The Expanse 3×02 | Reviews

UPDATE (April 22): we added just a small comment about Anna at the end of the page.


We found some nice reviews with great comments about Elizabeth and Anna. 😀

We also made this wall with the best lines from them because well… we are so proud of this woman! <3

Reverend Anna: Giver of few craps

Elizabeth Mitchell is by far the best part of this episode. She comes onto the scene and almost instantly starts knocking heads around, first with a UN security worker, then later with the Secretary-General, and finally, and most importantly with Errinwright.

Honestly, everyone should be verbally smacking Errinwright around, but it’s just that much more satisfying that it’s Elizabeth Mitchell doing it.


The title, “IFF,” also brilliantly addresses the compelling theme of identifying of friend or foe, whether among Holden’s arguing crew, between the Pinus Contorta and the Razorback, or even with the new character played by Elizabeth Mitchell, who challenges Errinwright for the attention of the UN leader at a crucial time.

Mitchell is, in fact, perfectly cast as Anna Volovodov, or Pastor Anna as readers of the James S.A. Corey novels know her, even though her appearance, character, and history appear to be quite different here. Mitchell’s ability to smile with equal amounts endearment and menace and to combine wide-eyed disbelief with a strength of resolve are perfect for this role in which Anna must place a moral and religious framework around the UN war and the origins of the protomolecule. The softer side she shows her wife and daughter and the hard edge revealed by her past as the Secretary General’s speechwriter create a complex character from the very start.

Dan of geek

I already like Anna solely based on the two minutes she’s been on my screen. She’s assertive, but not maliciously so. Her compassion and intellect is evident.

Also, the addition of Anna and the always superb Mitchell was an A+ choice.


The other girl is Nami, daughter of Reverend Anna Volovodov (Elizabeth Mitchell, LOST’s Juliette), and her wife Nono. Nami is not as impactful on the story as Mei, but her scene shows us something about Mitchell, and how well she and the writers have got a handle on this new character right out of the gate. Within a couple of scenes, we get a sense of where Anna is politically in her relationship with the S-G. I especially liked her wincing at the racism displayed towards Belters by Errinwright and the U.N. functionaries. The scene with Anna’s wife and daughter gives the audience a chance to see Mitchell play to more dimensions than just the government’s conscience. The hug of the pillow and stuttering “love” is obviously very cute, but I was won over by the joy evident when she jumped off the couch to approach the screen with her daughter. She’s only been in a single episode, but if Elizabeth Mitchell continues to bring her game here, she may reach Avasarala levels of cool.


1. ?”IFF” introduced Elizabeth Mitchell as a new character, ?Annushka ?”Anna” ?Volovodov?.? What do you think of her so far? Will she be able to prevent Secretary-General Sorrento-Gilli?s? from doing something catastrophic and help balance out Errinwright’s manipulation?

Carlos (@carlostk1): WOW! What a performance by Elizabeth Mitchell. Including her to the already fantastic cast has added a compassionate element to the mix. This is her first time on The Expanse but from what the writers are going for with her role looks like that she’s the only one capable enough to get Secretary-General Sorrento-Gillis to see past Errinwright’s veil of lies and hopefully help him find a way that can prevent further escalation of the war.

T.J. (@ohplzlol): Anna is strong, charming and able to overrule Errinwright, but also has her own family to protect and she knows they will use them against her if necessary.

Gaius Greene (@GaiusGreene): a) Loving Anna. b) I hope so. c) Unsure. Errinwright is even better at manipulation than Grima Wormtongue!

Jamie (@jamerz3294): Anna is a great character! And yes, she will certainly try to lessen Errinwright’s manipulations, but I think that will come with varying amounts of success, and at a great cost to her personally. But I do think that she will be able to expose some of Erringwright’s evil for what it is. The intriguing question will be how much of her own morality can she hang on to?

Kiddle (@kiddle): First, I love Anna, she is a religious person who is not in your face about it. In the dinner scene, she was clearly the only one with a conscience in the room. The glee from the other politicians was disgusting. Errinwright/SecGen are pretty committed to war – that train may not be stoppable. She gets people to do what she wants because she calls on their ethics and commands a great deal of respect. She also seems to be pretty conflicted about what she’s doing. That dinner might have done it.


Do you believe in love at first sight?

Because I think I’m in love with Pastor Anna. When the Secretary General says he wants a speech reassuring Earth that God is on their side in the war, she snaps back by saying “Abraham Lincoln hoped he was on God’s side.” Then the Sec Gen pressures her, she re-sets the stakes: she runs a clinic for undocumented immigrants, and she wants one year of financial support. She clearly finds the gig morally offensive, but she’s going to get something larger out of it rather than making a symbolic stand. But best of all, she observes a war meeting, takes the measure of Errinwright in about 30 seconds, and and reminds him that his actions against Mao are a war crime. “Visiting the sins of the father on the children? We’ve had a whole other testament since then!” (I mean to be fair we’ve had a bunch, but it’s still a good line.)

Rather than casting the religious leader as naive or shocked, she holds her own in each argument, making it very clear that she doesn’t agree with the war, and she’s not going to soothe the egos of the people around her.


Anna risks her own body to help a protester at a demonstration, and checks in on him later.

These little moments are what make the show good, and save it from becoming a slog like some episodes/seasons of Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead.

Just when I thought I couldn’t love her more, Pastor Anna sasses the Sec Gen with a quote from “Bartleby the Scrivener.”

So what did all of you think? Are there any other Pastor Anna fans out there?


This episode introduced a compelling new character, Anna Volovodov. She brings at least a teeny bit of restraint, but it’s unclear that this can stop the speeding train wreck that Errinwright is responsible for.