Black Hole Sun: ‘Transmission,’ episode 5 of ‘Lost in Space,’


“Transmission,” episode 5 of Netflix’s Lost in Space, is about confrontation among the Resolute’s survivors, man-eating reptiles, and troubling new knowledge.

Are the Survivors All Doomed?

After getting to know the Robinsons, it’s kind of sad to think they could all die soon. However, that’s exactly the idea that’s instilled by Maureen Robinson (Molly Parker), while conducting research on the rapidly changing climate from her weather balloon.

People aren’t only lost in space. They are apparently smack dab in the middle of a black hole/star binary system! Even if one doesn’t exactly grasp black holes, they’ll know that they mean trouble. (Stephen Hawking likened it to being stretched out “longwise” and being made into “spaghetti.”)

Maureen Robinson (Molly Parker) conducts some research. (Lost in Space, Netflix)

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What can be done about this? Can they really get back to the Resolute, or are these people really all doomed? While the Resolute gang has plenty of survival knowledge, it will take a real miracle (or some decent writing) to make a plausible, workable solution for these folks.

Certainly, this is a predicament for Maureen. They are already low on supplies. If she tells them about the binary black hole situation, they’ll be extra low on hope.

Dr. Smith: The Evil Beneath the Surface

In this episode, we get even more insight into “Dr. Smith” (Parker Posey) — Lost in Space’s primary villain. It’s increasingly clear that she manipulates everyone and everything within range. In the previous episode (“The Robinsons Were Here”), she tried manipulating the robot into distrusting Will Robinson (Maxwell Jenkins), who is only a boy (even if he’s above average intelligence).

And, of course, she had lied to get on board the Resolute, to begin with, going so far as to steal her sister’s identity.

Now, however, she has the obstacle of meeting Don West (Ignacio Serricchio), who she had recently abandoned, stealing his flare gun and acting like she was a lone survivor to the Robinsons. Obviously, it will be hard to win back his favor. All she can manage is the floundering idea that she somehow took it by accident.

Now, in an improvised effort to cover her tracks, Smith begins sowing seeds of doubt about Mr. West — being careful to employ at least some truth in her efforts. For example, she notes that he stole the boots right off of a Jupiter crash casualty.

When talking to Judy Robinson (Taylor Russell), she claims Don showed no care regarding Angela Goddard (Sibongile Mlambo), who was unconscious during the freakish diamond storm. Obviously, she may also exploit West’s booze-smuggling as a way to question his character.

The Reptilian Menace and the Robot Question

In a demonstration of sheer disregard for safety, Smith shuts down the perimeter fence, designed to protect the survivors. Unfortunately for them, their light beacon not only attracted strange giant moths but also strange giant reptiles, who attack them movie monster-style.

When the robot is psychically summoned by Will to fend of the reptiles, it goes into “angry” attack mode. This, of course, is the same form it showcased while attacking the Resolute, which is why people are lost in space, to begin with. Ouch!

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Regarding Dr. Smith: As her deadly behaviors and white lies pile up, she may stand as the biggest problem for reaching Alpha Centauri. Think of it: Her deceit and cunning may be deadlier to people than a black hole.