Queen Sono Season 1, Episode 4, “Rookie” exists to provide more context to the story, but it feels more like a filler than a useful addition.
This recap of Netflix Series Queen Sono season 1, episode 4, “Rookie” contains significant spoilers.
- Read the Season 1 review.
- Read the recap of Episode 5.
- Read the recap of the previous episode (3)
- Access the archive of all the episode recaps.
Episode 4, “Rookie”, gives the audience some immediate history into these characters, attempting to provide the history to the story.
It begins 5 years ago in Joburg, with Queen Sono evading the police while speeding — she has a high-energy mood, just like the first episode when we were first introduced to her. She lives at Grandma Mazet’s house — Dr. Sid visits and berates her for dealing with dirty money. In response, Sono tells Dr. Sid how she was the best in training and wants to be taken seriously. The next scene reveals a snippet of Sono’s romantic relationship with Shandu — while naked in bed with him, she asks Shandu what jobs he is doing at SOG. Shandu makes a rather strange comment saying Sono looks like her mother, which was inappropriate considering they were naked with each other.
Queen Sono heads into the SOG office and she is introduced to new colleague Fred. She asks Fred why Ulrich and Shandu are part of the Deputy President’s security detail. Sono begs Dr. Sid for more exciting work. He assigns her to the same security detail and is asked to shadow, protect and listen while Malunga holds a meeting.
And Malunga is in a meeting with SOG listening in. The meeting discusses a nuclear plant deal; he is advised to take no more bribes. While en route in his car after the meeting, Malunga’s car is ambushed, with his security team doing all they can to get him out. Queen Sono joins the shoot out but experiences PTSD when she hears an array of gunshots and sees Ulrich getting shot in the head. Shandu takes the death of his friend Ulrich personally, and his emotions get the better of him, calling out Dr. Sid for not using the intel.
An emotional, shaky Queen Sono visits Williams and then afterward, reminisces about her mother, watching videos of her online.
As we near the end, Shandu tells Sono that he wants to leave Sono and leave the country. Sono questions where they would go and does not want him to leave. At Ulrich’s funeral, Shandu says nothing has changed politically and that they are dying for no cause.
This scene is important as it indicates why Shandu is determined to find another way to change Africa now, even if his methods are attached to terrorism.
Queen Sono Season 1, Episode 4, “Rookie” ends with Nana ringing Miri in Boston, telling her to stop wasting her time in America and come home. Queen Sono sits with Dr. Sid and claims she cannot continue with her time at SOG. Dr. Sid explains that her mother wanted it different for Queen Sono. Queen Sono states that “this is what freedom looks like” and that Ulrich died protecting a corrupt Deputy President. Dr. Sid encourages Queen Sono to stay, saying she is the “tip of the spear”.
I’m honestly convinced this series could have survived without this chapter.
- There are suggestions that Shandu wanted to start a family with Queen Sono.
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Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.