Thursday, May 11, 2017

Sense8, Season Two, Episode Seven: I Have No Room in My Heart for Hate

As I mentioned in my last review, the character which frustrates me the most is Riley. Unlike the other sensates she seems to serve no real purpose for her cluster. She's been the damsel in distress that Will just had to save and then quickly fell into the girlfriend role. Besides giving the concert which drew the attention of other clusters, Riley hasn't really done much and that's all about to change in a massive way with a trip to Chicago. Will, of course, being an overbearing boyfriend, is not on side with this at all.  To be honest, he like the audience has been given no reason to believe that Riley is the least bit capable but it's still annoying. 

Riley is on a plane to Chicago and Will just won't leave her alone.  He's like an annoying gnat in her ear.  It's so bad that Nomi actually has to intervene and play peace maker when Riley snarks to the flight attendant that she would like some ear plugs. Of course Will is quick to reminder Riley that ear plugs won't stop her from hearing him because he's in her head. Nomi explains to Riley that Will is just worried about her and encourages Will to simmer the hell down a little bit. On the plane, Riley gets a visit from a sensate we haven't met yet.  This sensate isn't interested in much conversation because she feels that Riley is still trying to change the world and that one can only change oneself. She does however say that she's looking forward to meeting Riley again when her thinking has improved. This new sensate totally reminds me of Tilda Swinton in Dr. Strange and I'm glad to see the back of her quickly. Please don't go there Sense8, there's no need for that. 

Will is not above pestering Nomi and he wants to know if the ID she created for Riley will hold up. Nomi is confidant because it's the best one she's over done. An insistent Will wants to now how Nomi knows for sure it's all good and Nomi explains that over the years she's had to make new ID for trans* people when the government wouldn't provide it. Nomi does get Amanita to check for updates and they learn that there's been another mass shooting and that border security has been increased a bit. Nomi does however promise Will to get in touch with him if anything becomes a concern. 

Nomi and Amanita sit to have a meal with Amanita's three dads and her mother. They consider themselves old hippies and all attest that they have no desire to find out who actually is Amanita's biological father is. Amanita's parents are absolutely horrified by the shooting when they discuss it and are quick to blame patriarchy. They see patriarchy as a violent force bent on destruction for the sake of power. I love the family dynamics Amanita grew up. 

When Riley lands in Chicago, Will is by her side and on high alert.  Proving that he's a true BFF, Will's old partner Diego shows up to escort Riley around.  Diego is willing to do this even though he's super pissed at Will for just leaving with no explanation. Will says that he's sorry but of course, Diego cannot hear him. Diego drives to a small restaurant and stops to get some food. Will explains to Riley that Diego eats when he gets nervous. Over a malt, Riley explains a little bit about sensates and that Will is with her right now. Diego is incredulous but after Will calls him on the phone, they begin to repair their relationship.

Lito, Hernando, and Daniela The Fetishist, return to their home in Mexico city chanting, "we're here, we're queer". Someone needs to explain to me why it is that Daniela The Fetishist seems to think that it's okay for her to do that.  Their happy mood is destroyed when they discover Joaquin and Daniela's The Fetishist's parents waiting for them. Daniela's The Fetishist's parents aren't happy that she left Joaquin and are even less pleased that she's now living with Hernando and Lito. Daniela's The Fetishist's parents demand that Joaquin grab her bag and that she leave with them immediately. Before Joaquin can take the bag, Lito grabs the other end and refuses to let go.  Joaquin actually has the nerve to call Lito a "f@ggot" and ask Lito if he wants to go again.  At this point, Lito is confidant that his cluster will be there for him and responds, "only if you want to get your ass kicked by a f@ggot." It's Wolfie who shows up to add, "again" with a smile on his face.  Daniela's The Fetishist's parents make it clear that if she doesn't leave with them right now that they'll cut off her trust fund but Herando and Lito assert that Daniela The Fetishist doesn't need their money.  Daniela The Fetishists decides to stay with Lito and Hernando. 

Since her promotion, Kala has had more access to the accounting of the family business and she's not pleased with what she's discovered. Kala marches into Rajan's office and interrupts one of his meetings. Rajan admits that to boost the bottom line, the company has been selling old and expired medication to places like Kenya. Capheus is in the room when Rajan makes his admission, making it very personal for Kala because she knows Capheus's mother depends on the HIV medication for her life.  Rajan tries to say that this is standard operating procedure and that he makes sure that their people receive only the good medicine. Kala is pissed right off with his confession and storms out of the office. 

Kala retreats to her family home and they are rather protective of her which is sweet. Rajan shows up with a large bouquet of roses and Kala agrees to speak with him because clearly they have things they need to work out.  Rajan promises to end the practice of selling expired and outdated medications and promises to henceforth live up to the high moral standards that he knows that Kala has. Rajan wants to be the man that Kala wants him to be. Rajan wants to be a better person.  

Things have been going good for Capheus. His mother knows that he is seeing someone and in fact she has a boyfriend as well.  Capheus brings Zakia to meet Shiro and Zakia let's slip the possibility of Capheus running for office.  Shiro is not the least bit pleased at this admission. Later, at home, Shiro explains that she lost her husband because of his political activism and is afraid that she will lose Capheus as well. Shiro says that Capheus is all that she has left of her husband but in the end, she consents to Capheus's participation in politics.

Amanita is still very troubled by the shooting and after a little bit of searching, she manages to find a video of what happened. The shooting happened in a NYC mosque at an interfaith discussion.  What should have been open was closed by hatred.  After some research, Amanita learns that the main target was professor Mitchell Taylor, who seems to have a connection to Ruth Al-Sadaawi. The doubt of BPO involvement is erased when the killer turns out to be self hating sensate Todd.

Sun is all to aware of how alone she is in the world. Sun visits her parents graves. Sun was in jail when her father died and so she never had a chance to say goodbye. Sun has a memory of her mother at one of her matches crying because she realised that Sun's strength would mean that Sun would never go through the same things as she did.  Sun also remembers her father coming to see her in prison just before he was killed by her brother. Sun feels guilty and is certain at this point that she's failed her brother because she promised her her mother that she would look out for him. Sun's cluster shows up to offer comfort and advice. Will points out that he certainly didn't have any loving support and didn't turn out to be like Joong-Ki. Wolfgang thinks that Joong-Ki is no different than his father and should be dealt with similarly.  Capheus talks about wanting revenge after his father's murder and even stealing a gun but choosing in the end not to go through with it.  None of this helps Sun decide what to do but she is reminded that no matter what her decision is that her cluster will be there for her. They all engage in one big sensate hug.

Sun's contemplation is interrupted by Detective Moon, who is dressed as a groundskeeper to make contact with Sun. Detective Moon asserts once again that he's onto Joong-Ki and is looking for evidence. Detective Moon isn't there to arrest Sun today but suggests that they should fight again with the proviso that if Sun loses, she will come with him and make an official statement about Joong-Ki. Sun at first resists the offer for a fight but like Wolfie, she can't resist the opportunity for battle. There's a lot of sexual tension in their fight and it's clear early on that Sun is the more skillful warrior. Detective Moon does break through Sun's warrior facade when he suggests to Sun that she refuses to see how special she really is and that she's not really fighting a person but something else. It earns Detective Moon a kiss before Sun replaces her facade and knocks him the hell out. 

Diego is still driving Riley around and it's clear that he's not impressed when they arrive at the abandoned church from season one. Riley realises that she has to go downstairs and Diego is not enthused, comparing her decision to a dead chick in a horror flick. Diego decides to wait in the car and Will is unimpressed. Riley finds a table with a glass of water and a note written in the dust on the table to drink it.  If Riley takes the offered blocker, she will be cut off from her cell.  Will of course advises her not to do it but Riley takes the blocker anyway. 

When Riley takes the pill a former associate of Angelica and Whispers introduces herself.  It seems that Whispers real name is Dr. Milton. It's Angelica who nicknamed him Whispers because he's the quiet voice in your head instructing you to commit self harm. Riley is rewarded for her leap of faith with Whispers address.

Will and Wolfie are in London looking at Whispers home.  They prepare to break in and deal with Whispers once and for all when Jonas makes an appearance, asking if they are really going to kill a man in cold blood. Holy shit, Jonas is alive.  Whispers comes rushing out of his home with his wife and child and hops on a helicopter and flies away. 

As I mentioned in the start of this review, Riley hasn't been nearly as active or useful as the others in her cluster. Riley has the least skills of them all and so it's good to finally see some distance between her and Will so that she can make her own decisions. I understand Will's concern for Wiley and how much he loves her but he seems unwilling to allow her to have a breathe free of him.  He absolutely suffocates her with concern.  I like that Riley was willing to take risks on her own and against Will's advice where necessary. More than any other character, Riley needs some room to grow.

Daniela The Fetishist continues to annoy me. Sense8 has worked so hard to turn Daniela The Fetishist, Hernando and Lito into a family.  It wouldn't bother me so much if Daniela The Fetishist wasn't masturbating the moment things turn sexual between Lito and Hernando and if she didn't insert herself into spaces where she didn't belong. I can understand Daniela The Fetishist deciding to go to Pride to support Lito. It's actually a nice gesture but her returning chant about being queer alongside to gay men when there's been absolutely no evidence of her bisexuality speaks to appropriation and fetishism. Why could they just have Daniela The Fetishist have a relationship with Hernando and Lito where boundaries existed? 

It's not enough to simply say that I love Amanita's family. They're so wonderful I want to move in with them.  No wonder Amanita is such a free thinker and such a beautiful soul. It's almost too perfect and pulls me out of the imaginary world of Sense8 just a little.  This is what none hierarchical anti sexist and anti racist parenting looks like and it's wonderful. I love that it was filled about social commentary regarding the shooting. Yes, this is one of the times when Sense8 is obviously working an agenda but it works because who better to make this point than marginalised people who have so often been subjected to brutality.  

So the big elephant in the room is how the hell is Jonas still alive. If you think back, we didn't actually see Jonas die. Jonas told us that he believed he was going to be killed and we saw him strapped to a bed about to be experimented on but we didn't see the experiment and we certainly didn't see Jonas take his last breathe.  We know that somehow Whispers was able to get free after Croomer ordered him locked up and that there are factions in BPO could the other side of intervened in time to save Jonas? If it is the side of BPO that wants to return to its original mission why then is Jonas intervening while Will is trying to kill Whispers and for that matter, why doesn't Jonas want Whispers dead? Whispers was directly responsible for Angelica's suicide.  Okay, I'm a little confused now.