Thank you for reading and trying to unpack so much from this episode.
Some people ascribe to the ‘show, don’t tell’ method of storytelling but perhaps the opposite would have made this episode stick the landing a tad better by directly addressing that Black Americans (due to colonization) have absorbed and regurgitated similar violences against each other and non-Black people.
For example, there’s been explorations of a sort throughout the series with colorism but it’s been more so unspoken and primarily involved the visuals of the episode(s) rather than the dialogue which kind of nudges at it.
I’ve stated in another comment that it’s a tightrope attempting to balance so many different voices/stories and if you aren’t adept at it then don’t do it.
The real-word implications of seeing Indigenous/Native violence collide with anti-trans violence (where oftentimes the two intersect) was just…tone deaf…and appalling. The fact Yahima didn’t even exist in the book was cause for alarm, especially with minimal to no input from those whose identities these directly impact. Missing-Murdered-Indigenous-Women-Girls MMIWG is a rampant issue where sexual/gender identity can also play a role…moreover we as Black Americans are intimately familiar with anti-trans violence, wherein Black trans Women are murdered/harmed with the highest frequency.
The story associated with this episode (from the book) would have been about the Black Freemasons assisting them in their quest for the missing pages, which would have been amazing to see and could have been more in the writing team’s wheelhouse.