The Orville tackles quite the moral and ethical conundrum in “The Krill.” Behind alien costumes and practical effect prosthetics, Ed and Gordon face a very serious and difficult decision while on an undercover mission for The Union. Thus far, we haven’t been told much about the main villains to The Union, The Krill have remained somewhat ambiguous for the viewers, we know that they are enemies, but not much more. Up until now, we haven’t had the chance to explore The Krill and their background a little more closely. “The Krill” is the mid-way point of the first season of The Orville, and this episode finally gives us a much better look at this species history, sense of community, and religious beliefs.
After recovering a fully intact Krill shuttle, The Union sends Ed and Gordon on a secret mission to gather information about The Krill and their religion. They are to pose as the only surviving Krill soldiers from a recent run in with the Union and board one of the Krill’s vessels to get a copy of the Ankhana, a sacred religious text. The Union wants to better understand the Krill and their beliefs at an attempt to make peace with their war-hungry society.
We mainly focus on Ed and Gordon this week, which is just fine by me. The two of them are outstanding together and are a perfect comedy relief when things get difficult on the Krill vessel. Though they are only supposed to find and copy the Ankhana, their plans change when they discover that the Krill have a very powerful bomb on board. And that they plan to field test that bomb on the small Union farming colony below. They have to do something to prevent the Krill from using the bomb. They can’t just destroy the entire Krill ship, because there are also children on board.
Teleya, the Krill children’s teacher, befriends Ed and Gordon, and the two decide that they have to save her and the kids but also save the farming colony below. They decide to use the Krill’s weakness to sunlight against them, while sparing the kids in a protected classroom. Teleya, after being transported to The Orville, warns Ed that those children will remember what he did. That he pretended to be one of them, stole their trust and eliminated their parents. That the next time those Krill children saw him, they would be ready to fight. So though they saved the kids and the Union farming colony, they still might have not made the biggest steps towards peace with the Krill.
The Orville is well paced each week, and the comedy/chemistry of the cast is always a delight. The practical effects will always be a huge plus in my book, I love that as a sci-fi show they aren’t relying fully on CGI for things. It really gives The Orville that classic and realistic sci-fi feel that so many fans love. This week gives viewers an underlying moral message about cultural, racial, and religious acceptance. The Orville has put in a solid start to it’s first season and fills a niche in sci-fi that fans across all genres can (and do) enjoy.
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