“Chapter 01: Moon” gets things off to an urgent start, raising plenty of questions and mysteries and upping the tension immediately in this final season.
This recap of 3% season 4, episode 1, “Chapter 01: Moon”, contains spoilers.
And we’re back, folks, for another “final season”, this time for the Brazilian dystopian sci-fi thriller 3%. “Chapter 01: Moon”, opens with what is many ways the show’s theme and underlying conflict in microcosm – the survivors, the main cast, stood outside the looming Process, which they’re eventually granted access to, dressed in the colors of, and escorted through, to be greeted by Nair and allowed passage to the Offshore to begin negotiations.
Cutting to two weeks earlier, we see Michele, less of the protagonist this time around, gathering troops within the Shell. The question of diplomacy versus rebellion comes up, not for the first time, as Michele believes an invite to the Offshore allows the group a chance to negotiate, where Joana thinks it’s a good chance to sabotage the Process. That sabotage would include plasma, a turbine, and an electromagnetic pulse since sabotage in dystopian sci-fi always does.
With the conflict of whether attacking the Offshore will turn the citizenry against them or not, given voice by Gloria, a vote is taken and a decision is made – they’re going.
The beauty of the Offshore presents a natural problem in “Chapter 01: Moon”. It’s a compelling sight that it’s easy to get seduced by, even for someone like Joana, but the arrival of Andre, who is in charge now, is a stark reminder that the grass isn’t always greener. He, apparently, wants to forge a final treaty that’ll bring the fighting to an end, but what’ll be offered in exchange – Marcela and all the soldiers released from the Shell – is the subject of some tense negotiation.
The group is staying in a house whose walls they don’t trust, so after Joana is beset by uncomfortable memories, they head out to discuss their plans outside, by the water, where Joana submerges and hears the name “Luana” hauntingly whispered. Is her mother in the Offshore?
There’s tension and paranoia in many character exchanges, and Xavier’s efforts with the turbine are witnessed, complicating matters there. While Rafael and Marco meet with Denise – who takes Andre’s place – Joana, Natalia, and Elisa make their way inside the lab where the turbine is supposed to be but isn’t, getting caught in that act as well.
Joana, desperate to find her mother, manages to sneak away and check the computers and happens on a potential maternal figure: Veronica, the woman who gave her the necklace upon arrival at the Offshore. Is she her mother? We don’t know for now, since Joana is caught and brought before Nair and the other council members.
After an opening episode fraught with the show’s newfound final season urgency, 3% season 4, episode 1 bows out having raised plenty of questions.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.