TV Review – The Orville: Sanctuary

TL;DR – If we don’t defend those who need defence why should we save ourselves.

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

The Orville: Sanctuary. Image Credit: Fox.


In the background of The Orville has been a growing problem for the Interstellar Union, and no that is not an external threat, but an internal dilemma. For a long time, there has been a growing unease with Moclus and parts of their culture that seem to go against what the Union stands for. This week this issue comes to a head when the very nature of the Union is called into question by Dolly Parton, sort of.

So to set the scene, after the destruction of a large chunk of the fleet in Identity Part 2, the Interstellar Union is trying to bring more ships online and upgrade the weapons of those ships they already have. The USS Orville is sent to Moclus to get the upgrade and also taxi some engineers to a scout ship, much to everyone’s annoyance. However, the engineers are carrying more than just supplies with them, which puts Bortus (Peter Macon) in a difficult position having to choose his own people over the crew. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.  

The Orville: Sanctuary. Image Credit: Fox.
The danger of putting all your eggs in one basket Image Credit: Fox.

After dancing around the issue throughout Season One, this week the show takes on Moclus and their actions towards the female minority directly. This is because tracing the engineers and their secret female baby (already putting in doubt the one in 75 years claim), leads the crew to a secret colony made up of Molcan women and their families that had been smuggled out to stop forced gender reassignment. It is a sanctuary, but it is also a threat to the traditional Moclan way of life because it shows not only is there significantly more women born into the species that the government will admit but also that they are not the weak burdens on society that many claim.

The fact that their sanctuary has been found means that sooner rather than later Moclus will find out and since Klyden (Chad L. Coleman) is on board make that a definite sooner. All of this is impacting on Bortus because not only of his history with Topa (Blesson Yates) but also the fact that Topa has started to act out physically against other female students in his school because they are weak and that is what Klyden told him to do. Okay side note here, I am never one to suggest that the best course of action for a married couple is to divorce, but like seriously Bortus, dump his ass and kick him off the ship at the next starbase, seriously.

The Orville: Sanctuary. Image Credit: Fox.
The glow of truth. Image Credit: Fox.

All of this leads to a choice for Ed (Seth MacFarlane), what to do because there are few good options, so he decided the best course of action, and the best way to protect them is to help them become independent members of the Union. He brings their leader Heveena (Rena Owen) to argue their case and leaves the Orville in orbit to protect them. Which of course the Moclan delegation took with grace and … nope, they flipped the heck out and threatened to leave the Union if the colony is let in.

Here we have it at the bare nature of it, do you chose security or do you chose human rights (or in this case sentient rights). This is a debate that is very much something that we need to be having today especially as politicians here in Australia (and around the world) use the notion of security to consistently curtail human rights. For the sanctuary, the choice is clear if they fail that will be faced with persecution, mutilation, and extinction, all things that happen in the world today, sometimes with the blessing of the very governments that state that they are the champions of freedom. Weapons or your soul, it is not an easy answer, but it is a question we should be asking. Of course, we also have people discovering the joy of Dolly Parton, who I think would very much approve of being the anthem to women fighting against their oppressors. “Speaks with the might of 100 soldiers” indeed.

The Orville: Sanctuary. Image Credit: Fox.
The power of strength. Image Credit: Fox.

In the end, do we recommend Sanctuary? Yes, yes we do. It was well produced, the action scenes all hit their mark, and it is asking an important question that we need to ask. Another great episode that really shows the strength of the show.

By Brian MacNamara: You can follow Brian on Twitter Here, when he’s not chatting about Movies and TV, he’ll be talking about International Relations, or the Solar System.

Have you seen The Orville yet ?, let us know what you thought in the comments below, feel free to share this review on any of the social medias and you can follow us Here. Check out all our past reviews and articles Here, and have a happy day.    

Credits –
All images were created by the cast, crew, and production companies of The Orville
Directed by
– Jonathan Frakes
Written by – Joe Menosky
Created by – Seth MacFarlane
Production/Disruption Companies – 20th Century Fox, Fuzzy Door Production, Fox Network & SBS Viceland.
Starring in Season Two – Seth MacFarlane, Adrianne Palicki, Penny Johnson Jerald, Scott Grimes, Peter Macon, Jessica Szohr, J. Lee & Mark Jackson also Chad L. Coleman, Victor Garber, F. Murray Abraham, Ted Danson, Rena Owen, Ron Canada, Kelly Hu, Tony Todd, Regi Davis, Shawn T. Andrew, Marina Sirtis, Emerson Brooks & Cameron Knight


1 thought on “TV Review – The Orville: Sanctuary

  1. I thought this was a great soul-searching episode as well. I gave it 8 stars on Imdb which is equivalent to your 4/5 stars.
    Btw, thanks for all your Orville reviews. I think I have read them all and you are usually spot on imho.

    Liked by 1 person

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