's sneaking around supporting Palpatine. More likely wants to stick it to Mommy simply out of teenage resentment.
posted by mono blanco at 7:00 AM on October 29, 2022 [1 favorite]


I think Leida is a secret rebel sympathizer and has been spying on her parents. I'm basing this on the belief that she's a teen who wants to piss off her parents and what could be better than telling your "rebel" friends what your Senator mom and asshole dad have been doing.
posted by fiercekitten at 8:59 AM on October 29, 2022 [3 favorites]


Dad and daughter dress like Jedi and Padawan, as has been pointed out by others than me, so whatever’s going on has some connection to that.
posted by Kattullus at 1:52 PM on October 29, 2022 [2 favorites]


So the gas chamber/shower room we briefly see the prisoners being cleaned and/or disinfected by: 100% a Holocaust reference, no?
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:37 PM on October 29, 2022 [4 favorites]


Kleya has that similar face structure as Carrie Fisher. I spent a few eps wondering if she was Leah - but Leah was a senator at this time. I wonder what she's up to? I wonder if Mon will make contact with her in this show.

Star Wars has really done something interesting here
posted by rebent at 5:59 AM on October 30, 2022 [2 favorites]


This is five years before A New Hope, so Kleya is approximately the same age as Leia and Luke.

Bail Organa is Mon Mothma’s biggest ally in the Senate, so Kleya and Leia have certainly met each other.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 6:29 AM on October 30, 2022 [5 favorites]


So the gas chamber/shower room we briefly see the prisoners being cleaned and/or disinfected by: 100% a Holocaust reference, no?

I don't think so, not in the way you meant. The gas chambers were built explicitly for the purpose of mass murder. That's not what's happening here. Narkina 5 is a forced labor prison and it appears that the Empire intends to keep prisoners alive and reasonably healthy in order to work and to have their spirit broken.

So I think this scene is meant to recall another aspect of industrial imprisonment, the dehumanization of the prisoners on arrival. This too was a feature of Nazi camps. It's a trope of American prison TV shows and movies too. Stripped naked in front of guards with no privacy, forced to wash, often body hair removed or other delousing procedures. It's a form of totalitarian control. But it is not murder, it is a procedure designed to humiliate the prisoners and process them before they are put to work.

(Sorry to go pedantic here but I just got back from visiting Mauthausen which taught me some details about how this worked there.)
posted by Nelson at 6:53 AM on October 30, 2022 [15 favorites]


but Leah was a senator at this time. I wonder what she's up to?

Leia would be around 14 during Andor so it’s not unreasonable to she knows Lieda Mothma (same age, same social circles). Rebels is also set during the same period as Andor; Leia shows up in a S2 episode and is already using her diplomatic status to cover her work for the rebellion. (Rebels is ostensibly a kids show but it’s worth a watch if not just for the foul-mouthed sociopaths murder droid.)
posted by nathan_teske at 9:06 PM on October 30, 2022 [3 favorites]


By the 3rd season, if not before, Rebels isn't a kids' show anymore really by any measure IMO. And anyone enraptured by Andor should indeed give it a try at least; Rebels went a long way to establish the fragmented nature of the Rebellion, for example.
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 3:44 AM on October 31, 2022 [3 favorites]


A More Civilized Age - Andor episode 08
If you made fun of us for going long on a previous Andor episode, well the joke is on you, because you should've waited for this week. In what can only be described as (minute-for-minute and pound-for-pound) our MOST five star runtime episode yet, we delve into all manner of bleak material. There's prison labor. There's a bitter-yet-functional marriage. There's a snare slowly tightening around a rebellion so nascent that even two of its most important leaders can't come to terms about working together. And there's a little terrible man who is, one bad day at a time, learning that the world doesn't work in the the facile, cartoonish way he dreamt it did.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 4:50 AM on October 31, 2022 [3 favorites]


Shouldn't Leida be on the marriage market by now? Her parents were married at 15. Maybe that's what she's acting strangely about.
posted by orrnyereg at 12:00 PM on October 31, 2022 [1 favorite]


> Would be amazing if the entire household was all secretly rebel sympathizers hiding it from one another to varying degrees

That's how I read it, but just for the mom and the daughter. If the dad is also a rebel, he's hiding it very well.
posted by The corpse in the library at 2:58 PM on November 1, 2022


So the gas chamber/shower room we briefly see the prisoners being cleaned and/or disinfected by: 100% a Holocaust reference, no?

That was my immediate thought.
posted by octothorpe at 4:52 PM on November 1, 2022


Mon Fotha

Dear Mon Mothma, also Fotha,
Here I am at Takodana,

(The forest planet where Max Kanata’s castle is, and the best fit I can think of to the rhyme and scansion. I hope I have not become a filk guy by mistake.)
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:02 AM on November 4, 2022 [9 favorites]


It's interesting that the rebel (separatist, partisan, neo-Republican, etc) groups are very separate from each other currently - not as a security feature but because a lot of them hate each other.

People's Front of Judea vs. Judean People's Front
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:49 PM on November 6, 2022 [6 favorites]


"Marge, is Lisa at Takodana?"
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:49 PM on November 6, 2022 [5 favorites]


Do we know where Luthen went to meet Saw Gerrera or was it just the Forest moon of Andor?
posted by andrewdoull at 5:48 AM on November 13, 2022


Segra Milo
posted by nubs at 7:07 AM on November 13, 2022


There were multiple people of color among the Aldhani. I'm pretty sure the reason they went with the Highland Clearances metaphor was because it was white, and they wouldn't look like they were pillaging another ethnic group's tragedy for their story.

I'm wondering if one reason they're avoiding non-humans is that Lucas non-humans so often felt like they were modeled on unfortunate ethnic stereotypes from our world. Plus, I don't think the showrunners are sci-fi guys, so they might have doubts about how well actors can express emotion under layers of silicone or whatever. Maybe they're even bringing attention to the lack of non-humans, given that "famous for playing CGI" Andy Serkis is here as a regular human guy. And, y'know, I think it was filmed when people were still taking COVID precautions seriously. So maybe they just decided it wasn't worth hiring makeup people to spend hours applying prosthetics to minor characters? (They should put some Bothans in the show, though, as a treat.)

I was overjoyed when Dedra cut Karn loose. That intelligence roundtable is a shark tank, why would she elevate the pathetic Richard Spencer guy? He'd be a terrible asset! The only reason he "solved a murder" is that he got lucky with a tip, and the planet and security force would've been much better off if he'd done what his boss ordered and covered the whole thing up. But it definitely felt like he was going to get hired to Dedra's team and be Very Important -- what they did here was so much funnier.
posted by grandiloquiet at 10:18 AM on November 15, 2022 [4 favorites]


Tony Gilroy talking about the lack of non-humans:
“There’s already so much politics in the show to begin with, and we’re trying to tell an adventure story, really,” he explained. “So adding strong alien characters means that all of a sudden, there’s a whole bunch of new issues that we have to deal with that I don’t really understand that well or I just couldn’t think of a way to bake them into what we’re doing. You’ll see more as we go along, but it’s a legit question and one we’ll be answering as we go along. There is a more human-centric side of the story and the politics of it. There’s certainly no aliens working for the Empire, so that kind of tips it one way, automatically.”
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:32 PM on November 15, 2022 [6 favorites]


That prison is like Gitmo, if it were run by Amazon, with THX 1138 aesthetics. Chilling.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 3:24 PM on November 23, 2022 [7 favorites]


Desks for the Imperial Standards Bureau?

In the Empire, components are standardized, to promote consistency and efficiency. They have a whole bureau for it.


BTW, Sauce Trough, I'm pretty sure it's the Imperial Security Bureau.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 3:25 PM on November 23, 2022


...And on rewatch, I realize you may have been talking about where Syril Karn works.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 7:58 PM on December 2, 2022 [2 favorites]


Only for GBA!
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 7:07 AM on December 25, 2022 [4 favorites]


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