The Women of The Passage: Character Analysis

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One of the main themes of The Passage, both the TV series and the book trilogy, could be summed up in the title of S1 Ep8 of the series: You Are Not That Girl Anymore. The major female characters of The Passage have all grown this season and had an impact on the main arc of the story.

The future relies on Amy Bellafonte and how she weathers the virus and her relationship with the other virals. It’s Dr Nichole Sykes’ commitment to Jonas Lear’s vision that made Project NOAH what it is, and she is still an important part of the evolving nature of the virus and virals. Dr Lila Wolgast has provided emotional, medical and logistical support for Brad, Amy, Richards, Sykes and Lacey at key moments. Shauna Babcock is Fanning’s second in command. Lacey Antoine rescued Brad and Amy and gave them a hideout from Richards’ pursuit. Elizabeth Lear was the catalyst for the entire endeavor. She was both Jonas’ excuse for pursuing the Bolivian rumors until the end of the world and the voice of reason in his head telling him he was going too far.


Shauna Babcock

Though there are a few female inmates who have become virals, Shauna Babcock is the only one we’ve seen communicate with humans and whose backstory we’ve been given in detail. Shauna has lived a complicated life, and has created a complicated web of relationships within Project NOAH. Manipulation is her specialty, making it difficult to tell when she’s being sincere and when she’s using someone.

In the story she told Clark, she’s a victim with a tragic backstory who finally snapped. Shauna was regularly raped by her stepfather from the ages of 8-16, until she was old enough to stand up to him and make him stop.

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Travelers Season 3: Grace’s Role in the Director’s Plan

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Spoilers Through Season 3 Episode 10.

In Travelers season 3, watching Grace stand, abandoned, alone, and with her hands tied behind her back, after the assault teams vacated the farm in episode 1, then watching her get left behind again in episode 4, reminded me of a question I’ve had since she came to the 21st. Where does she stand with the Director, for real?

When she arrived, we were told she was his favorite, except for possibly Ellis. After Grace and Trevor were shot, the Director chose to kill Ellis by using him as a messenger and to save Grace by sending D-13/Dr. Derek with enough medical nanites that she could spare some for her (boy)friend, Trevor. That seems to show that the Director does indeed care deeply about Grace. The Director doesn’t send nanites around often.

Grace has certain unique skills and attitudes with regard to the Director that I believe it wants to protect. One of Grace’s gifts is the ability to creatively stretch resources by finding ways to have them do double duty, such using the same code to fix Marcy and reset the Director, passing her medical nanites on to Trevor so that they healed two patients instead of one, and repurposing the nuclear material from the military to save the Director from the Faction during the plague.

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Manifest Season 1 Episode 10: What Did “All Good Things” Really Mean to Karen Stone?

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In Manifest, Season 1, Episode 10, Crosswinds, we find out that Karen Stone’s gravestone reads “All good things”, a misquote of her favorite bible verse, Romans 8:28. At first, this misquote appears to be an inconsequential shortening of the verse, because it includes the same words as the correct version of the quote, “All things work together for good”. In fact, the difference in wording changes the meaning of the verse, and we have to question what that means for Karen’s state of mind.

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Travelers Season 3: Could David and Marcy’s Fates Have Been Predicted?

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Was There Foreshadowing for What Happened to Everyone’s Favorite Couple?

Spoilers Through Season 3 Episode 10, Protocol Omega

The short answer to the title question is, yes. The fates of David and Marcy were foreshadowed from season 1 all the way through season 3. Knowing this doesn’t take away the shock of what happened to them, but perhaps it does make it easier to process, if we realize that this was always the path they were on. There were timelines in which things could have turned out differently for David and Traveler 3569, but this timeline was unlikely to bend in that direction.

First, let’s look at a related side issue, the one pictured above. What does it mean that David fell in love with original Marcy in a different version of the timeline? Does it negate his love for Traveler Marcy?

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Travelers Season 3: Why Is It So Hard for the Travelers to Face Being Solo?

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From Philip to Boyd to Hall, the Travelers Don’t Like the Idea of Ending Up Alone

Spoilers Through Season 3 Episode 10, Protocol Omega

Being a solo Traveler or the last remaining member of a Traveler team has come up several times this season. Grace and 5416 are solo Travelers. The Archivist, A-18, appears to also be a solo traveler. Hall becomes the last member of his team when Luca and Kyle defect to the Faction. Hall dies soon after.

The Shanghai historian becomes the last member of their team when the bomb explodes. Both Philip and Boyd face the possibility of being alone, Philip because of the Seattle bomb and Boyd because her historian, Nathan, is kidnapped by the Faction. Even as part of a five person team, travelers face frequent danger, including the possibility of being overwritten by the Faction.

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Travelers Season 3: Did Carly Provoke the Director into Intervening with Jeff?

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Spoilers Through Season 3 Episode 10, Protocol Omega.

In season 3 of Travelers, Jeff and Carly’s series-long battle finally ends with Jeff being taken over as a Traveler. Later, the Traveler who’s using Jeff as a host, 5416, suggests that the Director only took Jeff because Carly stood her ground during an argument and turned it into a kill or be killed situation, forcing the Director’s hand. In other words, he accuses her of causing Jeff’s death by making the Director choose between allowing both her and Jeff to die, or using Jeff as a host.

During the same conversation, 5416 makes it clear that he knows little about Jeff as a person or his history with Carly. Over the next few episodes, it becomes obvious that his training was lacking in other ways, because the future is getting worse, instead of better. His supposed “calling out” of Carly for causing the Director to take Jeff as a host, when it otherwise wouldn’t have, is based on ignorance, and should be dismissed.

When evidence from all three seasons is examined, it’s clear that the Director planned to use Jeff as a host, and planned to use him for this mission. Indeed, 5416 acknowledges that he’s been training for this mission, and has had training to function as “Jeff”, just not enough.

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Midnight, Texas: Who Killed Creek? Could It Be Fiji?

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In the shocking ending of  Midnight, Texas, season 2, episode 6, No More Mr Nice Kai, Manfred discovered that his once and possibly future girlfriend, Creek Lovell, was dead. Creek left town at the end of season 2, episode 1, Head Games, in order to go to college and find the peace of mind and personal safety that eluded her in Midnight. She came back to Midnight in episode 6 because she thought Manfred needed her and she missed him. Instead of being allowed to return to her new life, she was murdered.

The last time we saw Creek alive, Kai discovered her in the hotel, searching for Manfred. The next time we saw her, she was a ghost. She was able to speak to Manfred, but she quickly burned up and was forced to move on to the next plane of existence. The fire started in her throat, probably to stop her from speaking.

The normal way that ghosts move on to the next plane is to disappear. They become gray smoke, which then vanishes. This is how Lyric moved on. We saw it frequently in season 1. The only other ghosts who’ve disappeared in fire, the way that Creek did, were Bruce and Carolyn, the married couple who’d owned the hotel in the 50’s, who we met in episode 2. Fiji used an ancient spell to send them on their way, which required the bones of the dead, sage, and a goat’s heart. The flames burned the ghosts in the same order that they burned their bones. In the case of Bruce and Carolyn, that was bottom to top. Carolyn was able to give Manfred a message, “There are secrets behind the woods,” because her head and neck were the last parts to go.

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The Handmaid’s Tale Season 2 Finale: Did June Betray Rita and the Marthas by Staying in Gilead?

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In the season 2 finale of The Handmaid’s Tale, June chooses to stay in Gilead rather than escape with her baby daughter, despite several Marthas and others having risked their lives to help her and Nichole. This has become a controversial choice with the audience. I’ve seen many commenters who feel that June was selfish to stay behind, because the Marthas had taken serious risks to get her and the baby out. Some people think that the Marthas will feel angry and betrayed when they find out that June didn’t leave. Since even major outlets were shocked and disgusted by June’s choice and agree with the judgement that it makes her selfish, I’ve decided to address it in a separate post from my already extra long recap/analysis.

This is a complex issue. First, calling June selfish for sending one child to safety but giving up her own chance at freedom so that she can try to save her other child and work with the Resistance to save more people, is blatantly ridiculous and misogynistic. What would be selfish is saving herself without a thought for the other people it would affect, which is what the Marthas expected her to do.

Second, June didn’t ask the Marthas to get her out. She owes them now that her baby is hopefully free, but she wasn’t required to take them up on their offer, since she didn’t request it in the first place. Even if she requested it, she would have been allowed to change her mind. Her life and her children’s lives are the lives most at stake in an escape attempt. If she wasn’t comfortable with what was happening, she had the right to change her mind. After all of the uproar about the rapes in this show, are people now saying that June doesn’t have the right of consent to the escape plan that others devised for her and her children? That’s insane. Hannah and Nichole are the most innocent victims, and as their parent, June’s first responsibility is always to them. She has the right to consent to the plan or not, and to withdraw her consent if needed when conditions change. Which they did, when she saw that she could send Nichole to Canada with Emily.

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Travelers Season 2: Review, Analysis and Speculation

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Updated 7/18/18- What/Who Is the Director, Really?

We made it through another season! Season 2 of Travelers had its ups and downs. Whereas I would have given season 1 an A+, I’d only give this season a B+. There were improvements in some areas. The female characters weren’t treated with as much misogyny, and the show had some stellar cinematography. The cast continued to be amazing, and the new additions kept up the quality. The production values of the show look and sound great, especially considering the size of their budget. It’s the writing that needs to be given more attention next season.

We learned intriguing new aspects of the mythology, but we also went around in circles, repeating the same kernels of information over and over, rather than continuing to reveal more about life in the future and how time travel works. The showrunners say that they don’t intend to have the series physically go to the future because the travelers are trapped in the 21st, but that’s a cop out.

They can still give us a clear picture of the environment and culture that the characters are coming from, explain the Director clearly, and give sensible explanations for their theories of time travel and consciousness transfer, then stick to those rules. Otherwise, the show runs the risk of retconning and contradicting itself every time they think up a new storyline, which is death to serious science fiction.

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Metawitches Guidelines for Spotting Misogyny vs Female Equality in Entertainment and Media

This is the basic list of questions we ask ourselves while consuming media to help us determine if we’re seeing women being treated fairly or not. It’s not a yes or no checklist, or an easy, one sentence test, like the Bechdel test. But then, Alison Bechdel never meant for her test to become a widely used standardized instrument. This test requires some thinking about what you’re viewing. Misogyny is often subtle, and it’s pervasive. It’s easy to miss with one, casual viewing, but the message still gets into our heads and affects us.

That’s why these are guidelines, rather than a test. Some of these answers will be subjective, and reasonable people can disagree. We’re talking about art and the interpretation of art, after all. It also takes practice to start seeing things like camera angles and positioning, rather than letting it fly by. Hardly any of us can always spot gaslighting, especially when it’s being done by the writers and producers instead of the characters. These guidelines are just aspects of entertainment to keep in mind while viewing, to become more aware of what you’re seeing.

I (Metacrone) started working on this list in the late 80s, and it’s slowly grown. It’s still a work in progress, just like the entertainment industry. There are very few works that would pass every question with flying colors. Figure out how much you can live with watching, and the level that makes you take action. It’s okay to just watch and enjoy the show sometimes without feeling guilty, too. But, the more you can recognize the issues with entertainment and speak out, even if it’s only to one person, the more of an effect we all have on the entertainment industry.

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