3%: Chapter 4: Gateway (Portão)
November 27, 2016 2:01 PM - Season 1, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Trapped in the dorms without food or water, the candidates race to find a solution. A sudden change in the test brings out a new side of Marco.

*Aline sneaks into Ezequiel's room for more spying, tries to lift his fingerprint from the blocks to get computer access, but the print is unrecognized (Augusto's, presumably). She is caught by Cassia, but Matheus uses his influence to keep her from being removed from the facility.
*In flashback, we see Marco's 20th birthday. His caretaker gives him a letter from his parents, left for him when they went to the Process. His caretaker takes a photo for the family portrait wall, and he gives a letter to the woman carrying his son, to be given to him on his 20th birthday.
*In the test, Marco figures out that they must match the levers in the 8 rooms to the numerical sequence on the board. They succeed, but it only brings one ration of food & drink down the chute, not unlocking the entryway as they'd expected. Michele says the ration should be given in alphabetical order; Agata gets first dibs, and everyone works to memorize & match the next sequence. After successfully getting one ration for everyone, the sequences stop working. When everyone decides to quit for the day and rest, Ezequiel dumps enough rations down the chute for 3 per person.
*Marco decides that the time for cooperation is over, that the Process wants only the elite, and gangs up. He, along with several other men and Rafael, manage to get one door wedged partially open, but it only leads to another locked doorway. They begin stealing rations from the others by force.
*Joana manages to climb up the chute, and finds Ezequiel waiting. He shows her the dorm camera, and tells her that he cannot stop the test, but she can.
*Michele and Fernando and others barricade themselves into one room to hide from Marco's gang. After Marco kills one woman with a blow to the head, Rafael has had it, and runs away to the barricade, whispering something to Michele which convinces her to let him past.
*Joana returns to the dorm, frees the candidates under guard, and leads an attack on Marco & his gang. Ezequiel opens the gates, and everyone moves on, except for the dead girl, Agata, the fallen gang, and Marco (who is crushed trying to drag himself out the gate before it closes).
*In flashback, we learn that Rafael is really Tiago, who made it one day into his Process before elimination. He got the real Rafael drunk so he could take his registration and get into the Process again, because he is with La Causa.
*Ezequiel welcomes the remaining candidates to the garden.
posted by oh yeah! (10 comments total)
Well damn, Marco. I guess his caretaker still has a job, raising Marco's son and helping the mom out? It's interesting, his is the only home we see that looks close to being traditional and not like everyone else's life in the favelas.

In a way it's a shame that we don't see more of day-to-day life on the "outside"/from the Inland perspective, but it also makes me wonder how the heck anyone with any possessions or money isn't immediately crushed by the desperately poor people -- like Joana and the gangs, for example -- living everywhere else. It also seems unusual that children can just roam the streets and fend for themselves somehow like Augusto is doing without any adults present. I mean, they have all these surveillance cameras everywhere, but are they meant to keep the Inland peace or simply to spy on outsiders? I can't really tell.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 2:16 PM on November 27, 2016

I found it interesting that in one of the scenes of the eliminated candidates (this may have been in episode 3) that they are told having children is a good way to get over the disappointment of not getting to the Offshore. They are encouraged to procreate even with the extreme poverty!
posted by CoffeeHikeNapWine at 2:21 PM on November 27, 2016 [1 favorite]

This episode is a series of pretty brutal scenes. The rapid breakdown inside the dorms is pure Lord of the Flies stuff, but rings more frighteningly plausible to me. The scene where Marco 'I am the elite' bushwhacks a girl and kills her because he's high on power is horrifying.

Also, I'm beginning to deeply dislike Ezequiel. He's set up to be a douchebag, then they reel it back in with the little kid back story, but I think pumping a bunch of kids full of chemicals that make them frightened and paranoid, then putting them in a locked metal box and slowly starving them makes it a bit rich to claim 'they did this themselves' when they start killing each other.

And again - it looks like they filmed this in a random storage facility over a long weekend. But it really works!
posted by Happy Dave at 1:44 PM on November 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

These kids sure get hungry quick. Also, using pillows to build the wall to keep out the rampaging looters.
posted by snofoam at 9:57 AM on November 29, 2016

The dorm test reminded me of the Stamford Prison experiment than Lord of the Flies, which I think is why it felt more reality-based.

Also, I was really glad that they didn't have overt sexual violence in this episode or in Joana's backstory flashbacks in the previous "Corridor" episode. Joana was explicitly threatened then, and Marco and his gang were pretty grabby and threatening here, but I liked that they didn't go for a gratuitous rape scene to emphasize that they'd gone to the Dark Side of the Force, as it were.
posted by oh yeah! at 10:39 AM on November 29, 2016

Oh, hey - did anyone catch what happened to Agata? When Joana took her shoes to climb the chute, I thought she was just unconscious, but by the end I guess she was supposed to be dead?. Did I miss a scene, or were we just to assume it was a bad reaction to the Corridor gassing?
posted by oh yeah! at 11:38 AM on November 29, 2016

This was probably the darkest episode yet. I am really loving this show though--nthing the thanks for posting it. I'm watching it in Portuguese with Portuguese subtitles and it's been a really fun way to practice.

I was confused by the thing with Agata too (though I haven't watched the remaining episodes yet; maybe they touch on it or she reappears in some way.) It didn't seem like anything happened to cause her to die, but she's clearly shown multiple times being completely stone-cold out (at best) on the floor there over a pretty long period of time... she's there when Joana escapes, and she's there when Joana re-enters the dorm space after the conversation with Ezequiel, too. I think there may even be a shot of her still there in the "aftermath" sequence before Marco bites it. I mean, they did set up her having an unusually bad reaction to the gas in the last episode, but, I don't remember seeing anything in THIS episode that really connected those dots. It's a little bit of a storytelling misstep in a show that's otherwise been really tight and well-told. Minor objection, though.
posted by Kosh at 4:48 AM on November 30, 2016

I was surprised they killed off Marco so soon and in such a harsh way. He probably deserved it after the way he behaved during this test but it was still a shock to me. And had he even met both of his parents? It looks like his father may have done the same thing he was doing, that is, leave the age 18 or younger pregnant wife/girlfriend behind to enter the Process. The age 20 thing doesn't work otherwise.

So are there two people in there from La Causa because I was under the impression Michele is with them too. She apparently didn't know about Rafael but he knew about her.
posted by fuse theorem at 9:34 AM on November 30, 2016

I'm up to this episode. The show is unexpectedly good! I'm watching it with Portuguese audio and English subtitle and it works well.

So Marco seems convinced that all of his family so far has made it to the Offshore. Do they write back or something? How do people in the Inland know if their relatives/friends make it after the Process if they don't return like those eliminated. If they die during it, do the people in charge tell the families on both sides? So many question! I can't wait to find out.
posted by numaner at 1:04 PM on August 25, 2017

Welcome, numaner, glad to see this show popping up in Recent Activity. No spoilers, just want to say that all of those questions will be addressed in season 1, enjoy!
posted by oh yeah! at 3:03 PM on August 25, 2017

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