Altered Carbon (2018–…): Season 2, Episode 1 - Altered Carbon - full transcript

Thirty years after the Bancroft case, a Meth tracks down Kovacs to offer him a job, a high-tech sleeve and a chance to see Quellcrist Falconer again.

Are you wondering how healthy the food you are eating is? Check it -
[theme music playing]

[indistinct whispering]

[Kovacs] This is a ghost story.

Told in the age of eternal life.

Technology has conquered death...

but with endless future

comes endless past.

We are trailed by specters...

twisted apparitions
born from our deepest pain...

until sometimes...

we'd rather be dead ourselves.

[overlapping voices echoing]

♪ I've got you ♪

♪ Under my skin ♪

♪ I've got you ♪

♪ Deep in the heart ♪

♪ Of me ♪

♪ So deep in my heart ♪

♪ You're really a part of me ♪

♪ I've got you ♪

♪ Under my skin

♪ I've tried so ♪

♪ Not to give in ♪

♪ I said to myself
This affair ♪

♪ Will never go so well ♪

♪ But why should I try to resist ♪

♪ When, darling, I know darn well ♪

♪ I've got you... ♪



My apologies if your drink disappoints.

It's not you. The nerve endings
in this thing are for shit.

[Poe] Ah!

- You're wearing a synth.
- More like a latex glove.

[scoffs] Everything tastes
like curried sawdust.

Hmm. Perhaps an organic sleeve
would be more to your liking?

Uh-uh. I'm traveling. Interstellar.

May I ask what brings you
all the way to Maghda Prime?

I'm looking for someone.

Takeshi Kovacs?

I beg your pardon.

Word is he's owed a lot of credits
and he'll be here tonight to collect.

Any idea which one of these losers is him?

Hmm. I wish I could be of service,

but I hear Takeshi Kovacs
is off on an epic quest

to find his long-lost love,
Quellcrist Falconer.


Oh, sounds like a load
of swamp-panther crap to me.

I assure you, it is not.

You expect me to buy that Takeshi Kovacs,
the Last Envoy, and Quellcrist Falconer,

leader of the Uprising,

had a thing?

If you mean a passionate connection
transcending time

and challenging the grim bounds
of death itself,

then yes, they had a thing.

I never heard that.

Sounds like you know a lot about him.

Oh, I consider myself somewhat
of an authority on the subject.

Prove it.

Untraceable credits.

I've got more...

if you can point him out...
[echoes softly]


[faint ticking]

Point out who?

I just told you.

I regret, a vicious attack
on my person-hood

has left my memory a trifle...


Perhaps, if you reminded me.

What's your name again?

[bartender] Hey!

I work here, you don't.
Stop harassing the customers.


[bartender] Ugh, fucking rogue AI.

You see an emitter around here?

An emitter?

[bartender] He's a holo.
Talks people's ears off.

He's got stories from all over
the settled worlds.

You think any of them are true?

I think if I ever find
that emitter he's tethered to,

I'm gonna use it for target practice.

[crowd clapping and cheering]

["Illusion of You" by Jihae playing]

♪ I close my eyes ♪

♪ And drift away to distant sound
Of an old symphony... ♪

Hey, I'm looking for somebody,

goes by Takeshi Kovacs.
Do you know him?

People don't like questions around here.

♪ I can hear it now... ♪

Which one of you is Kovacs?


I don't care what face you're wearing,
take your money and get out of my life.

♪ Illusion of you... ♪

I'm Kovacs.

♪ Illusion of you... ♪


I'm Kovacs.

[in Japanese]
Both these men are liars.

I'm Takeshi Kovacs,
and I'll take my money...

thank you very much.

[in English] I thought this might happen.
You all work it out.

Winner gets paid.

And I don't wanna hear another word
from Takeshi Kovacs ever again.

♪ I think I fell in love
With an illusion ♪

♪ I think I fell in love
With an illusion of you ♪

♪ Illusion of you... ♪


♪ Illusion of you... ♪

- [crowd screams in panic]
- [glass shattering]

♪ Illusion of you... ♪


- [yells]
- [grunts]


[men continue grunting]

What's the rush?


[man] Kovacs?

- Is that you?
- In the flesh.

Just not the kind
you were expecting.

Why didn't you say something
before it all went to shit?

Your money's back in the bar.

[chuckles] My money's in your pocket.

You palmed it and left those suckers
to kill each other over an empty case.

[loud explosion]


Maybe not completely empty.

- Yeah.
- Missed me.

All right, all right. Here.

Take it.

[soft ding]

This is half of what you owe me.
How am I supposed to get off planet?

Look, there's another job.

You could have my cut.



Just the messenger.

I was hired to find you.

How the fuck did you?

For starters, that's a wide-frequency
emitter you got there on your hip.

I hear Takeshi Kovacs goes nowhere
without his crazy AI.

Yeah, well, I don't like
being interrupted either.

It's not like you were gonna say yes.

And I'm on a deadline.

Horace Axley wants to talk to you.


It's a job offer.

Short term.

I don't work for Meths.

You have before.

Tell your boss, hard pass.

I don't care how many credits he's got.

Forget it.


- [gunfire]
- [gasps]


Told you. I'm on a deadline.

[Kovacs coughing]

[grunting, panting]

You wanted to get off planet.


You shot me in the back.

Organic damage isn't personal.

It's business.

[soft ding]

Honor gets in the way of profit.

[Kovacs] Let me guess.

You're Axley?

Have you ever heard of an ONI?
Because you could have done your research.

I fucking hate getting shot.

Well, I wasn't sure you'd take my call.

I hate Meths too.

Well, perhaps this will assuage you.

[soft zapping]

Accept my offer and this is the sleeve
you'll have waiting for you.

Bespoke design by Khumalo Bioware.

Military use only, aftermarket upgrades,

rapid healing, enhanced reaction time,

biometric mag plates among other bells
and whistles. Does it help you say yes?

Does your definition of consent
always involve restraints?

That wasn't my call. My associates set up
this virtual sub routine.

You mean, your bounty hunter.

She's done quite a few jobs for me.
She's efficient.

She's a psychopath.

Well, coming from you,
I'll assume that's a compliment.

I'll adjust it.

Don't bother.

Envoy 101: I control the construct.

You know what I hate more than Meths

or death by gunfire?

It's being underestimated.


- [screams]
- [grunts]

This room isn't real.
Your stacks in conducting gel.

You're not getting out of that body
without me.

One minute. [panting]

If you're still not interested,
I'll cast you back to Maghda Prime

in whatever lounge performer sleeve
you want.

It better be good.
I always wanted to play piano.

- [Kovacs grunts]
- [exhales]

[breathing heavily]
I need your protection.

[Kovacs] From what?

There's a war where I come from.

Get private security or go on vacation.
Or move.

I have business interests I can't forsake.

I believe no one can protect me
better than you.

- I don't care.
- I can give you what you want.

No matter what you have,
it won't be enough.

Quellcrist Falconer.

[indistinct soft whispering]

Be very careful what you say next.

[Axley] I can show you where she is,

and I'll pay you enough the two of you
can disappear.

I don't believe you.

[exhales] You'll see for yourself.

I can deliver her.

How? How do you know it's really her?

Do you have her DHF?

Is she spun up, re-sleeved?

[shouts] Where the fuck did you find her?

I'll answer all your questions
when you're here.

As long as you keep me alive.

Falconer's life for mine.

Do I have your word?

If you're lying,

you have my word
the last thing you'll see is this face

before your stack is ripped
from your spine.

I crossed the stars in a colony ship
before stacks were invented.

I left a dying Earth behind
to seed a new world.

You don't scare me, Mr. Kovacs.

I know what you dream of.

Make sure there's a mirror.

And get your psychopath bounty hunter
to transmit my AI.

Already done.

[Kovacs] Stay alive long enough,

and there's nowhere you can go
that isn't haunted.

[woman whispering]
I see the boy inside the man.

[Kovacs] All of us have ghosts.

They cling to us like shadows.

But if you chase after shadows...

if you're foolish enough to seek out
your ghosts...

[Quell] Survive. That's an order!

[Kovacs] just might become one.


[banging, grunting]

[alarm blaring]


[female voice] Thank you for choosing
Psychosec in-home resleeving package,

- the ultimate in elegance and privacy.
- [groans]

[gags] Mirror.

[female voice] My readings show that you
may be feeling some sleeve sickness.

I've alerted support staff.
Medication is on the way.


[female voice]
I recommend you lie down and relax.

Your oxygen levels are low.






[breathes heavily]




[panting heavily]

[female voice]
Your resleeving is now complete.

[breathing heavily]


Shit, Axley.

Wake up. Axley, where is she?


Tell me!



You seeing this?

"'Twas noontide of summer

And mid-time of night,
And stars in their orbits

Shone pale thro' the night."

Yeah, but those aren't stars.


Obviously we're on...

Harlan's World?

You know another planet
with a sky full of Elder Orbitals?

Home again, home again. Huzzah.

- How long has it been? Five years?
- Try 30.

Of all the godforsaken rocks
we've been to,

we're right back where we started.

I thought you swore you'd never return.
What compelled you?

Horace Axley compelled me.

And who, pray tell, is Horace Axley?

He's that one.

My word.

- We just got here.
- I didn't kill him.

What a refreshing change. Hmm.

Is it prudent to loiter?

We're in a house with a murdered Meth.
Whatever happened, I'll be blamed.

Now Axley said this sleeve
has a personalized weapons augment.

- Just have to be within range.
- [clicks]


Oh, my.

Let's go.

- [automated female voice]
- [indistinct chatter]

Look, the needlecast station.
It's a sign. We should heed it.

Not until I find out who killed Axley.

We have no idea what Mr. Axley
will remember after he spins back up.

And as you said, so astutely,

accusations for his murder
could land squarely on you.

If we are apprehended,

you will be arrested,
and I will be deleted.

- Choosing to stay here is...
- It's not a choice.


- Suicide!
- I'm not leaving.

You don't get it. Axley was a Meth.

He should have been untouchable
with his resources,

but he was scared shitless.

He believed he needed protection.
And he was right.

If he was right about that...

he might be right about Quell.


He said she's here.

He swore to prove it if I kept him alive.

[Poe] I see. If that is the case...

we'll need some place to stay.

I know a place.

An old AI hotel a friend of mine
used to own.

[female newscaster] There has also been
a decrease in terrorist activity

within the city of Millsport itself.

Negotiations with Joshua Kemp are ongoing

- as we await...
- Check the local feed.

Axley said something about a war.

It appears we've arrived
in the middle of it.

[Renouncer holo]
True salvation is found in renunciation.

Become a Renouncer and the world can be
as you make it. No loss, no pain.

No, thank you.

[overlapping automated voices]

Do a search on Konrad Harlan,
see what the old bastard's up to.

[female newscaster] Attention, stand by
for an important message

from Governor Harlan.

That's not Konrad.

According to the Array,
Konrad recently abdicated his position,

along with everything else.

You're kidding?

In his absence, his daughter, Danica,
has taken up his mantle.

Let me guess. She ran unopposed.

That is also accurate.

Citizens of Harlan's World,

for 20 years the Quellist rebellion
has disrupted our way of life.

Mines have been sabotaged,

alloy shipments attacked,
our people dislocated.

At every step, we have fought back
against these terrorists,

weakening them,
rooting them out of our cities.

But we have also suffered great loss.

It's with this shared burden in mind

that I have recently entered into talks
with Quellist leader Joshua Kemp.

[crowd booing]

It would seem the revolution
has a new face as well.

I've seen enough.

[Danica] After much negotiation,

we have agreed this conflict must end.

A cease-fire is now in place
effective immediately.

[crowd cheers]

[Danica] Starting tomorrow,
mining operations resume in full.

Make no mistake, if the cease-fire
is broken, our retaliation will be swift.

But tonight, as your governor

and as my father's daughter,

I am proud to declare the safety
of Harlan's World has been secured.

Thank you. Good night.



You've brought peace to the world.

My father used to say that a cease-fire
was just a breath between battles.

A breath's all we need.

The Protectorate will have to return
their colonel now.

No war, no reason to stay.

Over half the stacks in existence
are made of alloy dug from our trenches.

We're the goddamn fountain
of eternal life, Stone.

Colonel Carrera has every reason to stay.

The only thing standing between
the Protectorate and us is them.

Well, I think you're giving them
too much credit.

Elders are extinct.

Anyone who builds weaponized satellites
we can't shoot down

deserves to be taken seriously.

[Stone] And did your father say that too?

Quellcrist Falconer actually.

Keep an eye on Colonel Carrera.

Let's make sure he doesn't come up
with another reason to stay.

[Poe] I believe we made a wrong turn.

The Array has no evidence
of a decommissioned hotel in this area.

Well, the guy who owns it
pays a lot of money to keep it that way.

One of your more unsavory acquaintances?

Depends where you stand on Yakuza.


The big boss has a dozen of these places,
half safe house, half black site.

I've used it before so he won't...

Damn it, Poe.

- You glitched.
- Ah!

There you are.

- Try and stick with me, okay?
- Of course.

- Where are we going again?
- I just told you, twice.


Are we there yet?

We're here.

And are you certain it is safe?

- [Jaeger] You're under arrest for treason.
- Good to see you too, Jaeger.


Safe enough.

If you'll excuse me, I will leave you

to adjust the configuration
of the nanoswarm.

[Japanese hip-hop music playing]

[indistinct chatter]

[man 1 speaking Japanese}

- [man 2 shouts in Japanese]
- [men shout in Japanese]

[in Japanese] Trespassers!

I did not sanction this.
This building is off-limits.

[in English]
Who the hell do you think you are?

You got a death wish?

Answer me.

I am Tanaseda Hideki. This is my property.

Tanaseda wouldn't be caught dead
in a common combat sleeve.

[in Japanese]
Arrows and bullets all spent...

with sadness we fall.

But unless I smite the enemy,

my body cannot rot in the field.

[In English]
Where did you hear that?

I told you, I'm Tanaseda Hideki.

Continue this disrespect,
whoever you may be...

and I will rip you from that sleeve.

Almost had me.

Only one mistake.

I'm Tanaseda Yukito.

You don't recognize
your own great-grandson?


Now that you mention it,
you do look familiar.

[thug] That sleeve
is worth a bundle, Yuki-san.

That's some custom shit.

Preserve the sleeve.

Sir, I set up a nanoswarm,

so if you would be so kind
as to plug in the emitter,

perhaps I can assist in negotiating
this misunderstanding.

Perhaps not.

Nothing common about that.

[groans loudly]




[gun firing]

[gun cocks]

[groans and screams]


You're a dead man.

[breathing heavily]

But first, you get to explain
to my great-grandfather

why you know my family's death poem.

I'm not sure that's a good idea.

So this is the man
who dares take my name.

A heavy burden...

not worth stealing and harder to carry.

My name carries its own weight.

He impersonated you, Sosofu.
Sleeve killed two of my men.

How do you know
my family's death poem?

You recited it to me almost 300 years ago

in a teahouse in New Hokkaido.

Foolish child.

Do you have any idea who you escorted
past my security?

Perhaps you'd like to cut out my stack
and hand it to him as well.

No, we beat him.

He's not a threat.

Educate him.

[man shouts in Japanese]

Forgive me, Oyabun.

[in Japanese] I asked you
to make a point, and you made it.

[In English] I don't understand.

He's an Envoy.

He allowed you to beat him
because he wanted an audience.

He recited the poem
so you would have to comply.

Isn't that right, Takeshi-san?

I'm not here to endanger you,
only to ask a favor.

I need a place to stay.

Off the grid.

But my great-grandson didn't know that.

I'll make amends.

Start by vacating the building.

This man did a job for me
after the fall of Stronghold.

When one of our own betrayed me,

he was caught by the Protectorate,
tortured in every way they knew how.

He never gave me up.

He is not to be bothered again!

Yukito is young,
but still, that was disappointing.

Family usually is.

I see your gift for understatement
hasn't changed.

Has anything else?

I'm still looking for her.

Horace Axley told me that she was here
on Harlan's, said he could prove it.

I protected him...

but I was too late.

Axley and I go back a long way,

He would lie to the devil himself
if he stood something to gain.

Well, someone went savage on him.
This time he wasn't lying.

I gave no orders to eliminate Axley.

The last time you were here,

you suspected your sister had hidden
Quellcrist Falconer's DHF.

Has it ever occurred to you
that Reileen was lying?

That Axley merely dangled Falconer's
whereabouts to bend you to his will?

Every minute of every day.

But if there's a chance that anything
he said is true...

I can't walk away.

That's not love.

It's obsession.

This is the first Songspire grown
in captivity,

my personal experiment over the centuries.

You sound like a scientist.

Remnants of an abandoned past.

The cells in our bodies are constantly
dying and being replaced.

As we age, we become a copy
of a copy of a copy,

degrading each time.

Meths have got around that.

Have we?

We transfer our minds into new sleeves,

but what if the spirit degrades as well?

We can't quantify the change,
but we are not the same.

I'm not the person I once was.

Neither are you.

Nor, I suspect, is she.

I didn't come here for a lesson, Oyabun.

I should get back.

Time is the greatest of all warriors.

What it doesn't destroy,

it alters beyond recognition.

Time tears down everything.

We brace our backs against the void,

desperate to hold on to the past...

to our ghosts...

to ourselves.

[device buzzes]


My apologies, sir.

I'm afraid our old haunt
is much like myself,

in a state of broken-down disarray.


Perhaps "The Nevermore"
would be a more apt moniker.

Is there whiskey?

I believe the former tenants
left a passable bottle of...

Oh! Single malt.

[Kovacs] Then it's fine.

All I want is a bed
and no more bullshit for one day.

Hmm, can I infer you... triumphed
against adversity once again?

I'm on a planet I hate,

I don't know who killed Axley
or how I'll find them,

and I'm no closer to Quell
than I was before.


that's a no.

Good night, Poe.

Good night, sir.

I can't do this anymore.

This wild-goose chase across the stars,
running after you.

This isn't true, is it?

You're just a figment...

in my head.

That's all there is left.

You're gone.

You have your answer, Tak.

- It's in the one place you're not looking.
- I don't know what that means.

When we made stacks, we thought
we severed the mind from the body,

but the truth is more complicated.

I'm done with complicated.
Either you're dead or you're not.

Our bodies know things,

our skin, our bones,

our flesh hold our experiences.

What does your body, this body, remember?

Feel what you felt...

then you can remember what you saw.

State-dependent memory.

[groans loudly]


[groans loudly]



I did what you told me.

I survived.

I'm not here for you.




["Illusion of You" by Jihae playing]

♪ I close my eyes ♪

♪ And drift away ♪

♪ To a distant sound
Of an old symphony ♪

♪ There I saw your face ♪

♪ And recalled the days
When you couldn't find ♪

♪ Your melody ♪

♪ I can hear it now ♪

♪ I think I fell in love
With an illusion ♪

♪ I think I fell in love
With an illusion of you ♪

♪ Illusion of you ♪

♪ Illusion of you ♪

♪ Many moons have passed ♪

♪ Since that winter's night ♪

♪ We poured our hearts out
Till the morning light ♪

♪ The windblown chime
Break the lovers sigh ♪

♪ The big bad wolf has cried
Too many times ♪

♪ I can hear it now ♪