Dark Matter 3.10 Recap: Human on the inside

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Mar 25, 2021, 7:00 AM EDT (Updated)

Warning: If you have not seen Dark Matter, Season 3, Episode 10, the following recap contains many many spoilers. So many spoilers. All the spoilers. Proceed at your own risk.

All right, I've gotta warn you fine folks before we get into this. I'm about to dump some serious feels all over the place. This episode was just full of emotional turmoil and big character moments for Two and Android (and even Three!), and I just have a lot of feelings, okay?

If you read my Wynonna Earp recaps -- or half the other stuff I write -- you know what I really want to talk about is everything involving Two and Dr. Shaw. But we will hold off on that for a bit so we can talk about everything else, 'cause this episode marks a lot of changes for a number of characters.

But first, the setup, which involves Android coming to the aid of her "robot friends," including the very attractive Victor and a few of his fellow free android compatriots. When one of their former owners is killed, they have to go on the run, and to their credit, the Raza Crew is actually willing to help. The decision is made to take them to some secret coordinates embedded in the code of the emotional upgrade, coordinates that will take them to meet their creator. For those of you keeping track, this is another check mark on the list of future events the Future Five told Android about.

One of the things that make this episode so strong -- other than the reliance on the characters and their relationships with each other and the universe around them to push the story forward -- is the fact that it focuses very specifically on one of the show's major themes. Namely, what exactly makes someone a person? What does it mean to be alive? To be human? And it does so from a number of different angles.


Three spends most of the episode struggling with the concept directly, and as the only one approaching it from an unambiguously human perspective. He doesn't trust androids because, in his head, they are not people. They are not alive. Then again, he's dating the digital consciousness of his girlfriend. Sarah is all personality and no physicality. The only difference between her and Android, for example, is the fact that Sarah was, at some point in the past, flesh and blood.

Eventually he comes around on androids, if only far enough to be okay with the idea of Sarah's consciousness being downloaded into a synthetic body, an act that, as we discover later, basically makes her the ubermensch.

Two also has some relationship drama this week, though to categorize it as such would be a disservice to the huge implications of what she (and we) learn. The missing pieces of her time as Rebecca are filled in, as we discover she didn't escape from Dwarf Star on her own. She had help in the form of Dr. Irena Shaw, a woman who looks exactly like Android and who apparently was instrumental in Rebecca's creation. It's so easy for us to forget that Two was also built, not born. She is a synthetic human, who, much like Android, only has humanity as far as any human is willing to admit she possesses. Dr. Shaw didn't see the difference between Rebecca and any other person, and they developed a close personal relationship.


The fact that this show is finally giving us some semblance of a significant LGBT relationship is, frankly, awesome. Yes, we had some comments about Solara's past, and we had that kiss in the premiere, but confirmation that, at the very least, Two is open to and capable of bisexuality is something this show has been sorely missing. The fact that it's not questioned and that the "gay thing" isn't made into anything more than it would have been if she'd found out she was romantically linked to any other character is even better.

But as much as the relationship is the thing most people will be talking about, it's also not the crux of Two's story in this episode. What we see of her in Android's memories is. In those memories, we meet Portia Lin right after she started going by that name, just as she joined the crew of the Raza and brought Android with her. We see her fight and kill the former leader of the crew as a result of that action, and we see her interacting with Five (when Five was Emily). It's that moment, where we watch as Portia thanks Five for fixing Android, and snaps at her when she has the gall to suggest that Android is a machine, that we see that there are more sides to Portia than the ones we've been exposed to so far. It raises two very interesting questions: First, does the alternate Portia also have a Dr. Shaw? Given what we know about her relationship with her own Android, it stands to reason. And second, would Two actually become the Portia we've come to know, the hardened murderer, if she were to get her memories back?


Portia was a personality that Rebecca took on for whatever reason, but she was still Rebecca. She lost someone she loved, but she still loved. She obviously had the capacity to be a good and decent person, at least to Android. Maybe Two and Portia aren't all that different.

Then there's Android, who has probably the most to deal with out of anyone this week, as she learns that her original purpose was to be a replacement body for Dr. Shaw's failing one. Android's ongoing story for the whole of the series has been her struggle to be seen as a person, as a member of the crew, despite the fact that she is not human. This whole experience just threw that difference into an even starker comparison. She is not human. She is a machine. More than that, she's a machine that wasn't intended to function in the way that she does.


Android takes all this news extremely well and actually decides to use it as motivation. She tells Five that she doesn't want to use the emotional upgrade because it's a mask. It's not who she is. She also talks about how she was meant for a bigger purpose and manages to navigate the rough waters of dealing with the idea that Dr. Shaw's existence in some way diminishes her own, and she comes through it somehow more appreciative of who she is and what she can offer the crew.

At the end of the episode, everyone is sort of left to ponder the implications of what they've just experienced, as Two, Three, and Android leave on the Raza, while Victor, Shaw, and Sarah leave on their own ship. Something tells me they probably won't be talking out their feelings much. Well, at least, Two and Three probably won't be.

Meanwhile, it looks like we're getting a peek into the predicted Android Liberation Front, as Victor, Chase, and Shaw all welcome Sarah back to the world of the corporeal by informing her that she's going to help them with their very important cause. One that, apparently, involves occasionally luring former android owners to their deaths.

Random Thoughts:

Apparently, Android's name is Sookie. So, that's a thing.

Zoie Palmer was amazing in this episode, and not because she got to play someone other than Android.

Victor assuming the creator was a "he"... #PowThePatriarchy

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