An unknown enemy that strikes from the mask of dense fog—this might sound like the 2007 horror-thriller “The Mist,” but in this case, it’s the situation for the crew on the Kinloch Rig in the second episode of Amazon Prime original “The Rig.” Episode 1 ended with the gravely injured Barry “Baz” Roberts climbing to the helipad to warn the others about the start of something sinister as ash rained all around them. Something lurks in the darkness of this ancient oil rig, which may have caused the impenetrable fog and also caused the shutdown of the entire field. As the crew stays stranded with no help in sight, things start to take a turn for the worse.
Chaos Descends On The Kinloch
“The Rig” Episode 2 kicks off with Baz opening his eyes in the clinic as Cat Braithwaite and Rose Mason stand near him. The man who had just fallen several feet on mesh steel is talking normally, and his wry sense of humor seems to have returned as well. Suddenly, though, his demeanor changes, and he becomes ferocious when Cat tries to take a blood sample. As Rose and Cat struggle to restrain him, Baz is terrified, and he screams about a wave coming. At the manager’s cabin, Magnus and Grant Dunlin, the Safety Officer, discuss the situation. Having been colleagues for over two decades, Dunlin feels betrayed that Magnus never alerted him about the decommissioning that’s about to happen. In the clinic, Baz is awake, and he undoes the bandage on his arm. A wound where the bone and muscles were sticking out has almost healed. Miracle? or something more insidious?
Coincidentally, Heather and Alwyn talk about Baz in the rec room, where Alwyn admits that he’d never thought that Baz would walk again. The crew spots the lights from a standby vessel out in the sea that’s signaling to the rig. Leck heads out to the helipad to note down the signals. As Fulmer translates, the message is a PAN, or “possible assistance needed,” over and over again. The signal has also caught the eye of Hutton, who appears to be on cabin arrest as the crane operator, Easter, stands outside his cabin. As Alwyn narrates to Heather about the time when Leck almost froze to death in a crash two years earlier, Leck is already shivering on the helipad, covered in ashes and chilled to the bone. As for Baz, he’s far from normal – his left eye that had been destroyed in the fall has healed and he seems physically mobile. Mentally, however, that’s a different matter. Something is happening inside his body that makes him throw up his tooth filling.
While Magnus, Rose, and Fulmer discuss the decommissioning, an issue that’s been plaguing everyone, Cat rushes in to inform them that Baz is missing. Alwyn finds him in a cabin, making weird symbols against the window and talking nonsense. Meanwhile, Leck is freezing and needs to warm up, so he turns to the best way he knows how: alcohol. In an oil rig where the crew needs to be ready for any and every emergency, alcohol for recreational purposes isn’t a usual item, so Leck tiptoes into Cat’s clinic and siphons off some rubbing alcohol. He takes a few swigs of that dangerous liquid and steps into the shower when taking his clothes off, having an adverse reaction. You’d need to see it to believe it, but his tattoos wash off in the water as his eyes, palms, and body start to bleed. Leck screams in pain as blood continues flowing out of his pores while Hutton makes his escape through the cabin window. Heather walks in with Leck’s dinner to find him dead in the shower. The cause of his death remains unknown, but Dunlin finds Baz’s fillings in his cabins, and Magnus and Rose theorize that the ones who have been exposed to the ash in the air have been infected by the substance, and it’s the substance’s presence that’s cleaning the bodies of objects it considers impurities. This explains why Baz’s inorganic fillings came out and why Leck’s tattoos washed off. Additionally, it’s quite possible that Leck died bleeding and clutching his stomach in pain because the substance in the ash was rejecting the rubbing alcohol he ingested.
Death On The Deck
Spotting a torchlight on the deck, Alwyn and Fulmer go down to the deck, where he cuts his hand on the lifeboat door, and Hutton slips inside the cabin unbeknownst to the two. He goes straight for the communications room and signals SOS to the standby vessel, a tactical mistake because the zero visibility will cause the SBV to crash into the rig. Fulmer returns after struggling with the door, and Magnus, Dunlin, Fulmer, and Rose confront Hutton in the radio room. A scuffle almost breaks out between Fulmer and him when Hutton makes pointed remarks about Fulmer and Rose’s secret relationship but is broken off by Magnus. Fulmer frantically signals the SBV to change course to avoid colliding when they remember that Alwyn is still down there. Magnus orders Alwyn to come back up, but the genial Scotsman spots Baz on the deck and rushes to bring him to safety. Dunlin arrives just in time to see Baz choking Alwyn, and before he can step in, Alwyn spits water from his mouth and falls down, dead, as Baz escapes. Magnus pleads with Alwyn’s lifeless body to stay with him as he performs CPR, but to no avail. Later, Rose informs Magnus that the particles inside the ash are living organisms that act like parasites that invade a host and drive out its impurities. Containment becomes another major concern that plagues the overwhelmed manager, who is already bent over backward with the issues of a stranded crew, broken communications, a shortage of food, and two dead crewmates. It’s theorized that anyone who was exposed to the ash for a long period of time or who sustained cuts or injuries needs to be put under observation. A montage of a worried Fulmer flexing his injured hand plays and then changes to a scene of Baz sitting on the stairs with purpose in his eyes as the screen fades to black.
Everything We Know
Imagine there’s an entity that wants to possess your body as a host and use it for its needs. Now imagine they’re millions and millions of such entities, only they’re in microscopic form, and they can attack anyone inside an oil rig. With two crew members already dead within one day, tensions have flared up insurmountably. If the mistrust and disloyalty because of the decommissioning weren’t enough, now there is the need to isolate people who might have been exposed to the particles. The wound in Fulmer’s palm makes him a target for suspicion and creates a rift in the relationship that he and Rose have. The need to ration food shortens food portions and leaves an empty stomach, and workers who aren’t working but are cooped up in cramped places combine to make a recipe for disaster. Murch, the rig cook, comments that the fish they have for dinner was caught in Vietnam because the ones in the Scottish seas have been depleted already. In another scene, he explains the vastness of the ocean from his experience as the cook in a submarine and how the ocean is a far more unknown and undiscovered place than space. Each episode of “The Rig” provides some sort of commentary into the evils of mankind that barrage into the earth to extract resources without a care about how their actions impact the planet. The series can be viewed as the planet’s way of claiming what’s hers and overthrowing the invaders. From a different perspective, the parasites that have infected the earth are us humans, who need to be removed. Towards the beginning of the second episode of “The Rig,” Alwyn recounts the story of the Stroegga Slide that washed over what used to be land and changed the entire geography of Europe. Is something similar coming? Is nature taking back what belongs to her finally? It seems the first warrior against the invaders has already been chosen, and it’s Baz, who’s ready to hurt anyone who stands in the way of the light in the water that he thinks is life.