‘Foundation’ Episode 8 Recap: “The Missing Piece”

You need to hand it to Emperor Cleon. Most omnipotent galactic overlords would have a tough time suppressing a heretical sect of their star-spanning realm’s strongest faith, led by a priestess who’s mainly referred to as him a soulless abomination. Most would additionally battle to show her mistaken by finishing a spiritual pilgrimage that kills 50% of its pilgrims via warmth, thirst, and publicity. And most would most likely hold their shirts on whereas doing so.


Not our boy Cleon, although! On this compelling episode of Foundation (“The Lacking Piece”), actor Lee Tempo is at his most shirtless as Brother Day, the first Emperor, who takes on the problem of strolling the Spiral as a way to regain management of the Luminist faith and its three trillion worshippers. It’s a bet, no two methods about that: It’s his first time experiencing true bodily hardship, it places him in danger for galaxy-wide humiliation and rejection, and since he has to go away his protecting defend behind, he’s in grave life-or-death hazard for the primary time in his cloned life. At one level, he requires the assistance of an aged pilgrim (Michael Elwyn) whom he befriends on the best way simply to rise up off of 1 knee and proceed the trek.


However as soon as he reaches the sacred cave on the Spiral’s coronary heart and immerses himself within the pool referred to as the Mom’s Womb, he’s golden. He emerges to inform the three Zephyr priestesses who oversee the pilgrimage that he had a imaginative and prescient of an historic three-petalled flower—three petals from a single supply, identical to how Luminism’s three goddesses have been as soon as one being, and identical to how he and his brothers Nightfall and Daybreak all stem from the identical genetic supply. How may anybody with a imaginative and prescient like that be the soulless abomination that the rogue Zephyr Halima has labeled him?

With that, he wins the day and ends the schism. As he departs the moon the place the pilgrimage takes place, he can’t assist however closely indicate to Halima that if she hadn’t given a speech successfully labeling him a monstrosity, he’d by no means have had the thought for his profitable pilgrimage within the first place. Then he provides deadly damage to insult by forcing his robotic servant Demerzel, who have to be loyal to him in any respect prices, to poison Halima to demise, regardless of harboring her personal grave and now redoubled doubts about Cleon and his soullessness, since she will be able to inform he was bullshitting about his sacred non secular imaginative and prescient. (He’d seen a kind of historic flowers in her quarters, it seems.)

(Observe: I assume on this adaptation of Isaac Asimov, his First Legislation of Robotics—“A robotic could not injure a human being or, via inaction, permit a human being to come back to hurt”—not applies. Until, I suppose, the Zeroth Legislation—“A robotic could not hurt humanity, or, by in motion, permit humanity to come back to hurt”—supersedes and overrides the First Legislation, and Demerzel’s robotic thoughts has deduced that Cleon’s success among the many Luminists hinges on Halima’s demise. It’s difficult!)

Whereas Cleon’s grasp plan goes off with no hitch, Hari Seldon’s, it appears, has not. His digital self tells his protégé Gaal Dornick that he wants her assist to construct a Second Basis, impartial and hidden from the First, on his homeworld of Helicon. There’s additionally some backwards and forwards about her reward of psychic prescience, which if dealt with improperly may jeopardize all the subject of psychohistory, a mathematical self-discipline predicated on the concept individuals are mainly the identical. (No room for rogue psychics, in different phrases.)

However Gaal isn’t having it. Hari already did not predict that Gaal would burst in on his pre-planned assassination by his different protégé (and her lover) Raych, or that Raych would voluntarily take the autumn and ship Gaal out into area in an escape pod in his place. So she’s not about to easily take his phrase for it when he tells her she’s important to the plan for the Second Basis and the preservation of human variety. 

Her solely leverage, although, is to threat her personal life by destroying their vessel’s temperature regulation system, permitting herself to boil to demise moderately than full the voyage. Digital Hari is pressured to permit her to go away within the escape pod as soon as once more, which she packages for an 138-year journey again to her homeworld of Synnax. I don’t learn about you, however I’m hoping this stop-and-start storyline reaches its vacation spot sooner moderately than later.


The ultimate piece of the puzzle is Salvor Hardin, who like Gaal seems to have some telepathic skills, in her case taking the type of each clairvoyance and unnaturally good luck. However by the point she reaches the bridge of the planet-killing spacecraft the Invictus, her get together is down to simply 4 members: herself, Basis chief Lewis Pirenne, Anacrean huntress Phara, and Phara’s lieutenant, Rowan (Pravessh Rana).

By that time, it’s clear that there’s no speaking Phara out of her plan to make use of the Invictus to raze Trantor, though the Empire will probably retaliate by killing each final Anacrean it will possibly discover, and sure wiping out different worlds on the rim of the galaxy for good measure. Salvor manages to get the bounce on her captors for a bit, giving her and Lewis simply sufficient time to plot a plan to take the Invictus again to Terminus, if her enhanced thoughts can in some way interface with the ship’s AI.

However Phara and Rowan burst in, capturing Lewis, and a struggle between Phara and Salvor ensues; Salvor’s nearly to ship the killshot when her luck fails her and her gun runs out of ammo. As Thespin ships referred to as into motion by Hugo (who’s nonetheless alive on the market; my theory was correct, hooray!) assault, the ship jumps to an unknown vacation spot, and Salvor finds herself wakeful for the maneuver. That’s a one-way ticket to insanity for the common human mind, however as we noticed with Gaal, it’s potential for individuals with extraordinary psychological skills to climate the journey. 


The place will that journey finish? It’s an open query, and it’s to the present’s credit score that at this level I’m truly within the reply. The Cleons are nonetheless far and away probably the most fascinating factor about Basis—paradoxically, provided that they haven’t any foundation within the supply materials, not that the Gaal and Salvor storylines are any extra devoted to the books than Brother Day’s. However we’re attending to the purpose the place the Gaal and Salvor materials actually has to ship if the present is to keep away from feeling lopsided for its complete period. I’m wanting ahead to seeing whether or not the present lives as much as that problem.


Sean T. Collins (@theseantcollins) writes about TV for Rolling Stone, Vulture, The New York Occasions, and anyplace that will have him, actually. He and his household reside on Lengthy Island.

Watch Foundation Episode 8 on Apple TV+

https://decider.com/2021/11/05/foundation-episode-8-recap/ | ‘Basis’ Episode 8 Recap: “The Lacking Piece”


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