Defiance, S3 Ep01/02 – The World We Seize / The Last Unicorns

Taking place 7 months after the conclusion of last season, Defiance‘s two-hour season premiere introduces viewers to two new forces. The first one being the Omecs, a superior alien race viewed as an enemy by other Votan races. The second force we’re introduced to is General Rahm Tak – the terrorist-like leader of a Votanis death squad. As these two forces converge on to the small town of Defiance, for their own separate reasons, it will only mean a bad outcome for Defiance‘s cast of characters. Already, in “The World We Seize” the emergence of Rahm Tak has greatly affected members of the McCawley family.

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General Rahm Tak

General Rahm Tak has already proved himself to be a formidable villain for the citizens of Defiance. When we first meet him, as Stahma and Datak attempt to gain his trust by bringing him a beaten Rafe McCawley, he is surrounded by dozens loyal to him and the severed heads and limbs of humans he’s murdered. He is a merciless killer with only one goal on his mind: to rid the world of humanity.

As if taking cues from Game of Thrones, Defiance kills off the entire McCawley family (except for Pilar) in the first hour of this two-hour premiere. Rafe, Datak, and Stahma’s plan to rescue their children from Pilar goes awry when they come across Rahm Tak. Though they intend to lure Rahm Tak away from their children’s location, their children are found regardless. This leads to Quentin being shot through the head, despite his allegiance to the Votanis Collective. This death was a bit shocking, but not as much as the ones that followed. Rafe dies when he enters the house, guns blazing, in order to save his daughter, Christie, and Christie dies by the hand of Stahma.

The Christie death was the most shocking of all, especially since it was Stahma who did the deed. Stahma was seemingly conflicted in the choice between killing Christie or allowing her husband to be killed. In a sense, Stahma made the right choice in killing Christie, because if she didn’t, Rahm Tak would have ordered the deaths of all three of them and then the baby may have been found as well. This way at least two of them live, and their son Alak and Pilar were able to retrieve the newborn. That being sad, it’s still sad to see Christie go, considering she did have one of the more compelling character arcs last season.

While the threat of the Votanis Collective looms in the air, Defiance faces other problems as Omecs arrive in the McCawley Mines. It turns out they’re there for gulanite to re-power their ship, but this goal leads to something much more extraordinary, as we later find out. Nolan and Irisa are saved from their stasis pod by the Omecs, but it was unclear why they did in the first place. With Nolan and Irisa back in Defiance, they wind up getting in a confrontation with the female Omec, Kindzi, who in turn gets shot by Amanda, who has retaken control of Defiance in the past few months.

The capture of Kindzi leads the male Omec, T’evgin, to Defiance, where he stirs up much civil unrest considering how the Omecs treated the other Votan races in the past. A lot happens in the second hour of this premiere, as Kindzi murders a Votan child (after being provoked), Irisa continues to feel guilt and grief over the ones she killed last season, and the eventual act that allies the Omecs with Amanda and Nolan. Doc Yewl, who has shown her disapproval of the Omecs’ arrival since she first saw them, was the only one who could heal Kindzi from her bullet wounds. Unfortunately, the one way to do it was to have a portion of her skin cut off and placed on Kindzi’s wound. Seemingly given no other choice, and in need of the Omecs’ services to mine for gulanite themselves, Amanda and Nolan brutally slice a piece of flesh off Yewl in order to help the Omecs.

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Stahma and Datak forced to assist Rahm Tak

Defiance‘s two-hour premiere concludes with everyone in very different spots than they were before. Yewl will remained angered over how Amanda and Nolan abused her in order to help the Omecs, but meanwhile the town is happy that they have power and the shield is up due to the gulanite they were able to acquire. Irisa and Nolan aren’t seeing eye to eye, as Nolan shot the father of the child that was killed after that father tried to kill Kindzi. Datak and Stahma have been forced by Rahm Tak to sabotage Defiance from the inside. Pilar is off somewhere keeping her granddaughter safe, killing any strangers she comes across for resources.

Amanda and Nolan don’t know what they’ve gotten themselves into helping out the Omecs. We find out at the end (in a montage aided with a pleasing cover of Queen’s “Your My Best Friend”) that the Gulanite the Omecs will soon have will bring about a race of thousands of Omecs awakened from cryosleep. Knowing what we now know about the Omecs’ past, this can only mean bad things for the human race and the Votan races on Earth.

Overall, Defiance’s two-hour premiere was pretty good. It was filled with plenty of surprises, compelling new twists on the series, and some frightening new threats. While Defiance‘s first season felt a bit weak, the second season was far superior. If this episode is any inclination, Defiance‘s third season should be even better. It’s a shame so many lead characters were killed off in the first hour, but this at least illustrates the severity of the world they’re living in. No one is safe.

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