Defiance: If You Could See Her Through My Eyes
August 2, 2014 6:09 PM - Season 2, Episode 7 - Subscribe

Datak and Stahma temporarily unite to uncover the killer of a beloved Tarr family slave, while Amanda learns more about William Atherton's Viceroy Mercado's plans for the future of the mayorship of Defiance. Deirdre, Alak's DJ in the Arch, continues to manipulate both him and Christy, striving to tear their marriage apart while playing sympathetic to both. Christy continues her visits to the Janus Club dressed as a Castithan and is discovered by Alak. Finally, Nolan discovers the truth about Irisa. Come for the eye gouging, stay for Atherton's jazzy solo vocals that concludes the episode!

"There are two types of friends in this world. The kind that helps you hide a dead whore, and me.” - Doc Yewll
posted by Atreides (9 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Solid, enjoyable episode.

Doc Ywll for the win! Great lines and acting. "We're squirrelly by nature." and, as mentioned, "There are two kinds of friends in this world."

Christy is terribly stupid. You have a young, good-looking, rich bloke who married YOU and loves YOU. So you're going to dress up as someone else so you can be fawned over by some old, creepy dude? Stupid. The DJ practically tells you she wants your husband and that doesn't register. Alak deserves better. And, really, if you wanted to be like Stahma, the easiest thing would be to go talk to her. You idiot.

I wonder if Stahma might know what Christy is doing? When Datak asked about Alak, there was a close-up on Stahma's face that was suggestive. But I'd like to think Stahma would have strongly disabused StupidChristy of her costuming ideas. Then again, Stahma has been pretty busy lately.

The end scene with Nolan and Irissa was great. Too bad any scene with then reminds me of their asshole treatment of the black guy.

Back to Christy. It would be very gross if he desired and wanted to marry his mother. Stupid Christy.


The eye gouging for the doc didn't go far enough. Sure, he's now blind but he still has all his limbs intact and no other bruises. He definitely deserved more suffering for his crimes. Stahma would back me on this, I'm sure.

Defiance definitely needs more law enforcement if people can crawl around wounded, be carted off in plastic sheeting, be dragged off into alleys, etc willy-nilly without anyone noticing. I mean really. It's as if everywhere outside the (overly crowded) marketplace is dead empty of people.

Finally, Christy is hella stupid.
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 8:59 AM on August 3, 2014 [2 favorites]

Yeah that Christy missed Dierdre's line about essentially wanting her husband....not so bright and I certainly don't buy that she'd be all "Hey dude as old in as my dad and in costume to boot, I want you and not my hot young husband." However, Alak hasn't been that understanding of her. She's gone from being in a human household to being in an entirely alien one where she never feels like she fits in. I've never really seen Alak out of his environment like say staying at Christy's house. It's interesting that instead of going back to the human world, she chooses to identify with Stahma, her alien mother-in-law, since Stahma is now, essentially, a single mother. (Hey Christy Stahma maybe hot and all but notice how she is now SINGLE.) I think both Christy and Alak married too young and too naive, which is a somewhat realistic storyline. It's also interesting that Christy's father, despite the bath moment, essentially has bonded with the family to the point of covering up a murder. He's had an easier adjustment than Christy.
posted by miss-lapin at 11:02 AM on August 3, 2014

Also I'm really glad Atherton is on the show. That jazz solo made me squee.
posted by miss-lapin at 12:10 PM on August 3, 2014

miss-lapin, I agree that Rafe has bonded well (though it took him a while). But notice he's speaking with Datak and Stahma. Christy consulted nobody Castithan, much less her new family. On the dance floor, Alak was very upfront about what he wanted/liked: her, sans costume. She willfully didn't listen.

Stahma isn't exactly single. It reads as though she and Datak are separated and he has visitation rights. Also, Stahma has Rafe, somewhat. I'm not exactly sure on their relationship. Let's not forget that Datak is an abusive father and husband. Better single than bound to him, assuming the show doesn't rehabilitate him.
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 1:50 PM on August 3, 2014

I enjoyed the episode, but so definitely echo the above sentiments about Christy. When Deirdre pretty much tells you exactly what her goal is and it slips right over your head, you're just asking for your husband to go running off. Incidentally, to a certain degree, I can't blame Christy too much for wanting to be like Stahma, as she's the only strong woman that Christy has been exposed to for a long period of time with her mother deceased. Rafe apparently never brought her around Amanda, which probably would have resulted in her being more upfront about her problems to Alak without resorting to cosplaying a Castithan. That said, again, she's stupid. The writers have tried to make her sympathetic, but her character and personal storyline is probably the weakest on the show at the moment. Let's not forget that in this entire time, she's pregnant, and yet, no one is asking what a Castithan and Human baby will be... (much less the incredible amazing chance that not only do sex organs on the two races align, but they're STILL compatible, despite evolving in different solar systems).

I'm not a major fan of the Mayor-Viceroy-Amanda storyline, but I do absolutely enjoy Atherton's presence on the show.

I also agree that eye gouging is definitely not a good eye for an eye retribution (I know what I did there). Stahma probably would have kept him alive to slowly harvest different parts of his body from him (of course, leaving his ears to the end - PB) for resale - she's a businesswoman, ya know? I did appreciate that the old crew still cared nothing at all for Datak and helps to imply that he was not the best manager/leader.

Finally, Nolan and Irisa are on the same page. Thanks to Supernatural, I'm sick of death of two individuals who care about each other withholding some super important fact. True, this one was because Irisa was told that figment girl would kill Nolan, but annoying, none the less. They're a team and things are out of whack when they're not. I'm also glad that Nolan wasn't meant to play suspicious any further, he's a smart guy and the incredible luck that Irisa was enjoying by never getting wounded was definitely stretching it.

Prediction time. Deirdre wants Alak to dump Christy. He won't, "She's carrying my child!" Deirdre kills or tries to kill Christy. Hilarity ensues. I do look forward to the point where Rafe is told what his daughter is doing. Hilarity will ensue?
posted by Atreides at 1:59 PM on August 3, 2014 [1 favorite]

Yeah we have it established that Castithan men play around and their women are supposed to be ok with it. Stahma talks about that first season. It's an accepted convention. If Dierdre really wants Alak she has to know the culture and even by Earth standards she's not playing the game smart.

And yeah Alak is upfront in the club. He comes from a culture that reinforces male dominance so that's not surprising. He chooses to use her species, human, in a pejorative way towards her. And then doesn't make the connection with her wanting to castithan? He's very ambivalent and doesn't see how his ambivalence translates to his wife, who is young and now much more cut off from what little family she has. He has more grounding and even he is all kerfuffled. He needs to have a bit of empathy and not use human as an insult if he doesn't want his wife rejecting her own identity.

I don't really like her as a character....I kind of like Alak less.
posted by miss-lapin at 2:11 PM on August 3, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've thought more about this. Alak, the child of essentially a crime lord begins by want this own identity. So why then, considering his views of his own family and his sensitivity to his wife, are they living in his family's house? Starting a new household would have been the right way to go, but ignoring all that any rich boy with a crime family behind him who has a woman say " I want to be your princess" needs to write her a check out of his life. It's obvious. It's STUPID obvious which put him below Christy in my book. Christy doesn't have much stability but he's playing from home turf and still is making seriously dumb mistakes.

I'm willing to bet Stahma puts an end to this though in a bloody way.
posted by miss-lapin at 1:07 PM on August 6, 2014

So why then, considering his views of his own family and his sensitivity to his wife, are they living in his family's house? Starting a new household would have been the right way to go, but ignoring all that any rich boy with a crime family behind him who has a woman say " I want to be your princess" needs to write her a check out of his life. It's obvious. It's STUPID obvious which put him below Christy in my book. Christy doesn't have much stability but he's playing from home turf and still is making seriously dumb mistakes.

One thing we've generally seen Alak do is give in to the pressures of family loyalty, be it his father or his mother, he ultimately backs down and refuses to reject his place within a Castithan family. The exception, of course, being his romance and marriage to Christy. Since the start of this season, he has been sliding more and more into what one might consider a proper Castithan male role, be it the color of his hair or the style of his dress. His mother creates this false sense of rebellion for him to shelter in, that is, rejecting his father - which definitely is a gross violation of Castithan societal rules, but internally, it's really so much as his mother has replaced his father as the head of the household. The rules are the same, but the players different.

I think I do agree with your placement of Alak as less sympathetic than Christy. Deirdre's charade would simply fall apart if the two would just have a conversation, "Where did you get this idea?" "Deirdre." [insert hopefully logical conclusion]

Your proposal on Stahma is definitely intriguing, because the entire worth of Christy's addition to the Tarr family was based on the premise of eventually scooping up the mining interests her father possessed. Those interests are now gone, so what purpose is left to retain the marriage and the connection, much less invite Rafe into the home? Right now, I can only think that Stahma desires to keep Alak happy so he can be his rather obvious figurehead for the criminal business. Would Stahma accept a half-human/half-Castithan grandchild? Would Datak? Is that child the new source of value to the McCawleys? (sp?)

I still think the end of this season will result in the Voltan Collective taking over Defiance, and who the heck knows how that'll play with Stahma's violent rejection of traditional Castithian culture and societal expectations.

Also, one thing I don't think I brought up, but it was the Viceroy's apparent resignation that the Earth Republic would ultimately lose the battle for the planet and that humans were just a countdown clock away from extinction. This is something of the world building that I've really found lacking. While the Earth Republic and the Voltan Collective are obviously in a cold war, they also signed a truce years ago. Are tensions so high that it's like the interwar period between WW1 and WW2? Does everyone just expect one more war to end it all?
posted by Atreides at 1:37 PM on August 6, 2014

f Stahma and Datak weren't interested in hybrid children (assuming they are hybrid and don't take after one parent or another), then the marriage shouldn't have gone forward. Christy is easily manipulated,a quality Stahma probably finds some usefulness in. Rafe still has some value. Dierdre on the other hand is just a scheming social climber and I'm pretty sure Stahma won't have the patience to put up with her unless she really ups her game to bring something of use to the table.
posted by miss-lapin at 12:54 PM on August 10, 2014

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