‘Halo’ Season 2 Episode 3 Recap Summary: What Did Corporal Perez Reveal To The Master Chief?

We have reached the third episode of the second season of Paramount+’s Halo, and already pacing issues have started popping up, which was a major drawback of the first season as well. Narrative wise, the point where the last episode ended was supposed to be the initiator of the next stage of human-Covenant conflict, but the third episode stalls the flow abruptly by working around a very trope-y and contrived situation that comes off as distracting.

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Previously, the first episode of the second season established the impending Covenant invasion as the central crisis, as Chief suspects the presence of Covenant forces in the UNSC colonies after his experience on Sanctuary, which gets glassed by the alien aggressors. Chief comes into conflict with newly appointed Spartan program head and ONI chief, Colonel Ackerson, who actively tries to bury the narrative under the rug by questioning Chief’s mental condition. Later, Master Chief decides to act on his own and takes the Silver team to search for and rescue the Cobalt team of Spartans, whom he feels are in grave danger as Ackerman sent them on mission without informing them about a possible Covenant threat. On the other hand, Soren gets betrayed by his crew, who let UNSC capture him, separating him from his wife Laera and son Kessler, and we learn Kwan Ha has returned to the Rubble, whose presence might be the only chance his family might have at survival. Finally, it was revealed that Ackerson is keeping Dr. Halsey and Cortana captive and that he has knowledge of an impending Covenant attack on Reach. Meanwhile, led by supposedly resurrected Makee, a team of Sangheili soldiers initiates the attack on Reach as they get access to a keystone. We learn more about Ackerson in this episode, and Chief gets let down by a bunch of people as he struggles to convince others about his suspicion that the alien armadas have made their way into their home, Reach.

Spoilers Ahead

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What Happened To The Cobalt Team? 

At the beginning of the episode, we see Master Chief leading the Silver team in the dark wilderness of Visegrád, in Reach, following the Cobalt team’s mission route. Every effort to communicate with them results in failure, as if the secondary Spartan team went totally off-grid. Chief knows that the Cobalts went uninformed thanks to Ackerson and is convinced that they are in deep trouble; however, the rest of his team members, especially Kai, are still skeptical about this assumption. Eventually, the team reaches a stranded UNSC outpost, and observing the telltale signs, Chief states that Cobalt had been there previously. However, before they can venture any further, led by Briggs, a troop of UNSC marines appear out of nowhere and round the Silver team up. Briggs accuses the Chief of insubordination, as he has headed an unauthorized mission without informing Fleetcom, and orders him to stand down alongside his team. An enraged Chief lashes out and questions Briggs about the status of the Cobalt team, to no avail. The rest of the Silver team is shocked to learn that Chief lied to them about the mission being authorized by Fleetcom, and Kai requests Chief to comply with high command. Chief desists in his protest and returns to Reach along with his team and marines. 

At the base, Master Chief gets scolded by Captain Keyes for his insubordination, as it seems that he has less influence to protect them now that ONI and Ackerson have absolute command. After raising his concerns regarding possible Covenant presence in Reach, Chief gets labeled as delusional and erratic, to the point that Keyes orders his psych evaluation to be conducted after temporarily relieving him of his duties. To make the situation worse, the Silver team turned their back on their leader as well; even Kai refused to trust Chief’s words, as Chief’s revelation about seeing Makee in the Covenant (in the previous episode) made her believe that their leader wasn’t in his right mind at the moment. Later, Chief escapes from the base by incapacitating two marines who were assigned to escort him, and Kai learns about this development from Ackerson, to whom she had gone to seek suggestions. Ackerson seems hell bent in his efforts to strip Master Chief of his position, as he makes it his duty to not let anyone allow the chance to share the truth about the upcoming crisis. 

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Later, it is revealed that the entire Cobalt team was ambushed and killed by Covenant forces, and Ackerson plans to cover this up as well by declaring the team MIA. By now, Captain Keyes had enough of this falsification as he lashes out at the Colonel for undermining  Master Chief’s valid concerns and sending the Cobalt team on a suicide mission without prior information. Upon being questioned, Ackerson reveals that he had anticipated the Covenant invasion in Reach as well, but it seems he has already given up on fighting back as he had planned to salvage whatever they could and evacuate instead. Captain Keyes spits on Ackerson’s proposition of assisting him further and remarks that he will stay when the danger starts knocking at the door. 


What Happened To Soren’s Family?

The scene shifts to Rubble, where Kwan Ha is trying to escort Soren’s family—Laera and Kessler—safely out of the asteroid belt as their lives are at risk after Soren’s crew betrayed their leader. Failing in their attempt to escape, Laera surrenders to Soren’s crew and allows an escape window for Kwan to flee with Kessler by starting a scuffle. Later, as a captured Laera gets tortured by the crew, who demand to learn about Soren’s treasure from Madrigal, Kwan sneakily attacks and eliminates them off screen, saving Laera’s life in the process. Honestly, this section is extremely boring and inconsequential, to say the least, and we feel it would have been better to focus on the theocratic intricacies of the Covenant, which the series continues to avoid.

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This episode also sheds light on Ackerson’s past; through a conversation he shares with his old, dementia-afflicted father, it is revealed that the loss of his mother and sister affected him greatly. Through a shocking revelation, we learn that the flash clone whom he was using to mentally agonize Dr. Halsey was his late sister, Julia’s, who passed away after failing to survive the Spartan augmentation process. This explains why Ackerson holds a grudge against the scientist, and to spite her even further, as he takes his leave from the Reach, he brings a captive Soren to Halsey’s holding cell. It goes beyond saying that, being a former Spartan, Soren, who was already worked up about bringing Halsey to justice, can very well try to eliminate her once and for all. We will learn about their respective fates in the next episode, as the Covenant invasion might not allow Soren much time to plan his actions either. 


What Did Corporal Perez Reveal To Master Chief?

Chief goes to meet former ONI Admiral Parangosky as a last resort and reveals to her his suspicions regarding Covenant presence in Reach. However, he learns that she is still affiliated with ONI as well, which is acting solely for self-sustenance, ready to sacrifice the millions of people living on the planet without a second thought. Parangosky repeats what Keyes had previously advised to the Chief: to act like a soldier—shun his humanitarian consideration and better judgment and act according to the commands he is given. But as we know, even with the emotion suppression pellet on, the Master Chief went against authority to protect and serve humanity, and now, in his true self, he is never going to back out of his pursuit of justice. Chief leaves, and despite having her operatives prepared to take him in, the Admiral allows him to go. 

Betrayed, cornered, and restless, Chief finally goes to meet Corporal Perez and finds her in a church, offering her prayers to the altar. Perhaps the thought of choosing a faith comes to the chief’s mind, as the priestess in Sanctuary had suggested, but we don’t know for sure. Perez reveals that she had seen Makee in Sanctuary as well, confirming further that Chief was not having delusions or traumatic hallucinations when he saw the supposedly deceased Covenant assistance. This comes as a huge relief to Chief, as he also had a shred of doubt regarding his sanity after seeing Makee, and at this point, the ordeal seems a bit contrived. Why seeing Makee to be alive would be such a big issue that Kai started doubting the Chief’s mental well-being? Because Forerunner granted Covenant technology is already more advanced than human tech, and given that Dr. Halsey had already perfected flash-clone technology long ago, it is not difficult to imagine that the Covenant can resurrect the dead. Anyway, Perez also shares a recording captured in Sanctuary, which plays a Sangheili prayer addressed to the people of Reach detailing how viciously they will massacre the people of Reach, and upon the remains of the one they call the demon (Master Chief), the pathway to the Great Journey of Covenant will be carved towards the Sacred Ringworld (Halo). Perez knows that the Covenant is already in reach as well, but before Chief can breathe a sigh of relief considering at least someone believes his words, an explosion indicates the beginning of the Covenant invasion. This episode, more or less, can be considered a filler, which acts as a buffer before the large-scale conflict spreads out in the next episode, which will decide the fate of Reach and humanity as a whole. 


Siddhartha Das
Siddhartha Das
An avid fan and voracious reader of comic book literature, Siddhartha thinks the ideals accentuated in the superhero genre should be taken as lessons in real life also. A sucker for everything horror and different art styles, Siddhartha likes to spend his time reading subjects. He's always eager to learn more about world fauna, history, geography, crime fiction, sports, and cultures. He also wishes to abolish human egocentrism, which can make the world a better place.

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