“Defiance” recap 1.04: Monsters, Inc.

Previously on Defiance, Irisa was revealed as a seer after she smoked a little hookah and did a little blood oath with a giant Irathient called Steampunk Sukar. Luckily, her omniscience kicked in just in time for her to save the city from a Hellbug infestation. Everybody else had job problems. All the assholes in town kept reminding Amanda she’s up for reelection in just a couple more weeks, one of Kenya’s bacon-loving clients literally exploded mid-coitus, and Stahma Tarr’s job of bending the world to her whims got pretty tedious because the only thing bigger than Datak’s ego is a blue star.

Another day, another way for Nolan and Irisa to piss off the entire Castithan population of Defiance. This time, they bust up a gun-running operation, only whoops: The guns weren’t for Datak and his bullies; they were being smuggled in by Datak and his bullies on behalf of the City Council. They made a deal with him — without Amanda’s knowledge, by the way — to get them some weapons because with the stasis net still down, the town’s a sitting duck for whatever Arkfall mutant thing is lurking in the forest. How happy is Amanda about this? As happy as Datak is about never being asked to to join the City Council. Which is to say: The exact opposite of happy.

“I may not be wearing my power-braid, but I’m still fierce, bitch!”

If you’re having a really shitty day because the various alien races in your city are conspiring with the humans in your city to undermine your authority and turn the whole place into a mob town, one good way to relieve stress is to have a drink and a laugh with your sister. Unfortunately for Amanda, as she’s on her way to do just that, she is accosted by an angry wife of one of Kenya’s clients. The angry wife calls Kenya a whore in about eleven different ways, and so Mayor Rosewater just socks her one right in the jaw. Professional? No. The correct way to be a big sister? Yes.

Amanda’s day gets even worse, though, when she shows up at Need/Want and finds her crush/the town sheriff enjoying a romp with her sister. What Amanda doesn’t know is that it’s not a paid-for romp. Kenya has developed actual feelings for Nolan, so she tells him maybe they can keep having sexytime fun together, for free. Well, but the gun thing and the getting trolled thing and now this thing conspire to make Amanda grumpier than we’ve ever seen her. She lays into Kenya about how her profession isn’t respectable and she just had to cold-clock some random woman to defend her honor and wouldn’t she rather be doing a safer thing for her vocation. Which: That seems a little silly since the only other work in this town is, like, mining alien artifacts and investigating murders. They don’t get to finish their sisterly scuffle because one of Kenya’s clients starts hollering about how one of Kenya’s workers stole his money.

“I guess Jenny was so busy doing bizarre shit that lesbians forgot to notice my Jessica Rabbit physique.”

Kenya chases her girl out into the street and into a seedy part of town where that Bio-man from the pilot, the one Nolan deactivated by punching him real hard in the ass, is slinging whatever is the alien version of heroin. Kenya’s not scared very much, but she realizes they’re in big time trouble when the back doors of the Bio-man’s ice cream truck(?!) open up to reveal like a dozen junkies he’s kidnapped. Five seconds later, Kenya and her girl are bound and gagged in the back of that truck.

OK, and the whole time all this stuff is happening, Kenya and/or Amanda are flashing back to when they were little kids. See, Amanda actually raised Kenya because their mom was killed during the Pale Wars. Except for that’s just a pretty lie Amanda has been telling Kenya. What really happened is that Amanda and her mom were out scavenging when bombs started falling all around them. Amanda insisted that they hurry back and get Kenya, who was just playing hopscotch out in the street while brimstone crashed all around her, but Mama Rosewater decided to save her own skin instead. Amanda rushed back for her baby sister, told her their mom had been killed, and gave her an amulet to protect her: The medal of St. Finnigan.

“St. Finnigan is the patron saint of the odds being ever in your favor.”

And you thought the only thing Amanda had in common with Katniss Everdeen was her side-braid.

The Bio-man takes his prisoners back to his lair, which, by the way, he shares with his gay ol’ boyfriend. The Bio-boyfriend, who is human, is like, “Oh, good, moron, you kidnapped the mayor’s sister. Well, so much for keeping our adrenaline-extracting operation secret, you twit!” These guys are extracting adrenaline from junkies by hooking them up to some kind of haunted house Matrix and draining their fight-or-flight-fluid while they’re in a state of heightened terror. Kind of liking working at Monster, Inc., actually, except for there’s a lot less cuddly blue KITTIES! and a lot more angry Volge.

Inside the Matrix, Kenya keeps herself and her girl safe, running and ducking and hiding, and whispering words of encouragement and affection to her.

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