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I just finished watching season 4 of The Expanse. In the last episode, Bobbi is suspecting something is wrong with the last job she and her co-conspirators were offered. Then there's a scene where she's looking through a list of military personnel including the one guy they had been working with that seemed kind of suspicious. What I don't understand is how she concluded after looking at this list that the Martians were selling stealth tech to the OPA, since immediately after she attempts to break up the sale, it shows Bobbi saying "There was stealth tech in those containers." (episode 10 at 27:45) Can anyone explain? Or maybe the audience was supposed to conclude something completely different from that scene? Was there a particular significance to the one person in the personnel list she brought up named Norris?

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  • "person in the personnel list she brought up named Norris?" Was this guy's first name Chuck by any chance? That could explain it! – Hans Olo Dec 15 '19 at 18:47
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I saw a thread on Reddit discussing this exact question. The user Hydis pointed out in a scene prior to when Bobbi looked up the personnel list that occurred at 10:26 in episode 10, Leelee meets with Bobbi and they agree to "compare notes" regarding their current job and Beltran.

The dialog they exchange is as following (emphasis mine.)

Leelee: I couldn't find much about Beltran in the public record...

Bobbi: Me neither.

Leelee: ...So I tailed him to a naval logistics office in New Londres.

Leelee: He's a desk jockey.

Bobbi: What's his rank?

Leelee: I think he's a sergeant.

Bobbi: The security codes he's been supplying us with are high-level, typically restricted to commanding officers only.

Bobbi: They're way above his pay grade.

After that conversation, at around 24:00 in episode 10, Bobbi starts looking up other personnel that work in the same office as Beltran that may have that level of security clearance. The viewer can deduce this as the list of personnel says "logistics command" at the top.

The two people she looks into further are G. Freeman, Ring Probe Telemetry Analyst (presumably meaning The Ring) and K. Norris, Protomolecule Working Group. These people are shown to have security level 4 and 5 respectively, while Beltran is shown to be only at level 2 security clearance. The audience is therefore probably supposed to conclude that these people working with the Ring and the Protomolecule are the ones giving Beltran that level of clearance.

I'm personally not very familiar with military rankings, but the other piece of information that might supposed to be notable is that despite his level 4 security clearance, Freeman is listed as only a private, which to my understanding is a very low rank and definitely not a commanding officer, and Norris, who has security clearance 5 is only a lieutenant, which by my understanding is only a low ranked officer. This is also in contrast to Beltran who has only security clearance level 2 despite being a sergeant, which should be a higher rank than private, and not that much lower than the rank of lieutenant even though Bobbi said the security clearance Beltran was giving was "way above his pay grade."

At any rate, you can see in this scene Bobbi's reaction is to look very confused rather than shocked, so while the audience may be alarmed by words like the Ring or Protomolecule, Bobbi is almost certainly supposed to be honing in on some other detail, which seems to me probably the descrepancy between their ranks and their security clearance level.

It then cuts to the next scene where she sees that Beltran is actually dead, and that's when she becomes alarmed enough that she tries to break up the sale.

As for "How did Bobbi conclude the containers contain stealth tech?" the answer seems to probably be that she still didn't know what they were selling from her investigation into the logistics personnel until she went to actually break up the sale, and that she may have figured it out by recognizing them from her time working in the salvage yard.

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She checked 2 persons:

  1. G. Freeman - Ring Probe Telemetry Analyst enter image description here

  2. K. Norris - Protomolecule Working Group enter image description here

I'm not sure what is significance of first person, but "Protomolecule Working Group" immediately gives me a red light. I would suspect that it is not all about stealth tech, but protomolecule samples from Mars.

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  • Okay, so I misremembered exactly where Bobbi said it was stealth tech, but I went back and found the exact moment at 27:45 in episode 10, Bobbi said "There was stealth tech in those containers." This scene takes place immediately after she tried to break up the sale. So back to my original question, I doubt she could have known it was stealth tech they were moving by looking at the containers (it seems silly to label something important like that), so it seems to me like she must have figured it out in the previous scene while looking at the personnel files, but I can't figure out how. – Kai Jan 4 '20 at 23:06
  • The thing that really confused me honestly is that first it shows Norris is involved with the proto molecule, so I assumed Bobbi was worried about them secretly doing did with the proto molecule, but then it turns out no, it was stealth tech...? – Kai Jan 4 '20 at 23:16
  • She may also lie about their suspicious - it's not like you tell everything to someone you don't trust most of the season. ;] – rob006 Jan 5 '20 at 0:29
  • It wasn't a lie though. They were selling the stealth tech to Marco Inaros as his plan was to put it on asteroids so he could use them to bombard Earth without them getting detected and destroyed first. – Kai Jan 5 '20 at 0:45

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