We begin with M.K. (Aramis Knight) wandering the Badlands, after having made good his escape from Quinn’s (Marton Csokas) fort. Meanwhile, Sunny (Daniel Wu) struggles with the shift in his loyalties after seeing Quinn murder in cold blood. He eventually decides to take M.K. under his wing – to train him and teach him to control his ‘Avatar Aang’ powers.

But the beginning of this episode was really one of my favorite scenes thus far, because we get to see the Widow (Emily Beecham) in action. Her mad dagger skills showed a fierce and cruel side to her character as she decimates the men who come to kill her.

But despite her character showing skills that I only wish I could possess, I can’t help but see similarities with another Widow of the Black variety. As of right now, the Widow’s ‘Xiao Long Nu’ hairstyle and her ‘merry’ band of daughters are the only traits that are keeping me from merging the two together.

Emily Beecham as the Widow. Source: AMC
“Call me Natasha again. I dare you.” Source: AMC

Cliches were abundant in this episode – it actually felt like I was watching a perfectly-dubbed TVB drama with a 99 per cent Caucasian cast. The biggest cliches of all came from Sunny’s character.  Just like any conflicted hero, Sunny is adamant that he cannot have a family for fear of losing them to his enemies. But his mind is quickly changed when he goes through a life-changing moment and decides to accept his responsibilities.

I was expecting Sunny to have an unpredictable personality but with the way the show is shaping him, everything I had sort of predicted about him came true. The fight scene towards the end of the episode was yet another cliche that I have to point out because it looked like it was taking place in any generic kung fu movie movie.

Sunny’s invincible fighting skills had him taking on 10 men and their small axes with just two swords – and winning, of course. The only difference in this setting is the venue of the fight – instead of a restaurant, it takes place in an abandoned old building. Visually, the effects are amazing but on a whole, the ‘odds against the hero’ plot line is overused and frankly pretty boring.

Source: AMC
“Tell me: does my contrived badassery impress you?” Source: AMC

Also, in a weirdly Mandarin-sounding conversation, M.K. and Tilda exchange names like they just met each other in class for the first time, which seemed very unnatural to me. Did M.K. forget that he just saw Tilda using her butterfly-shaped ninja-star to kill an innocent squirrel? Instead of being wary of this potentially crazy ninja-star throwing girl, he goes and makes friends with her.

I definitely felt that some thought should have been put into introducing these 2 characters to each other, like Tilda and M.K. earning each other’s trust first. Instead, it looked more like they were trying to sell Tilda’s character to the viewers as the one who will protect M.K. as he falls in love with him.

Ah well. Let’s hope episode 3 fares better.