Extant - The Katie Nightmare
I'm a little frustrated.
With Extant? No, I think it's great. Quickly paced, fraught with dramatic tension and superbly acted. I guess I'm frustrated with CBS. Next week is an "Extant special event." Two episodes back to back. Add this to the finale being bumped from the Fall premier week and it seems CBS has lost faith in the show and is rushing it off the air.
It's too bad.
It is summer, I don't know what CBS expected, people have things to do. Do they really want to disaffect Halle Berry? She may never work with them again (Yes, I know, $$$$ heals all wounds.)
Ah well, lets get to some of the major things we learned this week.
Here's a red flag. The balloons are back baby! Sparks keeps a picture of his daughter Katie when she was young. Once I saw this I knew we were headed for a resolution of the Katie mystery.
I know we are jumping ahead a little, the fact that Ethan can dream was pretty big also but the Katie thing has been lingering for a while so I'm anxious to examine it.
Our resident 007, Kryger, busted into the ISEA building and stole the "Aruna file." Man, for a nervous wreck, Kryger is the bomb! The file it seems is the proof he needed to show there was malice aforethought and that the ISEA knew what it was doing from the get go. Not only does the file show the "Greatest discovery in the history of civilization" but how Sparks, despite the death of his daughter, was willing to exploit this discovery.
The "Aruna" was a space station filled with astronauts that was approached by the "Entity" one of which was Katie.
By the way, here is the Wikipedia entry of the Hindu spirit "Aruna."
"In Hindu mythology and scriptures, Aruṇá or Aruṇ sometimes also called Anoora, is a personification of the reddish glow of the rising Sun, which is believed to have spiritual powers. The presence of Aruṇá, the coming of day, is invoked in Hindu prayers to Surya."
We know that the other station is named "Seraphim" so Aruna fits as another celestial being especially since Aruna is the "vision and driving force" behind the path of the sun, "Surya" in Hindu mythology. We certainly have had a lot of "visions" associated with this show and Aruna came from an egg and there has been a lot of egg imagery from Extant too. (Learn more of Aruna here.)
Another big reveal was that Katie was pregnant (eggs, fertility.) Dr. Sam asked Sparks earlier in the episode "what happened to you?" so I guess this was it. Sparks took the sacrifice of his daughter and decided to run with it. Perhaps he thought his daughter should not have died in vain and decided to exploit her death in her memory But really, it seems to have broken him.
Katie describes the Entity as a "circular rash" that has infected the crew. It causes hallucinations and has driven the crew to turn on each other and become homicidal.
I wonder if the Entity does this as a defense mechanism in order to protect the impregnated host? Katie claimed they were out to kill her. Which doesn't make sense but it does explain why Molly was sent up alone. No one to kill her!
Is the Entity malevolent or is it just not used to impregnating humans and the hallucination factor is something it hasn't dealt with? I've theorized the Entity is friendly (read that theory here) so the hallucinations and violent behavior may be an inherent byproduct of it's impregnation defense mechanism.
Whatever it's reasoning, Sparks is fully on board with it. He even knows to communicate with it and in return it gives him what he wants.
How far back or developed is this relationship???
Gordon warned Sparks to pull the plug but Sparks wouldn't hear of it. The next balloon omen we'll get will be meant for Sparks and it will mark his hubris.
Ethan can dream but he is not supposed to! (A discovery mishandled by the crass Charlie. No wonder Julie is looking at other men. Off to the "coworker lounge" with you Charlie!)
John theorizes that Ethan's leap of evolution is due to an "override" from his shutdown. He's anxious to get Ethan to the lab despite the fact that crass Charlie is there and not "late" Julie. It's a good thing they do get Ethan there because his intellectual capacity has taken a leap also. (Hmm, Julie is "late" is she pregnant perhaps?)
Ethan's new found "superpowers" allow him to decipher the Aruna file as if he were playing a game. Where is this leading? I'm not sure. I also theorized Ethan will be a host for the Entity some day. Maybe not him specifically, but other "Humanics" to follow. One mystery resolved in Katie and a new one started for Ethan.
Ethan's drawing is revealing also. He predicts dire consequences for his mom. "Something bad is happening to you." Maybe not Ethan, yes she is still in trouble working against Sparks and ISEA but thanks to the fetus being extracted the hallucinations have stopped as verified by Dr. Sam. (Plus a cute message delivered by Molly to Sam, "Family is different.")
Ethan saw the circles on his mom when she had passed out. His newly formed subconscious has sought to process this warning when she was in distress.
It's funny that Kryger saw this as a distress signal also. Perhaps the Entity is reaching out to people. Sparks and the ISEA was quick to squelch this warning/distress call. I think they wanted to make sure the Entity could approach a single human without killing it or having it killed by someone else.
The god of war and poetry has arrived on the scene. So who is the new guy? He certainly worked his way into Julie's life quickly "Second Korea" my foot! It's obvious he is a plant. I think he knows who Julie is and wormed his way into her life by revealing his prosthesis.
By doing so he managed to get into the lab and close to Ethan. Nice going Julie! So who does he work for? Yasumoto? He already has John and all his work in his lab. I suspect a third party. The military maybe? He did introduce himself as a veteran and of course he is the god of war! He had that little aside with Ethan about poetry and the need for heroes. Hmm, working for the good guys? Probably not! Do we need a third party? I'm thinking no but we will have to see where this goes.
Gordon and Kryger
Here's a guy that is skating on thin ice. Did you notice the return of the "Skeletal Tree" as he entered Sparks' office early on? Sparks gets a nice leafy one next to him.
The Skeletal Tree makes another appearance later on and this time it frames Gordon's head. Not a good sign.
It seems Gordon has a bit of an addiction problem. This led to 007 Kryger exploiting his weakness and allowing him to breach ISEA security.
I thought this was a pretty cool moment. It showed us Kryger is no fool and is prepared to topple Sparks and the ISEA. Sadly Godon is no fool also.
I had a feeling Gordon smelled a rat when the Bradfield Park meeting didn't go off as planned. This will get Gordon in good with Sparks again. But I still feel Gordon is a goner. He did urge Sparks to pull the plug so maybe there are pangs of guilt. If he is being pulled in two directions then one urge will have to override the other. You're done Gordon!
What happens to Kryger? Nothing good! Exposed to the Entity? I'm thinking yes. He'll be tortured and interrogated and then "exposed." You're done too Kryger! (Actually, I hope not, we need heroes right Odin?)
Odd and Ends
When John was urging Molly to have Ethan sent to the lab after his dream, his backdrop was a lone astronaut floating in space. It made me think of Ethan alone with his dreams but it also speaks to the single astronauts alone in the Seraphim.
Sparks had a model sailing ship behind him at his desk. The sailing ship reappears on the fridge behind Molly. Previously, I had referred to the ship as a reference to a Styx song, "Come Sail Away" where the ship is really a space ship and the sailors really spacemen. Reinforced here?
What does the Entity want? It speaks to Sparks, Gordon fears it and it has a track record of driving people crazy.
It drove Calder to homicide. I think Sparks realizes you have to approach it alone. He told that one security guard to grab a coffee. Good thing, the guard had a rifle! Uh-oh for poor Glass the crewman alone aboard the Seraphim. The Entity is here so why is Glass up there?
Sparks sees the reflection of the person he once was. A loving father. He's not that person anymore. Does Yasumoto know to approach the entity in this way? Is Sparks the only one with this relationship? How much of this is he hiding from Yasumoto and how does this fit with the life prolonging substance from the meteorite?
Yasumoto returns in the next episode or should I say "episodes?' Does everyone have their own motives?
We'll find out when Hamlet makes his return!