Defiance: This Woman’s Work Review

Another roller coaster ride on Defiance saw relationships shift and secrets revealed. Here's our review...

The more twisted things get in Defiance, the more my evil grin widens. Which characters should we root for? How should we feel about what’s happening to those we despise and those we enjoy most?

Viewers will have to decide for themselves, but that’s the beauty of the ups and downs of the mixed society in this frontier town. So get on the roller coaster, put those hands up, and surrender!

Viceroy Mercado returns for the monumental Arkfall whose decaying orbit has been tracked for 17 years, and the cover story he and Pottinger feed to Nolan seems too good to be true: the fallen ship contains an infinite power source!

The truth is that Gulanee prisoners were contained on board, and the E-Rep presumably sought to use these powerful energy beings as a weapon. How they thought they could control such a creature is beyond me, but it hardly matters since the mission was a failure. What does matter is the fallout for Pottinger, who apparently is headed to Dakota Reach despite his understandable defeat. Will the Castithan fetishist, Mercado, be in charge now?

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And speaking of Castithan sex – how about that ending, Defiance fans? I’m not sure Christie’s quest to understand her new Castithan family included a rendezvous with another human in white-face, but what was Christie doing at the Casti night club alone anyway? Seeking a hook-up? That seems unlikely given that she’s married, but it seems risky to send her in to contend with another culture’s bar mating rituals unaccompanied. The Arch DJ’s plan to help her “get in the skin” of her in-laws’ race seems extreme; nevertheless, wow – what a shocker of a conclusion!

It’s likely that Amanda will take advantage of her knowledge of Mercado’s predilections to protect Pottinger, and her increasing sympathy for the new mayor allows for an opening at Nolan’s side. Everyone is welcome to join me in being jealous of the old man’s luck in landing the rebounding “Barbie Doll,” Berlin, who may be feeling hurt by Tommy’s decision not to leave with her to Texas, but who I think is actually is more suited to the current Lawkeeper than she is to his former deputy anyway.

Clearly, I’m a “Torisa” shipper, but what a relief it must be for all viewers to have Irisa inadvertently share her secret with her former lover – or anybody for that matter. Although Tommy insists he’s helping her as a friend, the bond between them must be strong for him to keep the mystery of Irisa’s not-so-fatal-after-all murder spree to himself. And I’m glad to hear Irisa no longer sees Irzu as a god.

Are the artifacts inside her, which are tied to the ancient Votan ship buried beneath the town, perhaps allowing her to communicate with the ship’s AI, for example? Are the snaking tendrils which temporarily kill her victims some sort of recruitment or influence the ship is exerting? I love this kind of speculation, which will no doubt last all season – at least!

Likewise, Stahma’s consistent struggle for power will probably take all summer (and hooray for that), especially as it takes a more subtle turn this week with a “women’s rights” slant. Not so subtle, though, is Stahma’s solution to the higher caste resistance to her fight for change: poisoning the wives’ tea and blaming it on the religious leader in town. However, if her frame-up required the cooperation of supposed witnesses, perhaps there are others more sympathetic to her quest to change the culture of the misogynist Castithans. And didn’t Datak seem strangely pleased despite being her victim himself? This couple wins the dysfunctional romance of the year award!

Defiance has been non-stop entertainment this year, and the deck just got another shuffle. Relationships shift, secrets are revealed, and new ones are glimpsed only by the viewers, giving us tantalizing morsels to keep us hungering for more.

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I’ll miss the bioman, Churchill, but I shall press on to see how things turn out for the remaining heroes and villains of the show. Wait, which ones are which again?

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4.5 out of 5