THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Paul Murray as William Trust, Mercedes de la Cruz as Helena Trust, Tiana Upcheva as Eva Markovic — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)
THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Paul Murray as William Trust, Mercedes de la Cruz as Helena Trust, Tiana Upcheva as Eva Markovic — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)

Review: Trusts Try To Get Their ‘Coup’ On Aboard Ark 1 – Ep. 109

In the famous words of Mayor Augustus Maywho, “Well, well, well. Who could have predicted this?” Yes, Whoville’s most prominent politician’s classic line is certainly apropos of the goings-on during The Ark’s ninth episode of season 1.

The Trusts spread their little spider web of discontent and manipulation and, unfortunately, snared some key folks that led to an ugly, ugly, ugly scene aboard Ark 1. William Trust’s arrogant, narcissistic cuckholded personality, coupled with his wife’s ruthless, conniving, manipulative love of self provided the primer for what became an hour-long firestorm aboard the ship. I’m talking coup, my friends. COUP., which rhymes with poo (not the bear), which is just about the level I hold William and Helena Trust at – the old Porta-Potty.

And with it, some of our favorite characters chose the make some very questionable decisions. I’m not gonna lie, it was tough seeing a host of The Outpost alumni that inhabit the show walk over to the dark side. Darth Trust and his minions made their move and it was bothersome. Let’s talk about how the Trusts did it “The Painful Way.”

Dr. Kabir checks on Lt. Garnet during episode 109 of The Ark.

But first, a quick SPOILER ALERT. There are SPOILERS ahead, so stay cool and loose just in case you haven’t watched Ep. 109 of The Ark.

The Trusts enlisted the aid of Cat, as well as Eva, Jelena, and our favorite poor decision-maker in Lane, to take over the ship’s command after Garnet rebuffed a very hypothetical shield proposal from Trust. You see, a straight line through the FTL world led them to believe that Ark 15 was awaiting them and locked and loaded for trouble. Hence, the shield idea. Garnet, wanting to avoid a firefight and not confident in the shield idea, thought heading for the secondary inhabitable world was the idea. She balked, the Trusts dove into their entitlement, and the coup was on.

Here’s the thing. There are a lot of people on Ark 1 who hold William Trust (little do they know his wife is the puppet-master) in high regard as a savior. Others hold him responsible for the deaths of millions due to a failed attempt to save the earth that, instead, killed people via disease. It’s not hard to imagine the Trusts finding allies within the crew and command structure given the real mixed feelings they engender. A little pandering, a few compliments, the odd promise or demand and before you know it, Cat is drugging Garnet, Brice and Felix, the trusts are on the bridge and Lane is in command. Bing, bang, boom!

THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Richard Fleeshman as Lt. James Brice, Tiana Upcheva as Eva Markovic — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)

And with that, the game is afoot. Kudos to Alicia for trying to keep the others out of the computer system, but Trust (urged on by the wife) plays a game of chicken with his three prisoners, the oxygen and whoever turned things off. There’s an interestingly subtle moment as this is going one when Alicia is calling William Trust a horrible monster and asks “What happened to you?” In that instant, Helena Trust can be seen in the background leaning out from behind her husband. It’s a great little message that William Trust’s better motives have become corrupted by a wife with an agenda and ambition that knows no bounds.

The question Alicia asks is answered with a sly little movement within the shot. What’s wrong with William Trust is his wife. That’s the disease that’s overcome the man and I look forward to it being cut out. However, Dean Devlin and gang, nice little subtle moment that answered a question with no words. Well done.

But even in the darkness that is building on the bridge, Lane, Eva and Jelena start to realize that the murderous, cruel version of the Trusts are not what they signed up for. It’s Jelena who makes the first move, opening the locked door that’s holding our trio of heroes who are just trying to get their breaths back. With that, the reign of terror that is the Trusts, particularly the vicious Helena, rapidly unravels as the three of them get to the bridge and start kicking ass and taking names. Brice gets his wish by dropping William Trust with a crushing straight right. Garnet pops Lane a good one and things are back under control.

THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Tiana Upcheva as Eva Markovic, Reece Ritchie as Lt. Spencer Lane, Mercedes de la Cruz as Helena Trust, Paul Murray as William Trust — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)

Of course, now the aftermath should be interesting. My suggestion would to be throw Helena in an airlock and launch her into the icy cold of space. Unfortunately, I think Garnet’s humanity is going to prevail. Let’s be honest, Helena is a master manipulator and would have no way to cope with being subjugated to the greater good. She and her husband feel they are a cut above the rest, something unique and special who simply don’t have to adhere to any rules but those that they make. You know, delusions of grandeur, king-makers, adulation-sluts, etc., that’s the Trusts. That’s dangerous to have on the ship given the divided feelings about the Trusts. Not hard to think she’ll find sympathetic ears amongst the crew once again, right?

I can’t help but be disappointed in the ease with which the Trusts manipulated Lane, Jelena and Eva, but I also understand why and how. But that’s also a warning bell ringing loudly about the danger the Trusts, particularly Helena, pose while on board. Not a fan, though in the trailer for Ep. 110, it looks like the Ark 15 mystery is solved a bit as Maddox is looking for William. Interesting development.

THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Mercedes de la Cruz as Helena Trust, Christina Wolfe as Cat Brandice — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)

And that leads us to Kelly, who, as my lovely twitter friend Lee Ann suggested early on, was actually a member of Ark 15. Turns out, she is. Now, the question becomes what was her role aboard Ark 3 and what is she doing aboard Ark 1? Well, based on the trailer, she’s been trying to track down William Trust.

My guess is that Maddox, aboard Ark 15, has been trying to track down Trust for a while and has raided other arks looking for him. They discovered he’d snuck off earth at some point and have been in pursuit – just not sure which ark he’d left one.  In next week’s episode, looks like she finds him. We’ll see, though. The hunt for Trust is an interesting little twist, so let’s see where that leads.

Another thing to consider, Kelly clearly has some skills with her hands. She killed a couple male crewmembers during her sneaky excursion through the ship, as well as continuing her seduction of Angus Medford. There are a lot of layers to Kelly and it’s hard to really know what layers you’re getting at any one time. She kind of morphs in and out of different situations and can adjust as needed.

But how’d she get on Ark 3? Did she infiltrate at take-off as an Ark 15 operative? Did they insert here after the initial attack on Ark 3 to “mop up” whoever’s left and try to extract some info on Trust? So many questions about Kelly. On some level, she has Helena-like manipulation skills. But she feels more like a pro. Well, I suppose Helena is something of a “pro” as well given she’s probably been like this for a long while.

THE ARK — “The Painful Way” Season 1 Episode 9 — Pictured: (l-r) Paul Murray as William Trust, Reece Ritchie as Lt. Spencer Lane — (Photo by: Aleksandar Letic/Ark TV Holdings, Inc./SYFY)

Cat is also a little bit of a conundrum. She seemed to be under the impression that William Trust was going to throw over his wife for her (the second time’s the charm), something that anyone could see he doesn’t have the guts, savvy or political acumen to do. Helena Trust is the dominatrix to William Trust’s submissive. It’s a relationship that, no matter how uncomfortable, is one he’s going to stay with. “You’re right, you’re always right,” he says to his wife as she attempts to commit murder. Need we say more.

Cat, for as savvy as I believe she demonstrates she is, just can’t see that. She’s legitimately in love with this guy, so the news he’s throwing her over is devastating. She picked the wrong side as well, even though she did it for love. How does she come back from this and does Dr. Kabiri share her secret? I felt for Cat, but if I gleaned anything from her, it’s that she’s resilient and not someone who will take being pushed aside with quiet grace and dignity. Beware a woman scorned, William and Helena Trust. Should be very interesting, eh?

Again, The Ark seems to have hit a very nice stride. I keep reading info about the ratings have dropped over the last two weeks and if so, that disappoints me. I think this show is running at a high level in terms of acting, story-telling and overall vibe. It’s a worthy sci-fi offering in a niche that is woefully underrepresented at the present time and I’d like to see it carry some momentum into a couple more seasons. So, fly that The Ark flag high – and enlist your friends for a trip aboard Ark 1.

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