In episode 7, “The Queen’s Gambit,” Emori has plans for peace, Sheidheda has plans for destruction, and Echo and the gang have a change of plans.
We start off with Gabriel waking up in a cell on Bardo. He’s dragged out to see Anders, who offers him a job as a cypher. He takes it, almost immediately.
This episode continues the season’s pattern of split storylines – though, with a cast this big, it’s not a surprising strategy. Our focuses are Bardo and Sanctum.
The Bardo storyline involves Gabriel joining the Disciples, as well as Echo, Octavia, Hope, and Diyoza dealing with captivity.
Echo and Octavia bury the hatchet and hug it out. Echo seems to finally make peace with things until she figures out why they haven’t been killed or properly imprisoned. She doubles down on her murderous streak, cuts up her face, and informs their captures she’s ready to join their army. Octavia, shocked, follows suit.
Hope and Diyoza finally get some much-needed mother/daughter bonding time. Given that both are badass warriors, of course, it comes down to fisticuffs. See, this is the part of time-traveling motherhood that no one tells you about – one day you’ll run into your kid, who is much older now, and they will want you to treat them as an adult when you left them as a child. It’s a fun dynamic, and, because Hope is 25, it gives Diyoza the chance to be more of a physical disciplinarian than when Hope was a little girl. Once these two learn what Echo knows, they also agree to fight for the cause.
Looks like all that Disciple training won’t be going to waste, and they’ll be getting more to boot!
Back on Sanctum Emori wants to do for the Nulls what was never done for her (a freakdrena), bring them back into the fold. She’s planning a reunification ceremony, using DNA to reunite the Nulls with the families that abandoned them (hmm…that sounds like it’ll go well). Apparently, it takes all day to plan this because Murphy went in the morning to bring Sheidheda his breakfast and winds up suckered into a day-long chess game. Emori is obviously disappointed, but she perseveres.
Sheid’s playing games, more than just what we’re watching, he purposefully keeps Murphy occupied because he knows the believers won’t follow Kaylee Prime without Daniel Prime’s presence. He’s not wrong, and the ceremony goes to shit when Nelson’s father loudly objects. Maybe Emori could have gotten things back under control, but then Nikki shows up guns a blazing and the Children of Gabriel align with the prison miners – uh oh!
Things aren’t looking good for Emori, Nelson points a gun in her face but weirdly Nikki stops him. She says they need to make demands first, then kill her. It’s very Sheidheda…
Meanwhile, Bardo has one last surprise for us: Clarke and the gang have arrived. They get told the same lie we all have been – Bellamy’s dead. Clarke’s reaction of stunned silence lingers before we switch over to Anders, who goes to visit a very high security area of the Disciple HQ. Here we get to meet William Cadogan (John Pyper-Ferguson), who, as it turns out, was the leader of the doomsday cult that built the bunker back on Earth! Oooo…it’s all starting to come to a head now!
This is a good episode overall. Gives us some backstory on how Echo and Bellamy got together (I mean…they spent 5 years in space…two of the women were in relationships and the other was a lifelong platonic friend, is it really that surprising he’d shack up with Echo???). In any event, it was nice to see Bellamy again!
I feel bad for Emori; she really did want this event to go well, and, though she understood John’s importance as Daniel, I think she believed even without him she could make it work. It’s a shame that, no matter how we envision the future, no matter how many badass ladies we populate it with, a man’s word is still favored over a lady’s. Le sigh.
It’s especially frustrating given how well the ceremony seems to be going until Nelson’s dad ruins things – none of the other people are making a fuss or having a tantrum, but all of the sudden one asshole decries it and everything goes to shit? That’s not really how things work. Even the horrified look on Nelson’s mom’s face, come on…she did see her husband was about to choke their son to death, right? Ug. This would have worked better if other people at the party were having issues.
Also, why does Nikki stop Nelson from killing Emori? My guess is Sheidheda has something to do with it because Nikki – at least from what Hatch said – has a bit of a hair trigger for killing so this is very out of character for her. Granted, killing a Prime before exposing the truth about the new “primes” would cause a revolt of the believers, but I’m pretty sure Nikki’s gang plus the Children of Gabriel have enough weapons to easily kill those idiots. Only the Grounders would be a real obstacle, and, once Sheidheda reveals himself to them…well, that’s game over.
Finally, I’m glad we’re gonna get a glimpse at what the fuck happened on Earth. I figured, since the show is about the future, it would kind of be like the new Spider-Man series, where his origin story is left out just because it’s been done so many times. But, how the Earth goes into nuclear Armageddon can happen in multiple ways, so seeing what this version is like should be enlightening.
I do love that the final season is doing justice to the series as a whole, bringing our story back to the beginning – actually, before the beginning really. That’s what a good final season does. Can’t wait to see the next episode!