Synopsis of 2×03: Niska’s test of consciousness begins with Laura there to help. Dr. Morrow continues her pursuit of the secret behind the newly aware synthetics and Mia gives her love for Ed the time of day.


So here’s the skinny:

  • Dr. Morrow has a daughter, Jenny, who has been in a coma of sorts for so long that Jenny’s father insists Dr. Morrow must let go and move on.
  • Odi is fully conscious and aware!! p.s. There’s probably romance looming on the horizon for him and Mattie.
  • Niska’s test begins. For the most part, she fails to show any significant emotional response until Laura questions her about the man she killed. The test shall continue.
  • Mia returns to the parlor that Ed, her boss, turned her away from once he realized she was no normal synthetic. She declares her love for Ed and they embrace after he admits his feelings for her.
  • Karen and Pete go drinking with friends, during which Karen’s food bag in her throat bursts and Pete cares for her in the heat of the moment.
  • Dr. Morrow meets Professor Hobb and learns about the synthetics Helster created.

We open with a flashback of Dr. Morrow and a younger girl, which ends with Dr. Morrow arriving at Pacific Bay Care in San Francisco. She visits the girl from the flashback, her daughter Jenny, but Jenny’s father interrupts Morrow and insists that she let Jenny go.

In the Hawkins home, Mattie watches over Odi and whips out the hard drive Niska left. She uploads the program on it to Odi, but nothing of note happens… for now.

Alone with a moment to talk, Mia confides in Max. She tells him of her love for Ed and his banishing her once he caught wind of her peculiarity. Max suggests she talk to him again since he was probably frightened. 

Leo charges in yelling that they must leave as soon as possible, he has noticed the missing hostage and fears that the hostage will return with the synthetic captors. Max confesses that he let the hostage go. Hester opens her mouth to mention her murder, but says nothing instead. They all leave, except for Mia who refused to leave due to her unfinished business. 

Before Niska’s test begins, Laura argues with one of the CPS members. She points out the cliche of the organization treating synthetics as monsters because of their differences, as well as their willingness to adopt the “it’s us or them” attitude. Laura has really come into her own and her irritating shell of insecurity in the first season has withered into nonexistence. Laura hears the rules of the test and it begins.

At first it is pretty weird, to say the least. It resembles aversion therapy of the Clockwork Orange variety. The test is a myriad of videos of seemingly random content, such as a baby laughing and a finger bleeding after being pricked by a snake. Laura and the CPS members sit outside of the room monitoring the information for an emotional response from Niska as she takes the test.

Meanwhile, Toby spots a familiar synthetic girl in the school cafeteria. He makes his move while his peers watch in amused curiosity. He introduces himself and tries to have a normal conversation, but amidst the laughter of Toby’s classmates the synthetic girl acts like any other unaware synth. Maybe Toby seems to believe that she is aware like Mia, but she leaves him to eat his lunch alone.

Mia returns to the parlor and confronts Ed. He is reluctant, but they stand on the shore of the beach to talk. Mia explains the full extent of her awareness to Ed, delivering a meaningful speech. At first the news overwhelms Ed, but he changes his tune when Mia bares her feelings.

Karen has an encounter with another detective in the bathroom. She picks up on the relationship between Karen and Pete, but teases her ambiguously, allowing for a thrilling moment caused by simple misunderstanding. The classic “I know your secret… but not the secret you actually care about, just an insignificant one” misunderstanding.

Mia speaks with Ed in the parlor, both sitting behind the counter. Ed admits that he thought about Mia, but believed that he was just lonely and looking for a connection he was incapable of making with fellow humans. They hold hands and share kiss after kiss.

Niska is still taking the test and showing no response. Laura changes the test from visual to auditory and Niska’s memories of the nightclub she attended resurface, but not long enough to garner a reaction.

Odi casually gains awareness and unplugs himself from Mattie’s computer. He comes across Joe in the shower and Mattie finds him before he catches sight of a nude Joe. Mattie questions Odi briefly on his awareness and after answering a couple of questions, he poses one of his own. One that perfectly sums up my thoughts at the moment: “What happens now?”

Together on a new case, Karen and Pete pay a visit to Martin, an old informant. He makes a run for it, but Karen finds a cell phone with one lonely contact in its directory. There’s nothing more suspicious than a cell phone with only one contact. Really, if you want to hide the contact, then wouldn’t it make sense to add more than one contact. But, what do I know?

Dr. Morrow visits Professor Hobb and he initially uses idle chatter to stave off her real questions. Regardless, she mentions that she should have written him years ago and pops the question about conscious synthetics. Hobb seemingly denies her, but as she begins to insist on staying he writes her a message to come out to the garden and leave her phone in the car for a few minutes.

Apparently, he has been under surveillance, but he will be left alone as long as he doesn’t acknowledge anything about conscious synthetics or his former field of work. She attempts to persuade him with a grant, but he turns it down. She threatens to blow his cover if he does not give her the information she is looking for and gives him a place to meet.

Joe and Sophie prepare dinner together in the kitchen and she hurts herself. Sophie hardly reacts and only shows a response when Joe asks about the pain. Her response comes off as eerily emotionless.

Niska’s test continues. They pelt her with question after question, but nothing works until Laura questions her about the man that she killed. Laura finally gets the response that she was looking for, fear. Still, it’s only a hint of the raw emotion Laura is grasping at.

Ed’s friend watches from outside of the parlor as Ed and Mia embrace each other. That’ll definitely come into play later on, probably sooner than later.

Hobb meets Dr. Morrow and sets the details of their arrangement, including the limits of the information he will give her.

Laura goes through Niska’s belongings that the CPS confiscated when she was originally brought in to take the test. She finds Astrid’s number. Now, Astrid’s purpose in this story is truly revealed. Unbeknownst to Laura, it’ll lead to Niska’s holy grail of emotion.

Karen and Pete drink at a bar with friends. Pete’s control issues begin to rear their ugly faces, but Karen’s independent attitude shuts that down fairly quickly. That is, until she experiences somewhat of a malfunction and vomits in a bathroom at the bar. Pete rushes her out of the bar, where he follows her directions to turn her off and place her in the car until he can drain the excess fluids from her “food bag.” I guess if you stick a bag down your throat to catch the foods and liquids you pretend to take in like a regular human then it’s gotta burst sometime.

Joe and Laura reunite back at home. Joe pays Laura some more compliments and retells his painfully mundane day. Although, he does enjoy time he has to spend with their children.

In her new office at Qualia Global Systems, Dr. Morrow retells all of Hobb’s information to Vee before Vee tells her that the specific waterfall she has dreamed about is the same one Dr. Morrow snapped a picture in front of years ago with her daughter.

Another appealing episode, hinting at more twists to come. Got anything to say? Leave a comment. We’d love to hear it. Otherwise, stay tuned for what happens next.

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