The disarmed missile may also lead to a realization on Filip’s part as well, but the lessons he was beginning to learn from working on the hull repairs with his compassionate companion were interrupted by Drummer’s goading invitation for Marco to “live shamed and die empty.” Even so, Filip’s evolution as a character is many times more interesting than watching his father’s ego trip over itself, no matter what coaching Rosenfeld may provide.
And speaking of Drummer — what an amazing character! The raid on the supply depot had plenty of great action, but the best moments were when Drummer showed her strong leadership, even in small gestures like when she motioned Josep to back off when asking Michio to sweep the area again. And wow, did Michio ever come through in a pinch, saving Josep by field amputating his arm! The battle with Marco’s guards may have been a bit confused, but the resulting drama and Drummer’s final ultimatum were spectacular.
There was also plenty of emotional punch on Ceres, where Monica was documenting the suffering of the people Marco hung out to dry simply to frame the UN. Her news piece profiling the man with the cat was quite effective, and the reporter is right to blame Avasarala and her fellow Earthers for being just as guilty of dehumanizing the enemy. But this narrative is well-worn through earlier seasons of The Expanse, and it feels indulgent despite its effectiveness.
After all, how will it end? Will Drummer finish the job Holden couldn’t (and perhaps shouldn’t) complete? If so, what will the Rocinante achieve in the final two episodes, and what sort of resolution does The Expanse have in store for the larger story beyond Marco’s power play? Perhaps the show is focusing inward because the characters we care about might be able to achieve personal closure as a substitute for the unresolved protomolecule story. In that sense, this week’s episode (and season 6 in general) succeeds even where it disappoints.