The Peripheral Episode 2 Recap: Empathy Bonus

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

Prime Video’s sci-fi drama ‘The Peripheral’ continues with the world-building in its second episode and gives the audience a much better idea of what the world looks like at the beginning of the twenty-second century. While a few things are clarified for Flynne, the protagonist who visits the future through something that she’d previously assumed was part of a game, a lot more questions are raised, especially when it comes to the intentions of the people who have promised to help her through the dangerous situation that she’s in now. By the end of the episode, the show throws around new terms that have “quantum” in there somewhere. Here’s what it means for Flynne and her uncertain future. SPOILERS AHEAD

The Peripheral Episode 2 Recap

Image Credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Prime Video

In 2032, Flynne, Burton, and his army buddies face off against the mercenaries who’d picked up a bounty to kill them for nine million dollars. The element of surprise works in their favor and after a heavy firefight, they succeed in killing all the mercenaries. The next morning, Flynne goes back into the sim to get some answers and meets Wilf. This time, she is inside a body that looks exactly like her. She also discovers that the events inside the sim are actually taking place in the future.

Wilf introduces Flynne to a man named Lev, who is very invested in figuring out the whereabouts of Aelita West, whom Flynne last saw escaping the Research Institute building. In return for her services, Wilf offers her the cure for her mother’s illness, who is otherwise fated to die four weeks from the present date in Flynne’s world. While Flynne shares all this with Burton, and they start preparing for the next attack, they also ponder upon how much they can trust the people from the future.

Meanwhile, Tommy, the sheriff, finds a cloaked car and a bullet inside it. He has his suspicions, but for now, he remains oblivious to the battle that happened the previous night around Flynne’s house. With the last attempt on Flynne and Burton’s life turning out to be a failure, Daniel, the man who attacked Aelita and Flynne in the last episode, reaches out to Corbell Pickett and offers him money in exchange for killing two seemingly insignificant people.

The Peripheral Episode 2 Ending: Is Flynne’s Mother Cured?

The first time we meet Flynne’s mother, Ella, she is blind. It is revealed that she only recently lost her eyesight and it is related to the disease that’s slowly eating her away. The fact that her children can’t afford the medication to ease her pain makes her situation even worse. There is a cure for her illness, but that lies seventy years into the future. Fortunately for her, her daughter has found a way there and is now in contact with people who can make things a lot easier for them.

Ella had been diagnosed with glioma, and the doctors had given her barely six more weeks to live. She didn’t share this information with her children because she wanted to spare them the heartbreak. Flynne finds out about her mother’s condition from Wilf, who shows her the obituary to prove that he is telling the truth. In return for Flynne’s services in finding Aelita, he sends the medicine for Ella in the past, along with some money.

While Flynne wants to believe Wilf and the fact that her mother can be saved, she is wary of what the people from the future promise her, and rightly so. It is only later that she discovers that the medicine is not the surest cure. There is only a 57 percent chance that it will work for her mother, which brings her back to the point of not trusting them. But then again, what Wilf had promised Flynne comes true soon enough. The medicine removes Ella’s tumor as easily as getting rid of weeds. This not only relieves her pain and makes her healthier, but it also brings back her sight.

While this is great news for the Fishers, one can’t help but wonder about the cost of this favor. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered before Flynne can even think about trusting the people who are acting as her saviors. There is also reason to question the effectiveness of the medicine that has apparently cured her mother. Are its effects permanent or is it simply a temporary solution? Is Ella’s condition fixed once and for all or will the tumor return and she will find herself back at square one? In any case, now Flynne is bound to honor her part of the deal.

Previously, Flynne didn’t feel obligated to do anything for Wilf and Lev, but now that they have saved her mother from her imminent death, she will have to do what they ask. She doesn’t know anything about any of them, but one thing is pretty clear. None of them is telling her the entire truth. She doesn’t know why they are looking for Aelita, and more importantly, why they need to maintain contact with the past in the first place. What do they want from Flynne’s timeline, which they can’t get in their own? And why did they hire Burton as the beta tester for what they’d been masquerading as just another game? It is still too soon to tell the difference between the good guys and the bad guys. Until then, Flynne will need to take her next step very carefully. One wrong move could have devastating effects on her future.

Read More: What Game Does Flynne Play in The Peripheral? How Does the Game Work?