The Rook: Season 1, Episode 2 “Chapter 2” – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

Linda (Joely Richardson) sitting in her office.
Linda (Joely Richardson)
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As it becomes the left-hand doesn’t know what the right one is doing, we dig deeper into why and who was trying to hunt Myfanwy and the price they were willing to pay.


Network
STARZ
Director(s) Kari Skogland
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 7/7/2019
Introduced This Episode
Linda Joely Richardson
Conrad Adrian Lester
Zef Nikolaos Brahimllari
Monica Olivia Munn
Ingrid Ruth Madeley
Eliza Catherine Steadman
Robert Ronan Raftery
Alex Jon Fletcher
Jennifer Gina McKee

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Recap

It Isn’t Only Linda Covering Up For Myfanwy: Conrad, Zef, Jennifer

Everyone is checking into what happened at the Millennium Bridge and at Mansel bank, but most aren’t making headway. Which, for Home Secretary Jennifer, is a huge issue since she reigns over the Checquy and clearly the incident was caused by someone within the EVA (Extreme variant abilities) community. So, Conrad, working on his own, checks into a Lugat member named Zef. Someone he, originally, tries to be friendly with since the Checquy has need for underground connections to get work done. However, with Zef not presenting the whole truth, Conrad is forced to use his powers.

This leads to us learning that the Lugat seemingly were trying to capture Myfanwy to sell her but failed. Which, considering all Conrad knows, if there is one thing he doesn’t take well to is the trafficking of his kind. So, while he killed a few Lugat members, he leaves Zef alive to warn his boss, Lorik, to stay away from Myfanwy.

Now, as for why Conrad would protect her, even to the extent of lying to Linda, is anyone’s guess?

Where Does Your Allegiance Truly Lay?: Monica, Ingrid, Eliza, Robert

Monica (Olivia Munn) pushing Ingrid to help her.
Monica (Olivia Munn)

While Monica tries to present herself as a friend, nearly everyone recognizes she is there for selfish purposes. Ingrid, the genius office manager, knows it, as well as the members of the Gestalt. However, none of them are able to catch Monica in the act as she tries to rescue the reputation of her ex Marcus while throwing off the Checquy. But, with the discovery of Babylon, where people can participate in an auction for EVAs, who are worth millions, maybe she’ll be more forthcoming since her super strength can only get her so far.

Who. Am. I?: Linda, Myfanwy, Alex, Robert

With notes littered everywhere, Myfanwy not only has trouble trusting Linda, but also herself. Yet, with every interaction, she learns more. Be it from Alex, who makes it seem she rarely leaves the office, and only hooks up with him when drunk, or Linda, who makes it seem she has OCD. Each person presents a piece to her mosaic, but often with chipped edges. Take, for instance, Linda making sure Myfanwy doesn’t get to see pictures of her parents.

All that Myfanwy could want to know requires doing more espionage than it seems she ever was willing to do before. Leading you to wonder, before the memory loss, was Myfanwy a real asset to the Checquy or just a liability kept close so she couldn’t cause trouble?

Review

Highlights

It’s Getting Better

Myfanwy asking what kind of monster is she?
Myfanwy: What kind of monster am I?

I think the best way to appreciate The Rook is looking at it as story-driven than character-driven. Which, when it comes to supernatural people, is either rare or just not done. Yet, between all the lies, uncovering Myfanwy’s past, and the espionage/investigation angle, I think this could become a wood-burning oven kind of show. One which certainly doesn’t win people over with the pilot but that’s probably why when critics get screeners they usually get around 3 or so episodes. For, increasingly, it is becoming clear very few shows are truly capable of hitting it out of the park on their first outing.

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The Rook - Episode List

Creator

Daniel O’Malley

Character Guide

Created

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Season Reviews

First Season Not Complete Yet

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Season/ EpisodeSynopsisEpisode InformationTopics & Focused Characters
Season 1, Episode 8 “Chapter 8” [Season Finale]In the finale, we finally get to see powers used for fights and a reason to want to see more as all hell breaks loose.
Director(s) China Moo-Young
Writer(s) Karyn Usher, Lisa Zwerling
Air Date 8/18/2019
Introduced This Episode
Viktor Nick Moss
Sophia Poppy Corby
  • Nazim, Monica, Gestalt | I Just Want To Forget
  • Linda, Myfanwy, Sophia, Conrad, Jennifer | It Never Ends
  • Linda, Myfanwy, Viktor, Lorik, Bronwyn, Jennifer, Conrad, Gestalt | Until It Does
Season 1, Episode 7 “Prologue”Before the finale, we retrace what led to Myfanwy getting her mind-wiped and the incident at the Millennium Bridge.
Director(s) Rebecca Johnson
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 8/11/2019
Introduced This Episode
Josie Rosie Sansom
  • A Predication Was Made: Josie, Myfanwy, Linda, Gestalt
  • Old Friends & Uneasy Allies: Jennifer, Conrad, Linda, Monica, Marcus
  • The Days Before & The Night Of: Linda, Lorik, Peter, Marcus, Bronwyn, Myfanwy, Nazim
Season 1, Episode 6 "Chapter 6"As Monica comes to a realization about Marcus, Myfanwy provides all Conrad needs to seal Linda. Also, Bronwyn triggers Myfanwy’s memories.
Director(s) Sunu Gonera
Writer(s) Francesca Gardiner
Air Date 8/4/2019
  • It’s Becoming Clear To Me Now: Bronwyn, Marcus, Monica, Myfanwy
  • I Don’t Want To Lie Anymore: Gestalt, Conrad, Myfanwy, Monica, Ingrid
  • The Fall of Linda Ferrier: Linda, Jennifer, Conrad, Myfanwy
Season 1, Episode 4 “Chapter 4”Alongside what happened at and to Glengrove House, we learn who caused Myfanwy to lose her memories and why.
Director(s) Sunu Gonera
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 7/21/2019
Introduced This Episode
Nazim Michael Karim
Dr. Bristol James D’Arcy
  • A Certain Lack Of Trust: Conrad, Linda, Myfanwy
  • The Search For An EVA: Monica, Robert, Eliza, Alex, Teddy
  • I Can See Clearly Now, The Wipe Is Nearly Gone:Nazim, Linda, Dr. Bristol, Myfanwy
Season 1, Episode 5 “Chapter 5”As Monica gains an unexpected ally, Linda overplays her hand. Leading to her having to reveal a secret weapon.
Director(s) China Moo-Young
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 7/28/2019
Introduced This Episode
Lorik Michael McElhatton
Marcus Luke Roberts
Bronwyn Tamsin Topolski
  • Congratulations, You Played Yourself: Linda, Jennifer, Conrad
  • A Different Approach: Monica, Marcus, Myfanwy, Nazim
  • There Is So Much You Don’t Know: Nazim, Myfanwy, Bronwyn, Lorik, Conrad, Linda, Gestalt, Monica
Season 1, Episode 3 “Chapter 3”As one of Myfanwy’s pursuers get captured, complications with the Gestalt, Monica, and the relationship between Conrad and Linda continue.
Director(s) China Moo-Young
Writer(s) Francesca Gardiner
Air Date 7/14/2019
Introduced This Episode
Peter Von Syoc Barry Atsma
Danielle Shelley Conn
Gordon Steven Pacey
  • The Theories Aren’t Off & The Hive Mind Isn’t Always Advantageous: Danielle, Jennifer, Myfanwy, Linda
  • Sometimes I Feel Like Someone Is Watching Me:Myfanwy, Eliza, Linda
  • Trust Is So Hard To Gain & Easy To Lose: Gordon, Monica, Peter, Myfanwy, Conrad, Linda
Season 1, Episode 1 “Chapter 1” [Series Premiere]While The Rook seems like it could be intriguing, it faces an uphill battle by being everything we’re not used to when superheroes are involved.
Creator(s) Daniel O’Malley
Director(s) Kari Skogland
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 6/30/2019
Genre(s) Fantasy, Action, Drama, Superhero
Good If You Like
  • Understated Supernatural Productions
  • Protagonists With Memory Loss Rediscovering Who They Are
  • Who Dun It Shows
Isn’t For You If You
  • Need At Least One Character With Charm, Charisma, Or Who Can Be Considered Comedic Relief
Introduced This Episode
Myfanwy Emma Greenwell
Season 1, Episode 2 “Chapter 2”As it becomes the left-hand doesn’t know what the right one is doing, we dig deeper into why and who was trying to hunt Myfanwy and the price they were willing to pay.
Director(s) Kari Skogland
Writer(s) Al Blyth, Sam Holcroft
Air Date 7/7/2019
Introduced This Episode
Linda Joely Richardson
Conrad Adrian Lester
Zef Nikolaos Brahimllari
Monica Olivia Munn
Ingrid Ruth Madeley
Eliza Catherine Steadman
Robert Ronan Raftery
Alex Jon Fletcher
Jennifer Gina McKee
  • It Isn’t Only Linda Covering Up For Myfanwy: Conrad, Zef, Jennifer
  • Where Does Your Allegiance Truly Lay?: Monica, Ingrid, Eliza, Robert
  • Who. Am. I?: Linda, Myfanwy, Alex, Robert

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I wouldn’t consider this satirical at all. It’s more so a spy drama. One which, for some reason, has me hooked, but isn’t necessarily a show I’d imagine becoming one of their tentpole series.

  2. I have not got around to watching the TV series, but I have read the novel upon which this series is based.

    The marketing of this show struck me as rather odd… the novel in many ways felt like a typical British espionage thriller (with all the emotional reserve, and dry, fussily formal interactions you’d expect from this genre), but with some far-out fantasy elements thrown in… at least, it’s like that when the amnesiac heroine is still getting a handle on things – once she regains control of her life it becomes more of a wacky comedy. Taking the book as a whole, you could interpret it as a satirical spoof of either the spy genre or superhero mythology.

    But the TV advertisements don’t give much hint that “The Rook” is satirical, it seems to be pitching the premise of the story to the audience in a very serious way, and emphasising the super-powered, paranormal stuff over the espionage elements.

    Your summary makes it sound like they’ve followed the plot of the first few chapters in the book reasonably closely, even if the tonal choices are a bit odd.
    It doesn’t sound like those making this approached the material with a satiric mindset, but I guess I’ll find out once I get to see it myself.

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