DISCLAIMER: This recap of The Expanse episode “Jetsam” contains more spoilers than the number of shots Amos can chug in one sitting. He is that guy. You’ve been warned. Proceed with caution.
Welcome back, Beltalowda! The Expanse binge-athon continues with “Jetsam,” the jam-packed second episode of Season 4. Our Roci crew delved deeper into the protomolecule’s presence on Ilus, while tensions rose between the Belters and “Inners.” Adolphus Murtry, in particular, caused quite the ruckus when he shot one of the Belters point blank in the head. Murder tends to divide more than unite. Amos got some action, Draper attended an awkward dinner party at Avasarala’s behest and Naomi found herself struggling to adjust to gravity. As a certified clumsy person, I find myself struggling with gravity everyday.
Alright, ready to delve into “Jetsam?” Time to flip and burn, Screaming Firehawks.
Now, we open with some incoherent mumbling from Apparition Miller (Thomas Jane). Lots of detective talk intermingled with some protomolecule buzzwords. We see a blue sphere akin to the Station from last season.
Next, we return to Ilus, right after our gang was attacked by that swarm of metallic insects. Holden (Steven Strait) goes off with Naomi (Dominique Tipper) and Dr. Okoye (Lyndie Greenwood) to further study said insects. Amos (Wes Chatham) suggests to Adolphus Murtry (Burn Gorman) that the bugs may have brought down his ship. The pair make a beeline to inspect the crash site. Alex (Cas Anvar) heads to the med bay to tend to the injured. Go team!
Meanwhile, Ashford (David Strathairn) and Drummer (Cara Gee) watch footage of a horde of bodies free falling through the Ring, bypassing the blockade entirely. They learn that the aforementioned daredevils came from a UNN ship. Now the Inners are hopping aboard the exploration/colonization train. Should they report this incident to the UN? Or let it slide?
Then, we see Avasarala (Shohreh Aghdashloo) boarding a ship bound for Mars. She’s making an historic first visit as Secretary-General to the red planet. Her husband, Arjun (Michael Benyaer), is also joining her for the trek. They’re so sickeningly sweet, y’all.
Later, Draper (Frankie Adams) is called in for an interrogation with an MVPD detective. Apparently, a Martian Marine was brutally murdered the previous night. She knows that Draper has a history of insubordination in the Marines. Draper, naturally, doesn’t even know who the dearly departed is. When the detective hints that perhaps Draper’s loyalty lies with Earth, the latter reiterates that everything she’s done has been for Mars. However, receiving an invitation to Avasarala’s gala didn’t help her case.
Next, Alex is assisting Dr. Lucia (Rosa Gilmore) in the med bay. He learns from Holden that the metallic bugs are protomolecule tech. Holden orders Alex to test everyone for potential infection via the protomolecule. He passes the information on to Lucia, and the pair hunker down for a little testing session.
Meanwhile, Amos and Murtry are bonding en route to the crash site. Amos has taken to calling the solemn chief “Multy,” to which the latter corrects him without a hint of humor. I like it. Now, I’m craving a buddy road trip comedy with Amos and his good pal Multy. The shenanigans they’d get into! Anyway, Amos locates something that suggests Multy’s ship was tampered with by someone on Ilus. Uh oh.
Then, we see Holden, Naomi and Okoye heading for the peculiar rock formation from the previous episode. Well, upon closer inspection it appears to be a metallic-looking structure comprised of protomolecule tech. Okoye reveals that said structure has existed for a billion years – it’s older than the organisms on Ilus. Holden touches it and notes that the structure feels “dead.” He keeps a drone airborne to monitor the scene should any more creepy crawlies emerge.
Next, Alex and Lucia have completed their tests. Thankfully, everyone is clean of the blue goo. The pair bond, and Alex casually asks her out for a drink. She seems open to the idea – that is, until her husband and daughter show up, much to Alex’s disdain. Poor guy. He’s just gone through a divorce! My favorite Martian cowboy pilot deserves all the love and more.
Later, Draper arrives at Avasarala’s dinner party, feeling entirely out of place. My introverted self can relate, Bobbie. Draper attempts to introduce herself, but she’s blatantly brushed off. However, she meets Arjun, who thanks Draper for keeping Avasarala safe. Next, the guest of honor gives a touching speech regarding true peace and how to establish everlasting harmony between Earth, Mars and the Belt. The Martian Prime Minister is seated next to her.
Meanwhile, on Ilus, Naomi and Holden are enjoying the nighttime sky looming above them. We can see two moons and a smattering of stars in the sky. All is right with the world. They return to the Roci and they part ways. Naomi makes a break for the med bay and instantly vomits. She falls unconscious. Her body is not adjusting to the gravity as she’d hoped it would.
After a while, she wakes up to Alex playing nurse. She implores him to keep the incident a secret from Holden. However, Alex urges her to take it easy. While her bones and muscle tissue are strengthening, her heart is slow on the uptake. Naomi, being Naomi, refuses to slow down.
Next, Draper attempts an Irish goodbye when Avasarala catches her. Draper chastises Avasarala for utilizing her as a pawn. Draper is her “Earth lapdog.” Avasarala beseeches Draper to come work for her. Mars will never fully appreciate Draper as she does. But Draper gives her a terse goodbye and they part.
Later, Miller pops in while Holden and Naomi are sleeping. Rude, but I suppose that’s par for the course when you’re an apparition held captive by sentient blue goo. Miller urges Holden to check out the massive structures from earlier, as they’ve undergone some changes. Holden and Alex depart for the mission, while Naomi stays behind to keep tabs on the Roci.
Meanwhile, Amos has been keeping the local saloon bar stools company. The Roci crew inquires of his whereabouts, but he’s merely watching over the settlers. Then, a woman named Chandra Wei (Jess Salgeuiro) waltzes in and asks if Amos is taking her job as Murtry’s sidekick. The pair begin boozing together, among other things. Bow-chicka-wow-wow!
Later, Draper catches her nephew concocting drugs in a discreetly hidden lab. He’s obviously watched Breaking Bad. His “girlfriend” from the previous episode informs him that his time is running out on the drug making. Draper launches into protective auntie mode. She beats the snot out of the girlfriend and her lackeys. Draper asserts that her nephew’s drug days are over. Boom! Never mess with Bobbie Draper or her loved ones.
Next, Alex and Holden notice that openings have appeared in the protomolecule structures. A massive door lies open before them. Alex lowers Holden inside to investigate. Suddenly, Miller appears out of nowhere (that apparition thing, you know) and begins to regale Holden with a cop anecdote. However, the latter puts the kibosh on story time. Miller reveals that Holden must remove some tree branches that are impeding the structure from functioning.
Meanwhile, Amos and Chandra are horizontally tangoing. Outside their tent, Murtry is being antagonized by the Belter called Coop (Kris Holden-Ried) and his buddies. Coop spouts out a thinly veiled threat. As a result, Murtry whips out his gun and shoots Coop in the head. Amos and Chandra are now outside and have witnessed the violent act. Nothing kills the libido more than murder.
Then, Holden successfully extracts a tree root from the structure’s walls. Suddenly, the holes begin to close. The door also begins to close…while Holden is still within. Naomi, observing the scene, screams at Alex to help free Holden. Finally, Alex pulls Holden out of the abyss, right as the massive door clangs shut. Close call, boys!
Next, lightening strikes all around them. However, it has a blue tinge to it, which tells me it’s probably linked to the protomolecule. The lightening continues to strike ground on different parts of Ilus. Alex wonders aloud what exactly Holden did to cause the random lightening storm. I’m wondering that as well.
Alright, Screaming Firehawks. Two down, eight to go! This episode felt more action-packed than the season premiere. Not a single second felt wasted or like a “filler.” One of the many reasons why I adore The Expanse is the attention to detail – every intricate aspect is crucial to telling the overall story. This world we’re vicariously living in is fleshed out and meticulously built. My favorite kind of world-building.
Do you think Murtry is the antagonist of this season? Will Draper face repercussions for her brawl with the drug people? How will Drummer and Ashford keep the peace between the Belters and Inners? Join me next time as I recap The Expanse, here on Geek Girl Authority.
The Expanse Season 4 is now streaming on Amazon Prime.
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