Welcome Caprica fans.
The title, “Reins of a Waterfall” describes this episode perfectly. The noun “reins” as a means to guide, control, check or restrain. In tarot cards, the waterfall represents emotion and the subconscious. In Chinese symbolism, it represents the feminine. In dream analysis, waterfalls are a symbol of rebirth or can represent a form of baptism or initiation. Since the last episode was “Rebirth”, this episode would typify the guidance of that rebirth, the next step in the journey of creation.
Entering into this episode, we are sampling through Caprica television like a remote control, seeing the cultural aftermath of Dr. Amanda Graystone’s public statement that her daughter Zoe was a terrorist involved with the MagLev bombing and the Soldiers of the One (STO). Dr. Graystone has had to resign her position at the hospital. Lacy Rand’s classmates at the Athenian Academy ostracize her. Daniel Graystone’s company appears on the verge of collapse.
As Daniel lets off steam in the boxing ring, his colleague, Cyrus, pleads with him to hire Pryah (Luciana Carro, “Kat” on Battlestar Galactica) to the open public relations position to counter the negative press. Cyrus wants Daniel to go on television to speak out. Daniel refuses.
As he leaves the gym, Daniel’s driver relinquishes the keys quite quickly to Sam Adama, but Daniel does not realize exactly who he is. Daniel performs a pre-emptive first strike blow, but Sam quickly shows him who is boss in this encounter. Joseph Adama walks up and introduces Daniel to his brother, Sam. Joseph seems to be embracing his Tauron roots whole-heartedly. I have a feeling Daniel will no longer refuse a phone call from Joseph again.
I thought Sam’s statement to Daniel was ironic about his niece, Tamara: “She’s dead because you raised a terrorist and I frakkin’ hate terrorists.” Sam belongs to the mob and likely has inflicted terror into the hearts of many in addition to the routine assassinations he carries out for the Guatrau (the Godfather).
Joseph wants to see Tamara, his daughter, again in the virtual world. Daniel tries to explain the program is gone, but Joseph reminds him that he said Daniel “thought” it was gone. As Daniel walks out of the ally, a single crow or raven flies behind him. Crows are powerful symbols that can be associated as being messengers, and symbols of death, wisdom, communication and the underworld.
In a scene reminiscent of Goodfellas, Willie skips school again to hang out with his Uncle Sam at his off-track betting establishment, bringing food to the men in the back room, including Francis (Christian Tessier, “Duck” from Battlestar Galactica). Sam admonishes Willie, telling him he needs to wait until attendance is taken and THEN he can skip out. To cover his absence, Sam plans to call in and use a made-up Tauron holiday as an excuse because he does not think the school will know any better. While watching scenes with Sam and the future Admiral William Adama, I cannot help but wonder how many lessons he learned from Sam that helped in the salvation of the survivors in the Battlestar Galactica story.
A beaten-up Daniel comes home and rebuffs Serge’s desire to assist him medically. He walks down to his lab. Amanda comes home and they both shocked at each other’s wounds. There is a glaring medical error here in the script. Amanda is a neurosurgeon. Keeping a sterile environment becomes second nature to a physician. She goes over to the wound glue (which is known as Dermabond here on our planet) and applies it to her contaminated finger before applying it to Daniel’s facial wound. The normal procedure in a hospital would be to open a singly-packed cotton swab, apply the medication to the swab, and apply the swab to the wound. Being in the medical field, it was something that I noticed. Amanda apologizes for her public statement. Daniel chuckles that she would do it again if she could which she acknowledges. The range of emotions carried by these phenomenal actors in this scene is astounding. Eric Stoltz and Paula Malcomson are to be applauded. The love that exists between Daniel and Amanda is palpable. Daniel wants to bond her wounds with the glue; Amanda wants to bond in a different sort of way.
All of this is going on in front of U-87/Zoe. U-87/Zoe looks confused and alarmed that her parents think she was part of the bombing. Since this is Avatar Zoe in U-87’s body, I believe this would be news to her as well. Although Real Zoe and Avatar Zoe were in a biofeedback loop at the time of the explosion, electrical impulses and/or feelings were being transmitted, not actual documentation of seeing Ben opening up his jacket with the bomb strapped to Ben’s body, totally unknown to Real Zoe. When her parents start having sex in the lab, the poor soul cannot leave the U-87 body. The writing here gets quite clever as they show U-87/Zoe giving them as much privacy as possible. The robot’s red eye goes from the left mid center to the far left several times to avoid looking at her parents having sex to the right of her.
Once again, the writers are pushing boundaries. Most people do not want to even think of their parents as sexual beings much less walk-in on them when they are in that intimate relationship. Again, U-87/Zoe is trapped, forced to hear, see or do things she would not choose to do otherwise.
Stargate viewers would be thrilled to see Teryl Rothery, their beloved Dr. Janet Frazier from Stargate SG-1, on Caprica. She plays Evelyn, a colleague of Joseph Adama. Evelyn briefs Joseph on a pending case and that the judge has called him there. She confirms to Joseph that the “special delivery” was sent to the judge. The judge is furious at the way Joseph handled this. Joseph has become sloppy and the cost of his cooperation has just doubled, which undoubtedly will come out of Joseph’s own pay since the Guatrau will be most displeased.
I thoroughly enjoyed the scene between Sister Clarice at the Athenian Academy and Lacy. Every time Clarice tries to sit down to get close to Lacy to pump her for information about Avatar Zoe, Lacy asks her for something else for her tea to make her get up: Sugar please. Lemon? How about a spoon? The only thing playing in my head was the Police song, “Don’t Stand So Close to Me.”
The Global Defense Department seems to be run by Stargate SG-1 alumni: Kendall Cross, who played Julia Donovan; Peter Wingfield, who played Tanith in SG-1 and Dr. James Watson in Sanctuary; and Ben Markinson who was Lotan in Stargate SG-1. The possibility that Ben Stark’s mother was an agent in the episode “Rebirth” proved to be false; it actually was Ben Stark’s mother who approached Amanda Graystone. Agent Durham (Ben Markinson) is not happy about the public confession, believing it will now drive any leads on STO underground. Gara Singh (Peter Wingfield) walks in with (gasp) a VHS tape revealing that had Ben Stark in custody over a year ago as Ben Starke for a curfew violation, finding detonators and wires in his backpack that he explained as being part of a science club project. They let him leave. Agent Durham destroys the tape and calls a reporter with the Caprican Tribune to plant a story that they have been stonewalled at getting a search warrant for the Graystone’s home because of defense contracts. Their tactic works; they get their warrant to search the Graystone house the next day.
I love the subtle touches of asymmetry in The Caprica world. They can achieve space flight between planets, but they are still using VHS tapes.
Back at the lab U-87/Zoe has figured out how to get her consciousness back to the virtual world and summons Lacy to meet her there. Avatar Zoe is in the space her father created. Zoe and Lacy look for the door out (nod to The Matrix). As they search, Lacy shares with Zoe about Clarice’s inquisitions. Zoe implores Lacy not to trust her. Avatar Zoe reasons that if Real Zoe had trusted Clarice, she would have already known of her existence. Lacy finds the door and opens it. A light floods the darkness, revealing they are not alone. A confused Tamara Adams (Joseph Adama’s daughter who died under the “Adams” name) is between them. Zoe tells Tamara they will all go through the door and then they will be free. In a profound moment, Lacy asks, “Can you be free if you’re not real?” Avatar Zoe certainly hopes so. I personally think that living in the virtual world is a step closer to freedom than an avatar of a living person being trapped in a metal body. Tamara, Lacy and Zoe make their way through the V-club. Tamara is visibly shaken and Zoe wants to help her, but Tamara wants to find her own way home.
Pryah (“Kat” from Battlestar Galactica) advises Daniel that it would be best to go on Baxter Sarno’s show to give an emotional appeal, that Zoe was a troubled kid who got mixed up with the wrong people, that she was not a normal kid (i.e., that she was not like everyone else’s child). Daniel refuses, saying Zoe was normal. He will not dishonor his daughter to save his company.
Clarice puts on a holoband to talk with the STO. In a room resembling a Catholic confessional booth, “Alvo” hears Clarice. Alvo sounds like the voice of Lucius from the original Battlestar Galactica. Clarice gives Alvo an update on her progress, but Alvo is not pleased at the fallout from the events that occurred as they were premature. Clarice believes Zoe will help the soldiers, to serve the Lord through Apotheosis. Alvo says that not everyone in the STO believes in Apotheosis. Clarice will not abandon God’s plan. She believes the creation of Avatar Zoe was God’s gift to all of them and that it will save all of them.
Apotheosis on a simple level is “to deify” or to “to be made divine.” According to Webster’s Dictionary, it is “the act of raising a person to the status of a god.” In Christology, it refers to the Trinity. In modern literature, it has been used figuratively to refer to elevation of a dead leader (often one who was assassinated and/or martyred) to a superhuman charismatic figure free of all faults and controversies. Some examples that came up in my research included Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. Since Caprica is filled with religious symbolism, it is my interpretation at this point, since Clarice knows nothing about the robot, U-87, and Clarice cannot make a leap to a Trinity connection (yet), Clarice is just referring to Avatar Zoe and Real Zoe.
Back in the virtual room, Avatar Zoe is growing up emotionally quickly, learning the art of manipulation herself. Using guilt as a motivator, she tells Lacy that she is obligated to help her get to Gemenon especially since she chickened out of going with them in the first place. Avatar Zoe tells Lacy that God wants her on Gemenon; she was going to be something special. I said to myself, “She already IS special.” Lacy brings up a valid point, “What if the purpose is bad?” Because Real Zoe is Avatar Zoe’s creator, she trusts in her creator’s plan. The plan is to locate Keon, Ben’s best friend, and get him to help move the robot. Lacy physically ambushes Keon (Liam Sproule) and demands his help. When she mentions Sister Clarice’s name in connection to STO, he appears to have no knowledge of her involvement.
Daniel and Joseph are back at Daniel’s lab. He informs Joseph that Tamara was in the virtual room he created approximately 3 (series) hours ago. The two men go in together; the room, however, is empty. Daniel takes off his holoband to check his readings, leaving Joseph alone. I wondered if Joseph felt some of what Tamara must have experienced when Joseph unknowingly walked out on her and left her in the virtual room all alone. Daniel comes back to say that it appears Tamara really is gone; the previous readings must have been a glitch, like a ghost in the machine. Daniel sadly realizes that means Zoe is no longer there either (of course, he does not realize she is just outside the room in another room in the virtual world). Joseph verbalizes that he wishes that he had not seen her and Daniel agrees (about Zoe). It appears Joseph understands this and says, “I’m sorry.” However, the look he had in his eyes was similar to the one he had when he used this same phrase in talking to Minister Chambers in the pilot episode right before Minister Chambers was assassinated by Sam, his brother. My heart started racing. It was not an apology but rather a “hey you brought what is to come” kind of sorry.
After listening to the TV news and the company losing value, Daniel places a call and decides to go on Sarno’s show.
Willie, Sam and Sam’s husband, Larry (Julius Chapple) are about to have dinner. The writers give us some Tauron cultural information. There is a sculpture on the table that Willie admires. Sam tells him that the four sides mean order, nature, strength and love. Because Willie’s dad is a lawyer, he respects order, represented by Jupiter, above everything else and that is why that is bigger. Larry says that in their home, Mars (strength) is three times bigger because he married a tough guy (Sam). Willie wants to know why his uncle and his husband do not have children. Sam says perhaps if he changed jobs as his current job is too dangerous; Larry pipes in that Sam’s job is not too good for grown-ups either.
Joseph walks in and asks to speak to Sam privately. He wants Tauron eye-for-an-eye justice. He says he has a daughter AND a wife in the bombing while Daniel only lost a daughter. He wants Sam to balance the accounting sheet.
It will be 2 weeks before the next Caprica airs because of the Vancouver Winter Olympics 2010. Can Joseph go through with his request? Can Sam go through with Joseph’s request or will he ultimately protect his brother and not go through with it? Will U-87/Zoe get one step closer to Gemenon? How will Daniel’s appearance go on Sarno’s show? Will Tamara find her way out of
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