Episode 1 deals with the grief and regret as a single character battles with herself using sci-fi tropes — with a convincing performance from Anne Hathaway, the concept of the first chapter works.
This recap of Amazon Original series Solos season 1, episode 1, “Leah,” contains spoilers.
The whole meaning of episode 1 is to strongly highlight how regret can eat away at a person and how the pursuit of trying to change the present is not always the most desirable outcome. The opening chapter of this series encapsulates the present-day problem, where we try and evade time that needs to be cherished. Some cultures fear death and grief, yet this chapter is a soft reminder that it is a daily event, and we should embrace rather than escape.
Episode 1 opens with Leah (played by Anne Hathaway) working on her time travelling technology — she’s exhausted from not getting results. She’s trying to make contact with the future, and her latest trial has failed. Annoyed and irritable, she talks to herself on the time-travelling communication device about recalibrating. Her sister Rachel gives her a call and questions why she’s still in her mother’s basement on her time travelling project — she tells Leah that their mother is in pain. Leah is frustrated with Rachel, explaining that it is too hot in her mother’s room and the medical staff need to lower the temperature. These sisters are clearly at loggerheads with each other on their mother’s care. When Leah speaks to her mother, it’s clear she loves her dearly.
The time machine works
The sci-fi aspect of the episode shines through eventually.
Suddenly, Leah has a lightbulb moment and starts working on a different formula. As she types away, a voice speaks to her from the device — she believes she is speaking to her future self; they are both excited and prove that they are both the same person by asking each other questions. They then calibrate frequencies so they can see each other on video footage.
The annoying Leah
Halfway through their conversation, the present-day Leah has to answer the phone to her mother. Her future self looks sad as she sees her past self on the phone. After the phone call, Leah wants to jump into the future. However, she learns she is apparently talking to her past self. She gets angry and says her past self is dumb. When her past self says, “2020 is going to be my year”, Leah gets even angrier, which is relatable for all viewers, considering the 2020 we had.
The future self
Present-day Leah wants the code from her past self so she can go into the future — they agree to make a trade; information on the future for the interdimensional code. Her past self wants the Game of Thrones ending. Getting frustrated, present-day Leah decides to do some more formulas, and she realises that the other Leah was lying about being in the past — she’s in 2029; Leah is now talking to two versions of herself on two separate video screens — one in the future and one in the past. The future Leah asks present-day Leah why she wants to travel in the future. Present-day Leah explains to her past self she wants to travel in the future to find a cure for their mother because she’s sick with ALS. Her past self gets upset.
The whole concept of regret and the disregard for cherishing time then come to fruition in Solos season 1, episode 1
The future Leah wonders why present-day Leah thinks that there is a cure to ALS in five years — she continues to press her, and present-day Leah eventually screams, “I need it to be gone! I need to be finished”. She expresses how every day feels like a year with her mother — she admits to lying, and the reason she wants to go into the future is that she wants it to be over; she wants her mother to be a thing of the past because the present hurts too much.
The future Leah tells her present-self that she cannot escape this because she’s gone through this herself — she knows she will not be able to live with herself and knows she needs to stay and cherish the time left. Future Leah hates the regret she is going through and wants some comfort that present-day Leah forgives her. Present-day Leah tells her future self that she’s forgiven.
But suddenly, present-day Leah tells her past self on the other screen that she can travel far into the future to get the cure of ALS. Future Leah warns present-day Leah that this will not work because of the butterfly effect. The past Leah disappears as she uses the calculations given and disappears — the present-day Leah tells future Leah that they need to think of a better future before muting her agitated and extremely upset future self.
To close the episode, the present-day character rings her mother and recollects a time there was a bad thunderstorm when she was younger, and she comforted her. She wants to remember the song that her mother sang to her. Her mother sings the song, and tears trickle down her face — she sits back and listens. Her surroundings start disappearing as the tumble dryer finishes its load — she then disappears.
Solos season 1, episode 1 deals with the grief and regret as a single character battles with herself using sci-fi tropes — with a convincing performance from Anne Hathaway, the concept of the first chapter works.