From a mixed gumbo of Doylist and Watsonian viewpoints on what I think were the first two episodes, which apparently ran as one:
1. I am so glad it's back on; I was afraid they'd cancelled it. We're catching up on it now, since it started airing on SyFy last month.
2. But, wow, they eliminated practically the entirety of one family, and I'm not sure it's a smart move, plot or flow-wise.
3. I will miss Rafe MacCawley.
4. Christie MacCawley was extremely brave.
5. Linda Hamilton plays "dangerous crazy" beautifully; understated, cheerful, utterly batshit ruthless.
6. I still enjoy the emotional interplay between Nolan and Irisa, and Stephanie Leonidas' Irisa is still a believable teenager, albeit a teenager who was possessed and had the power of a godlet at one point.
7. I was glad to see the Omec appear - great, scary antagonists, although their initial appearance and actions were a little uneven - and impressed with the continuity of the series, since the showrunners and back story both mentioned a Votan species that had been left behind, as far back as the beginning of the series.
8. Stahma!! Datak!! My favorite badass, and just plain bad, but still weirdly awesome, couple. Stahma's actions were unforgivable, but completely understandable. She'll undoubtedly take vengeance on someone for backing her into that particular corner. She just has to stay alive to do so.
9. Ram Tak, aka The Beast, makes Datak look like Desi Arnez. But his admitted menace pales in comparison to that of the Omec.
10. For some reason, I loved the fact that they were obviously really filming in winter. That must have been a joy.
11. Doc Yewl, my favorite morally ambivalent character ... I still love her. And right now I want to give her a hug, and take her away from Defiance. Trenna Keating plays all sides of Yewl beautifully, including the "so scared that bystanders should pay attention to what she's scared about" part she played in the first two episodes. It's hard to see our hard-as-nails doctor be that undone by fear.
11. The set-up, with the advancing Tak forces, the two Omec on the ground, and their ship above, makes certain that Defiance will continue to be extremely high tension.
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