Is Anne Winters leaving The Orville, and her role of Ensign Charly Burke, following the events of this week’s new episode?
The first thing that we should note here is that “Domino” is a work of brilliance, and perhaps one of the greatest bits of science fiction on television we have ever seen. The character development for Charly Burke from the start was an absolute thing of beauty. The character started on the ship as someone with understandable hatred towards the Kaylon: They killed the woman she loved before she could confess her true feelings. As a result of that, she was left wondering what could have been and refused to acknowledge that this race of synthetic beings could be anything more than her anger allowed her to see.
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However, through the season, her eyes started to truly open. Isaac showed her that there was more to the Kaylon, and soon after, she learned that with the right modifications, they could even be capable of emotion. These aliens were acting out of their own fear of being enslaved and controlled once more. She came to understand their perspective and even cared for Isaac in her own way.
When Charly chose to sacrifice her life in order to protect the Kaylon from a weapon of mass genocide, it felt truly earned. She recognized this would not bring back the person she loved, but that it would help stop more death and destruction. Her death has led to a more sustained level of peace between the Kaylon and the Union.
All of this was heartfelt, devastating, and also beautifully filmed. The final scene with the explosion reflecting on Burke’s eyes may be the most memorable visual in the entire series.
If you weren’t crying at this point, you certainly were by the time you made it to Isaac’s speech at the end of the episode. The title of “Domino” is derived from his comments, and these are words that will stick with us for quite some time. It is almost impossible to imagine that Burke survived this explosion and if this is the end for Winters on the show, we must credit her for a fantastic performance across nine episodes. She may have been new to the ship, but she was a true part of the family by the very end. We’re going to miss her.
What did you think about the events of The Orville season 3 episode 9, including the death of Charly Burke?
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