Amazon Prime’s Hanna
Season 1, Episode 6: “Mother”
Directed by Amy Neil
Written by David Farr
* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Town” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “Road” – click here
At the CIA, Jerome Sawyer (Khalid Abdalla) heads down into a secure facility where Erik Heller (Joel Kinnaman) is being kept in cold storage. The CIA agent/Utrax secret agent has a bucket of cold water tossed onto him. He wants to know where Hanna (Esme Creed-Miles) has gone. Erik says he has no idea and she’s smarter than all of them combined: “You made her that way.” When things aren’t going how Sawyer had hoped he resorts to strangling Erik.
They chew you in their mouth, suck all the goodness out of you,
and one day
they spit you out.
Out in the forests of England, Hanna wakes next to Anton (Gamba Cole) after their intimate night. She grips the ground letting an ant crawl over her skin, she touches the vegetation and feels the light breeze on her face. She feels at home here, rather than trapped in the confines of an urban landscape. Father Gore’s curious how things will be for her and Sophie (Rhianne Barreto) due to Anton. After the crew leave, Sophie tries to get close with Anton and he rejects her. He tries to talk to Hanna and she nearly breaks his hand. She and Sophie must face the truth, none of which is easy. When they’re done, Sophie kicks her out. Problem is, Hanna can’t find the papers she stole from her father, and now her secrets are out there in the world, out of her control again.
What about Marissa Wiegler (Mireille Enos)? She’s come to London and, knowing her, will not leave until she’s found what she’s looking for— but then, who knows what’ll happen. Right now she’s looking for Sophie’s family, because she knows that’s where the girl is hiding.
When Sophie gets back home she finds her parents there with Marissa, calling herself Clare and claiming her daughter’s “not well.” Her brother alerts Hanna, who spies on the house to get a look at Ms. Wiegler. Luckily, Sophie’s smart enough to know Marissa isn’t the actual mother and doesn’t give up any info. This sends our fugitive off on the run all over again. She texts Sophie. It ends being Marissa on the other end. Hanna winds up at a cafe, face-to-face with her. She’s told Erik is dead. She’s the told about “the project” at Utrax succinctly. Marissa offers to tell her everything, preying on Hanna’s emotions to make her leave. She’s also dealing with Sawyer keeping tabs on her and trying to wrangle “full authority” over everything seeing as how she’s an utter control freak.
Meanwhile, back at the CIA, Erik’s suffering relentless torture. He listens to Sawyer go on about his wonderful bourgeois life, knowing his “little box” will mean nothing when Utrax decides they’re finished with him, after he’s become useless to them and expendable. Simultaneously, Sophie’s found out interesting things about Hanna’s origins, like the blacked out area of the Romanian forest listed on her credentials as a birthplace. She knows ‘Clare’ isn’t her mother, and now she realises there’s something dangerous going on with her friend. Yet she can’t stop Marissa from taking Hanna, who’s reluctantly going in an effort to keep Sophie out of harm’s way.
Sort of odd and unsettling to see Marissa play the surrogate mother, in a similar way to how Erik played surrogate father, after spending years experimenting on mothers and babies. At a hotel, she makes sure the girl is comfortable, watches her sleep, and even attempts to take off Hanna’s shoes after she’s fallen asleep clothed on the bed.
Soundtrack note: “You Should See Me in a Crown” by Billie Eilish plays as Hanna leaves in the car with Marissa heading for a hotel.
Unique just means alone
When Erik is about to be executed he takes action, getting one of the CIA agents’ guns and shooting his way out of that cold torture room. He takes one of their suits, gets into the CIA computer system, and looks through the secret files on the Utrax server. What he finds is a seemingly endless list of women. It’s clear to him the experiments continue to be conducted. No telling how efficient and cruel the process has gotten. Once Erik leaves he goes to see Dieter (Benno Fürmann) for transportation and cash. He knows what his old friend did was only out of concern for his family’s lives, and he also, to some degree, he laments not being able to have a real family, too.
At hotel breakfast, Hanna starts to feel as if she can hear Erik calling to her, as if she can sense him. She knows he’s still alive. Her surrogate mother’s no better than dad for trying to lie to her. She asks Marissa how he died, but it’s obvious she doesn’t believe what she’s told. When they step into the elevator and head down a floor, they watch as Erik steps into the lift with them— the smug smile on his daughter’s face is beautiful. He gets out on another floor with Hanna and they start to run.
While Erik starts a fiery distraction, Hanna sits in on a seminar about the “feelings of anxiety versus the reality of danger” in a delightfully perfect juxtaposition as genuine violence is about to come crashing down on the hotel. “I‘m afraid of being killed,” she tells the seminar leader in parallel to another man who worries about his mother potentially getting ill and passing away. The fire alarm starts sounding, which sends people out of there in a confused crowd. Father and daughter blend in with everyone else until they reach the lobby and Hanna starts kicking serious ass with dad. They make it outside and take command of the CIA’s helicopter, lifting off before Marissa and Sawyer can reach them. Marissa and Hanna have gun sights on one another, though refuse to pull the trigger, and the father-daughter duo fly away.
Elsewhere, at the Utrax facility, other young women are trained by Dr. Kunek (Noah Taylor) to be elite, unstoppable fighting machines. Are these ladies going to be dispatched to take down Hanna and Erik?
Soundtrack note: During the hotel sequence, “Zombie” by Swet Shop Boys is playing. The song over the end credits is “Whites of Their Eyes” by Mattiel.
Great episode. Some have complained about the lack of action. Understandable, but for Father Gore the interest has been a widening of the characters, development of backstory, that type of thing. The end of this episode signals there’ll definitely be more action in the last couple. Even so, the rest is good enough that the action isn’t what’s mainly driving Hanna anyway.
“Road” is next.