The Expanse: Windmills
January 20, 2016 8:39 AM - Season 1, Episode 7 - Subscribe

The Rocinante finds a stowaway rat. Avasarala heads to big sky country. Miller takes a field trip. Donkey Balls.
posted by leotrotsky (42 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Alex struggling to find a way to use those 3 words in a sentence was pretty delightful. Amos got pretty scary when backed against a wall, he made it really clear he has no moral issue with killing someone if he thinks it'll increase his chance at survival.

The stowaway was pretty well done I thought, he said all the right things but you know trusting him is a mistake that will bite you in the ass. I don't know if he was interrupted from messing with the panel or if he finished what he was doing. He certainly seems to know a lot about that ship for a stowaway.

It was cool to see Avasarala in action she seemed to genuinely want to know what the hell was going on because making decisions based on an incomplete picture usually just makes things worse. It developed her character and it was good to learn more about what makes Holden tick. The co-op setup was a little confusing to me though.

Not much to say about Miller. He's a man without much to lose, but he's got even less now.
posted by Green With You at 10:36 AM on January 20, 2016 [2 favorites]


Amos got pretty scary when backed against a wall, he made it really clear he has no moral issue with killing someone if he thinks it'll increase his chance at survival.

The most disturbing part was,"Well, that worked out!" Happy little smile, not a second thought, and back to business.
posted by leotrotsky at 10:48 AM on January 20, 2016 [8 favorites]


The co-op setup was a little confusing to me though.

He's got like 8 parents who mixed their genes together to have a kid. They got a big tax break for only having one kid which allowed them to afford the farmland and the ranch.
posted by leotrotsky at 10:51 AM on January 20, 2016 [2 favorites]


The entire episode.

I've been really impressed with the whole adaptation so far, especially (vaguest of spoilers).
posted by books for weapons at 11:48 AM on January 20, 2016


I liked the book, but maybe not enough to dedicate more of my reading time to the sequels. So I must be forgiven for hating how much this story deviates from the story in the book if it's being done to fill in the world of the later books more fully.
Nothing happened in this episode, at least as far as advancing the plot of Leviathan Wakes. Nothing, it was 46 minutes of filler.
And Oh my lord that scene between the mothers on earth was painful. nothing about that encounter made any sense AT ALL, and the hamfisted emotional 'reveal' that turned the tables on Holden's mom was so freakin' weak. Ugh.
I am basically just hate watching at this point cause it's pretty and it's sci-fi on tv which is better than most things even when it's not great.
posted by OHenryPacey at 2:07 PM on January 20, 2016


On the other hand I think this show is pretty excellent and one of the few SF shows I watch without having to forgive all kinds of bullshit, as with the massively overrated Firefly.

Tell me Miller didn't leave his hat! Come on, man. That's your thing.
posted by Justinian at 3:33 PM on January 20, 2016 [6 favorites]


Despite everything, in my heart he's still Hat Cop.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 3:56 PM on January 20, 2016 [10 favorites]


I'm choosing to think we just didn't see him ducking back upstairs to grab the hat, and that he had it tucked under his seat in the shuttle where we couldn't see it. Because c'mon, what's zakomang shapu without his shapu?

The meetup tonight with Nick Farmer was a lot of fun. We spent several hours geeking out over language and science fiction while enjoying festive rum drinks. And the Belter word of the day is "rumwala" — "bartender".
posted by Lexica at 8:51 PM on January 20, 2016 [7 favorites]


It's been a while since I read the books, but I don't recall Amos and Holden being so at odds.. or Holden being such a useless dummy.

In my recollection he was always the overly-honest TELL THE TRUTH ALL THE TIME guy, but also a leader, and that was never really questioned. But in the show it's way more a group of people thrown together with Naomi more of the leader.

Am I misremembering?
posted by coriolisdave at 8:52 PM on January 20, 2016 [2 favorites]


Despite everything, in my heart he's still Hat Cop.
Well, he was referred to as Detective Chapeau in this episode.
posted by Green With You at 9:41 PM on January 20, 2016 [4 favorites]


The actress who plays Elise seemed very familiar, so I looked her up. She's been a regular on any number of shows I haven't watched. I can only guess I recognized her from Titanic, where she played Rose's mother.
posted by bq at 10:31 PM on January 20, 2016


"...and the hamfisted emotional 'reveal' that turned the tables on Holden's mom was so freakin' weak."

That struck me as not very believable, as well. I think that her story would have resonated with Holden's mom, but it wouldn't have been by itself enough for her to become cooperative. I would have preferred her reaction to be more subtle and a few more lines where Avasarala uses that small connection to work her grudgingly toward being cooperative. The instant capitulation was too much, too easily.

I found myself intrigued by the spy -- the writing and the actor's portrayal. I can't quite articulate what I liked so much about him, but it's that he was doing a really good job being who he was pretending to be and working on the psychology of Amos and Holden, in a way that I found very believable. Usually a show will do this sort of thing almost as a caricature, just lampshading how untrustworthy the person is and because this is a trope, the audience agrees to suspend disbelief that the protagonist doesn't see what's so obvious to us, what with all the eyebrow wagging and mustache-twirling. But I think they wrote and the actor portrayed this much more low-key and much more realistically.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:49 PM on January 20, 2016 [4 favorites]


Not only is "Rumwala" the belter word for "bartender", yours truly is the first official OPA rumwala in the Solar System, haircut and all. We even got OPA graffiti on our bathroom walls.

Amos... wow. Great character, great performance. He's got a really trippy sense of self. "I'm not a hero, I'm a small pebble amidst a huge avalanche.

"But I am a pebble with a gun."
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 2:07 AM on January 21, 2016 [7 favorites]


Nothing happened in this episode, at least as far as advancing the plot of Leviathan Wakes. Nothing, it was 46 minutes of filler.

[From the didn't-read-the-book department]

My reaction was THE EXACT OPPOSITE. This episode was my favorite so far because it took time for people to speak to each other. I learned some things about Holden, some about Amos, some about Avasarala, a bit about what is going on on Earth... I'd rather the exposition was mixed in a bit better, but this is the first episode, for me, that didn't say "PREREQUISITE: READ CHAPTERS 10-13" at the front.

More filler for me please. I'm not full yet.

I like the ambiguity of Amos (he seems like a psychopath and yet a good guy, and I like him) and the spy (Is he helping Holden and crew to follow Avasarala's agenda, or because he genuinely just wants to survive?)

Also, NO! HAT COP! NOOOOO! There had better be a nice little fedora shop on Eros or I'm going to be very upset.
posted by mmoncur at 2:09 AM on January 21, 2016 [5 favorites]


I love it when we see people being good at their jobs, instead of just being told they are good at their jobs. It's why I love the spy -- I watched as he talked his way out of an airlock, talked his way out of a locked chair, and I'm convinced he'd about to talk his way out of that cabin they put him in. AND, he also had a plan B for the airlock and I'm betting had a plan B for if the Martians actually boarded. People, this is a spy. I want him to have his own show.
posted by Mogur at 4:15 AM on January 21, 2016 [16 favorites]


Frances Farmer, Holden's mother, is married to Clint Eastwood.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 5:35 AM on January 21, 2016


Yeah, that spy was amazing. You could see the wheels turning in his head as he observed the conflict between Amos and Holden, filing away little details to use to manipulate them later. I hope he stays around a while.
posted by mmoncur at 4:02 PM on January 21, 2016 [4 favorites]


Ooh, one more thing about the spy - he is, apparently, the only one left in Tycho, which is why he was so valuable. I think... if this is what it takes to spy in Tycho, then Fred Johnson has one hell of a counterintelligence unit.
posted by Mogur at 4:53 PM on January 21, 2016 [5 favorites]


Does anyone else think we've now got Chekhov's airlock waiting to get fired? Because spy-guy seemed pretty confident about having finished what he was doing ("All right, knuckle-dragger, come to daddy"). And then he pulled the card/wire-bundle out and left it hanging, but it's still there and available…

Also, I'm on Team Wash Your Damn Hands. Ahem.
posted by Lexica at 10:01 PM on January 21, 2016 [3 favorites]


I loved the little glimpse of internal earth politics we got from Holden's mom. We've seen a fair amount of the belt, and how earth-mars-belt interact, but not much of different factions internal to either earth or mars. It was good.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 1:01 AM on January 22, 2016 [1 favorite]


The overriding question this episode left me with was: Are there donkeys on Mars?
posted by lumpenprole at 1:29 PM on January 22, 2016 [2 favorites]


la la la this is me trying to forget the spoiler in this thread. I'm really enjoying this show and this discussion about it, but book people remember not everyone has read them.

he was referred to as Detective Chapeau in this episode
yea, that made me laugh
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 2:35 AM on January 23, 2016


Detective Chapeau

Apologies for being nitpicky, but it's shapu, not chapeau.
posted by Lexica at 7:23 PM on January 23, 2016 [2 favorites]


Could we maybe discuss the books less in these threads ? I read the books, but these threads aren't marked "books included".
posted by Pendragon at 2:54 PM on January 24, 2016 [2 favorites]


I like the ambiguity of Amos (he seems like a psychopath and yet a good guy, and I like him)

I don't know if he's a psychopath as much as he's just extremely practical in every conceivable direction.
posted by SharkParty at 6:49 AM on January 25, 2016


It's hard to say this without implying a spoiler, but I am wondering if this season has 50 episodes or something because they uhh... sure are taking their time...
posted by SharkParty at 6:54 AM on January 25, 2016


"S1" is going to do Leviathan Wakes over two series.

So, you know that thing? Gonna be the season-ending shocker.

And we're getting close to that.

Damn, I love this show.
posted by Mezentian at 4:16 AM on January 26, 2016


I think... if this is what it takes to spy in Tycho, then Fred Johnson has one hell of a counterintelligence unit.

Fred Johnson was a Col with the United Nations Marine Corps expeditionary force in the Belt. I'm thinking he's got QUITE the skill set to draw on.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 12:33 PM on January 26, 2016


Why does Mars have gulags?

I just feel like that's like somebody now suggesting that they'd be caught in the Cambodian Inquisition.
posted by General Malaise at 7:54 PM on January 26, 2016


It's been a while since I read the books, but I don't recall Amos and Holden being so at odds.. or Holden being such a useless dummy.

In my recollection he was always the overly-honest TELL THE TRUTH ALL THE TIME guy, but also a leader, and that was never really questioned. But in the show it's way more a group of people thrown together with Naomi more of the leader.
I just read the book and yeah, you're definitely remembering correctly. Holden is more of a traditional leader and there's relatively little in the way of internal conflict among the Rocinante crew. I find the show's version more interesting.
posted by brundlefly at 12:43 AM on January 27, 2016 [2 favorites]


Amos in the TV show is great! The actor Wes Chatham is awesome; he has very little to work with, just lots of menacing glares and the occasional knuckle sandwich. I loved the previous episode where we casually learn he was a boy whore, no big deal.

I also am loving Shohreh Aghdashloo. Her snow-suit and mother-to-mother talk was great TV. That actress is totally over the top, it's hilarious and fun.
posted by Nelson at 9:22 PM on January 27, 2016


I've read the first book (only that one) and I think the folks developing it for TV have consistently made good choices. I like what they've done with changing the relationships among the Rocinante crew.

Plus, James S.A. Corey (individually and severally) have expressed enthusiasm for the changes and choices made, plot-level or otherwise; as far as the Belter language goes, one or both of them* have said "don't go on what's in the book, go on what Nick Farmer has done".

*It was on their Twitter. Which one is doing their Twitter?
posted by Lexica at 10:06 PM on January 27, 2016 [1 favorite]


> Why does Mars have gulags?

Mars needs labor; its population is pretty small.
posted by Sunburnt at 11:13 AM on January 28, 2016


But I thought Mars needed Moms?
posted by Mezentian at 3:30 AM on January 29, 2016


It's been a little while since I read one of the Bobby-heavy books, but Mars is a hard place to live which is why their military is so rugged. Earth is loaded with people who don't have to work because they can live on "basic" which grosses Martians out. I could see a militaristic colony stuck in a planet-sized inhospitable climate viewing labor camps as an efficient use of otherwise wasted time.

Also I am dying for Amos and Holden to chill out. I am not angry about the changes or anything, but like... Amos as a pithy and terrifying right arm is so good.
posted by SharkParty at 10:21 AM on January 29, 2016


Apologies. What I meant was more etymological. I understand that Mars uses labor camps, but why call the "gulags," which is a Russian acronym? Surely, even that far in the future, there's a sense that that would have been a specifically Russian institution, and especially with a negative connotation?
posted by General Malaise at 6:00 PM on February 1, 2016 [2 favorites]


Gulag is just a colloquialism for "unpleasant prison camp". The official name is probably "Security Detention Compounds".
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 8:11 AM on February 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Olympus Mons Bay"
posted by Pendragon at 2:25 AM on February 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, that spy was amazing. You could see the wheels turning in his head as he observed the conflict

literally, like, his iris rotated
posted by mwhybark at 9:24 PM on February 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Breaking news-- all of Season 1 is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video in the USA.
posted by seasparrow at 11:47 PM on December 21, 2016


Breaking news-- all of Season 1 is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video in the USA.

I just discovered this yesterday. I think I'm going to do a full rewatch and maybe hit these threads again.
posted by lumpenprole at 12:28 PM on January 5, 2017


here's a recap for those that need it!
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:15 PM on January 9, 2017 [1 favorite]


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