I suspect this will be an angsty episode since we start with Berlin and Tom in bed having sex – and Berlin’s love of cameras stretches into the bedroom. Who bets Irisa is going to see that video and be the saddest of all sad pandas over it?
Viceroy Mercado, one of Niles’s least favourite people, drops in to let Niles know there’s a big shiny piece of Arc debris going to land nearby – which they want very much. Niles doesn’t think he has the resources or expertise for Arc hunting – but Nolan is an expert and Mercado expects him to use Nolan’s expertise. Not being Nolan’s biggest fan, Niles is not best pleased. It’s all politics as well – Mercado need something for the nest election
The Arc debris crashes which attracts the attention of several nasty mutant monsters. The debris has some kind of defence which promptly kills the nasty tentacle dog things. There’s something nasty and deadly in there, kind of like a spindly transformer
Niles and Nolan prepare to set out with additional information on why they want this so bad – it contains something that produces inexhaustible, clean energy. Nice. Nolan insists on being in charge because he’s the expert and Niles isn’t (also because they don’t like each other but they won’t admit to that).
Tommy and Berlin show up, rather than Irisa. Tommy thinks it’s a bad idea to mix them both so brought Berlin because a) she’s his girlfriend and b) she wants to make a propaganda video (she definitely has a thing for cameras). Nolan wants Irisa because a) she’s his daughter, b) she’s an experienced Arc Hunter and C) he doesn’t like Berlin. He also has issues with Tommy revealing him and Rafe trying to hide a murderer and thief; in response to this ridiculousness, Tommy quits. Nolan leaves – and Berlin takes the chance to congratulate Tommy and suggest they go to a different part of the E-Rep, to the border which will be good for both their careers. Tommy agrees.
Meanwhile Stahma takes Christie to one of the Tarr establishments – a casino. Which is being loudly protested by a Castithan called Belatok Kurr, a holy man. He accuses Stahma of heresy and she sends Christie home so she can make nice with the holy man. No, he’s not upset about the gambling – he’s upset that a woman “usurped her husband.” He dismisses the idea of Alak in charge and how their culture has survived because they don’t compromise – Stahma elegantly points out they are both speaking English. She calls assimilation natural, he calls it a virus and think he’s encouraging other women to “forget their place” (his wife looks on with “one day I will strangle you” eyes). Stahma finally decides “screw this playing nice shit” and reminds him she’s an empowered woman backed by a band of hardened criminals. They exchange more insults back and forth and he threatens to see her in a “shaming rack”.
To Rafe and Datak in the hovel Datak is staying in (and a little neat piece of world building – Datak now has a shower, which for Castithans is a sign of very low class). Datak shows something illicit dangerous, shiny and something we can’t see to Rafe. He leaves when Stahma arrives and accuses Datak of paying Kurr – which Datak denies, he doesn’t have the money and Kurr is unbribable. This boycott is entirely from their community and Kurr is dangerous because he is an “honest” man.