I went into the third episode once again anticipating a more in-depth look into the connection between the eight strangers showcased in Sense8. The beginning of the third episode “Smart Money’s on the Skinny Bitch” seemed to be heading this way, as Chicago police officer Will wakes up in the hospital after being in the car chase with Jonas Maliki the night before. . He is told that he is suffering from a concussion and that there were also signs of unusual brain activity, which seemingly parallels Nomi’s diagnosis in the prior episode. However, this does not stop Will from leaving as he is set on talking to Jonas and finding out what is happening to him and what really lies beneath the strange occurrences he has been experiencing recently. Unfortunately this continuation of the broader storyline doesn’t last long as following majority of the episode goes back to the telling of the more individual character stories.
Just as in the second episode, there is a more focused approach to telling the character’s stories. There are glimpses of many of the stranger’s lives, but we are mostly engaged in the lives of three of the characters, Will (Chicago police officer), Sun (Seoul Businesswomen) and Capheus (Kenyan Bus driver). By centering on a smaller set of characters, the episode is able to go more in-depth, rather than the jumpy set-up of the first episode as it tried to cover too much ground.
Although it takes awhile to get it, this episode does finally allow for some continuation of the main narrative. The challenges that certain characters are set to face begin to finally form. This is shown in Will’s dream of watching (alongside Sara Partell, a young girl he failed to protect earlier in his policing career) someone undergo a lobotomy. This scene seems to give a sense that Will is grasping on to what is at stage for Nomi, the woman Jonas told him was in grave danger and needed Will’s help.
The episode also puts characters Sun and Capheus, who we had very little screen time previously, into a much more clearer view. Both are given thrilling, action-packed sequences that help further explain the connection that is present among the characters.
Capheus, a young Kenyan bus driver, reveals that his mother is dying of AIDs. He is determined to finding the medicine needed to save her. This leads to him purchasing the needed drugs from a sketchy downtown dealer. Unfortunately, not long into his drive him he is stopped and gunned down by a gang of thieves. They take everything, including the medicine. Initially Capheus is shocked but soon comes to realize that the pills are the determinant for his mother’s survival. This desperation acts as a catalyst and leads Capheus to go after the thieves and get back what is rightfully his. He eventually catches up to the group of thieves and initiates a fight against the group, which he unfortunately has no hope in winning. This is when the story begins connecting and just as Capheus reaches the edge of his abilities and possibly his life, his connection with Son (Seoul businesswoman) kicks in, literally.
Simultaneously back in Seoul, Sun abandons her work at the office after a mysteriously urgent phone call. It is clear that she is in some sort of trouble within her company. Sun decides to leave the office, taking her frustrations with her, and soon after ends up in a underground boxing ring. It is obvious that Sun has had some experience in the ring and right away shows off her impressive skills against her male opponent. However, her fight is interrupted by a bloody Corpheus who is on the ground of the ring asking for her help.
Here begins the intense action scene that finishes off the episode. Sun continues to beat her in-ring opponent, but at the same time also transfers her fighting skills over to Capheus, who is then able to defeat the gang of thieves.
I found myself once again surprised by the amount of fluff incorporated in the episode. It seems yet again the show relies on the cliffhanger ending to keep viewers tuning in for more. Although there were a few hints of the big plot line in the core of the episode, it really wasn’t until the last 5 minutes that we were able to see any headway being made in establishing the powers that lie within the connection. Here’s hoping after three episodes, now that we have more of an idea of who the characters are, Sense8 gives us a bit more to chew on in terms of the underlying plot.