"Phantom Lady" is the first episode of Season Two of Netflix's Altered Carbon. It aired on February 27, 2020, along with the remainder of the second season.

Promotional Synopsis

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

Recap

The episode starts at a nightclub, where Trepp, a bounty hunter, tells Poe that she knows Kovacs will show up to collect payment due to him. She asks Poe whether he knows which of the customers is Kovacs. He doesn't answer, but makes an enigmatic implication that Kovacs is on a mission to find his former lover Quellcrist Falconer; it turns out Poe doesn't work there and is only transmitted by Kovacs. When the agent who is scheduled to pay Kovacs shows up, a fight breaks out between various men claiming to be Kovacs. The agent leaves and is accosted outside by the nightclub singer who turns out to be Kovacs. Kovacs, in the sleeve of a female nightclub singer, collects his credits. Trepp confronts Kovacs in an attempt to hire him on behalf of the Meth Horace Axley, claiming Axley needs Kovacs to protect him. Kovacs refuses, and Trepp shoots him in the back.

Upon waking up, Kovacs is in a different sleeve in VR. Horace Axley, a very old Meth, asks him again to accept the assignment to protect him. In return, Kovacs will get a new, advanced sleeve and also the location of Quell. Unable to resist the notion of seeing Quell again, Kovacs accepts.

Kovacs wakes up in an unfamiliar place in an unfamiliar sleeve. He struggles to adjust, shattering a mirror in the process. When Kovacs is finally adjusted to new sleeve, he finds himself in an apartment with a shard of mirror in his chest. He exits the room to find many dead bodies, including Axley, who has strange blackened veins running over his face and neck.

After finding his bearings Takeshi activates Poe next to him and they look outside to see an Angel in the sky confirming that Takeshi and Poe are in the one place they have been avoiding for 30 years, Harlan's World.

Takeshi tells Poe they need to get out of there because they are in the home of a murdered Meth and CTAC will arrest them if they loiter there too long.

They go outside and Takeshi tells Poe they are not casting out just yet, they have a job to do. Whoever murdered Axley could be coming for them, and they need to find a place to lay low. Takeshi also tells Poe that Axley was right about Quell and they need to find her.

Takeshi tells Poe to search for information about the war and Poe says they are in the middle of it. Takeshi tells Poe to look for information on Konrad Harlan but they find out he is no longer the governor, his daughter Danica Harlan is.

In the town square, a holo appears and Danica delivers her speech she says she has signed a truce with Quellist leader Joshua Kemp.

Takeshi says they have seen enough and heads to the AI hotel.

Danica completes her speech and Mattias Stone congratulates her. Danica tells him the truce is only temporary and the Quellist will rebel. She also tells Stone they are the source of all stacks and if Colonel Correra decides to stay The Elders will take care of him. She explains the Angel Array is the only thing that stands between CTAC and Harlan's World being annihilated. She tells Stone to keep an eye on the Colonel and dismisses him.

Meanwhile, down on the streets, Takeshi and Poe head to The Nevermore Hotel but on the way Poe glitches. They arrive outside what use to be the Happy Face Hotel. 30 years ago Takeshi used this place as a safe house until Jaeger caught and killed him and he was spun back on Earth. Poe leaves Takeshi to get ready to take over the place once he is uploaded into the matrix.

Takeshi goes inside except this place is no longer a hotel. The Yakuza are using it as a cookhouse to make Reaper. Takeshi delivers a message to them in Japanese, reads them a death poem, and tells them to get out. The Yakuza draw weapons on him and Yukito tells him he is not his great-grandson and Takeshi is not Tanaseda Hideki. Poe accidentally activates to tell Takeshi he is ready but a fight breaks out. Takeshi beats the Yakuza but they overpower him and Yukito takes Takeshi to the real Hideki.

Hideki is not happy to see Takeshi impersonating him and demands his identity. Takeshi tells Hideki that he told him the death poem 300 years ago before the Battle of Stronghold and tells him that he is Takeshi Kovacs. Hideki tells his men to stand down and that Takeshi is a friend. Hideki tells his great-grandson that after Stronghold fell Takeshi worked for them to bring down a Yakuza operative who betrayed them but in the end, Takeshi was caught by CTAC and tortured but he never gave them up. Hideki tells the drug dealers to vacate the building and find another place for their Reaper lab and gives Takeshi the keys to the building. Takeshi and Hideki talk about old times and talks about how Reileen betrayed them. He tells Takeshi he did not kill Axley and if he is not careful his hunt for Quell will turn into an obsession. He shows Takeshi his Songspire Tree and tells him they are all copies and everything is not the way it used to be 300 years ago. He dismisses Takeshi and Takeshi heads back to the hotel.

On the way back Takeshi stops at the Tattoo parlor and gets his ouroboros tattoo re-applied.

In the now-vacated hotel Takeshi uploads Poe into the matrix, but his code is still corrupted and the building is falling apart. Poe finds a bottle left by the Yakuza and Takeshi takes some packs of Reaper as collateral. Takeshi tells Poe they have no leads and they are at square one, and heads up to his room to think over his situation. Takeshi talks to his subconscious in the form of Quell, who reminds him that his sleeve itself has memory, and tells him he will find the clue he is looking for if he subjects it to trauma. Takeshi takes a knife and stabs himself where the shard of mirror was lodged earlier. Through reliving this physical trauma, he is able to remember Quell stabbing him with the mirror shard earlier.

Cast

Starring

Guest starring

Media

Trivia

References

Season Two
Ep 01 • Ep 02 • Ep 03 • Ep 04 • Ep 05 • Ep 06 • Ep 07 • Ep 08
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.