See season 2, episode 2 recap – “Forever”

September 3, 2021
Jonathon Wilson 0
Apple TV+, Weekly TV
3.5

Summary

“Forever” complicates both the character drama and the politics as old and new alliances are formed.

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3.5

Summary

“Forever” complicates both the character drama and the politics as old and new alliances are formed.

This recap of See season 2, episode 2, “Forever”, contains spoilers.


In the first season’s finale, Baba Voss gave Jerlamarel the worst possible fate for a self-styled messiah whose godliness was his sight — he blinded him. As we see early on in “Forever”, he’s still not happy about this. While his many children — some of them, anyway — are still loyal to him, Jerlamarel has been stripped of his so-called power. He’s weak now, and vulnerable, and he’s left to scheme in the darkness, the lights in the House of Enlightenment extinguished for good. I’m sure he’ll remain important in some way, but I bet it’s not the way he intended.

See season 2, episode 2 recap

While Baba continues to be brutally whipped in Edo’s prison, Wren takes Haniwa out of her cell and, using her sway as a Lieutenant Commander, on a bit of a tour. They eventually arrive at an old world apartment, which would be a present-day apartment for us, which remains covered in dust but has been preserved — by Wren, as we learn — like a museum display, as though the life it once held has been kept in stasis. Given all the natural and repurposed environments we’ve seen in the show thus far, this glimpse of a recognizable world has some power — you can see why it’s attractive to Wren, who has lived a life of fire and steel, and secrets. In a child’s bedroom, Haniwa reads to her from Alice in Wonderland, a touching moment of humanity and kindness juxtaposed with Edo promising Baba that he’ll torture him for years until what he perceives as a childhood of abuse has been evened out. He seems to mean it.

Meanwhile, Queen Kane is absolutely adamant about beginning a war against the Trivantians. There’s a funny moment when Maghra challenges her authority and Kane lets her big-girl stern ruler facade slip for just a moment and regresses to a spiteful little girl, angry at her sister. There’s a lot of arrested development going on here, which Harlan, who continues to listen and scheme, surely recognizes.

Things are going better for Haniwa and Wren, though, who share a kiss and spend the night together. This is one of those weird television romances in which both parties fall inexplicably head-over-heels immediately, but at least there’s a bit more justification for that than usual given both of their sheltered lives. The only other sighted people Haniwa has met are her relatives; Wren hasn’t met any at all. So, they have a connection, but Wren also has a historic and familial one to Trivantes — she’s directly descended from the people who built it.

As we learn from the Trivantian Council, the place is always under attack from the Ganites, so they’re reluctant to open up another front against the Payans, despite Edo’s insistence that sight will return and threaten the security of the entire empire. We’re to infer from this conversation that Edo is obsessed with sight, and with Jerlamarel, whom the Council believes to be a myth. Edo knows different, though, since he’s currently in possession of two of his children. Haniwa is one, obviously. And as Wren explains to her as they make their way back to her cell, so is the little lookout boy who snitched on Baba Voss. He’s part of Edo’s secret program. He believes early adoption of sight is the way to power.

He’s also… not a nice guy. He finally stops physically torturing Baba, who is taken off the rack and to a cell, but he continues to emotionally torment him by wheeling him outside in a cage so Haniwa can see him. Even more cruelly, he orders Haniwa to be taken to his house for God-knows-what purpose, which is the last thing Baba wants to hear. Luckily, though, Edo has made an obvious tactical error. Baba’s cell is right next to Tamacti Jun’s, the Witchfinder General from the first season who kindly informs Baba that Maghra still lives, and is in fact the princess of Payan. That’s a reluctant allyship waiting to happen.

“Forever” ending explained

Time is of the essence. As the situation in Pennsa gets more complicated for Maghra when a political marriage to Harlan is proposed, Edo sends one of his henchmen to rape and impregnate Haniwa, to begin a line of sighted children under his command (he later explains this to Baba, using the term “breed mother”, which is lovely.) Wren isn’t having that, though. She breaks out Baba, who insists she frees Tamacti Jun, and together they start hacking their way through Edo’s men. A showdown between the brothers, this early in the season? Well, sort of. Baba does run into Edo, and they do fight, but Baba is too weak to defend himself and gets clobbered. Haniwa, though, still a handy archer, is able to save him by putting a few arrows in Edo. Baba naively lets him live, presumably out of guilt, but Edo sounds the alarm, making their escape a bit more complex. They all make it to the gates, and to freedom, but Wren elects to stay behind, closing the gates behind them after giving Haniwa a necklace.

In a further note of tragedy, Boots discovers that Queen Kane has miscarried his baby, and has stabbed her midwife to death as a result. She’s still stabbing her when he finds her, promising her a stronger baby in the hopes she’ll stop repeatedly puncturing the poor woman’s corpse. She does, eventually. But she also removes a blade from the skin in her wrist and fatally stabs Boots in the neck. Maybe she wasn’t keen on the idea of another baby after all.

You can stream See season 2, episode 2 on Apple TV+.

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