Solar Opposites season 1, episode 4 recap – “The Booster Manifold”

May 10, 2020
Jonathon Wilson 0
Hulu, TV Recaps
4

Summary

“The Booster Manifold” proves a creative and very funny metaphor for stress and social anxiety.

View all
4

Summary

“The Booster Manifold” proves a creative and very funny metaphor for stress and social anxiety.

This recap of Solar Opposites season 1, episode 4, “The Booster Manifold”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.

Check out our spoiler-free season review.

Check out the episode guide.


Solar Opposites Episode 4 is easily the most balls-to-the-wall outing in the season’s first half, with the most plot, the most sci-fi craziness, and the most uber-violence. “The Booster Manifold” starts in a crazy place and only gets crazier from there, but it also digs into universal themes of teen and adult anxiety, since both its main plots work as obvious metaphors.

Those two plots are, once again, divided up between Korvo and Terry and Jesse and Yumyulack. Korvo begins sweating out gooblers, physical manifestations of his stress, and he eventually coughs up a psychopathic red one which quickly sets about stalking and attempting to kill him. Jesse and Yumyulack, meanwhile, think they’ve hit puberty when they grow flowers on their heads that emit a mind-controlling pollen, which they see as their one opportunity to ingratiate themselves with the cool kids.

None of this is subtle, obviously, but the pressures of fitting in and of trying to keep stresses at bay are pretty relatable experiences that work well given this sci-fi makeover. Of course, neither plot works out well for anyone; Terry ends up basically inheriting Korvo’s stress after a very funny climactic encounter set in a Halloween store – they stress Korvo out because he doesn’t understand how they stay in business year-round – while Jesse and Yumyulack’s pollen mixes together into a substance that drives their peers into a murderous frenzy. This development features some pretty extreme violence that is funny and a bit shocking before quickly becoming funny again; it even makes for a pretty cool action sequence in which the aliens have to slice up the kids with healing sci-fi weaponry to cure them.

Solar Opposites Season 1, Episode 4 relies quite heavily on its imagery rather than its writing, though it still has some solid gags and a well-deployed c-bomb that stings even in the context of a very adult-oriented show. But the visuals do a lot for what I think is quite an effective portrayal of escalating and eventually debilitating stress. It’s really easy to get lost in or distracted by all the excess and not quite appreciate how much the underlying ideas of “The Booster Manifold” really work; the fact it includes another subplot for the pupa just because feels almost like showing off.


We are fast becoming the number one independent website for streaming coverage. Please support Ready Steady Cut today. Secure its future — we need you!

Become a Patron!

For more recaps, reviews and original features covering the world of entertainment, why not follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page?

View all

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.