Friday, July 3, 2020

REVIEW: 'Hanna' - Hanna Chooses to Rescue Clara Again While Marissa Hopes She Would Make a Different Choice in 'The Trial'

Amazon's Hanna - Episode 2.02 "The Trial"

Marissa and Hanna return to Paris, while Clara is introduced into the fold at The Meadows - but her rebellious nature causes problems, and Terri is tasked with persuading her to rejoin the program.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Amazon's Hanna.

"The Trial" was written by David Farr and directed by Eva Husson

Hanna is given the opportunity to make a clean break to a new life. She doesn't take it. That shouldn't be all that surprising. First, there would be no drama in the story if she were to make that decision at this point. And second, she has already been presented with this option and refused to take it. That makes it seem as if this season will follow some of the same themes as the first. That isn't inherently bad. These characters have to evolve over the years. That comes with mistakes and questioning one's choices. It may be beneficial to continually present this option to Hanna. She could trust Marissa and know that a better life is out there for her. And yet, that just doesn't make sense at the moment. If she chose to run away from Sophie's life in London as well as potential stability with her biological father, then it's unlikely that this offer would be any more tempting. The show goes through the motions of making it seem like this time will be different. That reads a little false. Hanna ran into Marissa again because she was on a mission. She had to find Clara. She found this connection and it was immediately taken from her. Sure, it's mostly about her reaction. She views this mission of saving the Utrax trainees as the sole thing defining her life. And yes, that proves to be quite reckless and dangerous to her. It's something that Marissa understands well. She has always prioritized her work. It has damaged her relationships in the past. She still sees the benefit of helping Hanna. She wasn't killed. She can start over. That would be so refreshing. It would also present as a clean break from the drama caused by the past coming back to haunt Marissa's life. It can never be that simple though. John is constantly monitoring her. It takes skill and talent for Marissa to sneak around and help Hanna. She does so because she remains at the top of her game. She cares about what happens to her. She only has that empathy with Hanna though. She doesn't seek out answers as to where Clara was taken. She just had to help John secure her once more. Hanna is the one who needs that clarity. She does so not to understand what makes her so special. She just doesn't want the girls like her to endure the trauma that she escaped from. She managed to do so once. Clara took her up on her offer. And now, Clara feels adrift. She lashes out at her fellow trainees. She can't embrace the new life that the program has assigned for her. It doesn't match the anguish that she feels. People have ideas on what could comfort her. Terri creates a backstory for a big family because that's what she longs for in her life. And yet, Terri can't equate her perspective as an only child with what Clara has been through. The narrative is trying to make that argument though. Terri doesn't want Clara to be alone. That's impossible because the trainees are being monitored all of the time. They believe that they have more freedom. The narrative suggests that they are allowed to question the world around them. That comes across in Jules challenging the heteronormative reality of The Meadows. However, it's difficult to understand if that is genuine rebellion against an oppressive force or if it's a pre-calculated narrative forced onto her by the people who supplied her with the books and this identity in the first place. What is real and what is simply a story. Jules and Sandy are close as friends. They protect one another. That spirit has developed because they have only known this one life. They've been together through it. Clara has as well. She is labeled the angry problem that could be costly in the end. That danger lurks in the outside world with Hanna who rampages through the pharmaceutical company developing the drugs for the program. That is such a lame and weird sequence. It highlights just how reckless Hanna can be in pursuit of the truth. Everything always manages to work out for her. But it's also so casual about her killing the doctors who oversee this trial. Plus, Marissa is right there to be the getaway driver. It's perfect and ensures she gets the next clue to find Clara and the other girls. It keeps momentum in the narrative. It just also features a one-note quest that is only important because the characters are still barely defined. The audience is told all of this is important. It asks questions about the value of identity. But this hour just wants to be about the espionage and action. That can be excited. The characters underneath it all just need to have more clarity and focus with what they are hoping to achieve especially when they make the same decisions over and over again.