The Covenant’s Banshees make their grand premiere, and a horrific airstrike corrects the live-action “Halo” series’ biggest fault with alien troops so far.
Warning! There will be spoilers for “Halo” 5 below.
The Covenant’s Banshee air raid has began to address a mistake made by Paramount in the “Halo” series, which has mainly neglected to put its principal foe to the forefront. So far, “Halo” has had a lot of narrative setup and a lackluster secondary story that has little to do with Master Chief John-117 or the Covenant (humanity’s greatest foe in the galaxy). With Banshees swooping overhead as they demonstrate the actual might and danger of the Covenant troops, “Halo“ episode 5 has gotten right to the core of what makes the “Halo” video games so enjoyable.
Prior to “Halo” episode 5, the Paramount live-action series included just one major fight between the UNSC and the Covenant at the start of the premiere. However, it only showed a small group of Covenant fighters known as Elites in “Halo”, rather than the full scope and diversity of species found in the original games and novels. Following that struggle, the Covenant invaded a UNSC ship with its lone human member Makee and a hive of Lekgolo worms, however it was just a brief interaction between the two groups. Apart from these two examples, “Halo” had either been about John-117 defying his SPARTAN training due to freshly awakened memories, dark UNSC politics, or a side plot about insurrectionists on a colony world that had nothing to do with Master Chief thus far.
Thankfully, “Halo” 5 has a fantastic action scene with the Covenant, which finally brings the much-anticipated aliens to the forefront. Furthermore, the famous appearance of the Covenant’s Banshees aircraft was amazing, coming in “quick and low,” like they did in “Halo” 3. They not only strafe the dig site and destroy an entire UNSC capital ship in minutes, but they also provide ferocious support to UNSC soldiers fighting Covenant forces on the ground, which includes Grunts, Jackals, Elites, and even a Brute. In an attempt to save his fellow SPARTAN Kai-125, Master Chief even “skyjacks” one of the Banshees, emulating perhaps one of the most rewarding maneuvers from the first “Halo” games.
Overall, “Halo” episode 5 and its new Covenant fight serve as a high point for a series that has been highly unappreciated and divisive online, as seen by the Master Chief’s helmet issue. In this way, “Halo” 5 offers a ray of optimism that the Covenant will stay at the forefront of the series’ action as it progresses. The Banshees, in particular, demonstrate the Covenant’s legitimacy as a danger to mankind by assisting the Covenant in claiming the Forerunner relic, which would perhaps lead them to the first “Halo” ring before the UNSC in the show.
While it’s understandable that the “Halo” series would wish to establish the UNSC’s complicated history and repressive attitude toward the rest of mankind, the UNSC is still canonically the strongest defense against the alien empire that aims to wipe out humanity in the show to far. With only four episodes left in “Halo” season 1, increasing the alien-based action with the Covenant is a logical way to keep viewers interested in the series. As a result, this new episode, along with its epic Banshee air raid, demonstrates that focusing on the Covenant solves many of “Halo”‘s narrative issues and complaints.