The Orville season 2, episode 3 recap: Home

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THE ORVILLE: L-R: Seth MacFarlane and Scott Grimes in the ÒHomeÓ episode of THE ORVILLE airing Thursday, Jan. 10 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2018 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: FOX

The third episode of The Orville gives us the chance to learn a little more about Alara’s home planet of Xelayah and the stressful family dynamics in which she was raised.

This episode of The Orville opens with Gordon and John grabbing Isaac in the cafeteria so he can compete against Alara in an arm wrestling competition. This is a new tradition on the ship where everyone gathers around and places bets on who will win.

Isaac wins, but unintentionally (and inexplicably) breaks Alara’s arm in the process.

Alara visits Claire in the medical bay. It’s strange that Isaac was able to break her arm since they’re usually so evenly matched. Apparently, Alara’s strength is deteriorating, which includes a loss in bone density.

Claire tells Alara, Kelly, and Ed that this sort of deterioration has previously been recorded in astronauts. However, it’s strange for a Xelayan to be deteriorating this quickly. Alara needs to return to her home to try to recover. Recovery could take anywhere from weeks to four years. There’s no way to tell how long (if ever) it’ll take for her to regain her strength.

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If she doesn’t go home, she may completely acclimate to earth gravity. If that happens, she’ll never be able to go home because the gravity on Xelayah would crush her. They need to leave as soon as possible.

Later, Ed visits Alara and says that the final decision is up to her. He’s willing to give her as much staff as she needs to compensate for what she’d lack in strength. But Alara knows she needs to go home. She worries about how long the process will take, but Ed assures her that no matter what, her job would be there for her.

Alara visits the bridge as the Orville approaches her planet and promises she’ll beat what’s happening to her and she’ll come back stronger than ever.

Ed and Gordon accompany Alara in a shuttle down to Xelayah’s surface. As they land at Alara’s house, Ed suits up to accompany her off the ship. His suit can last an hour in Xelayan gravity. Outside of the shuttle’s gravity shield, Alara immediately collapses under Xelayan gravity. Her parents say it’s worse than they thought and are completely condescending to Ed.

Ed tries to talk up all that Alara’s accomplished, but Xelayan’s don’t think very highly of the military.

In her home, Alara, getting around in a floating chair, has breakfast with her parents and older sister. Her parents say she already looks better simply by being away from the ship. Alara tells them she likes working on the ship.

Her father suggests she go back to school since there’s no telling how long recovery will take. He says he put in a word with the teachers so they can look after her since he says she always struggled in school compared to other kids. Again, looking down on the life she had chosen for herself.

Alara’s sister mentions that it can take a long time for some people to recover and Alara snaps. Her family, she says, is rooting for her to fail.

Changing the subject, Alara’s sister says she’s getting married and Alara can be the maid of honor. Of course, this leads to Alara’s mom saying that, now that Alara’s home, she may actually have success in the romance department.

Later in Alara’s room, Alara bickers with her father because it seems like her family pities her. He talks about how she was slower than other children and intellectually inferior to them. They, apparently, did the best they could with her.

Alara fights back by saying that everyone on the Orville was much more supportive of her than anyone on Xelayah ever was.

In order to pull the family back together, Alara’s dad suggests they take a trip to their beach house.

Alara’s family travels to their beach house on an island that is supposedly deserted other than their family. But, in the distance, Alara spots a light on in a house. Which is a bit suspicious considering they should be alone.

To get this (honestly unnecessary) side plot out of the way: On The Orville, an interim security chief joins the crew. Ed clearly misses Alara. It’s an awkward introduction. The new guy is kind of a bro and Ed is a bit caught off guard. Later, the new security officer walks on the bridge with food and pounds away at it at his station. He declines Ed’s suggestion of taking a break to eat somewhere else. It’s disturbing.

The only important thing that happens on the ship is that John and Claire say they have an idea on how to help Alara. They ask Ed and Kelly to join them in the simulator room.

Ok, back to Alara.

At the beach house, surrounded by her mom and sister, Alara tries to stand. She still can’t support her own weight. Just then, a couple knocks on their door and say they live up the beach. They say they think someone broke into their house and wondered if Alara’s family had seen anything.

Alara immediately starts asking questions to try to help. She’s in full detective mode.

The strange couple suggests that maybe Alara’s family caretaker was responsible. But when Alara’s mom tries to call him, there’s no answer.

Alara suggests that she can go check his cottage. Her mom says she shouldn’t in her condition, but Alara’s sister says she’ll go with Alara. The sisters take an awkward trip in their shuttle to check out the caretaker’s cottage.

As they travel, Alara’s sister seems genuinely interested in Alara’s life and career. She speculates that intellectuals and soldiers secretly envy what the other has. Alara asks why people can’t have both.

Alara’s sister admits she’s proud of Alara.

At the caretaker’s cottage, Alara finds all his stuff still there. He never left the island. But where is he?