This was created for TV by the guy who wrote and directed this episode. Yes, writer/director/creator/whatever - does he fancy himself as the new Joss Whedon ? Well, the good news is that it is based on a comic by the infamous Maggs Visaggio ... so it could be a lot worse.
The protagonist is a hot black girl, Alita ( Adriyan Rae ), who is so strong she can beat up an alien that has twice her body-weight. It turns out that she spent her entire child-hood being trained in combat skills, which would be useful if she was intended to be a Warrior Princess but instead she is meant to be a wise and decent ruler.
This story is set in a galaxy far, far away ... but not necessarily the one you might think of. The female Han Solo type hangs out in a cantina. We discover that she is actually a Princess, on the run from the mask-wearing stormtroopers of an evil empire. When they corner her, she ends up in the trash ejector. The only thing that was not stolen from Star Wars is her sidekick, Isaac (Tim Rozon in the same kind of role he plays in Wyonna Earp ).
The protagonist and her crew are unlikeable idiots. In comparison, the villain's stormtroopers are quite compelling characters - even though they are faceless minions in visored helmets. Which begs the obvious question - what are the chances the protagonist will use the wookie prisoner trick?
Alita the Vadge Queen ( Adriyan Rae ) and Isaac (Tim Rozon - Wyonna Earp ) are captured by a gang of cannibalistic aliens. They reminisce on how they met, so we get some well-needed backstory and character development.
It turns out that Isaac is not just a human, not merely an Earthling, but specifically a Canadian. Yes, somehow he got from Canada to an entirely different galaxy - and he wants to return home. By incredible coincidence, the cannibalistic aliens subject their victims to a kareoke contest. For some strange reason, the songs they use are from Earth!
Amae the engineer boots up the R2D2 pastiche she got in the previous episode. She calls it Winnibot, because it has a girl's voice instead of beeps and whistles.
The heroes are being hunted by Dengar. He is not the bounty hunter from Empire Strikes Back , he is just a low-level semi-competent officer in the Loyalist army. Ironically, Alita ( Adriyan Rae ) wants to invade the Republic and rescue her mother - but she resists the idea of getting herself a Loyalist army to help.
The heroes are reluctantly conscripted into the Loyalist force. We get flashbacks of Alita's brief rule as Queen. Her mother and other advisors refused to help the menial workers, who wanted to shift manpower from industrial output to agriculture so they could grow more food. Yes, the politicians cared more about the economy than about the citizens lives. For something written before the CoVid-19 outbreak, this is quite a shockingly prescient scenario.
Amae and Isaac (Tim Rozon - Wyonna Earp ) go exploring in a local disused mining camp so they can find some spare parts to fix their shop. He starts to make pop cultural references, which marks him out as a comedy version of Starlord from Guardians of the Galaxy (himself a take on John Chrichton from Farscape (1999) ). The problem is that Starlord is not someone who takes himself seriously anyway, so it seems a bit excessive to deliberately parody the character.
Alita ( Adriyan Rae ) leads a small team to invade the Republic and rescue her mother. First they must pass through the space-border security checks, at a space station that is like an airport.
The villain has received a tip-off. Isaac (Tim Rozon - Wyonna Earp ) gets captured by the bad guys. Alita has to decide - sacrife her friend for the good of the mission, or endanger everyone to save one man?
Isaac (Tim Rozon - Wyonna Earp ) wakes up in a desert. The ship reached its destination, but crashed. Now he is beset with Krivits from V: The Series , which act like sandworms in Dune (1986) and bring back memories of the graboids in Tremors (1992) .
We get flashbacks to Isaac's origin story. We know he was originally from Earth, but it turns out that despite his Twentieth Century popular culture references he is from many decades in the future. He started as an astronaut on a routine mission to Jupiter, when his ship was sucked through a wormhole. Unfortunately the place he landed has not had intergalactic travel in twenty years. His only choice was to earn a million credits so he could buy a starship with an Intergalactic engine. The only real option was to become a scavenger.
Finally the characters get to their destination. This leads on to a series of double-crosses.
Commander Lazaro takes his new super-weapon to the HQ of his former superiors, and carries out the plan that the Loyalists wanted Alita to use. It is actually pretty satisfying to see, even though he is a pretty two-dimensional villain. In fact, if Alita had gone through with it then she would have seemed very unsympathetic for a heroine.
Alita and her friends are stuck in the desert, trying to repair their badly damaged spaceship. She starts to halucinate, after being stung by a local sandfly. Isaac has to save her, even though she will not forgive him for the previous episode. The planet is infested with - well, not Rodents Of Unusual Size, but insect!
The female R2D2 robot is very useful this week, since the episode centres on the spaceship and the robot is given lots to do. And since robots are immune to Lazaro's super-weapon, she may have a much bigger role in the overall story arc.