Ladies and gentlemen: meet Bobbie Draper, your new favorite TV character.
One of the joys of Season 1 of The Expanse was to see the wide ranging ensemble of characters in far flung corners of the solar system suddenly thrust together. There’s a lot to keep track of beyond everybody’s name, but the series wastes no time in setting up its brand new star. She also happens to be a fan-favorite from author James S.A. Corey’s source material.
It may have taken an entire season to get a proper introduction to Bobbie Draper, but it was definitely worth the wait. This is also the first time we’ve glimpsed the red planet in the show so far. Until now, we’ve only gotten wind of the Martian homeworld from the stern, jet black-uniformed military commanders, like on the Donnager. But the opening scene in the jam-packed Season 2 premiere tells you everything you need to know about the Martian plight. These are born and bred warriors who are aliens on their own planet, as adrift as the Belters who want to disrupt the uneasy peace between Mars and Earth.
After her squad’s live-fire exercise, Bobbie and her team learns there’s no more training to be had: They’re shipping out for duty on the MCRN Scirocco ASAP. But before she can bust some skulls, Bobbie turns a hologram on in her battle suit to take a moment to look out onto a lush, vibrant, and green Mariner Valley. It isn’t the red, lifeless rock it is now. “Someday,” she whispers to herself, dreaming of terraforming Mars and knowing that her battles will be worth something.
Bobbie Draper is essentially a Furiosa-type. Actress Frankie Adams plays her as a completely badass female whose gender makes absolutely no difference. She’ll kick your ass just as easily as she’ll befriend you. “I don’t use sex as a weapon. I use weapons as weapons,” she tells her squad. (Bonus points also go to her Raiders of the Lost Ark hero moment arm wrestling and beating a programmed battle suit as her Martian platoon looks on in adoration.) But she never gets to use those weapons, at least in the premiere.
Just as they suit-up in a Scirocco drop ship to engage a U.N. ship burning towards Phoebe Station, the Martian warship sends a few warning torpedoes instead of its soldiers as a way to de-escalate the tension. She’ll have to store that terraforming hologram as a reminder of what could be and a reminder of what she needs to do, at all costs. “Maybe we can’t have the dream of Mars until we have that war,” she tells the Scirocco commander. Martian squabbles with Earth nearly brought the planets to the brink of war in the past, which delayed the terraforming project by a century. It guaranteed Bobbie’s generation wouldn’t be able to breath air on the red planet. But when she gets wind of the Eros genocide witnessed by Jim Holden and the Rocinante crew in the Season 1 finale, she might have to give up that war for the good of humanity.