The Sense8 Christmas special was an odd one. Both a delightfully fluff-filled piece of fan service (another! orgy! scene!) and also a skippable entry into Sense8 lore, the special struggled to fill a massive two-hour block. By the time Season 2 drops in May, it’ll be tough to remember what was important to the plot because those small details — which were few and far apart — were overshadowed by cathartic moments like the joyous, carefree celebration of the sensates’ birthday. Lucky for you, here’s a handy list of everything relevant you’ll need to know from the Christmas Special before going into Season 2.
Will keeps seeing Angelica.
Will is the new Angelica. After being seen by Whispers in the first season, Will is now under the near constant influence of heroin to keep Whispers out of his mind and keep the rest of the cluster safe. However, when he’s under, Will keeps having fever dreams of Angelica who urges him to kill himself. She knows the path he’s walked and we’ve already seen how it ended for her. In the Christmas Special, is almost feels like Will is haunted by the Ghost of Christmas Future and Angelica is trying to show him that there’s no other way out.
In a later visit with Jonas, Will discovers that because Angelica birthed Will’s cluster, her sense and memory experience has been passed onto him, much like how genes are passed on in a regular birth. That’s why he still sees her, and often in places he’s never been like a cabin where he sees living happily with Jonas. Only time will tell if the connection between the Angelica and Will that can actively help them defeat Whispers and the BPO.
Jonas is still being held prisoner but visits Will when he can.
Jonas is still alive and in BPO’s custody. It’s through him that Will understands why he can see still see and interact with Angelica despite her death. Will also learns that his cluster isn’t the first that Angelica gave birth to — and they all ended up dead or in BPO’s custody like Jonas. Will, desperate for more information about Whispers, asks about the cluster Whispers must have been born into, and Angelica answers: They’re all dead, but Whispers still talks to them in his sleep and in his mind. The most important thing Jonas teaches Will in their brief visit before Jonas is put back under by the BPO is that there’s another way to dissolve the connection between sensates that isn’t as destructive as heroin. Blocker pills.
Not only can Whispers see Will, but Will can see Whispers.
When Jonas first visits Will in the Christmas Special, Will is hiding in the corner of Whispers’s mind, spying on him and his whereabouts and trying to gather information. Will sees Whispers in a beautiful park with his daughter who he dotes on. Jonas appears and tells Will he’s not the first person to use Whispers’s link to the sensate he’s hunting against them and the Whispers has ways to protect himself. At the same same Whispers take a pill, and a low humming begins in Will’s ears. Jonas tell him the pill is called a blocker, and that BPO uses it to protect valuable assets like Whispers, and also hide prisoners like Jonas.
Jonas points out that Whipsers is very careful with his pills, meaning something happened to make him careless, or more likely, he wants Will to see this and is toying with Will and his cluster.
Whispers found Will’s dad.
Will’s been on the run for months, and we find out in the Christmas Special that he left without making any plausible excuses to his father. He’s been missing for months, causing his dad to relapse and start drinking again after years of sobriety. When Will finally picks up the phone to call his dad and let him know he’s okay, Will discovers his father’s fallen off the wagon, and despite loving each other, the only thing they manage to do is get in a fight. Will’s father begs him to come home, and Will can’t tell him the reasons why he can’t.
The reason Will can’t come home ends up finding his father a few days later. Whispers has been talking to Will’s father on the phone about the disappearance of his son, claiming he’s law enforcement and that Will’s on the run after doing something dangerous. Whispers visits Will’s father at their home and seeks out a psychic connection with Will, the threat implicit as he shows Will images of his drunk father precariously balanced on a railing trying to hang Christmas lights.
Will does hear his father say, “I don’t care what he did, I just want him to come home.” While its reassuring to know that he’s unconditionally loved, Will also understands what kind of danger he’s put his father in for the first time. Watching Whispers top up the whiskey in his father’s glass, Will disappears into the haze of heroin with a singular promise: “I’m gonna fucking kill you.”
Some of the sensates want to think of a backup plan, but there seems to be no other option.
With all the pressure of protecting the cluster falling squarely on Will, the other sensates begin to wonder what they can do. Will can’t keep using, especially not if he wants to be useful in the ultimate fight against Whispers and the BPO. Nomi ponders out loud to Sun whether they should start formulating a back up plan, either Will’s body or mind is going to give out sooner rather than later. Sun calms her by saying she trusts Will to protect them, and that’s a good enough plan for now.