Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels” provides a suitable ending to the Elders story and leaves us a little crumb for Season 3.
This recap of Netflix Series Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels” contains significant spoilers.
- Read the Season 2 review.
- Read the recap of the previous episode (7)
- Access the archive of all the episode recaps.
Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels” is not as impressive as last season’s finale but it is still memorable. It opens up with Kovacs, Quell and the team sustaining fire from the pretorians but then it suddenly stops. Kovacs Prime has killed them all and has offered to help them. They learn that the Elder has found a way out of the firewall. Kovacs predicts that Jaeger would have let it out. Quell is irritated in Episode 8, explaining to Kovacs that getting close to him was a mistake, and causes too many problems.
I felt this for Kovacs; Altered Carbon demonstrates purpose with immortality and you could tell at this moment he was probably wondering what his purpose was if Quell isn’t part of his plans.
When they reach Trepp’s father’s store, they find him dead and his stack is destroyed. Kovacs senses it was Kovacs Prime that killed him. Quell tries to remind an angry and upset Trepp that Angelfire will be raining down on the entire planet — Trepp does not care and leaves.
Kovacs Prime is seeing consequences for his violent actions in the finale.
Kovacs is fed up at this point and wants to confront Danica himself by going to her front door. Kovacs, Quell and Kovacs Prime approach Danica in her home. They explain that one of the Elders is in Carrera’s stack and that they need to find Konrad — they have seen the memory of genocide in the Songspire; the Founders need to answer for their crimes. Danica throws them Konrad’s destroyed stack — it appears she led a coup against Konrad a long time ago and the myth surrounding him was all false. Quell tries negotiating with Danica, offering the technology where she could control Angelfire; she suggests offering the Elder Konrad’s stack so they rest, knowing revenge has taken place. In return, Quell wants safe transport off the planet. Poe then turns up to warn everyone that the Orbitals are moving.
Kovacs Prime remembers that Trepp’s coils are connected with the Orbital and she could disrupt the signal and buy them time to get close to Jaeger. Kovacs asks Kovacs Prime to convince Trepp to join them — you can sense the tension between Kovacs and Kovacs Prime. Poe tries to calculate the convergence of the Orbitals but his memory keeps glitching. He asks Dig 301’s software to do the system reboot when the time is right — the hologram of the software is Elizabeth.
Kovacs shares a drink with Poe to grieve his impending death. I also think Kovacs was drowning his sorrows over Quell’s comments about getting close to him. “We’re all broken, Poe. There’s nothing more human than that”. Poe realizes the little time he has left and starts immediately tracking the Orbitals. He also tells Kovacs not to squander the time he has.
As we reach the midway point of Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels”, Kovacs admits to Quell that he has been shortsighted because of her but he will stand by her no matter what, even if it isn’t reciprocal. Quell tells Kovacs that he is a crack in her armor and one that she cannot afford. At the same time, she explains that Kovacs gave her strength to break free. Kovacs senses that she is being extra-loving because she has a plan he won’t like. Quell’s plan is to kill Jaeger and transfer the Elder back into her; when their minds are intertwined, she will get the Angelfire to shoot into her and the Elder — “Life has to have limits or we’re not humans anymore”. They have an emotional conversation, and Kovacs is distraught at her plans: “I wish you loved me enough to live”.
Meanwhile, Kovacs Prime tries to convince Trepp to use her coils to disrupt the Elder’s plans. He tells Trepp that her father was really brave and wouldn’t give her up. Kovacs Prime gives Trepp the option to kill him.
Poe finds the Orbitals convergence at the needlecast station. Kovacs, Danica and Quell head out to the station. Trepp and Kovacs Prime also show up. Trepp receives a signal and starts the disruption.
Quell, Danica and Kovacs head up to the top of the station. They approach Jaeger who is controlled by the Elder. Danica tries to compliment the Elder and shows the destroyed stack of Konrad. Danica then goes against the plan and shoots at Jaeger and then Kovacs and Quell — she didn’t believe in Quell’s promise. The Elder kills Danica by sneaking up behind her and then Quell and Kovacs fistfight the Elder. Kovacs tries to get through to Jaeger while fighting — the Elder activates the Orbitals again.
And then, the action continues as Kovacs Prime enters the fray to join the fight. Kovacs manages to grab Jaeger from behind and asks him to pull the trigger — he does. The Elder transfers to Kovacs and he looks strained. In a damning, emotional moment, he whispers “survive” to Quell, before pointing Angelfire at him. He is completely obliterated — Kovacs is dead and his stack is dust; he carried out Quell’s plans. Quell is absolutely devastated.
As we near the end of Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels”, Kovacs Prime reports back to the commission and explains that Quellcrist Falconer was incinerated — the members explain that Kovacs Prime’s fate will be decided later in regards to the double sleeving but Kovacs Prime insists there was one sleeve left and the last envoy is gone. It seems they all agreed to a cover story.
Dig 301 narrates that second chances are earned. Kovacs Prime radios to Quell with an update; she won’t tell him where she is going and as she says that, an imagined Kovacs walks up being her and asks, “Still chasing death?”. Quell is going to find a new world where she can grow an uprising again — Kovacs will always be in her mind; she’s going to fix all this and live.
Altered Carbon Season 2, Episode 8, “Broken Angels” ends with Dig writing a book about Poe so his story can be preserved, but then he returns, not remembering a thing — starting from scratch. She explains to Poe his origin and then he gets out a decryption key. Dig enters it and realizes he is storing raw human DHF. Dig 301 says, “Better get the whiskey ready”.
It seems that Kovacs and Poe agreed to store Kovacs human DHF — he’s not truly gone.
- It looks like the Governor has her own clones of herself. When she wakes up, you can see similar naked bodies behind her.
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Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.