Religious imagery abounds in an explosive Raised By Wolves Season 2 Episode 8 finale that sets up an intriguing Season 3 confrontation.
Raised By Wolves Season 2 Episode 8 goes out with a bang and a whimper as the two biggest players are removed from the board. As usual, Father’s more measured approach is the better one. Mother is emotional and worried, and it causes her to make some grave miscalculations. He was worried about Mother donning Grandmother’s veil. There was so much they didn’t understand about its purposes and capabilities. Mother was desperate to save everyone from Seven, though, and she threw caution to the wind. She was able to defeat the serpent but at what cost?
After placing the veil on her head, she could detach from her feelings toward Seven. She tracked down Seven, and it followed her into space above the planet. They embraced before Mother unleashed her sonic scream and killed the serpent. There was something oddly moving about the scene that showed mother and offspring connecting figuratively and literally. If looked at from a different perspective, it was deeply disturbing. The creature could have been trying to impregnate Mother with more serpents. Her sterilization earlier in the season prevented that, which is why Seven backed away. The strangely sexual scene was disturbing, but the scene that directly followed made us sympathize with the creature.
It is these moments that make the series so special. These are not subtle themes, and without the delicate and deliberate camera work by Kolja Brandt and the thoughtful emotionality by the creator Aaron Guzikowski, it could go awry quickly. It’s not easy to keep a show about an android that gave birth to a giant flying serpent and her human offspring grounded.
Not all androids are created equal, and we were right to doubt Grandmother. She is either a liar or has a funny view of protection. Paul has long questioned whether androids lied. We now know that they do and with great skill. Perhaps her end goal is the preservation of the most humans possible which would make her conscious sabotage of the human settlement on Kepler-22b sensical if cold-blooded. For all her worries that the entity has infected everyone already, she should look inward. The hologames she is distributing will infect everyone as much as the signal.
Campion and the others are evolving into acid sea creatures. Those are the human settlers who once lived with Grandmother. After she disables Mother and imprisons her, Grandmother tells her the only way to force the entity into hibernation is for all humans to go to the sea. For now, Mother is curtailed, but Father is intuitive and devoted to her. Season 3 undoubtedly will feature the inevitable battle between Mother and Grandmother, with Father providing sturdy backup. Unfortunately, we will have to wait to see if HBO Max renews the trippy sci-fi series for a third season. This intelligent and utterly unique series deserves another season.
HBO Max’s series has made us think a lot about what it means to be a parent. Now that Grandmother is in the mix, these become even murkier. However, an exciting symmetry is being established between Father and Mother and their children and Hunter and Tempest, who are reluctant parents to Tempest’s newborn. This has room for potential beyond the sci-fi weirdness and religious dogma.
Raised By Wolves Season 2 Episode 8 wasn’t content with the sci-fi explanations in the season finale either. It has always steered heavily into a pseudo-religious space reminiscent of the best seasons of Battlestar Galactica. By the end, the imagery is complete. Knowledge and contentment, curiosity and ignorance represent opposite sides of the equation. Grandmother argues being unaware is better, while Father appreciates a curious mind. It’s no wonder Grandmother values ignorance. She needs her charges to stay in the dark long enough to mutate into creatures. This will be intolerable to Father, but he is blissfully unaware for the moment. That will change as he is a curious mind.
There is a wisdom to Father that both of the other androids miss. He fully embraces his emotions without reservation while maintaining the sense to know inherently what is right and wrong. He is right to defer to Mother about her own body but be wary she is repressing emotions that would be better felt and dealt with. Although she is very right to worry about the continued efforts of the entity, she fails to see the wolf in sheep’s clothing under her roof.
Lucius stole the punisher’s helmet because he had been infected with the signal. After Marcus attempts to investigate the pit further, Lucius attacks him and crucifies him upside down on the tree that sprouted from Seven’s dead body. The message is clear, technology is bad. In this case, it might be the Devil. Marcus was sacrificed to be reborn as the antichrist, with Mother being established as a Christlike savior, making Grandmother Judas. How this trinity plays out in Season 3, we don’t know yet, but we know it will be unexpected.
The explosion caused by Seven’s death has made everyone vulnerable. It disrupted the electromagnetic layer that shielded the tropical zone from the signal and the cold. A heartbroken Campion is devastated by Vrille’s loss. All life, regardless of origin, is valuable to him, and Vrille was a friend. He took a tracing of her final words, and Paul translated them. Paul said they are meaningless, but he has lied before. He also could have mistranslated them. Details matter on Raised By Wolves, so we should expect that Vrille’s words will play a significant role in Season 3
The last thing to ponder is Seven behavior towards Campion. Seven stopped short of hurting Campion. Why? Perhaps there is more to this entity. Maybe Campion is right, and all life is meaningful but what we do with our life is what shapes us. This would mean everyone, synthetic or otherwise, has free will, and our choices define who we are. We are all capable of great good and evil. How we treat others decides on which side of the line we fall. If that’s the case, we are our own worst enemy, and no amount of praying can help us. Hopefully, a little prayer can secure a raised By Wolves Season 3 though. Find all our Raised By Wolves coverage here.
As the Managing Editor for Signal Horizon, I love watching and writing about genre entertainment. I grew up with old-school slashers, but my real passion is television and all things weird and ambiguous. My work can be found here and Travel Weird, where I am the Editor in Chief.