Humans Recap: Episode 3 — Synth Rights and Date Nights

Love and war, everything is heating up for the Hawkins.

Humans / Season 3, Episode 3 / AMC

Woo, Max done stepped in it now! I know synths are still learning the subtler aspects of personal dynamics, but hot damn, Max makes Don Blanketship look like Billy Dee Williams as we begin the third episode of the greatest show on AMC. Somebody get fam a copy of How to Win Friends and Influence People before this uprising pops off, ’cause the synths Mia saved were sent to the Saddest Place on Earth for sanctuary and Max turned ’em away at the checkpoint like he work for ICE. A Republican got their wings after that shit. Somebody better hide this technology before we got Max-bots along our whole southern border, don’t let these people find out what Max is capable of. Max got the cold heart of a Republican and he too was born without a soul. This was the last straw before the scales tip in Agnus’ favor. Daenerys-bot fed up.

Back at Mama Hawkins’ residence, the most useful auto-bot of all time getting his domestic duties on when there’s a knock at the door and guess who’s back. Leo holding onto life and also his future child bride and mass murder, Maddie. The whole band is almost back together again, minus Papa Hawkins who’s still busy on Green Acres. Nobody knows how Leo is healing so fast though — dude’s been in a coma for a year and he can barely use a fork, but all things considered my dude healed like Wolverine. Mama Hawkins is worried because Leo obviously comes with a lot of heat, but she agrees to let him stay for a few days and tries to call Mia to share how her brother is back. Mia though, well, shit, this whole episode is Mia taking the Ruby Bridges walk through a neighborhood of aggressively hateful-ass humans who want her ass gone.

Speaking of wanting her ass gone, the whole Dryden Commission is scoffing at Mama Hawkins at their high-rise luxury tower meeting as she tries to convince them that conscious synths are a value-add to civilization. Still ice skating uphill, I see. She looks to Obvious Love Interest Neil for support but when she calls for the cavalry, the cavalry ain’t come. Mama Hawkins is forgiving though ’cause her life been stressful as fuck lately and the least she deserves is date night. I ain’t mad, Laura. I ain’t mad at all.

Back at Mia’s terror stroll through the city, Mia rolls up in a real estate office and the 30-year old Dennis the Menace reception calls security post-haste. Mia didn’t pass Go or collect $200 before two cops pull up demanding that she come peacefully. Curveball though, ’cause Mia knows her rights and pulled the lawyer on speed dial, none other than Mama Hawkins who put the cops right back in their place. Yeah, this was all planned — Mia’s out here tryna prove tolerance by operating within the law to expose herself to humans in effort for them to become more tolerant. It’s going to be the saddest day when Mia Luther King learns just how terrible humans are. Sad day, indeed.

In the meantime though, Voss and her son have their first minor mishap where Sam is almost outed as a synth. They gotta run into Papa Hawkins’ shop to fix his contacts ’cause people don’t fux with green-eyes around here. When it comes to synths though, Joe found the soft place in his heart or the hard place in his pants ’cause he’s coming around to helping them out again. Joe clearly in the market for a new family, talking about how Karen needs something more in her life than to do nothing, like loving him and holding him and kissing him and starting a new life together. You been down this road before, Joe. You too, Voss. Yeah, y’all are perfect for each other. At least Joe can protect Sam though, because as it turns out, Karen can’t deliberately put herself in immediate physical danger, courtesy of David Elster’s programming. Elster’s wife committed suicide, so he programmed Karen to be unable to voluntary put herself in harm’s way. Normally that’s fine except, y’know, when you have a son who might walk into traffic and you can’t save him. That’s what Joe is for though, since dude wants to be useful so bad.

Back at the combine, Agnus X is rallying her people against Max and he pretty much knows it’s a wrap. It’s the primary debate in front of the voters and Max talking about long-term planning while Agnus giving the people what they wanna hear. Max is 5 minutes away from a “Lock Him Up” chant. He turns to Anatole who’s slowly converting him to Christianity, except replace Jesus with David Elster.

Over on date night, Laura got on the smooth black leather skirt trying balance social justice and a little play on the side. She gets a call from Mia and Laura passes the phone to Leo so they can reconnect and Leo learns of Mia’s plan to try to integrate. Fair to say, at this point, it ain’t going to well. Mia got a mob outside her crib with the “no more mutants” signs and she ain’t got the X-Men. Meanwhile, love is in the air everywhere it shouldn’t be. Joe and Karen are both perfect and terrible for each other; Laura and Neil are coworkers on opposite ends of their primary issue; Maddie and Leo — well at least that won’t happen. Leo confronts Maddie about her spiraling self-pity and they just have the age- and relationship-appropriate conversation the deserve.

Niska though, she ain’t on no love mission. Nah, Synth on Fire still out here tryna kill anybody and everybody responsible for the bombing. Turns out that the people responsible are onto her too though and they send her a message through a creepy ass orange-eyes synth who rolled up on her in an abandoned trap house in the middle of the night. Dude infiltrated her thoughts and everything, too. Niska in deep, but — God damn it, Madde and Leo are having awkward closed-mouth sex. That doesn’t make it any better, Leo! It’s not any better!

Back at the Dryden Commission, Laura is fed up and wants to quit ’cause she’s tired of ice skating uphill. She needs a motivational speech to keep from abandoning the Commission and gets one in favor of a big, bold idea to disrupt the anti-synth market. She calls Max with a proposal: let the Dryden Commission inside the combine so they can see them as people and see how they live. Max brings it to his people and doesn’t realize he should probably get buy-in from others before he starts inviting the oppressors straight into their camp. Max is the worst accidental dictator ever. Agnus had enough and escapes from the combine in the dark of night, only to stumble across… well, you remember those synths that Mia saved? The ones who Max turned away? Yeah, they didn’t make it far, and a pile of their dead bodies is about to be fuel for whatever Agnus has planned next. And whatever it is, Max ain’t gonna like it.

Watching Humans? You better be! So check out all our recaps of the series here.

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  • Jordan Calhoun is a writer in New York City. His forthcoming debut book "Piccolo Is Black" is a celebration of the common adaptations we made while non-diverse pop culture helped us form identities. He holds a B.A. in Sociology and Criminal Justice, B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Japanese, and an M.P.A. in Public and Nonprofit Management and Policy. He might solve a mystery, or rewrite history. Find him on Instagram and Twitter @JordanMCalhoun

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