Sick of living in fear, the sensates throw a party and come face to face with Whispers.
For the first three episodes of season 2, the sensates have been in hiding. They enjoyed a reprieve from their isolation while basking in the sunshine after having Whispers taken away by Croome, but that was a fleeting moment. It wasn’t much later that Whispers was back in control, hunting down the sensates and forcing them back into hiding. Now, they’ve lost one of their own. As “Fear Never Fixed Anything” kicks off, the sensates are in mourning. Jonas is dead, and they have no idea what to do next, or if one of them will soon be in Jonas’ place on a cold metal table in a BPO facility.
They’re running scared at the moment, but as always, life must go on. Early on in the episode, Capheus gets an intriguing visit from the Kenyan Democratic Reform Party. They are interested in having him run for office after seeing his passionate pleas to clean up the corruption and inequality in Nairobi. Capheus shrugs it off as a joke, saying that he’s not a politician. “We’re not looking for a politician. We’re looking for a leader,” they say, using his own words, spoken on the Better Living morning show the other day, against him. Still, Capheus refuses for the time being.
Meanwhile, Sun and Kala are seeking comfort and guidance where they can. For Kala, that means sitting down with her father and attempting to talk through why she’s so unhappy despite her good fortune with her job and husband. She doesn’t get much closer to any sort of answer — and later it’s clear that she’s not totally happy with the way Rajan is treating her in their work together — but she does seem more at peace with the complexity of it all. As for Sun, she’s finds solace in the home of a former teacher of hers. She eats a hearty meal, rests, and then sets about training to get her revenge. As she puts it, “I have no plan. I just have an enemy, and I won’t stop until he’s dead.” That’s what I’m talking about!
As for Nomi, Amanita, and Bug, they’re working on picking up clues from the photos taken from Raoul’s bedroom. Amanita thinks she’s found the manufacturer of Angelica’s equipment based on the pictures, and she’s determined that the company still supplies equipment to the University of Chicago. In other words, it’s looking like maybe Angelica had more to do with BPO than some have thought. What’s her full role in all of this?
Before they can do more digging, Bug interrupts them with some big news, and he delivers it in very dramatic fashion. He knows a guy who can give Nomi an “e-death,” which basically means getting rid of every single electronic record of her that exists. Once Amanita tells Bug to tone down the whole “pregnant pause-y thing” — I love when Sense8 winks at the audience; it’s part of its playful charm — they all set off to meet with the man Bug simply calls “The Guy.”
One of the stranger scenes in this episode, and so far this season, sees Capheus head to the TV station to visit Zakia, only to be confronted by three guys in the office who tell him, in very vulgar fashion, that he doesn’t have a shot with her because she’s a lesbian. The scene is kind of isolated within the episode. Perhaps it’s just a way to lay out the misogynistic culture Zakia must navigate on a day-to-day basis, but for now it’s a scene that feels out of place. That’s not necessarily a criticism, but rather a hesitant note on the scene’s inclusion because it might be important later on.
Back to the question about Angelica’s involvement with BPO. When Whispers shows up once again to chat with Will, he comes with a friendlier attitude. He says he wants to be honest this time around, so Will hears him out. They sit on a bench in London, and Whispers muses on the Black Plague, fear, and the idea of moving humanity forward to something better. He insists he’s working for the sensates and their future, and that Angelica believed in their mission. When Will fires back that Angelica killed herself, Whispers mentions that soldiers and police officers often take their lives, too, because the burden of fighting evil can be a lot to bear. This feels like Whispers being manipulative, but it’s also information that Will can use later.
Before the sensates can come back together and develop a new plan for fighting BPO, a few things need to happen to get them out of their respective funks. First, Lito needs to reckon with the fact that he’s now being typecast and find a way to motivate himself and others. That comes in the form of an invitation to be the Grand Marshal of the São Paulo Gay Pride Parade, but he’s hesitant to do it. Second, Nomi needs to feel safe enough to come out of hiding, and thankfully Bug’s guy comes through. They all meet at a movie theater, where Lito’s movie happens to be playing. Bug freaks out when Nomi tells him that Lito is “sitting beside him,” which is super cute. Bug is a huge fan of Lito’s movies, apparently. Once there, Nomi is handed a flash drive that gives her the e-death she craves. Furthermore, the anonymous-looking dude knows all about BPO and homo sensorium, which suggests there are many more sensates than this cluster assumed.
After Wolfgang turns down Lila’s advances and Sun hears that the cop who tried to capture her might actually be willing to help her out now, the cluster meets up at the bar where Lito stole a passionate kiss from a cute bartender last season. They go in there to plan and to drink, but what they find is courage. As the bartender relates how Lito’s passion inspired him to propose to his boyfriend, the group realize they need to change their tactics. Their fear is hindering them. As Will puts it, “Nothing changes if we keep playing it safe.” They’re sick of living in hiding and hoping they figure out a way to stop BPO. They need to be active and forceful.
Essentially, Will posits that if BPO is so stacked with resources, it must be because there are a ton of sensates out there. What they need to do is find a way to tap into those people and attract them to their cause. The plan is to take Victor up on his offer for Riley to perform a DJ set, and everyone is on board.
Sense8 calls back to arguably its most memorable scene by cueing up “What’s Up” by 4 Non Blondes as Riley takes the stage and puts on a show. She tells the crowd about how easy it is to go through life looking down, and how rewarding it is to finally look up and take in your surroundings. She tells Will that she loves him, and all of our collective hearts melt. Then she plays her set. Everybody dances, and it would seem a few people have their first sensate experience, including an older man who suddenly finds himself onstage alongside Riley.
Whispers descends on the party with the cops and smugly lambastes Will for his recklessness, but Will and Riley escape without any issue. They flee on a boat, smiles on their faces for the first time since the stabbing in the museum. For now, they’ve found another way forward: a new way to fight BPO and maybe secure a future for themselves and everyone like them.