3%: Napkin

"What if I don't want to lie anymore?"

Most of this episode was redundant. We already knew who was telling the truth and who wasn't, so it felt like walking around in circles. At least the last ten minutes or so were pretty good.

Michele and Ezequiel continue to have the most interesting dynamic this season. He is as manipulative as ever and she is trying not to crack under the pressure. But she almost did. Having Ezequiel inside her mind was too much, even if part of the time he was trying to help her. I don't think I ever loathed him more than when he finally let her brother speak to her only to keep her from defecting. He has no quandaries to push his agenda forward.

I loved when he said that she needed to give the Cause something, a truth, and she chose to let out how much she hated him. It was a release for her, and he probably got off on it: she can hate him as much as she wants to, he still controls her. For now. I bet that, whenever she gets a window of opportunity, she will have her payback.


During the endless interrogation of Michele and Rafael, Ivana assumed that Michele was lying based on the movements of her eyes. Even though that's one of the ways you can tell a person is lying, it didn't work within the story for me. Bless Joana for mocking it. It would have made more sense for Ivana to know that Michele's brother was alive – since his alleged death was a ruse to lure Michele into the Cause – and therefore know that Michele was lying.

In fact, why would Michele lie about that in the first place? It's a risky lie (because, again, it's something that Ivana ought to know), and her brother being alive doesn't implicate that she has betrayed the Cause. She could have confirmed that her brother was alive and that his unfair imprisonment was one of the reasons she wanted to bring Offshore down.

Still, Michele sold her lies better than Rafael sold his truth. What does that say about his competence as an infiltrator? Ivana only trusted him more because she knew him well and could tell he was being honest (also, Michele's eyes). I didn't expect Ivana to suicide-sacrifice herself like that for the Cause. That she was willing to do it so that Rafael wouldn't blow his cover and she wouldn't be interrogated or tortured showcased the religious type of devotion the Cause stirs.

Now everything has turned into a delicious mess. Ezequiel knows Rafael is with the Cause, but he can't do a thing about it, not directly, anyway. Rafael doesn't know that Ezequiel is onto him, but he has the good graces of Marcela, who believes he took down a high ranking member of the Cause. Joana trusts Michele and thinks Rafael is the traitor. And what Michele will do next remains a big question mark. I love it.

Bits and Pieces

- Fernando is obviously still in love with Michele, even if he says it ain't so.

- I didn't understand why telling that Ezequiel had been with the Cause was such a huge revelation. Again, isn't that something you would expect an older leader of the Cause to know already?

- Cassia is back and it looks like she is about to tell Marcela that Michele used to be part of the Cause.

- Magritte, a Doux Reviews reader, asked this a couple of episodes ago: "is it just me, or does Rafael still come off as a bit of a jerk?" After watching this episode, I completely agree with her.

Quotes

Rafael: "What's that?"
Joana: "It's an industrial battery with two connectors, one for each of your balls."

Slow start, strong ending. Two and a half out of four secret passages.
--
Lamounier

1 comment:

magritte said...

I enjoyed the episode more than you did, and overall feel the series continues be stronger than season 1. There are indications that information is not very freely shared through The Cause, so I wasn't bothered by the fact that Ivana didn't know things that Silas knew. And if she did know Michele's brother was alive, she'd also know the Cause lied to Michele, and that combined with the leverage the Offshore has on her is reason to distrust her.

I think I enjoyed the interrogation because of the tension of not being sure what I wanted to happen. We all hate Ezequiel and are sympathetic to the cause, but we don't want Michele to be killed. So we're ambivalent about the proceedings. Plus, Michele has become the most fascinating and unpredictable character on the show. And she's unpredictable in a good way, not a badly written Riverdale sort of way where characters just do random out-of-character stuff to create drama.

I found the interrogations interesting because of the way they are influenced by their prior knowledge of Michele and Rafael, and the sense of time pressure on a hard decision. And I found it interesting that the liar was more convincing than the truth-teller. That's partly because Michele is smarter than Rafael, but I think it's also a reflection of the fact that a liar is expecting to be doubted, so they're better prepared for questioning. And Ivana's death at the end was shocking but powerful.

Also, as I wrote that comment about Rafael being a jerk after having seen a few more episodes, I might have been influenced by foreknowledge.