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SYFY WIRE Resident Alien

Recap: Harry's back on Earth and kidnapping an octopus in SYFY's 'Resident Alien' Season 2 premiere

"I’m an alien. I’m here to kill everyone."

By Caitlin Busch

Being an alien is easier than being a human. At least, that’s what Harry Vanderspeigle (Alan Tudyk) posits in the opening moments of SYFY’s Resident Alien Season 2. We join him driving down a road with his frenemy Max (Judah Prehn) in the backseat demanding to be taken home — which is odd, since the last time we saw them together was heading off-planet in Harry’s spaceship at the end of Season 1. How’d they get in a car? 

How to Watch

Watch Resident Alien on SYFY and Peacock.

As the pair bicker, they get into a crash, and we’re shown that the car is not a car but Harry’s ship. What’s going on here? 

Memory loss. It’s memory loss. Harry wakes up in a hospital bed and a doctor reveals some folks found him “walking down the road naked.” When she asks who he is, his response is enough to cause any doctor concern: “I’m an alien. I’m here to kill everyone.” 

Get it together, Harry!

**SPOILER WARNING: This recap contains spoilers for Resident Alien Season 2, Episode 1, “Old Friends.”**

Back in Patience, Asta Twelvetrees (Sara Tomko) is at her adopted father Dan’s (Gary Farmer) diner and telling him that she can’t find Max; she fears he’s been kidnapped by the government agents who were after Harry in the Season 1 finale. She looked everywhere for him (because she’s unaware that Max snuck aboard Harry’s ship), and knows she’ll have to tell Max’s parents the truth. Dan assures her he’ll be with her the whole way — though more in spirit than physically because he’s got a business to run.

So, Asta goes to the Hawthorne household where she finds Mayor Ben (Levi Fiehler) and Kate (Meredith Garretson) cooking breakfast with… Max? Asta’s surprised but relieved, and Ben and Kate are none the wiser, as they’re still caught up in their heroics from the previous night when they beat up the government agents who broke into their home. Their adventure triggered… something… in their relationship, and they seem more into each other than ever, which translates to Max being free to run about town without his parents’ watchful eyes. He tells Asta to meet him at the baseball field. She warily agrees.

At Harry’s cabin, Sheriff Mike Thompson (Corey Reynolds) and Deputy Liv Baker (Elizabeth Bowen) are still hot on the trail of a potential killer, and they’re now convinced Harry is guilty. The evidence keeps piling up; the only problem is that they’re missing a key (read: alien) piece of the puzzle. They’re almost there, though. Sheriff Mike wants to dig deeper and find out what makes Harry “tick.” Because accusing the town doctor of murder? That’s a big one.

Asta meets Max at the baseball field and he explains that he woke up on the field after blacking out during the crash. And Harry’s ship? It’s cloaked and sitting in the outfield. Upon finding some of Harry’s blood at the scene of the crash, Asta runs off and tells Max to guard the ship until she can locate Harry.

Resident Alien 201 GATED

Harry, meanwhile, is still at the hospital and has begun lecturing the staff about where his planet is located and generally bullying them. Unfortunately, a little girl holding a stuffed octopus walks by with her mother, and Harry, convinced the stuffed toy is one of his octopus cousins, runs after her and steals it. He’s horrified to find the child has “stuffed” the octopus, and runs away, screaming about his superiority to humans right before he’s tackled to the ground and sedated. 

At the clinic, Asta’s checking medical records to see if she can track Harry down only for Nurse Ellen (Diana Bang) to arrive and tell her that D’Arcy (Alice Wetterlund) and Jay (Kaylayla Raine) were responsible for destroying Jimmy’s (Ben Cotton) truck the previous night. As we saw in the Season 1 finale, Jay threatened to kill Jimmy (who is her biological father) if he went near Asta (Jay’s biological mother) ever again. Just then, Asta gets a call from the hospital where Harry is shacking up and hears that Harry is running around telling everyone he’s an alien. Because of course he is.

Via voiceover, Harry tells us about how delicate the human brain is. Case in point: When he startles awake, he’s convinced he’s Detective Lennie Briscoe from Law & Order, his favorite show from back when he was learning to be human. So he’s not feelin’ too great.

You know who is feelin’ great, though? Mayor Ben, who’s struttin’ his way around town after his run-in with the agents. He even manages to give Sheriff Mike some sass. Granted, the good sheriff’s also in an odd mood as he hoards two coffee cups on his desk and refuses to tell Deputy Liv what’s up.

Max manages to ward off some teens trespassing near the grounded ship with Sahar’s (Gracelyn Awad Rinke) help. Just as Kate — who’s busy cleaning after the break-in — discovers Max isn’t in the house, Sahar starts quizzing Max about his time in space. Is he dizzy? Aging rapidly? Smarter? None of the above. But he is in trouble; Mayor Ben arrives to pick the kids up just before they realize there’s a baseball game scheduled for that afternoon.

D’Arcy’s the umpire for one team, and she’s got her eyes on a cute dude who she’s beating on the other. Might D’Arcy be in for some romance this season? 

At town hall, Liv is taking the Hawthornes’ statement, but the pair keep getting distracted by how… into each other they are after the attack. In his dad’s office, Max and Sahar take the opportunity to call Asta and let her know they’re no longer on guard duty, and that someone is bound to find that ship. Asta’s got a bigger problem at the moment, though, because she’s found Harry, and he’s in full-on Detective Briscoe mode. He’s also convinced Asta is a prostitute informant named Cosette. The only way Asta’s able to get him to go with her is to tell him she knows where a murder has taken place.

She takes him to the Japanese restaurant we saw in Season 1. As he fails to use chopsticks, Harry questions her about “this guy who died, Harry Vanderspendel.” Asta’s hoping this familiar setting will jog Harry’s memory, and just as she’s starting to lose her patience, that’s when the octopus in the tank (voiced by Nathan Fillion) calls out to Harry and telepathically jogs his memory. Asta also learns that octopuses are related to Harry’s people and that they can talk to humans — so Asta’s having a bit of a day.

Sahar & Max Play Detective While Harry Thinks He Is One

A re-Harry'd Harry and Asta arrive at the baseball field just as D’Arcy takes the plate, and Harry catches the ball and disrupts the game to try and stop them from discovering his ship. Just as it seems the ball’s about to hit the invisible ship, Asta kills the lights, effectively ending the game.

Once everyone has cleared out, Harry tries to start his ship up again only to find it’s damaged. He’s convinced he can fix it and leave without anyone seeing, and with a dramatic “goodbye, Asta,” he… fails to fix the ship.

As Harry tinkers away, Sheriff Mike’s father Lewis (Alvin Sanders) visits and tells Mike he doesn’t need to be alone because he knows “what day it is.” He gives Mike a beer and immediately begins criticizing him for never opening up to anyone. Lewis says, “He died six years ago. Can’t run away from this forever,” giving us the biggest hint thus far into Mike’s past.

“This is some bullsh**” Harry grumbles as he tries and fails several times to fix his ship. His ministrations result in a city-wide power surge that effects the Thompsons at work, the Hawthornes in their new-found sexual pursuits, and Liv, D’Arcy, and Judy Cooper (Jenna Lamia) at The 59. Growing more and more frustrated, Harry tells Asta that if he can’t fix his ship, he’s stuck on Earth, and Asta convinces him that he has to either fix the ship or come up with another solution so no one sees it. 

With no other options left, Harry miniaturizes his ship into four spheres that live inside a circular box. Harry explains this is a “survival kit… so we can live long enough to kill everyone,” but tells Asta that’s no longer his intention.

The next morning, Harry talks about how much it sucks to relive his failures in his mind over and over again while he’s sitting at Dan’s diner. They share a meaningful chat about their identities before Harry takes off for his cabin again. There, he finds an elated Max waiting for him. Max is overwhelmingly happy to see Harry alive, and Harry is predictably irritated by his frenemy’s presence (he even goes so far as to “spank” Max). But upon Max leaving, it's clear that Harry's conversations with both Dan and Max have left him shaken — why does he feel so much?

Harry and Max Reunite After Their Crash

Across town, Asta and D’Arcy hop aboard their tandem bicycle to spend some much-needed quality time together. Asta mentions that Dr. Ethan Stone (Michael Cassidy) hasn’t been into work for two days; D’Arcy tells Asta that she now knows Jay is her daughter. Their secrets, D’Arcy says, are all out in the open — and, of course, Asta feels a bit guilty about that given the “Harry is an alien” of it all.

Asta goes to visit Harry not long after where she finds Harry face-down in the lake. Panicked, she runs to save him only to find that he was merely “thinking” because, surprise, Harry’s got gills and can breathe underwater. Asta’s worried Harry might have a concussion, but Harry brushes her off and laments the loss of his planet and his people. Asta tells Harry that on Earth, “you don’t have to really be related to be family,” and she assures him there are people who care about him.

People like Max, who’s magically growing hair on his chest after his trip to space. And D’Arcy, who heads over to Ethan’s place only to find his stuff cleared out and David Logan (Alex Barima) waiting for her (luckily, she leaves before he feels he has to use his gun).

Alas, Harry still misses his people. He wants other aliens around him to remind him of his non-human origins. His solution? To kidnap the octopus (No. 49, named for his placement on the restaurant menu) and make him his roommate. Right before, though, No. 49 drops a bomb: Harry’s people are on the way to complete the mission and destroy all life on Earth, including Asta.

What’s next for Harry and his octopus friend (and humanity at large)? Find out in the next episode of Resident Alien, premiering next Wednesday at 9/8c on SYFY.