“Where the Apples Fell” serves up a hearty meal of family dysfunction across the board. It’s the type of gathering one will not likely forget. The main ingredient, exposure, reveals itself in various ways through vengeful, desperate, or angry actions.
The top story centers around Stahma and Datak being revealed as the Votanis Collective spies working for General Rahm Tak. Nolan, the Law Keeper arrives on a domestic violence call to the Tarr household after Datak and Stahma physically throw down on Alak for putting a knife to his mother’s neck because she killed his wife Christie. Before the arrival of Nolan, Stahma gets to explain herself, Christie was being a selfless mother and chose death to save her baby. Not buying it Alak outs his parents to Nolan. On the run they go both fugitives for blowing up the arch and spying for Rahm Tak. In truth this display of raw familial physical violence and anger is a difficult watch. It is fruitful. Stahma and Datak become more bonded as a team while Alak is seeing his purpose in his son Luke. Being a fugitive has Stahma acting like a caged animal, she kills a law officer who tries to arrest then attempts to kidnap mayor Amanda. Amanda puts up a most excellent fight leaving Stahma with a gut wound and on T’evgin’s porch seeking help.
The second most exposed character is General Rahm Tak. His wife, YES a wife we’ve not heard of. arrives to his camp wickedly disguised like a character from the original Mad Max. Their greeting is lighthearted and for show. Once alone, she drops the hammer. He is known to have gone rogue and if he returns home will be pardoned. He has so much to loose. He cleverly plays along for a moment seeming quite reasonable. Then the colors of his obsession to continue his unsanctioned campaign is unequivocally evident when first he focuses on the staked human heads in view from his tent while they engage in sex. His next action of murdering his wife before dragging her body in front of his men as a traitor shows his evil and brutality coming full circle. This guy is the epitome of bad.
Third up is T’evgin. A two part “uh oh” for him. Nolan seeking assistance against Rahm Tak’s coming attack, quickly figures out that the Omec cannot help defend itself from the Votanis Collective. They are weak and stranded in Defiance. To make matters worse, Alak recognizes his mother’s scent and knows she been there. T’evgin says she was a very willing sex partner to Alak’s horror (“Oh gross.”) and states he knew she was spying but what did he care. Nolan loses his crap over this one, threatens him and leaves. Next is the WHAT, wait WHAT just happened stunner with an ick factor gone wild. When his daughter Kindzi finds out he has been bedding Stahma in their home, she is angry and judgmental but it seems more than that. Come to find out the Omec fathers have sexual relations with their daughters and whoever else they want to. Are you gagging with me?! This moment of overexposed skeeve factor had me wincing when they went of screen to get it on after arguing. Dear Omec fathers, now I need eye and ear bleach. Momentarily, I run out of the room screaming. Best line from Kindzi “Tell it to your alabaster whore.”
Lastly, a small exposure for Berlin, is news from Mayor Amanda that her ex-boyfriend, Conrad von Bach is the one selling high end weaponry to Rahm Tak. The very weapons to be used against Defiance. This is a tidbit worth mentioning yet without resolution. I’m putting a pin in this piece of information for future reference.
As a proper aside from all the angst, there is bonding between Nolan and Alak getting information out of jailed Datak. This well acted rouse with Nolan holding Alak at gunpoint, shooting off rounds leaves Datak convincingly hysterical and pleading. His maniacal laughter is almost contagious when he realizes they are bluffing. The spot on timing between the two a joy to watch. Ultimately they believe what Datak tells them, but does he know more? Later over drinks, they become closer when Alak thanks him for saving his son. Nolan sweetly tells Alak he is a strong man. He seems to have a thing for being a father figure to Votanis youth. As rough and tumble as Nolan is, his vulnerable, loving side shines
All in all this episode feels like the purposeful piece connecting one half of the season to the next. A solid showing. I am excited to see how Defiance defends itself and prevails.
All photos belong to Syfy.
Defiance airs on Syfy, Fridays at 8pm Eastern/7pm Central