The Rankless Initiative- Krypton Episode 3

SPOILERS for the third episode of SyFy's Krypton. 
People who dress like this must be good, right?

Before I start, a question for someone more knowledgeable about these things than me- is this series in or connected to the DCEU? I know some of the creative team overlaps with Man of Steel and the DCEU is planning on having a funky connected universe. Anyone know? HMU.

Another week of Krypton and another week where I'm more interested in Lyta Zod's story line.  

Let's get the A-plot out of the way. Seg-El and his hologram grandfather analyze the Brainiac drone that Adam Strange and Kem found in the wastelands surrounding Kandor. Or what they think is the drone. It turns out what they have found is just the outer shell for the drone and the actual machine has escaped.

Then there is a flashback to 3 days earlier and Rhom, single mother and friend of Kem and Seg, has found work as a member of a salvage crew. She is scavenging the border and finds the drone. Rhom decides to sells it to a black market dealer after she is told some items will get her more money that way than reporting the finding to the Council. Unfortunately, this is after she has already unknowingly become infected.

Ghost in the shell.
This is only discovered because the Military Guild's Sagitarri are told to do a sweep of the Rankless to locate the terrorists Black Zero and any sympathizers. The team sweeping Sector 19 of Kandor is led by the newly promoted Lyta Zod.

One good cop.

Lyta's plan is to complete her mission with as little harm to the Rankless as possible. She wants to stop Black Zero and be a faithful member of the Military Guild. Additionally, Lyta wants to make sure that even citizens with no rank get treated with her respect, mostly for moral decency but also so they aren't tempted to join Black Zero as well. She understands that citizens go to extremes when pushed past the limited and are oppressed which is lost on the citizens with rank in Kandor apparently. Lyta tells her soldiers to behave themselves, keep the aggressive tactics to a minimum and treat these people with respect.

This all of course goes horribly wrong when Seg's problem meets Lyta's issue.

Rhom appears to be sick. She is walking around Sector 19 when a trio of Sagitarri confront her for identification. The drone inside her activates and Rhom is now fully in Brainiac mode, looking for a communication hub to send a signal that Krypton is a planet that should be collected. She kills the soldiers in her way and escapes. A Sagitarri named Kol-Da discovers her fallen comrade and accuses the other Rankless of murder and abetting Black Zero. She beats and begins to choke out a man until another Rankless tells her to let go. Kol-Da shoots and kills this man which she claims later is self-defense.

Lyta arrives and stops her Sagitarri from killing more Rankless. She places Kol-Da under arrest to calm the crowds and because she disobeyed orders. The crowd is dispersed and Lyta begins to investigate what is happening with her soldiers' death and the communication hub. Seg finds her and asks for time to go into the hub before the military. He doesn't tell Lyta what is going on but tells her to trust him which she does. Lyta has to postpone an assault and disobey an order from her superior. Seg eventually gets Rhom out but not before she is able to transmit a signal to Brainiac's ship. Seg tells Lyta that his grandfather was right and Lyta wants to bring Rhom to the Council to show as proof. Seg convinces her otherwise and takes Rhom to the Fortress to try to save her. There will be an aftermath to all the actions taken in this episode in the next episode.

We are finally getting into Brainiac's machinations on Krypton. We also realize why Adam Strange is around so much- his Zeta Bean technology is broken. He can't get back home until it is fixed properly. More importantly than all this, to me at least, is Lyta's progression. She has a moral code that she is sticking to that wants to make Krypton better for all. She is trying to work within the bounds of the law and her guild to do so, although Seg continues to make it hard for her. Her reaction to his requesting time to get into the hub is evidence of this and may cost her her position in the Sagitarri. Episode 4 will show what happens next.

This episode also touches on some more Earth bound issues. The interactions between Sagitarri and the Rankless definitely evokes the real world interactions between the police and marginalized communities, particularly black and brown ones. The fact that the Rankless being choked says "I can't breathe" was clearly intentional. I hope that the creators continue to use the Ranked vs Rankless dynamic to make us think about our own world and the systems of power that we should also challenge and change here on our own planet. Good science fiction pushes us to look to a better tomorrow technologically and socially. A show in the Superman mythology should definitely do this and, hopefully, Krypton will step up to the plate.

Sean Fields is an aspiring writer and has been in the education field for more than a decade. He works mostly with teenagers nowadays which both keeps him well informed on pop culture and makes his hair turn grayer daily. He has a few blogs but is currently focused on this one and this other one. You can also find him on TumblrTwitter and Instagram, if you want to be entertained or infuriated.
The Rankless Initiative- Krypton Episode 3 The Rankless Initiative- Krypton Episode 3 Reviewed by SeanFields on Monday, April 16, 2018 Rating: 5
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