Review: The Expanse Season 506, “Tribes”

Image: The Expanse/Amazon Prime Video
Image: The Expanse/Amazon Prime Video /

Another great episode of The Expanse has it all: thrilling zero gravity effects, family bonding, and ruminations on the nature of goodness in a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

With the Razorback floating through the empty void of space, Bobbie and Alex must fight for their lives as the Belter ship pursuing them takes a docking position. Thankfully, Bobbie packed her Marine body armor, and with the element of surprise, makes quick work of the intruding team.

Meanwhile, Alex has jumped over to the Belter ship to find what is needed to get the Razorback up and running again. In one moment, Alex must jump to the Razorback while it tumbles away from the Belter ship, and it’s pure magic. Alex tumbles head over heels towards a goal he cannot see, without a way to change course. The zero gravity effect is brilliant as gives us a real sense of helplessness.

Naomi is now fully a prisoner of Marco Inaros. Or cracks are starting to form — or maybe we’re only just now noticing them — within Marcos’ crew. Filip sees his father’s merciless side more clearly now, which seems to be drawing him closer to Naomi. And when Drummer arrives for a meeting, Filip learns about some of Naomi’s incredible feats.

Filip eventually goes into Naomi’s cell to ask her about her time on the Behemoth, and the two have their first-ever civil conversation. From his reaction to hearing about her life, we get the idea that he’s figuring out that his father has been feeding him lies about her, not wanting Filip to compare his parents. Naomi says it best when she explains that Marco wouldn’t die for Filip but would gladly let Filip die for him.

Marco hears all of this while watching on a camera feed and promptly makes plans to intercept the Roci and try to kill Holden. Apparently he’s a very jealous man.

On Earth, Amos and Clarissa make their way through a ruined, lawless land. They encounter a stranger at a fire who welcomes them and doesn’t follow them after they’ve left. Clarissa is the first to see Amos at his most primal. He explains how he grew up this way in Baltimore, and that “everybody else is just catching up.” Amos has always seen humans as tribal, and with things the way they are, he and Clarissa are a tribe of two.

Their conversations are very well-written. What makes someone a good person? What constitutes a good life? Can bad people do good things? They explore all of these topics in really engaging ways. It may seem strange that Amos would want to help someone who, just a year before, made it her life’s mission to kill him and everyone on the Roci. But when the two talk like this, we can see how similar they are.

The two eventually find a doomsday prepper who has sealed himself off with stocks of supplies. Amos attempts to make a deal or at least to get the man to drop his guard for a moment. When things go wrong, Clarissa is forced to use her mods to save Amos and kill the man.

The scene is solid up until Clarissa uses her mods. We never do learn exactly what enhancements she has, and here, there’s just a bunch of noise and then the other guy is dead. We still don’t know.

But that’s a small problem in the grand scheme of things. Afterwards, Clarissa notes that they just killed a man and took his stuff simply because they needed stuff too. Amos realizes what’s happening to him and quickly decides he needs to get back to his crew, and the guiding lights that are Naomi and Holden. Without them, his monstrous side grows ever stronger.

Grade: A

dark. Next. Review: The Expanse returns for season 5, excellent as ever

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