The Expanse - 5.09: Winnipesaukee

ctg

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Amos, Clarissa and a gang of thieves work together to leave Earth. Avasarala tries to head off a brutal military strike. Drummers's new family bonds are tested as Naomi's life hangs in the balance.
 

ctg

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I've been thinking a while and to me Marco's action are a reminder of what happened back in the day, when the Pirates were alive. So, sixteen to eighteen century pirates, not the modern ones. Thing is in the Expanse Sol the Belters had two choices, either put up and shut up, or take an action, any action.

Marco was fortunate enough to have developed a loyal group of followers and among them were pretty powerful people, like the Martian gunrunners. Sure Mars never got to a real conflict with Earth and UN, but they had people that we still have today on Earth. Ones who would act like Russian officers just after the Wall came down and Perestroika flared up.

I assume a lot of people don't have enough of money to buy a Martian cap ship. The sales must be limited to Mars only and to those who has big enough wallet. Mao didn't buy directly the ships, just parts of the technology and he had his own yards producing Stealth ships. Marco never has had such fortune. But if you look at all what he has done, the people who sold the weapons should be pissed, because Mars is also on line.

So there are two choices, either they wanted this or then Marco is a fool to think it will all turn out well with so many big fishes coming after him. Either position is great because he has no way out. It's just like back in the day, with one singular destiny, the pirates never grow old.

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Go Razorback, go. Alex and Bobby were certainly fishing as Naomi's transmission had changed four times. "Is it random?" Alex asked. "Does that seems random to you?"

WTF? Alex grow a brain, it is not random. It is a signal that changes intellectually and it's not producing gobbledygook. But that is also the thing with the recent transmission from Alpha Centauri. It is believed to be produced by a technologically advanced civilisation ... and it's not random.

I believe Alex and Bobby has operated radios forever and therefore they should not be an question of what is rubbish and what is not.

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Thing that bothers me is Naomi's action in the walls. Every time she comes back to control room, she leaves the hatch open, essentially filling the airless void with air. If there is enough of it then why don't she simply open all the hatches to that corridor and let it fill with air?

Is there a problem?

Please don't get me wrong. It is high drama and I absolutely feel for the characters. I want Naomi to survive but it bothers me that I cannot help.

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We were wrong. No tsunami reached the rich people summer homes. They are all function and intact unlike in the other places. Maybe the funniest thing is that some keeps clearing the driveways, roof from snow as if it is business as usual.

Man, rich people and their privileges. I personally have watched enough of tsunami footage and in my own corner I've fought for the poor people. Thing is, every single time a tsunami has hit something, the roads are absolutely clocked up with all sorts of rubbish and debris. The power and telecommunication lines are down, and there are so many people just wandering around, aimlessly lost in the destruction.

Amos, Clarissa and Erich's gang didn't see any of it. Not in the rich area.

I get why there was a winter staff. The simple reason is cold houses get problems, rot and mold. Warm houses don't have it. It's just I would have assumed that the rich would have installed an AI and let it run the operations without putting down money to keep the roads clear.

One thing Amos did wrong was letting the rent-o-cop's go instead of securing them and using them as prisoners. The firefight was always going to happen and he had no clear idea on how to fix the shuttle until it was too late and the mercs were ready to launch an assault.

I loved that they were burned in the launch. It was a proper send off to them and during the fight, it also felt proper that Amos got hit for trying to play a hero. The bullet don't care who you are when it strikes. It does equal amount of damage no matter what your name says.

But the ship they nicked, absolutely gorgeous.

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I love her suit. It looks so good on her. Also it is interesting that her horde is so vast that we never see same jewellery in the small screen. It always changes.

I also loved that she gave bollocking to the UN admiral for striking Pallas. At the essence we have grown to believe that UN people are all about the peace. Not war. It was therefore right in my opinion for her to tell the UN sec off for bringing the war to the innocent civilians. She has moral high ground, while the UN sec and the warhawks only think in old terms.

On how to press the opponent down and win the war.

What Avasarala forgets is that the war is continuation of the politics. There are times when you ahve no choice but to respond hard. Peace talks have no place in there. Only in the aftermath the peacekeepers would go in with the UN diplomats to clear up the mess.

The thing that expected Ava to suggest is declaring Marco as person non grata to inner worlds and put a bounty on his head.

I laughed out loud when she resigned and the ladies followed her action. It's just she no longer in the power and all she can do is whine and shout. That's it. Instead of staying in and whining in every moment, she walked out.

Getting fired or getting demoted would have drawn bigger headlines than a resignation.

I was surprised that the brass split after the meeting and ministers walked out to make a coup reality. Bigger surprise was that she went to ask Adm Delgado to join her staff. The no answer made me smile, because her explanation wasn't good enough. Sure Marco has millions of rocks and the blue stuff but delivering them on Earth is the biggest problem. How to do it when the enemy expects you to do it?

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Do it girl. Do it. Pull it out and press that trigger. It will solve the immediate problem.

I liked that Drummer questioned political officer's orders. Marco's orders, just like she should. Why to put her ship, her crew in the risk when there is a trap in place?

The bollocking she gave to Oksana felt rightful. It's like her lover had made up her mind and were willing to sacrifice everything, instead of trying to save the captain. I get that Oksana did it for the pirate family but she doesn't know Drummer like we do.
 

Susan Boulton

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OK, just ask yourself the following.
Marco has a number of Martian ships.
How did he pay for them?
Does he still have the blue goo?
There have been hints during his conversation with and about about the ship that was supposed to be carrying it that it was a sacrificial lamb.
Is Marco a distraction?
To keep Earth and Mars eyes and their ships elsewhere?
The puppet, not the puppet master?
Was he given the ships to be this?
Is he being used?
Remember he is all ego.
Very little mention of the Ring Space and the gate and Medina Station?
And the answers to these question now will be in the next series I think.
On a side note, annoyed at the Drummer storyline, oh it is good, but it is not akin to the Michio Pa storyline, as her family in that actually support her against Marco.
As to Naomi. In the books each time she goes into the walls she goes through a small airlock, assume she does that when she goes round the corner in the show. She only has the air in the ship. Everything has been stripped out, no filters, no supplies of anything. It is a bomb. everything either smashed or slaved to Marco's controls. That is why each time she goes in she marks the wall, counting how much air she is using each time she enters the walls. There is not enough air in the ship to fill both the inside and the inner walls. She has had a good dose of radiation all ready, the suit gives her protection such as it is. If she went into the wall space without it she would be already dead.
 

REBerg

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Yeah, looked like the island was the inland lake type -- far enough inland to escape the tsunami and need a helicopter to reach.
Funny that the problem preventing shuttle launch was a easily bypassed faulty electrical connection. That's the kind of thing that every DIY might experience in an attempt to fix an unknown piece of equipment, but it was certainly something Peaches should have found.
The take off was spectacular. Launch doors be damned!
It looked like the blast turned the estate into a flaming puddle. That made me speculate that fully opened launch doors would have shielded the property or that resorting to a shuttle escape was always a one-way final option for the super rich. Either way, it was a great way to end the firefight with the island security goons. Literally light 'em up!
Thing that bothers me is Naomi's action in the walls. Every time she comes back to control room, she leaves the hatch open, essentially filling the airless void with air. If there is enough of it then why don't she simply open all the hatches to that corridor and let it fill with air?
I've wondered about that, too. My best theory is that the mechanicals compartment she keeps entering has sprung a leak and has vented all its air. Every time she opens the door, she loses more air, so she has calculated how many times she can enter and still be able to breathe when she returns. Closing the hatch would conserve air, but maybe it would take too much time to open it when she returned.
When she goes in, she only has whatever air is in the suit plus whatever she is able to hold in her lungs, which can't be much. The increasingly frantic beeping is warning her about either carbon dioxide or oxygen levels in her suit.
Unless I missed it, it seems that she has not succeeded in disabling the explosive charges, and Jim is still burning to the rescue. I was expecting her to start desperately ripping connecting wires out, only to find that her fears of setting off the explosion were unfounded. When Marco set the trap, he was expecting the ship to be approached from space, not from inside.
 

ctg

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The take off was spectacular. Launch doors be damned!

It looked like the blast turned the estate into a flaming puddle. That made me speculate that fully opened launch doors would have shielded the property or that resorting to a shuttle escape was always a one-way final option for the super rich. Either way, it was a great way to end the firefight with the island security goons. Literally light 'em up!

Yep, it was a spectacular launch and I too did think about the blast. In the military, where they put missiles in vertical silos they have vents that direct the fiery gasses so that not all is burned crisps. The rent-o-cops were unlike to be in the hanger when they blasted off. But I assume that the property owner had thought about the blast and the flames weren't actually touching the property.

Unless I missed it, it seems that she has not succeeded in disabling the explosive charges, and Jim is still burning to the rescue. I was expecting her to start desperately ripping connecting wires out, only to find that her fears of setting off the explosion were unfounded. When Marco set the trap, he was expecting the ship to be approached from space, not from inside.

Well yeah. I doubt Naomi has received an EOD training, but she's after all the Chief Mechanic and in her mind, she should be able to draw a pretty good diagram on how things are connected before she starts cutting wires. What we don't know is how tamper proof those bombs are? Is the sticker just an illusion or is there actually some sort of device making sure that everything goes boom?
 

ctg

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Dear God, dyslexia again.

I meant to say that the rent-o-cops were very unlucky. First they encountered Clarissa and she went berserk on them, and then they ran off in the launch facility to get burned crisp. It's just how many of them were in the island and how many were injured or killed in the action?

Thing is when you think about their action. Sure they were allowed to take it according to their contract, but even then, at the end of the day you have to think about you. Are you willing to sacrifice your life for diminishing supplies?

I also would like to question their morality. The rent-o-cops aren't regular military. They are hired security guards and even though they might be toting around their firearms, it's the willingness of put your life on line that is questionable. Actually there are a lot of things that missing and we simply don't know, but I would not have been willing to risk my life for what they got. Why should you?

It kind of feels natural but at the same time I also feels that they had to put in action to fulfil the tension need in the episode. Why the coppers could not go to another facility and get their own shuttle?
 

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The "cops" got what they had coming.
The island is a post-apocalypse, dystopian microcosm. Those with the guns naturally became those with the power. One might wonder why they were so heavily armed, as they were basically gatekeepers.
The servants left behind by the exodus of the wealthy were easy pickings for the security people, who continued wearing their uniforms to maintain an appearance of having legitimate authority.
Erich got it right when he said the cops had commandeered a house and now were trying to take all the food. They just picked the wrong group for their shakedown. I laughed when Erich told them they were doing it so badly that they must be new at it.
I got the impression that the shuttle under repair was the last one left on the island, which would explain why it was still there. The rent-a-cops knew that it wouldn't work, which might indicate they had someone who could pilot it.
Any island servants who didn't make it to the shuttle will be better off if the entire security force was turned into crispy critters. That should make the stolen food pantry available. If that is depleted before they can be rescued, they are going to need to become skilled anglers -- Olympian swimmers.
 

ctg

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I got the impression that the shuttle under repair was the last one left on the island, which would explain why it was still there. The rent-a-cops knew that it wouldn't work, which might indicate they had someone who could pilot it.

I thought they were bullsh1tt1ng. The winter staff came around, saying that they were almost out supplies, even though you could imagine that logistics would run perfectly or they would have big enough of pantry to accommodate the need, even if the owners dropped in. But it's like "We have had nothing since the rocks came down." What happened to the reserves?

I know that I'm overly critical again, and while I like the episode it's the little things that are bugging me ... as usual. Another thing is, if the owners came in to get their shuttles, why they didn't take the staff or why the people didn't said that the rich bastards left them on ground ... with nothing. I'm pretty sure that over that side of the pond you know how to whine, don't you?

Maybe biggering about their situation would have move the series towards regular soap. But in the reality that's what we people do. We get annoyed and then whine about it, before we start doing something to fix the situation. But, maybe the owners were on verge of the bankruptcy and they couldn't afford to provide enough of supplies to the people.

Any island servants who didn't make it to the shuttle will be better off if the entire security force was turned into crispy critters. That should make the stolen food pantry available. If that is depleted before they can be rescued, they are going to need to become skilled anglers -- Olympian swimmers.

So there's no boats? I love Ozark as it has shown that everyone has a boat, or something to make it across the lake district, even if you have nothing. In Finland, there's so many boats, even some wrecked ones that you would have a problem on choosing which one. We also know how to prepare for a long winter so that you don't end in a situation where you have nothing.

Also now that I'm thinking about it, King's Shining showed a similar situation and they did do the shopping before they were snowed in ... forever. What we got was somewhat traditional survival drama, even if it was a small snippet of overall situation.

What I'm saying is that the lack of supplies was intentionally written in and they needed to move the characters back to space.
 

Susan Boulton

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CTG, I think you are missing the point. It is mostly from Amos' point of view. Amos wants to get back to his crew, the fate of those on the island is unimportant to him everyone "not his tribe," in fact, he intends to take Clarissa with him as he now considers her, "family". He goes to Eric because he knows that Eric has the resources to help, and knows he has to give Eric something in return.

In the book it takes them nearly a month to get to Baltimore. It is also made plain that the food/water/fuel supplies are running low and despite relief people are dying and more will die. Staying on earth means you will most likely die, and Amos does not like the idea of dying lol. Going to the moon is a way out. The rich take it as soon as they can. Yes, the ship was the last left on the island due to not working. The security staff were preying on the staff left behind, better Kings of a small island than fighting for scraps elsewhere.

Doesn't matter if there are boats or not, conditions are the same everywhere, in fact off the island it might be worse. Also people tend to stay put in places they know. I did research into UK cities during the Blitz, people were reluctant to leave their homes, even in the face of bombing sometimes not taking shelter in public shelter but risking it under the stairs or in home made shelters.

Also boats are no good with that amount of ice on the lake.
 

ctg

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Susan, if you have not noticed, I often talk about larger context and speculate on things that are beyond the scope of the immediate episode. Please don't get me wrong.

If it really annoys you, I will stop writing the expanse posts. You do it instead.
 

Susan Boulton

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Susan, if you have not noticed, I often talk about larger context and speculate on things that are beyond the scope of the immediate episode. Please don't get me wrong.

If it really annoys you, I will stop writing the expanse posts. You do it instead.
No it does not annoy me at all, sorry if I offended. Not my intention at all. Personally I try not to, "expand" the world in any book or series, as that way madness lies ;)
 
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ctg

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No it does not annoy me at all, sorry if I offended. Not my intention at all. Personally I try not to, "expand" the world in any book or series, as that way madness lies

It should be me who should be doing the apologising. I've had such a bad and dark week that I get annoyed. So, sorry, please forgive me.

Doesn't matter if there are boats or not, conditions are the same everywhere, in fact off the island it might be worse. Also people tend to stay put in places they know. I did research into UK cities during the Blitz, people were reluctant to leave their homes, even in the face of bombing sometimes not taking shelter in public shelter but risking it under the stairs or in home made shelters.

Interesting. We evacuated our children either to countryside or sent them to Sweden, hence the large Finnish-Swedish population on our coasts and in the major coastal cities. And when we started losing the ground to Russians, we took the Karelian tribe with us and gave them new homes.

Even today there is a lot of talk about what if it happened again, and as I've now commented and observed conflicts in other places for nearly fifteen years, the evacuations happen. Especially with the rich and powerful. For example, in that night when Erdogan were almost lost the I personally tracked his movements and posted them elsewhere.

One of the tools that I used were the flightracker and it showed not only the sultan first speeding over the Mediterrian sea, but it also showed other privileged people doing the same. But the thing with the rich people and their things in the Expanse context is that they might have had more vessels than one. These were summer homes, a vacation places or palaces.

The rich people might not have time to get to their "backup locations" or "the shelters," as they would have used the normal everyday vehicles, already parked in nearest locations. Also we don't know how much the suborbital vessels costs, but in the way Clarissa spoke about them it's as if it was as normal activity as today young ones stealing daddy's boat to go joyriding.

I assume that there is a lot of interplanetary traffic, but neither the books nor the show has actually shown it. It's just there are a lot of human operated vessels, space stations, colonised planets and moons, hollowed out asteroids, and in the newest terms Exoplanet colonies.

Funny thing is that they never used the term "exoplanet" in the books. And neither of the two writers and their editorial staff could imagine all the wonders that we've seen over the recent years.

I mean who knew that there were gas giants with the clear skies?!?

But in the terms of space travelling everyone in the Expanse universe takes it as normal activity. So I have to assume that there should've been more vessels or "space yachts/boats" in the summer homes and it was the normal ones that were used for the great exodus.

I also have to assume that the single yacht, because essentially that is what they stole, was framed for the story purposes, even if it was more logical to assume that there were more vessels than one! It's just Clarissa remembered this one.
 

ctg

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Before I forget, in that shot I took for island picture is a summer home, with regurally cleared roads and cleared solar panels on the roof. So some of the staff were BSing or someone made a mistake in the script, when the staff said that they had no power!

If they had petrol to clear the roads, they had petrol to run gennies and other machines that they need to keep "isolated location" functional. That summerhome looks well maintained and it makes sense that some of its power comes through the solar panels and not through the grid.

They might have had enough of money to have a large power storage to run all of the facility, including the launch silo. About the silo, funny thing is that it does not show the vents, but as it situated in the water, it is a very clever design, because the exhaust fumes and the heat would be handled with clever engineer that includes a waterbed.

In the vertical launch silos the fiery gasses are directed in high angle upwards and it only lasts a few seconds, before the projecticle is clear in the atmosphere and it is producing vapour through the thrust. In the yacht case it was the fusion blume and not the chemical engines and it vent directly in the maintenance bay.

I assume that they skipped closing the blast doors and opening the vents and just blasted to sky through the silo doors without caring who was around. That's what I would have done personally, because who the ef cares at that point? How many rounds that hull and its windows can take before there is enough of damage to prevent the launch?
 

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I get why there was a winter staff. The simple reason is cold houses get problems, rot and mold. Warm houses don't have it. It's just I would have assumed that the rich would have installed an AI and let it run the operations without putting down money to keep the roads clear.
The security staff were preying on the staff left behind, better Kings of a small island than fighting for scraps elsewhere.
I gathered that by "winter staff" it meant the smaller number of employees that were required all year around, even when the rich owners were off in warmer climates on a winter holiday. That in the summer they would hire extra staff when they were at home. And yes, the self-styled militia thought the servants were going to be easy-pickings, and the ship had only been left because it apparently didn't work.

Susan has the advantage of reading all the books. It is the same to me in the Walking Dead threads when CTG others have read the graphic novels. I do like the speculation, I also do like the extra information provided from the books/graphic novels, so please may it continue.

To be honest though, I believe any TV series should be able to stand alone, and that it has failed if it doesn't convey all necessary information, so that one has to go and check the source material in order to understand what is going on. As I've said elsewhere, in films at least, the need to read webpages, directors blogs and supplementary pages in order to understand, appears to be an increasing trend today, and I'm not a fan.
 

Susan Boulton

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I must admit the TV series is one of the best adaptations of a book I have seen. The books are very detailed and dense (in a good way) and trying to bring them to the screen must very difficult. A lot of people think the series is slow, it is compared to some. It is not a wham bam blow up everything story to begin with.

The one downside is that a number of characters have been merged. The interplay and humour has been cut quite a lot. Holden in the book is a lot more dry, re his humour, though they have captured his "childlike confusion", about the world. Amos is spot on, so too Naomi, Bobbie, and Chrisjen Avasarala. Drummer is as well, though in the books she does not come into her own until book 7. Alex is bland compared to the books, though this could be due to the actor.

Marcos and Phillip are difficult to bring to the screen as they are both many layered characters, but both actors are doing a good job.
 
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